Pub With No Beer

THE PUB WITH NO BEER is a tragic song made famous by country singer Slim Dusty in Australia and North America. The song was adapted by Gordon Parsons from the original poem “A Pub Without Beer” by Dan Sheahan of Ingham, North Queensland. In 1957, “A Pub With No Beer” became the first Australian single to go gold, and is still fairly well known in the pub circuit today.

Jos. Morneault


Oh, it’s lonesome away from your kindred and all
‘Round a campfire at night, where the wild dingoes call  {Bow-wooOOOooooo!}
But there’s nothin’ so lonesome, so morbid or drear
As to stand in the bar of a pub with no beer.

1. Well, the publican’s anxious for the quota to come,
There’s a faraway look on the face of the bum,
The maid’s gone all cranky and the cook’s actin’ queer –
What a terrible place is a pub with no beer!

2. The stockman rides in with his dry, dusty throat,
Goes up to the bar, pulls a wad from his coat,
But the smile on his face quickly turns to a sneer
When the barman says sadly, “The pub’s got no beer!”

3. There’s a dog on the verandah, for his master he waits,
But the boss is inside, drinkin’ wine with his mates,
He hurries for cover and he cringes in fear,
It’s no place for a dog, not a pub with no beer!

4. Then in comes the swagman, all covered with flies,
He throws down his roll, wipes the sweat from his eyes,
But when he is told he says, “What’s this I hear?
I’ve trudged fifty bleedin’ miles to a pub with no beer!”

5. Oh, pity the blacksmith – first time in his life
He’s gone home cold sober to his darlin’ wife
He walks in the kitchen; she says, “You’re early, my dear,”
Then he breaks down and he tells her that the pub’s got no beer.


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