Colonel Campbell and Mister Lang

Title:
Colonel Campbell and Mister Lang
Category:
NFSA ID:
191096
Year:
1932
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This song was considered very risque at the time of release. The lyrics refer to the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the political controversy between Colonel Campbell (head of the right-wing paramilitary group the New Guard) and NSW Premier Jack Lang. Francis de Groot, who rode up on a horse and slashed the official opening ribbon for the bridge was a member of the New Guard. Composer Jack O'Hagan did not want his name to be associated with it and used the pseudonym John Quinlan. Len Maurice and Jack Lumsdaine who sung the song used the pseudonyms Quip and Quirk. When sold in stores it was from 'under the counter'. Lyrics include 'Oh Colonel Campbell, why don't you scramble your precious gang? They have been a source of worry since we opened up the bridge, and the way they cut that ribbon was a downright sacrilege.' 

Cover image is from Sydney's Harbour Bridge (1933).