Reason Why, The

DESCRIPTION: The singer is picked up by a beautiful woman. She takes him to a house and then to bed: "You are the nicest boy I've seen today... I would love a jewelled ring." In the morning a man comes in and kicks him into the gutter. He pays and doesn't ask why
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: before 1884 (broadside, Bodleian Harding B 11(3238))
KEYWORDS: love sex violence prison punishment trial beauty drink food wife children whore ring
FOUND IN: Britain(England(Lond))
Roud #1745
RECORDINGS:
Walter Pardon, "One Cold Morning in December" (on Voice15)
BROADSIDES:
Bodleian, Harding B 11(3238), "The Reason Why" ("One night in cold December, I've reason to remember"), H. Disley (London), 1860-1883; also Firth b.28(13), Firth c.17(151), 2806 c.15(284), 2806 c.15(284), "The Reason Why"
CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "Annie of the Vale" (tune, per broadsides Bodleian Harding B 11(3238), 2806 c.15(284) and Firth b.28(13))
cf. "The Young Man Badly Walked" (plot)
NOTES: The description is based on Walter Pardon's version on Voice15.
The following description, based on broadside Bodleian Harding B 11(3238), tells a story with a different ending: The singer was picked up by a beautiful woman. She took him in tow. He paid for brandy and oysters. A dandy kicked him into the gutter. The police took him to the station-house. Before a magistrate, his wife and children he is sentenced to 30 days.
Keywords combine both stories.
Walter Pardon's version has a simple chorus:
And she said, "Come, come along, old boy,
And don't look so bashful and shy
She really was a beauty. I thought it was my duty,
So I paid and never asked the reason why.
The broadside Bodleian Harding B 11(3238) version has each "chorus" modified to advance the story. - BS
File: RcTReWhy

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.