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> Danny Spooner > Songs > Another Fall of Rain

Another Fall of Rain

[ Roud - ; AFS 3 ; Ballad Index MA154 ; John Neilson]

Martyn Wyndham-Read sang Another Fall of Rain on his 2013 CD Starlit Skies. He noted:

A song that goes back many years for me. Just recently I played it with a different rhythm and it took on a new life. The beauty of these old songs is that they will withstand any interpretation and still come back to the same shape and form. The song may be based on the poem by the Australian poet John Shaw Neilson to a tune of his time: The Little Low Log Cabin in the Lane.

Danny Spooner sang Another Fall of Rain in 2017 on his final CD, Home. He noted:

Also known as Waiting for the Rain, John Meredith collected a version from wharfie Leo Dixon, who had been a bush worker and shearer and was born at Eugowra. Meredith stated that the words were written by John Neilson of Penola, a bush worker, farmer, and balladist, and the father of John Shaw Neilson.

The last verse in this version was sent me by email and comes from Dave de Hugard"s record Freedom on the Wallaby.


Danny Spooner sings Another Fall of Rain

The weather has been sultry for a fortnight now or more
And the shearers have been driving might and main,
For some have got the century who ne’er got it before
But now we all are waiting for the rain.

Chorus (after each verse):
For the boss is getting rusty and the ringer’s caving in,
His bandaged wrist is aching with the pain,
And the second man I fear will make it hot for him
Unless we have another fall of rain.

Now some had taken quarters and were keeping well in bunk,
When we shore the six-tooth wethers from the plain.
And if the sheep get any harder some other blokes’ll flunk
Unless we have another fall of rain.

But the sky is clouding over and the thunder’s muttering loud
And the clouds are driving eastward o’er the plain.
And I see the lightning flashing round the edge of yon black cloud
And I hear the gentle patter of the rain.

So, lads, put on your stoppers and let us to the hut
And we’ll gather round and have a friendly game,
While some are playing music and some play ante up
And some just a-gazing at the rain.

Some cockies come here shearing, they would fill a little book
About this sad dry weather for the grain.
But here is lunch a-coming, make way for Dick the cook,
Old Dick is nigh as welcome as the rain.

But now the rain is over let the pressers spin the screw,
Let the teamsters back their wagons in again.
We’ll block the classer’s table by the way we push them through,
For everything goes merry since the rain.

So it’s, “Boss bring out the bottle” and let us wet the final flock,
For the shearers here may never meet again.
While some may meet next season and some not even then,
And some they will just vanish like the rain.

Final Chorus:
And the boss he won’t be rusty when his sheep they all are shore,
And the ringer’s wrist won’t ache much with the pain
Of pocketing a season’s cheque for a hundred quid or more—
And the second man will press him hard again.