Dirty Old Town

from by Shananigans

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This song was written about Salford, an industrial center in the heart of Lancashire, England, that predates the Industrial Revolution. Songwriter Ewan MacColl was born there and wrote this song about his impressions of the city while growing up. Industrial cities are by and large very dirty places, with factories spewing smoke into the skies and production waste into the rivers. They also invite trains and other modes of transportation to ship goods around the world, each bringing its own brands of pollution into an already choking place.


Songwriters: MACCOLL, EWAN 1949

I met my love by the gas works wall
Dreamed a dream by the old canal
I kissed my girl by the factory wall
Dirty old town
Dirty old town
Clouds a drifting across the moon
Cats a prowling on their beat
Spring's a girl in the street at night
Dirty old town
Dirty old town
Heard a siren from the docks
Saw a train set the night on fire
Smelled the spring on the smokey wind
Dirty old town
Dirty old town
I'm going to make a good sharp axe
Shining steel tempered in the fire
Will chop you down like an old dead tree
Dirty old town
Dirty old town


from Shananigans, released March 8, 2013
Trad. Arr. by Shananigans (c) 2013



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Shananigans Kitchener, Ontario

Shananigans have been featured on the main stages of some of the biggest festivals and venues in South Western Ontario, currently residing in the Kitchener Waterloo area of Canada it's members can trace their roots directly from Ireland, Scotland, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island. Always energetic and entertaining the Shananigans are considered fun for all ages! ... more

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