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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,John from Elsie`s Band Lyr Add: Men of Kent (Ken Barton, John Hills) (8) Lyr Add: MEN OF KENT (Ken Barton, John Hills) 12 Jan 09

Dear Dead Horse,
Your words to the song are very, very close but:-

"If you call for me on Monday, well, I won't be there.
I'll be bound off for Maidstone all to see the fair,
With a pocket full of money and a heart that's full of joy,
For there's many a thing in Maidstone to please a country boy.

CHORUS: So come all you jolly fellows; to Maidstone we will go,
Whatever is the weather, be it rain or be it snow.
We'll sport and we will drink, me boys, till all our money's spent,
And we'll prove to the world me boys we're all men of Kent.

If you want me on Tuesday, I'll tell you where I'll be:
I'll be down by the Medway, fair maidens for to see.
I'll pick me one that's handsome, that likes a bit of fun,
And I'll relieve her of her maidenhead before the day is done. CHORUS

If you want me on Wednesday, I know where I'll be found:
I'll be in the big ale house that's by the fair ground.
I'll drink of their Kentish ale to wash away the dust,
And I'll eat of the finest food until I'm fit to bust. CHORUS

On Thursday and Friday, I'll be drunk as I can be,
With all me friends around me as far as I can see,
With a wench a-sitting on me knee and a tankard at me lips,
And the beard that hangs beneath me chin a-soaking up the drips. CHORUS

And when the week is over, and I have had me fill,
I'll make me way back home again a-feeling rather ill.
Back to me home and farm again me weary legs I'll steer,
And start saving up me money to come back again next year." CHORUS

The song was written by Ken Barton and I helped him with the tune in 1970 when we were the group, "Four Square Circle", consisting Ken, the brothers Gray (Robin and Stephen) and myself. You are correct regarding three of the group being born to the west but I justify the title by being born in Harrietsham. Ken and I are still "family" and we keep in touch with Robin and Stephen. Ken lives in Cuxton and is a member of a local choral group. Even after all these years the song is still part of our band's repertoire. Apart from us, the only other singer I know to have seriously recorded it was our pal Ron Spicer and I have him on a cassette. We, "Four Square Circle", performed it once when we were booked at a club near Notting Hill, in the 1970's, called "The Crypt" and a young lass volunteered to us that the song was at least 200 years old. As you can imagine, in the words of Jethro, "We were quite surprised to hear that!"

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