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Lyr Add: Susan Van Doozen (Lincoln, Shepherd)

Joe Offer 27 May 09 - 02:25 PM
GUEST 28 Jan 18 - 01:48 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: Susan Van Doozen
From: Joe Offer
Date: 27 May 09 - 02:25 PM

Bob Coltman mentioned this in another thread, and I thought it deserved to be posted in its entirety, such as it is.

First, here's what Bob posted:

4. Susan Van Doozen
(No, it didn't originate with Bill Haley in 1947.)

This 1899 song by Joe Lincoln and Henry Shepherd can stand as an example of many songs (just think how many used "I love my wife, but oh! you kid!") that have a catchy hook but don't stand up as a whole.

    Susan Van Doozen, the girl of my choosin',
    You stick to my bosom like glue,
    When this you're perusin', remember I'm musin',
    Sweet Susan Van Doozen, on you,
    So don't be abusin' my offer and bruisin'
    A heart that is willin' to woo,
    And please be excusin', and not be refusin',
    Oh! Susan Van Doozen, please do.
As the wonderfully silly "Susan" had the misfortune to stem from an otherwise mostly forgettable, clumsy song frame and a scarcely better melody, music publishers tried to keep squeezing money out of the copyright by putting it in medleys with any two other songs, sometimes as "Susan Van Dusen," sometimes as "Susan McGoozan" (the latter apparently to get rid of its Dutchness). By 1940 its origins were completely obscured.

Here are the lyrics I found:

(words by Joe Lincoln, Music by Henry Shepherd)

I 'll write, for I 'm witty, a popular ditty,
    To bring to me shekels and fame,
And the only right way one may write one to-day
    Is to give it some Irish girl's name.
There's "Rosy O'Grady," that dear "steady lady,"
    And sweet "Annie Rooney " and such,
But mine shall be nearly original, really,
    For Susan Van Doozen is Dutch.

O Susan Van Doozen ! the girl of my choos'n',
You stick in my bosom like glue ;
While this you 're perusin', remember I'm, mus'n',
Sweet Susan Van Doozen, on you.
So don't be refus'n' my offer, and bruis'n'
A heart that is willing to woo;
And please be excus'n', not, cold and refus'n',—
O Susan Van Doozen, please do !

Now through it I'll scatter—a quite easy matter—
Some lines that we all of us know,
How "The neighbors all cry as she passes them by,
'There's Susan, the pride of the row!' "
And something like "daisy" and "setting me crazy,"
—These lines the dear public would miss—
Then chuck a "sweetheart" in, and " never to part" in,
And end with a chorus like this:

O Susan Van Doozen! before I'd be los'n'
One glance from your eyes of sky-blue,
I vow I'd quit us'n' tobacco and booz'n',
(That word is not nice, it is true).
I wear out my shoes, 'n' I 'm los'n' my roos'n',
My reason, I should say, dear Sue,—
So please change your views 'n' become my own Susan,
O Susan Van Doozen, please do!

    from Cape Cod Ballads. 1902. pages 79-80

There's a recording you can listen to here (click) (Instrumental only)

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Susan Van Doozen (Lincoln, Shepherd)
Date: 28 Jan 18 - 01:48 PM

When I was a little girl in the 50’s my daddy called me Susan MacGoozan, and used to recite the name with “she sticks to my bosom like glue”. He passed when I was only 7, but as a young woman a friend of his then quoted to me “I’d rather be losin my cig’rettes n boozin than losin my Susan MacGoozan”. I hadn’t known it was an wild song until then. Looks like they may have gotten some of the words mixed up, but so much fun to find it here. Thank you!

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