Oh, we are a happy family and I mention it with pride
There's father, mother, me and sister Fan
It would be quite a model group that meets around the fireside
But father he is such a lazy man
He has not done a day's work since the morning he was wed
And that is five and twenty years ago
No thought of work, in fact, has ever got into his head
He's the laziest man I ever yet did know

Chorus: We all go to work but father
And he stays at home all day
He sits by the fire with a quart of beer
And he smokes a ten-inch clay
Mother works at the washtub
So does my sister Fan
I've met lazy men in my time, now and then,
But a champion is our old man

He's in three sick societies, and that's the reason why
He vows to work he never will turn out
He groans about his liver, then he'll hug his big toe and cry
'Good gracious! Here's my old complaint, the gout!'
It seems to work he wasn't worth above a pound a week
Though his was always 'a very trying job'
And so each club in turn, he patronises, so to speak
By receiving just its merry thirty bob


When the brokers vowed one day they'd come, because we owed the rent
Dear mother said, 'We'd better shoot the moon'
We packed the goods upon a truck, at twelve at night we went
But father was an obstinate old coon
He wouldn't move an inch; he wouldn't let us take his chair
So that we left him there you may reply
He said our heartless conduct should be punished, I declare
But we banged the door and shouted out, 'Good-bye'


"He waited until we were nicely settled in elsewhere and then joined us having missed all the hard work involved with moving".
PDF Sheet Music
Music hall songs showed an understanding of the daily lives of the audiences. By adding humour to the songs they enabled people to laugh at their misfortunes. For many living during the 19th Century life was harsh, young children were sent out to work in appalling conditions from as young as seven and women and the elderly worked to supplement the family income. In this song the father of the family, who would have been expected to be the main breadwinner, will not work as he is too lazy. He gets his comeuppance at the end of the song when he is removed by the bailiffs when he doesn't leave his chair.
Written, composed and performed by Leslie Reed - 1891
Performed by J.C. Heffron (1857-1934)
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