Lyrics to a version of The Rambling Boy

Apropos of nothing else so far on this website I am posting the lyrics to a version of "The Rambling Boy" as done by lonesomepaul on YouTube.

This is not your grandfather's Ramblin' Boy. And the lyrics are not from the versions by Tom Paxton or Joan Baez. Listening to Tom Paxton after this is like listening to Pat Boone sing "Blueberry Hill." Nice, but just nice.

The singer says that is a version of a song done by Pete Steele in the 1930's. I couldn't make out all the words and most of the other versions have completely different lyrics. I got the part about 'the gallows tree' from another old version by The Clayton McMichen String Band with Riley Puckett, also at YouTube.

An Irish version of the same song and story is Newry Highwayman, by Sean Cannon of the Dubliners.

If anyone can pick out the rest of the words, or can correct any of mine, please let me know and I will edit this post to reflect the changes.


"The Rambling Boy"

Oh I never guessed when I was young
where my life would take me, what I'd become
that I would be a rambling ..
and ... on a dark highway

At seventeen I married me a wife
loved her as I loved my life
she treated me unkind all night and day
she drove me to rob on a dark highway

Oh that pretty little miss .... o
there's some gals sometimes....
prettiest face and the sweetest [hands?]
oh bless the ground on which she stands

oh i never robbed those with none to spare
I only robbed the rich I do declare
I robbed them on the street at night
and I'd bring money home to my heart's delight

but now I am condemned to die
got no one to love or cry
but all their tears will not help me
as I lay awaiting for the gallows tree

my mother sits and weeps and moans
sister says she'd let them know
true love cries in deep despair
with her dark brown eyes and pretty curly hair

oh pretty little girl I served you well
I loved you more than life itself
I .... that day will come
and you will find we'll live as one

come young and old and gather around
see me laid in this old ground
I'm not shamed or scared to die
since I know I'll see you bye and bye


Picture of banjo from Wikipedia:File:BluegrassBanjo.jpg.

The lyrics are probably in the public domain. Just because I wrote them down doesn't make them mine. My introduction is copyright by me.