"At a mile distant their thousand hooves were stuttering thunder, coming at a rate that frightened a man - they were an awe inspiring sight, galloping through the red haze - knee to knee and horse to horse - the dying sun glinting on bayonet points..." Trooper Ion Idriess
The Australian Light Horse Studies Centre aims to present an accurate history as chroniclers of early Australian military developments from 1899 to 1920.
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Saturday, 29 November 2008
Australian Imperial Forces, Marching Songs, Finding the Australian National Song Topic: AIF - Marching Songs
Australian Imperial Forces
Finding the Australian National Song
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL SONG
Words by Arthur H Adams, Music by Theodore Tourrier
[From the Queenslander, 29 August 1914, p. 30.]
During 1914, the Musical Association of New South Wales conducted an international competition to produce the quintessential Australian National Song. To add to the creative pool, a prize of £100 was offered. Over the competition period, some 558 entries were received from within Australia and overseas. The winning lyrics were written by Arthur Henry Adams, the well known editor of the Sydney Sun. These were then set to a musical arrangement and the winner of that segment was Theodore John Tourrier, of Glenferrie, Victoria.
Australian Imperial Forces, Marching Songs, Marching Song of the AIF, September 1914 Topic: AIF - Marching Songs
Australian Imperial Forces
Writing the AIF Marching Song
COO-EE! COO-EE! HERE COME THE KANGAROOS
[To be sung to the tune of "Marching through Georgia"]
Writing the AIF Marching Song
When the AIF's 1st Contingent was preparing to embark, someone hurriedly penned the following song in an effort to give a patriotic flavour to the Australians going overseas, something that was a bit more than Tipperary which was the only popular marching song available at the time. The song that emerged was printed off and distributed to all the troops anticipating the day they sailed to Britain. The aim was to have Australian troops thoroughly inculcated with this distinctly Australian song that the AIF would be instantly recognisable in the foreign lands.
It is hoped that this song, which is characteristic of our country, will be adopted by the Australian Troops and sung on the march, gatherings, etc.
Copies have been distributed to all Australian Transports.
Pull yourselves together, boys, we're marching to the front, Off to join the British Tommies in a little hunt, Kaiser Bill will have to leave his sauerkraut and shunt; Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
Cooee, Cooee, here come the kangaroos, Cooee, Cooee, we never get the blues, When we're marching home again, We'll bring the beat of news Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
Boys we are who've gathered right from Darwin to the Bight, Boys from Kosciusko where the snow is always white, Boys from Oodnadatta, and we all know how to fight, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
Fellows right from Ballarat and right from Bendigo, Fellows right from Coogee where the breezes always blow, Fellows right from Bunbury and Launceston; what ho: Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
When we join the Britishers we'll sing God. save the King, When we join the Frenchman then the Marseillaise we'll sing, When we join the Belgians we will dance a Highland Fling, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
When the camp fire's burning through the watches of the night, And we yarn together as we set our pipes alight, Then we'll think of pretty lips and eyes that shine so bright, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
Though we travel many thousand miles across the foam, Though in distant countries with our guns we have to roam We can ne'er forget that old Australia is our home, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
Pretty girls who smile at us in other lands we'll find, Girls who sing and girls who dance and girls of every kind None can hold a candle to the girls we leave behind, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
England is our Motherland, we're vary proud to say, England puts her trust in us, a trust we'll ne'er betray, If she fights we'll fight with her until, she wins the day, Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
We are fighting laddies and we do not care to boast, But we mean to help to smash the mighty German host, We'll catch Kaiser William and we'll serve him up on toast Cooee my boys for dear Australia.
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