Fred Karno's Army

DESCRIPTION: "We are Fred Karno's army [or air force, etc.], Fred Karno's infantry, We cannot fight, we cannot shoot, So what damn good re we? But what damn good are we?" But it will all work out when they get to Berlin. The song has many stories of army inefficiency
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1956 (Nettel); reportedly first published 1917
KEYWORDS: soldier hardtimes humorous
FOUND IN: Britain(England)
REFERENCES (4 citations):
Brophy/Partridge-TommiesSongsAndSlang, p. 33, "Fred Karno's Army" (1 text)
Cleveland-NZ-GreatNewZealandSongbook, p. 92, "Fred Karno's Army" (2 short texts, 1 tune; in the New Zealand version, Fred Karno is replaced by Bill Massey)
Tawney-GreyFunnelLines-RoyalNavy, p. 137, "10th MTB Flotilla Song" (1 text, tune referenced; a Navy version particularized to the 10th MTB squadron)
ADDITIONAL: Reginald Nettel, _Seven Centuries of Popular Song_, Phoenix House, 1956, p. 222, "(Fred Karno's Army)" (1 partial text)

Roud #10533
cf. "The Church's One Foundation" (tune)
NOTES [34 words]: Fred Karno (1866-1941) was a comedian of the First World War era -- according to Wikipedia, he popularized the pie-in-the-face gag -- whose performances sometimes burlesqued army life. Hence this song. - RBW
Last updated in version 5.1
File: NeFrKaAr

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