I've Been Working on the Railroad
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Bill Basham


Information
Lyrics
The origins of the tune are unknown. Some trace it back to a "Louisiana Levee" song of African-Americans. Others believe it is an old hymn adapted by the Irish work gangs in the West. The verses of "Dinah" and "Someone's In the Kitchen" are later additions. The tune was also adapted by Texans as The Eyes of Texas are Upon You. Dinah may refer to a woman OR a locomotive. The horn signifies the call to lunch. I've been working on the railroad
All the livelong day
I've been working on the railroad
Just to pass the time away

Can't you hear the whistle blowing
Rise up so early in the morn
Can't you hear the captain shouting
Dinah, blow your horn

Dinah, won't you blow
Dinah, won't you blow
Dinah, won't you blow your horn
Dinah, won't you blow
Dinah, won't you blow
Dinah, won't you blow your horn

Someone's in the kitchen with Dinah
Someone's in the kitchen I know
Someone's in the kitchen with Dinah
Strumming on the old banjo, and singing

Fie, fi, fiddly i o
Fie, fi, fiddly i o
Fie, fi, fiddly i o
Strumming on the old banjo
Related Links
Information and lyrics from
Best Loved Songs of the American People
See Bibliography for full information.