Springtime Brings On The Shearing


Ed Trickett: guitar, lead vocal; Cathy Barton: banjo, vocal; Dave Para: guitar, vocal; Additional chorus vocals: Caroline Paton, Sandy Paton, Harry Paton

Martyn Wyndham-Read, a wonderful English singer, learned two verses of this song in 1963, while he was working on the Emu Springs sheep station, thirty miles from the town of Tintinara in South Australia. He later found two more verses "in a book." Ed heard him sing it last year in a concert in Washington, DC, and Martyn has recently recorded it on his Fellside release, Mussels on a Tree. The traditional song seems to have evolved from a longer poem, "The Wallaby Track," by E. J. Overbury, first published in his Bush Poems, 1865.

Sandy Paton

Well, the springtime brings on the shearing,
And it's then you will see them in droves,
To the west country stations all steering,
To find them a job up the coast.

With a ragged old swag on me shoulder,
And a billy quart-pot in me hand,
I tell you we'll astonish the new chums
To see how we travel the land.

From the Billabone, Murray, and Lodden
To the far Tatiara and back
Oh, the mountains and plains are well-trodden
By the men on the Wallaby Track.

There are many who stick during shearing,
Then pack up their swag on their back.
For the rest of the year they'll be steering
On their well-beloved Wallaby Track.

And after the shearing is over,
And the wool season's all at an end,
It's then you will see those flash shearers
Making johnny-cakes on 'round the bend.

©1992 Folk-Legacy Records, Inc. Sharon, Connecticut 06069
  Used by permission.