Rockin' The Boat

1. 1000 Times No

By Eric Bogle

Vocal: Mike Agranoff

When I was nineteen I was young I was keen
And I had me a burning ambition
To be a folk singer, a dope-smoking swinger
Singing songs that were full of Tradition.
So I bought a guitar and I practiced real hard.
Wasn't good, but at least I was willin'.
But to my chagrin, a young girl came in
And said, "Can you sing some Bob Dylan?"

And I said "No, no a thousand times no! I'd rather see my life's blood spillin'.
Why I'll sing anything, even 'God Save the King', but I just won't sing any Bob Dylan!"

Well I traveled far with my trusty guitar,
Trying to gain recognition.
I sang "Matty Groves" from St. Paul to Glen Cove
In bars, clubs, and old seamen's missions.
And year after year as I traveled the road
Why I tell you the pace it was killin'.
'Cause wherever I went from Scotland to Kent,
They said, "Can you sing some Bob Dylan?"


Well I soldiered on but the magic was gone
Leaving naught but a deep sense of failure.
So I thought I would go where all failures go
And I took me a ship to Australia.
Well we landed in Sydney. The sun it shone down
On a scene that was lovely and thrilling.
But seeing my case, with a smile on his face
Customs man said, "Oy! Sing us some Dylan!"


Well ever since then, again and again
They've asked me the same boring question.
And I usually reply with a glint in my eye
And a rather indecent suggestion.
But the crunch came one night at a local hotel
Where I met a young girl who was willin'
* Put my hand on her knee, and she said "I'll agree
If first you will sing me some Dylan."


Well I tell you my friend, that was the end
Of all my traditional aspirations.
If being a folkie meant giving up nookie
I'll just find another vocation!
So the very next night at another folk club
Where the audience around me was millin',
I took off my coat and I ruptured my throat
And I sang a song just like Bob Dylan.

And the audience went wild, man woman and child.
They clapped 'til their poor hands were bleeding!
And they said (so to speak) that my style was unique
And just what the folk scene was needing.
So all you young folkies who play a guitar
If you want to achieve a top billin'
Just murder good prose and sing through your nose
And then you'll sound just like Bob Dylan


* Bogle's lyrics here are "Put my hand up her dress, and she said "I'll say yes..."