If we’re going to have the melody of this song here, we might as well have some lyrics:
In a neat little town they call Belfast,
Apprentice to trade I was bound;
And the many’s the hours sweet happiness,
I’ve I spent in that neat little town.
But a sad misfortune came over me,
Which caused me to stray from the land;
Far away from me friends and relations,
Betrayed by the black velvet band.
Her eyes they shone like diamonds,
I thought her the queen of the land;
And her hair, it hair hung over her shoulder,
Tied up with a black velvet band.
I took a stroll down Broadway,
Intending not long for to stay;
When who should I meet but this pretty fair maid,
Come traipsing along the highway.
She was both fair and handsome,
Her neck it was white like a swan;
And her hair, hung down from her shoulders,
Held up with a black velvet band.
I took a stroll, with this pretty fair maid,
Met a gentleman as he passed by;
Sure, I knew she meant the doing of him,
By the look in her roguish black eye.
A gold watch she took from his pocket,
And placed it right into my hand;
And the very first thing that I said was,
“What’s this?” to the black velvet band.
But before the judge and the jury,
Next morning I had to appear;
And the judge he says to me,
"Young man, your case it is proven and clear.
I’ll give you seven years penal servitude,
To be spent far away from the land;
Far away from your friends and relations,
Betrayed by the black velvet band."
So come all you jolly young fellows,
A warning take from me;
And if you go out on the town, me boys,
Beware of the pretty Colleens.
They’ll feed you with strong drink, my lads,
’Til you are unable to stand;
And the very first thing that you’ll know is,
You’ve landed in Van Dieman’s Land.