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Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ya - Dropkick Murphys

Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ya

The Meanest of Times
irish punk celtic punk folk punk punk rock


"Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye" (AKA Johnny We Hardly Knew Ye, and Johnny I Hardly Knew Ya) is a popular Irish traditional anti-war and anti-recruiting song. It is generally dated to the early 19th century, when Irish troops served the British East India Company. The original refers to the soldiers from Athy, County Kildare that fought in "Sulloon" (Ceylon - now Sri Lanka) for the East India Company. It has become a definitive anti-war song.


Dropkick Murphys are a punk rock band formed in Quincy, Massachusetts, United States in 1996. First playing together in the basement of a friend's barbershop, the band made a name for itself because of its relentless touring and for its annual St. Patrick's Day weekend shows in Boston. The band's songs often deal with Celtic influences, and the working-class environment in which the band members grew up. The band put out a series of EPs and was signed by Rancid frontman Tim Armstrong's label Hellcat Records. Show more ...

Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ya - Dropkick Murphys

When on the road to sweet Athy,
Hurroo Hurroo
When on the road to sweet Athy,
Hurroo Hurroo
When on the road to sweet Athy
A stick in the hand, A drop in the eye
A doleful damsel I heard cry
Johnny I hardly knew ya

Where are the eyes that looked so mild,
Hurroo Hurroo
Where are the eyes that looked so mild,
Hurroo Hurroo
Where are the eyes that looked so mild
When my poor heart you first beguiled
Why did ya run from me and the child
Johnny I hardly knew ya

[Chorus:]
We had guns and drums and drums and guns,
Hurroo Hurroo
We had guns and drums and drums and guns,
Hurroo Hurroo
We had guns and drums and drums and guns
The enemy never slew ya
Johnny I hardly knew ya

Where are the legs with which you run,
Hurroo Hurroo
Where are the legs with which you run,
Hurroo Hurroo
Where are the legs with which you run,
When first you went to carry a gun
Indeed your dancing days are done
Johnny I hardly knew ya

[Chorus:]

You haven't an arm, you haven't a leg,
Hurroo Hurroo
You haven't an arm, you haven't a leg,
Hurroo Hurroo
You hadn't an arm, you hadn't a leg
You're a armless, boneless, chickenless egg
You'll have to be put with the bowl to beg
Johnny I hardly knew ya

[Chorus:]

I'm happy for to see ya home,
Hurroo Hurroo
I'm happy for to see ya home,
Hurroo Hurroo
I'm happy for to see ya home
From the isle of Ceylon
Johnny I hardly knew ya

[Chorus:]



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