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What is a kid's song?

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SandyBob 29 Jul 99 - 03:10 PM
Tiger 29 Jul 99 - 03:35 PM
Dale Rose 29 Jul 99 - 03:58 PM
Dale Rose 29 Jul 99 - 04:17 PM
MAG (inactive) 29 Jul 99 - 04:17 PM
MAG (inactive) 29 Jul 99 - 04:27 PM
MAG (inactive) 29 Jul 99 - 04:29 PM
Dale Rose 29 Jul 99 - 05:08 PM
Tiger 29 Jul 99 - 05:15 PM
Joe Offer, on the road 29 Jul 99 - 07:43 PM
emily rain 29 Jul 99 - 07:51 PM
katlaughing 29 Jul 99 - 08:02 PM
rich r 29 Jul 99 - 09:49 PM
Mark Roffe 30 Jul 99 - 02:39 AM
Ewan McVicar 30 Jul 99 - 03:58 AM
dwditty 30 Jul 99 - 05:32 AM
Bert 30 Jul 99 - 09:20 AM
Margo 30 Jul 99 - 02:43 PM
SandyBob 30 Jul 99 - 03:11 PM
katlaughing 30 Jul 99 - 04:55 PM
MAG (inactive) 30 Jul 99 - 05:02 PM
Art Thieme 30 Jul 99 - 10:50 PM
Joe Offer 31 Jul 99 - 03:50 AM
Joe Offer 31 Jul 99 - 03:53 AM
Sourdough 31 Jul 99 - 04:32 AM
Joe Offer 31 Jul 99 - 04:47 AM
CarlZen 31 Jul 99 - 12:07 PM
Joe Offer 31 Jul 99 - 02:58 PM
Bev and Jerry 01 Aug 99 - 01:43 AM
Sourdough 01 Aug 99 - 02:01 AM
Joe Offer 01 Aug 99 - 02:54 AM
Sourdough 01 Aug 99 - 03:17 AM
Joe Offer 01 Aug 99 - 03:31 AM
Sourdough 01 Aug 99 - 03:49 AM
BK 01 Aug 99 - 09:37 AM
Arnie Naiman 01 Aug 99 - 09:55 AM
Arnie Naiman 01 Aug 99 - 10:07 AM
Arnie Naiman 01 Aug 99 - 10:22 AM
Sourdough 01 Aug 99 - 12:33 PM
Margo 01 Aug 99 - 02:37 PM
Sourdough 01 Aug 99 - 03:19 PM
Bev and Jerry 01 Aug 99 - 07:11 PM
BK 01 Aug 99 - 11:55 PM
Joe Offer 02 Aug 99 - 03:59 AM
MAG (inactive) 03 Aug 99 - 08:49 PM
AndyG 04 Aug 99 - 09:10 AM
L R Mole 01 May 00 - 12:21 PM
GUEST 01 May 00 - 02:36 PM
Wesley S 01 May 00 - 05:03 PM
Joe Offer 02 May 00 - 05:17 AM
Azizi 29 Dec 04 - 06:36 PM
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Subject: non-politically correct kids songs
From: SandyBob
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 03:10 PM

Any recommendations on non-saccarin, non-politically correct collections of kids songs? My six year old likes sea songs that have death and destruction in them...I think the least we owe kids is the truth and we underestimate their ability to handle it. Pete Seeger did a nice kids album 25 years ago before the PC taboo system took hold. Know any others?

SandyBob


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Tiger
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 03:35 PM

SandyBob....

Phil Rosenthal, formerly of The Seldom Scene, has some wonderful kids songs albums. I'll check again, and see what's still available.

......Tiger


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Dale Rose
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 03:58 PM

I entered from the New Messages Since Your Last Visit page (as I nearly always do anymore) and I saw Tiger's What is a kid's song? subject.

I was prepared to say just about anything they like to sing (preferably over and over), not what we think they ought to like.

But having read SandyBob's original post, that is something else altogether. I know of several. I'll get back.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Dale Rose
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 04:17 PM

Here are a couple of the best. (OPINION, of course!)

The Land of Yahoe: Children's Entertainments from the Days before Television by Various Artists on Rounder 8041. The link takes you to the Rounder description of the 29 cuts on the CD.

Doc Watson Sings Songs For Little Pickers. Information from CDNow, including RA clips for all the songs. (They also have a few sound clips for my first choice, just enter Yahoe as an album title search)


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 04:17 PM

What age kid? Raffi isn't too saccharin for toddlers; they love him. Teresa Morgan's "If Fish could Sing" is good.

Maria Muldauer did one this year based on swing band stuff, if you like Maria and you like the big band sound.

Taj Mahal' "Shake a Tailfeather."

Folkways has reissued "Brown Girl in a Ring" -- Lomax field recording of Caribbean childrens game songs.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 04:27 PM

Oh: anything and everything by Kathy Fink and Marcy Marxer.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 04:29 PM

PPS: go to

ALA.org

scroll down to "Divisions" and click on "ALSC" (Association of Library Service to Children)

I think there is a link to "Awards and prizes"

-- somewhere in there you will find "Notable Children's Recordings." The last coupla years have been heavy on the lullabies.

MAG


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Dale Rose
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 05:08 PM

Stuff from David Holt How could I have forgotten him?


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Tiger
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 05:15 PM

"Weird Al" Yankovic is pretty much harmless.

Tom Lehrer might do, too.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Joe Offer, on the road
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 07:43 PM

Hi - one of the most popular threads in the history of Mudcat was Naughty Kids' Greatest Hits (click) and its sequel (click). I know what you mean about the horrors of political correctness. I've been singing for kids "the old way" all my life. The kids love it, but the parents sometimes get a little huffy. When I sing "Mountain Dew," some complain about my promoting alcoholism. When I sing "Noah and the Arky-Arky," some complain I'm too religious. But I carry on, nonetheless. Most parents think it's great fun, but the few who complain can be a real pain.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: emily rain
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 07:51 PM

i always loved "peter paul and mommy" by, of course, peter paul and mary. a measure of truth, a measure of moralizing, a measure of oh-my-goodness-not-quite-pc, a measure of hilarity, and a measure of saccharin. i don't mind the saccharin in _adult_ songs, so naturally i would overlook saccharin in kids' songs.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 08:02 PM

Thanks, MAG, I'd been looking for lullaby tapes for my twin grandsons.

Couldn't find the ALSC, but did a search and found what you were talking about here

It's really a great site. Thanks for letting us know about it.

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: rich r
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 09:49 PM

When my kids were younger they always liked Barry Louis Polisar

rich r


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Mark Roffe
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 02:39 AM

Cathy Fink's "Grandma Slid Down the Mountain"


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Ewan McVicar
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 03:58 AM

Kids have their own songs - the ones that pass from kid to kid without adult involvement. We moan that they don't know any, because of the evil effects of the keyboard and the remote control. Yet all the time the old songs we loved as kids are being ruthlessly discarded and vibrant new ones created in the strongest and oldest yet youngest and least regarded folklore movement of all. Re finding Scottish kids songs - try the first 4 albums and first two videos of The Singing Kettle, two highly regarded Scots folkies - Cilla Fisher and Artie Trezise - who are a children's show sensation. Their more recent songs / albums / videos are not Scots but international in voice.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: dwditty
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 05:32 AM

My kids and I both love Dave Van Ronk's Peter & the Wolf (side one). Side 2 has Swinging on a Star, Glad to Be a Moose, Mairsy Doats, etc. All done with Dave and a jug band. Lots of fun.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Bert
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 09:20 AM

Kat. here's a lullaby for you. I'll get around to singing it for you soon as I can.

http://www.mudcat.org/bert/songs/angel.html

It didn't start out as a lullaby but after I started it, it's own internal whimsy took over, and I let it go it's own way.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Margo
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 02:43 PM

SandyBob, of course there's Burl Ives' Little White Duck CD. There are a fair number of critters that get shot or eaten. There's the Grey Goose (which I sang at song circle) that gets shot, plucked, cooked, and inedible, ends up flying o'er the ocean. That ought to satisfy the little darling!

Margarita


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: SandyBob
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 03:11 PM

Joe Offer, thanks for the references to past threads. Those brought back a lot of memories! Since you say you've been singing for kids a lot and you also can't stand the saccharin PC-stuff, what other songs do you like to sing for them?

SandyBob


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 04:55 PM

Oh, Bert! I love it! Thank you and I would love to hear you sing it. Will Max work his magic with you and link it to a thread, again??

kat


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 05:02 PM

Bill Harley stuff -- "50 ways to fool your mother," "Monsters in the bathroom," etc.

"yout got potatos, I got tomatos,/ We can have dinner together;/ You got a raincoat, I got a tugboat/ We'll sail, no matter the weather ..."

(That's what friends are for)


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 10:50 PM

I've been trying to get Cathy & Marcy to do a CD from THE GOLDEN BOOK OF MURDER BALLADS, but no luck so far.

Art


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 03:50 AM

Hi, Sandy Bob - well, I do songs like ANNE BOLEYN, Shel Silverstein's OUR HOUSE, AIN'T GONNA GRIEVE MY LORD NO MORE, RISE AND SHINE (Arky, Arky), SWALLOWED A FLY, CHARLEY ON THE MTA, And, of course, The Hole in the Bottom of the Sea.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: Lyr Add: HOLE IN THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA
From: Joe Offer
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 03:53 AM

Just in case you don't know it, or can't keep up with me when I'm singing it:

HOLE IN THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA
(follow along)

    There's a hole in the bottom of the sea,
    There's a hole in the bottom of the sea,
    There's a hole,
    There's a hole,
    There's a hole in the bottom of the sea.

    There's a log in the hole in the bottom of the sea,
    There's a log in the hole in the bottom of the sea,
    There's a hole,
    There's a hole,
    There's a hole in the bottom of the sea.

    (continue until ...)

    There's a hole, in the wing,
    on the flea, on the fly,
    on the tail, on the frog,
    on the bump, on the log
    in the hole in the bottom of the sea.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 04:32 AM

Joe O.

I can't put my hands on it now but an old Sing Out collection I have showed, I thought, that Bess Hawes shared the writing credit for Charley on the MTA.

What makes me think that my memory of this is right is that about fifteen years ago, a friend took me to a strange little bar in an alley in San Francisco, perhaps the name of the bar was "Spec's". It was directly across from City Lights Bookstore. The bartender there, my friend told me, had written Charley on the MTA. Since I was from Boston, this was interesting stuff. When I mentioned my interest to the bartender, he told me about Bess Hawes and there was something about his relation with her that I don't remember.

Of course, there is the possibility that I am wrong. (I have been wrong before. I have been wrong as recently as the late fall of 1975. ;-)>

There is such a concentration of knowledge and experience around here that someone will probably be able to tell me the name of the bartender, the bar and the alley as well as the definitive answer to who wrote Charley on the MTA. I keep being amazed.

Sourdough


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 04:47 AM

Hi, Sourdough. There's a little bad HTML in the database, and that causes a line to be invisible. it should read:
Written by Jacqueline Berman (now Steiner) and Bess Hawes as a campaign song for Walter A. O'Brian, the Progressive Party candidate in Boston's mayoral election. When Will Holt recorded the number as a pop song for Coral...
I checked BMI, and they list the songwriters as Bess Hawes and Jacqueline Steiner, and they give the official name of the song as The MTA
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: CarlZen
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 12:07 PM

The earlier mentioned "Peter and the Wolf" by Dave Van Ronk is available on CD.

My kids used to love cdertain cuts on Spider John Koerner's "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Been" and "Raised by Humans". These are not kid's collections, but they include some songs which are often found on 'standard folk kids collections' (whatever that might mean). I really appreciate the fact that Spider John puts those in his albums right along with everything else.

If you are looking for a song book try "Gonna Sing My Head Off". It is well put together with nice illustratons and nice, succinct and appropriate background stories about the songs. (It is a favorite choice of my fourth grade students during self selected reading time.)


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Subject: ADD: Dummy Line - Scout Camp Version ^^
From: Joe Offer
Date: 31 Jul 99 - 02:58 PM

My first year at Scout camp, I heard a version of "Dummy Line" that I really liked, but all I could remember was one verse and a chorus. I searched for this song for years and years. Here's all I remembered:
Little Willie Jones fell down the elevator
There they found him six months later
They held their noses, and said, "Gee Whiz,
What a spoiled child our little Willie is."

Ridin' ridin' ridin' on the dummy dummy line
Rain or shine I'll pay my fine
Rain or shine I'll pay my fine
Ridin' ridin' ridin' on the dummy dummy line
There was also a line about Davey Jones' locker, but that's all I remember.
Well, in my search for "Laughing Policeman," I found a version of the song at the Flying Pigs site (click).

Dummy Line

On the dummy line, on the dummy line
Rain or shine, I'll pay my fine
Rain or shine, I'll pay my fine
Ride, ride, riding on the dummy line

I got on the train and didn't have the fare
The conductor said, "Whatcha doin' there?"
He grabbed me by the collar and shoved me out the door
Said, "I don't want to see you on this line no more!"

Little Willy was home by himself
Found a chocolate cake on the kitchen shelf
Willy said, "If I eat this cake
Sis won't get a belly ache"

Little Willy saw a mill saw buzz
Didn't know quite what it was
Now his arm is full of nicks
And, alas poor Willy, he's cut in six

Little Willy found some dynamite
He didn't understand it quite
But curiosity never pays
It rained Willy several days

Little Willy coming home from school
Spied a half a dollar at the foot of a mule
Stooped down to pick it up, quiet as a mouse
Funeral tomorrow at little Willy's house!

Little birdie in the sky
Dropped some whitewash in my eye
Says I to me; says me to I
"I'm sure glad that cows can't fly!"

There was a boy by the name of Jack
Pitched his tent on a railroad track
Midnight express came around the bend
What kind of flowers did you send?

There once was a doctor, his name was Peck
He fell in a well and he broke his neck
It served him right, for he should've known
To tend to the sick and leave the well alone!

There once was a hunter, his name was O'Hare
He was chased by a grizzly bear
The people all thought he was out of his mind
Running down the street with a bear behind!

There was an old witch by the name of Nan
Who tried to pass as a good humor man
Couldn't fool the kids, they all stayed home -
They would not buy from an ice cream crone

My grandpa had a car, it was a Ford machine
His whiskers came in handy for straining gasoline
My grandma had a habit of chewing in her sleep
She chewed on grandpa's whiskers and dreamed of shredded wheat!

Not the verses I recall, but close. Hooray! Anybody know more verses. The "official" version of the song is in the database (click here), and there's a nice recording of it by Anne Hills and Cindy Mangsen on their Never Grow Up album (which is a great kids' album).
-Joe Offer- ^^


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 01:43 AM

Joe and Soudough:

Many years ago we did The MTA on KPFA (the station in Berkeley that is currently going through such troubles). We credited Bess Hawes and Jacqueline Steiner as the composers. While we were on the air, someone called and swore that this song was composed by a bartender in North Beach by the name of "Specs". We said that we got our information from Sing Out! and were quite certain of its correctness. Nevertheless, this has haunted us for more than fifteen years and this is the first time anyone else has mentioned it. Could there be any truth to this?

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 02:01 AM

THis is undoubtably the same man but he did not claim that he wrote it, my friend made the claim for him. He himself said something that had to do with his relationship with Bess Hawes but I just can't recall what it was. I also can't ask my friend who had an untimely death a few years later.

The best that I can do is say that there is an alley across from City Lights Bookstore in North Beach and at the end of the alley is the bar where this guy worked fifteen years ago. Whether he is there today, I haven't a clue but I may take a trip down there just to satisfy my curiousity.

I wish I could be more helpful.

Sourdough


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Subject: Charlie and the MTA
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 02:54 AM

Sourdough or Bev & Jerry, do you have any information about Hawes and Steiner? I've been singing this song all my life, and I'd like to know as much as I can of the story behind it.
Heck, I almost had to sing this song as part of a government security clearance investigation. I went up to one of the applicant's neighbors, and he said, "I ain't tellin you nothin' until you sing me that song about the MTA." Turns out he had heard me sing it for the Boy Scouts. Kind of ruined my credibility as a government investigator.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 03:17 AM

I'm afraid I can't help at all about Bess Hawes or Steiner. With this much interest, I will go to where Spec's was and see what/who is there.

I lived in Europe for a while and when I came home, I went to one of my favorite parts of Boston. The way you get there is to go to the Scollay Square Station of MTA Song fame. I came out of the subway to find that Scollay Square was gone! It had been ripped away to make room for the new government center and other civic improvements One of the casualties was "the Old Howard", a great theater that had hosted in its day the acting family, the Booths - doing Shakespeare, and Gypsy Rose Lee and Sally Rand doing something else.

But I digress -

SD


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Subject: Charlie and the MTA
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 03:31 AM

Yeah, Sourdough, I guess Scollay Square is gone and lots of downtown Boston is changing with the Big Dig or whatever they call it - but Boston still has some of the most interesting subway stations I've ever seen. And it's one of the most delightful walking towns I know.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 03:49 AM

Something that remained in that area is Ye Olde Union Oyster House. One of my favorite things to do was to go there and order some oyseters and a tumbler of brandy in honor of Daniel Webster who used to do exactly that at the same bar. "Only the oysters have been changed, to protect the innocent." Jack Kennedy used to sit at this bar, too.

Upstairs, in 1770, more or less, a farm boy from Woburn, MA took up residence. His name was Benjamin Thompson. He would later be knighted by the King of Bavaria after designing the English Gardens in Munich, providing work for the poor of that city to control poverty, developing a coffee percolator making coffee affordable and making possible the coffee shop which was a feature of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, developing a stove that was more efficient than Franklin's, and basic discoveries in the nature of friction. He was an astounding although forgotten guy. And he hung out in Scollay Square (he said, neatly returning to within a few kilometers of the original thread creep).


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: BK
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 09:37 AM

Great thread! - creep or not; Since I too, have been singing the MTA for virtually all of my singing life (along w/many others learned from the KT, like Greenback Dollar," which, BTW, kids have always loved - & parents seem to tolerate in spite of "don't give a damn.") - & still lovin it.

I await w/"baited breath" (whatever that is) the next installment of the origins of the MTA....

Cheers, BK (am I supposed to eat chum, or some other kind of bait fish? can you make a decent curry from bait fish - or fish chowder?)


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Arnie Naiman
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 09:55 AM

Try getting Shel Silverstein,s recordings. They are so good and funny. Also my wife, Kathy Reid-Naiman has 2 recordings out for young children and another one coming. email ragged@interlog.com if interested.


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Subject: Lyr Add: YOU'RE ALWAYS WELCOME AT OUR HOUSE
From: Arnie Naiman
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 10:07 AM

Here is one of Shel's nice songs:

Well a man came to our house, to our house, to our house
A man came to our house to sell some brooms
And we asked him to come in and we hit him with a hammer,
And we put him in the closet in my father's room.

Chorus
But you're always welcome at our house
At our house, at our house
Always welcome at hour house
And we hope you will stay

Well a lady came to our house, to our house, to our house
A lady came to our house to find out why I wasn't in school.
And we asked her to come in and we gave her some poison lemonade
And we put her in the freezer where it's nice and cool.

Chorus

Well a boy came to our yard, to our yard to our yard
A boy came to our yard to find his ball.
And we asked him to come in and we shot him with the 22
And sealed him up inside the basement wall.

Chorus
And we know you will stay (added last line to last chorus)

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 3-Aug-02.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Arnie Naiman
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 10:22 AM

Correction on last punch line of Our House it goes- Chorus And it's always open house at our house, and we hope you will stay, and we KNOW you will stay.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 12:33 PM

Cheer up, BK. No nead to eat chum or other bait fish in order to have baited breath. I used to think of the possibility of an aphrodisiac mouthwash so that I could troll for women with "baited breath" but then I realized out what baited breath is about. We wait excitedly for something with "abated breath".

If you want a more detailed explanation from me, I have to advise you, "Don't hold your breath."

Wow, talk about thread creep. I will not accept e-mail addressed to "The Thread Creep".

Sourdough


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Margo
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 02:37 PM

Sourdough, I am intrigued by Benjamin Thompson. Can you recommend any books about him?

Here's something interesting. I mentioned Burl Ives' Little White Duck CD above. There is one nonsense song in there called "Fooba Wooba John". The lyrics are silly (saw a flea kick a tree, in the middle of the sea). I found a song at a renaissance site that had very similar lyrics, and the same rhythm. Some of these songs go way back, and I didn't realize it.

Margarita


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Sourdough
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 03:19 PM

Benjamin Thompson, later Count Rumford, is one of those forgotten giants. His personality, not always admirable, comes through in any writing about him. This is a good place to get some general knowledge and some titles for further reading.

http://www.dartmouth.edu/~library/Library_Bulletin/Apr1995/King_Rumford.html

When I was in high school, I had a very special history teacher, Russel Ayres. As a young man, he had taught John F. Kennedy and Adlai Stevenson. He could, as they say, make history come alive. He had the special ability of a true teacher to light sparks so that the students carried the flame out of the classroom, into their lives and perhaps provided sparks for others. My introduction to Thompson / Rumford was through him and he certainly enhanced my appreciation of the poetry of traditional music, the expression of the experience of generations of people distilled into rhythmn and rhyme.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 07:11 PM

Joe:

Best wew can do is what is in RUS which says that MTA was copyrighted in 1956 by Atlantic Music Corp. RUS says it was written by Steiner and Hawes as a protest against the proposed subway fare increase from 10 cents to 15 cents and as a campaign song for the Progressive Party candidater for mayor, Walter O'Brien.

It lists the tune as being traditional and the tune to Wreck of the Old '97. While it is the tune to the Wreck of Old '97, it is not traditional. This tune was written by Henry Clay Work for his song The Ship That Never Returned which is, of course, is the song parodied by Charlie who never returned either.

There was a long article about this in the Boston Globe last year some of which follows:

When Jacqueline Steiner heard of the death last week of Walter A. O'Brien Jr., a long-forgotten Boston mayoral contender in 1949, her thoughts moved, once again, to a song about a man riding the subway without enough money to get off.

O'Brien's campaign which finished last in a field of five, had one enduring feature. It was O'Brien's objection to a change in fares that required an extra nickel to leave the subway that inspired Boston's legendary ditty "charlie on the MTA".

"I am continually amazed that people - it doesn't matter where they're from - still know the song which we wrote all those long years ago," said Steiner, now 79, who co-wrote the song with Bess Lomax Hawes for O'Brien's campaign.

The song was popularized nationally by the Kingston Trio in the 1950s, but O'Brien's first name was changed to George to avoid its being associated with the Progressive Party, of which O'Brien was a leader.

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: BK
Date: 01 Aug 99 - 11:55 PM

"The expression of the experience of generations of people distilled into rhythm and rhyme." Well said, indeed! I hope I can rememeber this excellent definition of traditional music. Thanks..

BTW: I was looking for an excuse to have fish curry... Too bad...

Cheers, BK


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Aug 99 - 03:59 AM

Bess Lomax Hawes? Ah, I knew I'd heard her name before! Now, how does she fit in to the Lomax Family? Thanks for the lead, Bev & Jerry.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 03 Aug 99 - 08:49 PM

She doesn't; she is (was??) a Black woman from the Georgia Sea Islands.

Draw me a bucket of water, for my oldest daughter ...


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: AndyG
Date: 04 Aug 99 - 09:10 AM

Following on from Margarita
Are these the sort of nonsense songs you meant ?

AndyG

Hi, Andy, please don't use quotation marks in links. If you goof it up, it freezes the thread. I fixed it.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: L R Mole
Date: 01 May 00 - 12:21 PM

Anyone know the Russian or Hungarian words Michael Cooney(who should be in this thread anyway, for volunteering on the barricades as the PC forces encroach) sings as part of a sone that might be called "May there always be mama (may there always be me)"? It's such a touching,tiny,anthem.


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: GUEST
Date: 01 May 00 - 02:36 PM

Definately Singing Kettle. Their older stuff is better, however, as they have now succumbed to political correctness. Where else would you hear about a wee boy who choked to death on a tattie scone?


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Wesley S
Date: 01 May 00 - 05:03 PM

I'd suggest checking out the childrens {and adult} recordings of two guys called "Trout Fishing In America". You should be able to find them at www.troutmusic.com


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 May 00 - 05:17 AM

Hi, Mole - Click here for the lyrics to "May There Always Be Sunshine." I know it from Pete Seeger recordings. Hope that helps.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: What is a kid's song?
From: Azizi
Date: 29 Dec 04 - 06:36 PM

Some 6 1/2 years later, I've a correction to make to a post in this thread.

In response to Joe Offer's question about whether Bess Lomax Hawe has any relationship to the famous Lomax family, on Aug 3, 1999 MAG said:

"She doesn't; she is (was??) a Black woman from the Georgia Sea Islands."

Well, actually, Bess Hawes Lomax IS related to the Lomax family.
The woman MAG was thinking of was Bessie Jones. The two "Bessies" collaborated on a 1972 book "Step It Down", which is a wonderful collection of African American children's rhymes from the Georgia Sea Isles.

I'm sure that most Mudcatters know the difference between the two Bessies, but for the record I wanted to correct this understandable misstatement.

And for those who want to know more about these two fascinating women:

See this excerpt about Bess Hawes Lomax:

In the 1960s, the effect of the Lomax clan on folk music literally spanned the country. On the East Coast, Alan Lomax continued ably to carry on the tradition of his father, John, by collecting folk songs from all over the world and lecturing on folk music at leading universities. Across the continent, in Santa Monica, California, his younger sister, Bess Hawes, ranked as one of the foremost unofficial authorities on folk music in the west...

In addition to teaching folklore and folk music at California State University at Northridge during the sixties, she joined the summer teaching staff of the Idyllwild School of Music and the Arts in Idyllwild, California. She is the co-author (with Bessie Jones) of a book of Afro-American children's games. Step It Down (Harper & Row, 1972). Bess Lomax Hawes is currently living in Washington, D.C., and working for the Division of the Performing Arts, Smithsonian Institution.

http://users2.ev1.net/~smyth/linernotes/personel/HawsBess.htm

Also see this excerpt from a bibliography about the African American singer and folklorist Bessie Jones, who died not long after the publication of "Step it Down" [although I don't know the exact year].

Although closely associated with the unique music of the Georgia Sea Islands, singer Bessie Jones was not actually born on the islands, but in a small mainland Georgia town. As a young woman she moved to the islands and became an intrinsic part of the cultural life there. Located directly off the Georgia coast, these islands represent a small but fascinating chapter in American history, a bit of which bears repetition to fully understand Jones' background....

Her performances, recordings, and educational programs earned many awards, including a National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Like all great folk artists, her voice has continued ringing on since her death. She perhaps may not have had much in common with the rap and techno music of the '90s, but the techno recording artist Moby chose to sample her voice on his recordings.* ~ Eugene Chadbourne

http://www.mp3.com/bessie-jones/artists/27610/biography.html

*Moby has a recording that features the words to "Green Sally Up", a rhyme that had been the topic of some discussion at the Mudcat Cafe...


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