I was working on a programme of songs with a prison theme to fit together with The Ould Triangle
, The Convict of Clonmel
and I wish there were no prisons
when re-finding Gaol Song
in The Penguin Book of English Folk Songs
. My version follows more-or-less exactly that which is written in the said songbook. I was delighted when trawling YouTube to find that one of my heroes, Luke Kelly, also sang it closely following the same book. Brilliant!
The song describes the dismal daily routine in a Victorian prison when serving a six-month sentence.