Jimmy learned this from the singing of Ewan D. Rodgers. A.L.Lloyd recorded it on his 1956 album 'Australian Bush Songs' (available on Fellside FECD219). He wrote: The Australian bush poet A.B. (banjo) Patterson included this text among his published works, though it is not clear whether he actually wrote it or merely remade it as Burns did certain Scots folk lyrics. Sometimes called The Old Jig Jog, it is well known among sheep and cattle hands. The Castlereagh is one of the tributaries of the Barwon River in New South Wales. Patterson entitled it A Bushmans Song.

Castlereagh (Roud 8399)

 

I'm riding down the Castlereagh, and I'm a station-hand,
I'm handy with a ropin' pole, I'm handy with the brand.
I can ride a rowdy colt and swing an axe all day;
But there's no demand for station-hands along the Castlereagh.

And It's shift, boys, shift, there isn't the slightest doubt
It's time that we were moving to the stations further out

I saddled up my pony and I whistled on me dog
And I made for the country at the old jig-jog.

 

I answered a call for shearin' once along the Marthaguy.
“We shear non-union men,” says he. “I call it scab,” says I.
I look a look along the shearing floor as I got up to go:
There was 8 to 10 non union men a’ shearin' in a row

And It's shift, boys, shift, there isn't the slightest doubt
It's time that we were moving, the leprosies about
I saddled up my pony and I whistled on me dog
And I made for the country at the old jig-jog.

 

I went to Illawarra where my brother' has a farm.

He has to ask the landlord's leave before he'll lift an arm.
The rich man owns the countryside: man, woman, dog and cat,
And they haven't the cheek to dare to speak without they tip their cap

And It's shift, boys, shift, there isn't the slightest doubt
That little landlord he and I are soon to fallen out
Was I to tip my hat to him? Was I his bloody dog?
And I made for the country at the old jig-jog.

 

I'm riding down the Castlereagh, and I'm a station-hand,
I'm handy with a ropin' pole, I'm handy with the brand.
And I can ride a rowdy colt and swing an axe all day;
There's no demand for station-hands along the Castlereagh

 

And It's shift, boys, shift, there isn't the slightest doubt

It's time that we were moving, the leprosies about

I saddled up my pony and I whistled on me dog

And I made for the country at the old jig-jog.

A.B.(Banjo) Patterson