Flies Are On the Tummits, The
DESCRIPTION: Singer has been farming all his life but "the only thing that flourishes is the damnation weeds." Flies are on his turnips... his live stock "eat me up and never turn out right." "No matters what I sell is cheap, but what I buy is dear"
EARLIEST DATE: 1976 (recording, Ted Laurence)
KEYWORDS: farming hardtimes nonballad animal bug chickens horse sheep
FOUND IN: Britain(England(Lond))
Ted Laurence, "The Flies Are On the Tummits" (on Voice20)
cf. "Seven Cent Cotton and Forty Cent Meat" (theme of poor living for farmers)
cf. "The Turnip-Hoer" (them of a turnip farmer's life)
NOTES: Roud lumps this with "The Turnip-Hoer," with which it shares some lyrics, but Ben Schwartz and I both consider the general plots distinict enough to split them. "The Turnip-Hoer" is about the singer's employment history; "The Flies Are On the Tummits" about the hard life of a farmer.
Widespread growing of turnips, incidentally, was a relatively recent practice; for details, see the notes to "The Turnip-Hoer." - RBW
Last updated in version 2.5
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 2017 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.