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puzzled Lyr Req: Dinah, Dinah show us a leg (26) RE: lyrics request - Dinah, Dinah show us a leg 30 Mar 99

I Copied this from Jug Band Rag at

Be There In The Morning... - We asked Mary Katherine Aldin for some help in identifying the composer of an old jug band tune. Kweskin recorded it as My Gal without any credit. It has also been known as Rich Gal, and by the first line of the the chorus, Be There In The Morning. Transcribed lyrics from Kweskin's version is elsewhere in this issue.

by Mary Katherine Aldin
Queen of the Obscure

First of all, from what I've always understood, this one is truly Public Domain (trad.). It's based in part on the old Black Gal, Yellow Gal blues tune, but it's also a take-off on the ancient (pre-1900) gospel tune Do, Lord, Remember Me. And one line of it is sung to the tune of Charmin' Betsy!!

The song is an internationally known dirty ditty. The British music hall version, titled Dinah Show Us Your Leg, includes the verse:

Rich girl wears a ring of gold,
The poor girl one of brass,
But the only ring that Dinah's got
Is the one around ----

...Well, I'm sure you get the picture. I think John Sebastian (or possibly somebody involved in his management) tried to copyright the song back in the Lovin' Spoonful days, but I don't see that could hold up now.

As to possible sources, the Kweskin Jug Band guys may have learned it from an old recording called Black Gal Swing by The Delta Boys (Sleepy John Estes & Son Bonds) recorded in 1941 and reissued on the LP Country Blues Classics Volume Three (Blues Classics 7), but in their case it's Black Gal and Brown Gal.

I also own an earlier version recorded in 1925 by Dora Carr as Black Girl Get There Just The Same, but it's more likely, given Muldaur's longtime fascination with Estes, that the 1941 track was their source.

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