Riley and I Were Chums

DESCRIPTION: "Oh, RIley and I were chums and always shared... Take my word whatever I done, I handed it over to Riley." The singer gave Riley a share of his drink. When he is arrested, he gives Riley the warrant. When his wife is unpleasant, he gives her to Riley
AUTHOR: Words: (see NOTES) / Music: Felix McGlennon
EARLIEST DATE: 1941 (Peters)
KEYWORDS: humorous drink wife friend
FOUND IN: US(MW) Canada(Newf)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Peters, pp. 57-58, "Riley and I Were Chums" (1 text,1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Johnny Burke (William J. Kirwin, editor), _John White's Collection of Johnny Burke Songs_, Harry Cuff Publications, St. John's, 1981, #91, p. 133, "Riley and I Were Chums" (1 text)

Roud #9080
ALTERNATE TITLES:
I Handed It Over to Riley
NOTES [128 words]: This song seems to have been best known from the singing of Johnny Burke, and some suspect he wrote it as a result. However, a nearly-illegible songster I found online (the "Gimme My Money Songster") appears to credit the words to Frank Totisey. I cannot read the composer's name at all. but another Internet source credits Felix McGlennon. The lyrics are there credited to Albert Hall. The title given is "I Handed It Over to Riley." The copyright date is nineteenth century. Since Burke lived from 1851 to 1930, he could have written it, but I note that the White/Kirwin edition of Burke's songs puts it in the later part of the book, with the songs that are not as firmly established as being by Burke.
It does seem more like a Stage Irish song than a Burke song. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.3
File: Pet057

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List

Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2018 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.