A Pub with No Beer
Slim Dusty Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

It's lonesome away, from your kindred and all
By the campfire at night, where the wild dingoes call
But there's nothing so lonesome, so morbid or drear
Than to stand in a bar, of a pub with no beer
Now the publicans anxious, for the quota to come
There's a faraway look, on the face of the bum
The maids gone all cranky , and the cooks acting queer
What a terrible place, is a pub with no beer
Then the stockman rides up, with his dry dusty throat
He breasts up to the bar, pulls a wad from his coat
But the smile on has face, quickly turns to a sneer
When the barman said sadly, the pubs got no beer
There's a dog on the v'randah, for his master he waits
But the boss is inside, drinking wine with his mates
He hurries for cover, and cringes with fear
Its no place for a dog, round a pub with no beer
Old Billy the blacksmith, first time in his life
Has gone home cold sober, to his darling wife




He walks in the kitchen, she says your early my dear
But he breaks down and tells her, the pubs got no beer

Overall Meaning

The lyrics to Slim Dusty's "A Pub with No Beer" highlight the desolation and melancholy that ensues when a person seeks solace in a bar only to find out that there is no alcohol available. The song speaks about the loneliness that one experiences when they are away from their friends and family, sitting in a bar located in a desolate area. The wild dingoes calling in the distance add to the gloominess of the setting and emphasize how desolate it could be in such areas.


The song narrates the plight of a publican, as he struggles to maintain his customers' expectation of alcohol availability in his pub. The publican is anxious for the alcohol quota to come so that he can please his customers. The customers themselves are unhappy, with the cooks becoming queer and the maids going cranky, leading to the pub becoming a terrible place. The emotions that are present in the song are ones of desperation, empathy, and concern.


Furthermore, the song talks about the frustration that people experience when alcohol supplies are low. The stockman riding up to the bar, going to buy himself an ale, is disappointed when he finds that the pub does not have any beer. The dog waiting outside for its owner, who is busy drinking wine with his mate, is also left despairing. Old Billy, the blacksmith, who had never gone home sober before, goes home early to his wife, only to tell her that the pub does not have any beer, leading to him breaking down.


Overall, Slim Dusty's "A Pub with No Beer" is an emotional song that highlights the sorrows that come with unfulfilled expectations and desires.


Line by Line Meaning

It's lonesome away, from your kindred and all
Being far away from loved ones and familiar surroundings can be a lonely experience.


By the campfire at night, where the wild dingoes call
Even though there may be beauty in nature, it is not enough to cure loneliness.


But there's nothing so lonesome, so morbid or drear
Despite other circumstances, nothing is quite as miserable as being in a pub without any beer.


Than to stand in a bar, of a pub with no beer
Being in a bar without any beer leaves a person with nothing to do but feel bored and miserable.


Now the publicans anxious, for the quota to come
The pub owner is anxious for the beer order to arrive.


There's a faraway look, on the face of the bum
The homeless person has a blank expression on their face, indicating that they are struggling through life and suffering from hardships.


The maids gone all cranky , and the cooks acting queer
The staff are all agitated and unhappy because of the pub's shortage of beer.


What a terrible place, is a pub with no beer
A pub without any beer is a horrible place to be in for anyone, whether it is a customer or a worker.


Then the stockman rides up, with his dry dusty throat
The cattle herder arrives at the pub with a parched throat from working all day in the dust and heat.


He breasts up to the bar, pulls a wad from his coat
He confidently walks up to the bar and takes out his wallet to buy a beer.


But the smile on has face, quickly turns to a sneer
However, the stockman's smile turns into a frown when he is told that there is no beer left in the pub.


When the barman said sadly, the pubs got no beer
The bartender is sad and apologetic for not having any beer left to offer the customer.


There's a dog on the v'randah, for his master he waits
A loyal dog is waiting on the veranda for his owner to finish his drink and come out of the pub.


But the boss is inside, drinking wine with his mates
The owner of the dog is inside the pub, drinking wine with his friends and ignoring his pet's loyalty.


He hurries for cover, and cringes with fear
The dog runs away in fear because the pub has become an unwelcoming place for him, without any beer for his owner or customers.


Its no place for a dog, round a pub with no beer
A pub without any beer is not a place where anyone, not even a dog, wants to be in.


Old Billy the blacksmith, first time in his life
A character named Billy, who works as a blacksmith, finds himself in a pub with no beer for the first time ever.


Has gone home cold sober, to his darling wife
As a result of the pub's lack of beer, Billy has to leave the pub completely sober and go back home to his wife.


He walks in the kitchen, she says your early my dear
Billy's wife is surprised to see him home early.


But he breaks down and tells her, the pubs got no beer
Billy, feeling defeated and disappointed, tells his wife that the pub they went to had no beer.




Lyrics © O/B/O APRA AMCOS
Written by: Gordon Noel Parsons

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on or correct specific content, highlight it

Genre not found
Artist not found
Album not found
Song not found
Most interesting comment from YouTube:

@HNL_Project

Lyrics if your Curious :

Well it's lonesome away from your kindred and all
By the camp fire at night
Where the wild dingos call
But there's nothin' so lonesome
Morbid or drear
Than to stand in the bar of a pub with no beer

Now the publican's anxious for the quota to come
And there's a far away look on the face of the bum
The maids got all cranky and
And the cooks acting queer
What a terrible place, is a pub with no beer

Then the stockman rides up with his dry dusty throat
He presses up to the bar and pulls a wad from his coat
But the smile on his face quickly turns to a snear
As the barman says sadly
"The pubs got no beer."

Then the swaggy comes in smoothered in dust and flies
He throws down his roll and rubs the sweat from his eyes
But when he is told he says "what's this I hear"
I've trudged fifty flamin' miles
To a pub with no beer

Now there's a dog on the veranda for his master he waits
But the boss is inside drinkin' wine with his mates
He hurries for cover and he cringes with fear
It's no place for a dog
Round a pub with no beer

And old Billie the Blacksmith, the first time in his life
Why he's gone home cold sober to his darling wife
He walks in the kitchen she says your early Bill dear
But then he breaks down and he tells her
The pub's got no beer

Well its hard to believe that there's customers still
But the money's still tinkling in the old ancient til
The wine dots are happy and I know they're sincere
When they say they don't care if the pubs got no beer

So it's a lonesome away from your kindred and all
By the camp fire at night
Where the wild dingos call
But there's nothin' so lonesome
Morbid or drear
Than to stand in the bar of that pub with no beer



All comments from YouTube:

@KxllerEggYT

This was played at my Grandpas funeral. Coming to say how lovely the song is and how much it means to me now!

@davidgreen4099

If this doesn't put a smile on your face you're not human

@callofduty3807

I want to go back to these times.

@mangosandpineapples4301

When Slim Dusty toured the Highlands of Papua New Guinea back in the early 90s...maaan it was like the second coming of Christ. Crowds walked days across valleys mountains,rivers etc to watch this Aussie Legend perform.I was just a young teenager among the massive crowd dancing and singing along to Slim Dusty.
Rest in Peace,Sir.
Love from a fan in PNG.

@thecookedchef.recipes

Thats such a cool story, thanks for sharing

@soniaturvey7391

Slim was great

@coldlakealta4043

G'day! Canada here: as a kid I grew up on Canadian Military bases (we were called base brats) and there were continuous exchanges with soldiers and airmen from other Commonwealth countries. By far the favourites were the Aussies - military bases are dreary places, but they lit up when the Aussies were here. We learned all about Mateship. Slim Dusty and Gordon Ramsay. They were the most open and hospitable guys I have seen. How can you not love a country which pauses in the middle of Slim's funeral to sing Pub With No Beer? All the best to you, mates.

@davidharvey321

Im curious if they were homophobic lol

@SuperMikado282

And plays a civilised game called cricket, which they are very good at.

@SuperMikado282

@@davidharvey321 Why?
Just enjoy this song.
Don't you have a sense of humour.

More Comments

More Versions