A Soldier I Shall Be

A few years ago I played a gig in a bar that was the last stop on a "hash." Hashing was a new phenomenon to me - the best description I've heard is "a running club with a drinking problem...or maybe a drinking club with a running problem." These guys and girls run around, drink heavily, then convent to a bar to sing "hash hymns," most of which are extremely neughty versions of old playground songs. It was so much like being at summer camp that I could almost smell the eggseronious.

One hymn was:

A sol, a sol, a soldier I shall be
two pis, two pis, two pistols on me knee
for count, for count, for country and glory
a sol, a sol, a soldier I shall be.


Say it out loud and you'll get a good impression of what's dirty about it, if you can't tell by looking.

I've since seen several variations online. Many subsitute "for cu, fo cu, for curiosity" for the third line (which works better if sung with a British accent than it does with an American one).

Another whole verse I've seen goes:

Harass, harass, harass them in the dark
each hit, each hit, each hit will find its mark."


I haven't found this in print anywhere yet. My guess would be that it started in the military and filtered its way down to the playground, as often happens. What versions did you know?

4 comments:

  1. Heard this in Weybridge, Endland - around 1980, at school. I think it's still funny. Slight difference on the end line being:
    "What a count, what a count, what a country boy."

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  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  3. Australia, early '70s:
    A sol, a sol, a soldier I shall be
    two pis, two pis, two pistols on my knee
    for cu, fo cu, for curiosity
    to fight for the old count, fight for the old count,
    fight for the old country,
    to fight for the old count, fight for the old count,
    fight for the old country.

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  4. My c(o)unt-
    My c(o)unt-
    My country's calling me
    A sol-
    A sol-
    A soldier I shall be
    A hor-
    A hor-
    A horsie I will ride
    A pis-
    A pis-
    A pistol at my side!

    NY/Conn, about 1980, from a NROTC buddy, as a marching cadence.

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PLEASE tell us where and when you heard your version (ie, "Chicago, early 1950s). And please be aware that the information may end up in a book sooner or later.