Song about a professed teetotaller who slyly drinks in secret. At the time this song was written abstinence from drink was a popular subject. Temperance lecturers had visited Newcastle since the Beer Act of 1830 had led to a nationwide eruption of beer houses. In 1858 the North of England Temperance League was founded and gained massive support in the region. This is one of many songs published in the late nineteenth century on being 'teetotal'. Joe Wilson, in particular, wrote a large number of songs for the Temperance Movement in the 1860s.
This collection comprises a selection of songs taken from the Keelmin's comic annewal, a collection of local facts, tales, songs and other ephemera. The book was published by local printer J.W. Chater and forms part of a series of similar annuals and almanacs published by the same printer. A large majority of the songs were written especially for the publication, many as competition pieces which were judged by Chater. The various annuals contain contributions from many well known local composers such as Joe Wilson and would have been popular in their day. The books are now held at Beamish Museum.