A Lusty Young Smith

A lusty young smith

I don't often do such naughty songs but I can't resist this one. The words come from Thomas D'Urfey's "Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy," published in 1717. It was set to music by Ed McCurdy for one his Electra albums in the series 'When Dalliance was In Flower and Maidens Lost the Heads." Ed was ably accompanied by Eric Darling and Alan Arkin. Jac Holzman tells the whole story on his history of Electra, which you can read on line Follow the Music.

Ed was a folksinger, actor, and all around great performer, best known for composing 'Last Night I Had the Strangest Dream'. He recorded mountians of albums for Electra, Folkways, Tradition, Rivierside and other labels in the 60's and 70's. I'm deeply indebted to Ed for much of my repertoire.


A lusty young smith at his vice stood a-filing.
His hammer laid by but his forge still aglow.
When to him a buxom young damsel came smiling,
And asked if to work in her forge he would go.

With a jingle bang jingle bang jingle bang jingle.
With a jingle bang jingle bang jingle high ho.

"I will," said the smith, and they went off together,
Along to the young damsel's forge they did go.
They stripped to go to it, 'twas hot work and hot weather.
They kindled a fire and she soon made him glow.

With a jingle . . .

Her husband, she said, no good work could afford her.
His strength and his tools were worn out long ago.
The smith said "Well mine are in very good order,
And I am now ready my skill for to show."

With a jingle . . .

Red hot grew his iron, as both did desire,
And he was too wise not to strike while 'twas so.
Said she, "What I get I get out of the fire,
So prithee, strike home and redouble the blow."

With a jingle . . .

Six times did his iron, by vigorous heating,
Grow soft in her forge in a minute or so,
But as often was hardened, still beating and beating,
But the more it was softened, it hardened more slow.

With a jingle . . .

When the smith rose to go, quoth the dame full of sorrow:
"Oh, what would I give could my husband do so.
Good lad with your hammer come hither tomorrow,
But pray could you use it once more ere you go!"

With a jingle . . .

C standard