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The Man They Couldn't Hang

from Angel In Reverse by Ian Bland

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    Ian Bland's second album, backed with an outstanding lineup of local and international musicians

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the man they couldn't hang

a policeman was murdered, the jury wasted no time
the prisoner faced the judge and he bowed his head
“i sentence you joseph samuels, for this terrible crime”
“to be hung by the neck till you are dead”

he cried out “i'm no murderer”
“i didn't beat that man to death”
“i swear to god, with my dying breath”

he closed his eyes and began to pray
the rope pulled tight, then the rope gave way
the crowd was hushed
for the man they couldn't hang

a man called simmonds, shared joseph's cell
he confessed one night he did the constable in
but they swore an oath, swore they'd never tell
said he'd see 500 hang to save his own skin

now joseph lay there dazed
as they dragged him from the ground
held him till another rope was found

then they hauled him high in the morning breeze
the rope unravelled, he slid to his knees
the crowd begged mercy
for the man they couldn't hang

they arrested simmonds, found blood on his clothes
he was charged with murder along with joseph his friend
but he convinced the jury, the blood came from his nose
once you're acquitted, they can't try you again

but they made him watch poor joseph
as he dangled from that noose
the rope snapped, for the third time he dropped loose

“set the poor wretch free”, the governor cried
“where man has failed let god decide”
the crowd they cheered
for the man they couldn't hang


from Angel In Reverse, released September 7, 2012


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Ian Bland Melbourne, Australia

Ian Bland - Melbourne based singer songwriter - musical influences include country, celtic, and folk with stories drawn from rural and urban Australia

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