Come Out Ye Black And Tans

I was [Am] born in a Dublin street where the [G] loyal drums do beat
And the [Am] loving English feet they tramped all over us
And [C] each day and every night when my [G] father comes home tight
He'd [Am] invite the neighbours [G] outside with this [Am] chorus

Oh come[Am] out ye Black and Tans, come out and [G] fight me like a man
Show your [Am] wives how you won medals down in Flanders
Tell [C] them how the IRA made you [G] run like hell away
From the [Am] green and lovely [G] lanes in Kille[Am]shandra

Come let [Am] me hear you tell how you've [G] slung the brave Parnell
When you [Am] thought him well and truly persecuted
Where [C] are your sneers and jeers that you [G] loudly let us hear
When [Am] our heroes of [G] '16 were [Am] executed

Oh come[Am] out ye Black and Tans, come out and [G] fight me like a man
Show your [Am] wives how you won medals down in Flanders
Tell [C] them how the IRA made you [G] run like hell away
From the [Am] green and lovely [G] lanes in Kille[Am]shandra

Oh let me [Am] hear you slew them poor [G] Arabs two by two
Like the [Am] Zulus they had spears and bows and arrows
How [C] you bravely faced each one with your [G] sixteen-pounder gun
And [Am] you've frightened them poor [G] natives to their [Am] marrows


[chorus]
Oh come[Am] out ye Black and Tans, come out and [G] fight me like a man
Show your [Am] wives how you won medals down in Flanders
Tell [C] them how the IRA made you [G] run like hell away
From the [Am] green and lovely [G] lanes in Kille[Am]shandra


[Verse]
Well the [Am] day is closing fast and the [G] time will soon be past
When each [Am] dawning will be cast aside afore us
And [C] if I be in need then me kids [G] will say godspeed
With [Am] a bar or two of Stephen [G] Behan`s [Am] chorus


[chorus]
Oh come[Am] out ye Black and Tans, come out and [G] fight me like a man
Show your [Am] wives how you won medals down in Flanders
Tell [C] them how the IRA made you [G] run like hell away
From the [Am] green and lovely [G] lanes in Kille[Am]shandra

“Come Out, Ye Black and Tans” was written by Dominic Behan as a tribute to his father, Stephen. The melody was adapted from an old air, Rosc Catha na Mumhan (Irish for Battlecry of Munster) by Piaras Mac Gearailt.

The Black and Tans were a force of temporary Police created by Winston Churchill to assist the RIC during the Irish War of Independence. They were recruited from Great Britain, and most were veterans of WW1. The name comes from their mixed khaki British army and green RIC uniforms.

They were known for their brutal and arbitrary reprisals against the civilian population. They went throughout Ireland burning villages, and even attacked the Catholic clergy. This was sanctioned by the British government, and these random atrocities continued for the remainder of the war.

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