Words and Music: Hughie Cannon (1902)


“Won’t you come home, Bill Bailey,
Won’t you come home?”
She moans the whole day long.
“I’ll do the cooking honey, I’ll pay the rent,
I know I’ve done you wrong.

“`Member that rainy eve when
I drove you out,
With nothing but
A fine-toothed comb?
I know I’m to blame –
Well, ain’t that a shame! –
Bill Bailey,
Won’t you please come home?”


Though written over a century ago by Cannon, an American songwriter and pianist, “Bill Bailey” (as it is commonly referred to) is still a standard with Dixieland and traditional jazz bands.


Bobby Darin puts his own spin on this number:

And here is the Sing-A-long version for listening to and downloading:

Bill Bailey