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The Man On The Bridge Lyrics

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The Man On The Bridge Song Lyrics. Written By Des Wade. It's about a Dublin street photographer Arthur Fields who, it is estimated, took over 180,000 photos of people on and around O'Connell Bridge for 50 years.  How the figure of 180,000 was arrived at. He was on the bridge for 50 years, he worked 365 days a year. He took 10 photos. a day for the 365 days and x that by 50. My own guess is that he took over a million photos. He took my photo outside The Savoy Cinema on O'Connell in 1977. He's give you a ticket after taking the picture and you would go to his office which was located over Eason's book shop on O'Connell Street a few days later where you'd pay a woman behind the counter and she's give you the photo. I watched Arthur work several times and he would take your picture even if you didn't want it taken. Sometimes he would take 10 snaps in a couple of minutes.

Des Wade Songs

A gentleman came from a far away land
And here on the bridge you’d see him each day
With his coat and hat and his camera in hand
He photographed people passing his way
Arthur Fields is the man with the cameras
And for fifty years it’s his pitch
He captures all those from the plain to the glamorous
Who pose for the man on the bridge
Fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers
Uncles and aunties, friends and lovers
Family re-unions and Holy communions
Events great and small - he recorded them all

Tho’ many passed over, lots are still living
And the memories in each picture keep giving
And for us it’s an honour and a rare kind of privilege
To share the life’s work of the man on the bridge
And here’s a young couple engaged to be married
And here’s a baby in arms being carried
The homecoming exile - kids out out on the tear
For all these the man on the bridge was there

Now far and wide his photos are found
In countless collections he figures
We remember the faces time hasn’t worn down
And they still look out from his pictures
Tho’ sadly for some a print that’s long-faded
Of a time and a face may be all that remains
Our world is the better for an archive so rich
As the work done by Arthur - the man on the bridge

Des Wade 2014


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