Poor Old England

(Photo: Geri Tallone)
(Photo: Geri Tallone)

My father-in-law, Solomon, born in Whitechapel in 1887, was noted for singing an endless number of English music hall songs. One in particular springs to mind. Please click the player below to hear Solly’s rendition of Poor Old England (1907), lyrics provided.

Poor old England, isn’t it a picture? Everything you see you must agree,
The carpet on the stairs, the table and the chairs are made in Germany.
When I go up into me bedroom, lying in a tiny cot
Is a little baby boy, mother’s pride and only joy,
That’s the only little thing that England’s got.



The Weaker Sex?

Solomon and Annie c. 1918
Solomon and Annie c. 1918

Pictured above are my in-laws from England, Solomon (“Solly”) and Annie. Solly was born in London in 1887. He possessed an inexhaustible repertory of English music hall songs, developed over decades of dedicated practice. He would sing at the drop of a hat, to Annie’s dismay. In 1955, my husband recorded his dad. I am providing just one example here among dozens of ditties. The recording is a song called “The Weaker Sex”. Click the player below to hear him, lyrics provided…

By the wink of her eye she can capture your body and soul.
By the wave of her tongue she can drive you up the pole.
She can rush a man, crush a man whenever he goes too far.
Oh, the weaker sex are wonderful strong they are.