American Old Time Song Lyrics: 31 Oh What An Alteration

Theater, Music-Hall, Nostalgic, Irish & Historic Old Songs, Volume 31

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OH! WHAT AN ALTERATION.
Words and Music by Eldred Powel Sung by Charles Coborn.

As every one's aware, America's always in repair,
And frequently we hear the exclamation,
When people see a change, and they come on something strange,
Oh! what an alteration.
On the stage of life we see things that genuine seem to be,
But, after all, they're only imitation.
When the scenes we look behind what a difference we find,
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
Now, there! well, I do declare!
Oh! what an alteration.

What lots of friends you'll find, so generous and kind,
Who'll show you such respect and admiration;
But tell them that you're down-want to borrow half-a-crown-
Oh! what an alteration.
Though poverty's no sin, let a man be stumped for "tin,"
His friends will give him little consolation;
But if by chance they hear he's been left a thou' a year.
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
What joy! How d'ye do, dear boys?
Oh! what an alteration.

Some fellows take delight in boasting they can fight.
You'd fancy they were champions of the nation;
But if into a row they ever get, somehow,
Oh! what an alteration.
Though if you are too bold, you are likely to be sold
By some one strong in fistic agitation;
And your pals to you may say, when they see your face next day,
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
Oh, law! why wasn't it a draw?
Oh! what an alteration.

Then you meet with Tom or Jack, and a horse he's going to back
For all he's worth, on solid information;
But when the race is run and the horse it hasn't won,
Oh! what an alteration.
And when a Welsher, flash, gets a crowd of people's cash,
And they catch him trying to leave the situation.
When they've given him a treat in a horse-pond, cool and sweet,
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
What a plight! Serves the beggar right!
Oh! what an alteration.

In town there's many a don with cuffs and collar on,
Looks fit for lords' and dukes' association;
But when his coat is off he's a dickey-looking toff-
Oh! what an alteration.
While the darling ladies, sweet, look so pretty, plump and neat,
Their charming figures gain our admiration;
But when at home they stay, with the bird-cage put away,
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
Girls, it's true, you know it's what you do.
Oh! what an alteration.

In a fellow's courting days his girl he loves to praise;
But When he's passed the marriage operation,
And he finds that she has got such a temper, nice and hot,
Oh! what an alteration.
then he forward looks, with joy, to a darling baby boy;
Ah! But when he has to soothe its agitation,
In a garment very slight, in the bedroom late at night,
Oh! what an alteration.

Refrain.
Ain't he wild! "Come and take the child."
Oh! what an alteration.
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III