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Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)

keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 02:14 PM
keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 03:14 PM
keberoxu 19 Nov 15 - 07:28 PM
GUEST,# 19 Nov 15 - 07:37 PM
keberoxu 20 Nov 15 - 03:43 PM
keberoxu 21 Nov 15 - 12:27 PM
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Subject: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 02:14 PM

You know the Smothers Brothers have infiltrated the mainstream, subversive interpreters that they are, when one of their pieces is printed for use by the Boy Scouts of America. Yes, I found this on the Internet. No, I am not a Boy Scout.

This appears to be a conflation of two things. One is a poem by the Reverend George A Strong, which Mudcat has on another thread (naturally, or it wouldn't be Mudcat). I'm going to save that chunk for later. The rest of the piece is built around this. Internet source material disclosed at the end of this post.


H I A W A T H A    H U N T    S O N G   

On the shores of Gitchee Goomee,
By the shining big sea water,
Stood the wigwam of Nokomis,
And the little Hiawatha.

Hiawatha, he went hunting,
Went to hunt a bunny rabbit,
Had to make a pair of mittens
From the bunny rabbit's fur.

Oh he hunted over woods,
He hunted over dell,
He hunted all about,
Where the bunny rabbits dwe -e-e- -e-ell.

He hunted all the day,
He hunted all the night,
At last he found a rabbit
With the fur just ri- -i-i-   i-ight.

Now the fur upon the rabbit,
Has the warm side fur side outside,
Hiawatha found that rabbits
Have the inside skin side in.


And Rev. George A Strong's poem is more or less shoe-horned in here. Future post.


resuming:

Hiawatha, he went hunting,
Went to hunt a bunny rabbit


(This is NOT in the Boy Scouts version:
Tom Smothers stops the music and hollers from the stage:
"HI THERE I'm your bunny for the evening Tommy")


Had to make a pair of mittens
From the bunny rabbit's fur.   


Section Ten, Page 22
Campfire Programs,
Super Saturday Book, 1998
Milwaukee County Council,
Boy Scouts of America
printed by CNI Newspapers


(re: the Mad Magazine Parody thread: guest Michael D asked after the Mad Magazine parody of Hiawatha making mittens. Don't know if Mad Magazine did it, but how COULD I forget the Smothers Brothers recording of a live show, "It Must Have Been Something I Said"?
Composer credit for "Hiawatha" is given as Milton Rosen on the album.)


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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 03:14 PM

Here's the missing chunk from the Smothers Brothers / Milton Rosen version.

So to keep the cold air outside,
He put the inside skin side outside,
And to keep the warm air inside,
He put the skin side inside out.

That is why to keep the warm side,
He put the warm side fur side outside,
And the skin side inside-out side,
And turned them inside outside.


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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 07:28 PM

Make that, MORE THAN two things conflated. Mixed up together.
It's a surprisingly long and winding way from George A Strong to Milton Rosen and the Smothers Brothers.

The ill-fated polar expedition (South) led by Captain Scott was assigned Herbert George Ponting, photographer. He wrote a poem, printed in Volume III of the South Polar Times, and immortalized in the feature film, "Scott of the Antarctic." Apparently, what we have in Ponting's contribution, is neither rabbit fur (Smothers Brothers) nor squirrel fur (George A Strong), but reindeer skin. Here goes:

T H E    S L E E P I N G   B A G by Herbert George Ponting

On the outside grows the fur side,
On the inside grows the skin side.
So the fur is on the outside
And the skin is on the inside.

As the fur side is on the outside
And the skin side is on the inside,
One side likes the skin side inside
And the fur side outside;
Others like the skin side outside
And the fur side inside,
As the skin side is the hard side
And the fur side is the soft side.

If you turn the skin side outside,
Thinking you will side with that side,
Then the soft side fur side's inside,
Which some argue is the wrong side.

If you turn the fur side outside,
as you say it grows on that side,
Then the hard side's next your own side,
Which for comfort's not the right side.

As the hard side is the cold side,
And your skin side's not your warm side,
And two cold sides coming side by side,
Are not the right sides, one side decides.

If you decide to side with this side,
Turn the outside fur side inside;
Then the hard side, cold side, skin side,
Beyond all question's inside-out side.

And it does not matter a particle
What you do with the bally thing,
Someone's sure to tell you it's outside inside.


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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: GUEST,#
Date: 19 Nov 15 - 07:37 PM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_NNFh-Fn3t8

The Smothers Brothers doing the song on YouTube with a cartoon video.


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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Nov 15 - 03:43 PM

Forgot to credit bibliography on The Sleeping Bag.

It is found on pp. 140 - 141 of The Great White South. Herbert George Ponting, the photographer who wrote the poem, was excused from that small part of Captain Scott's that pushed on to the South Pole; so excused, Ponting survived to tell the tale. The Great White South is the book that he wrote about it afterwards.


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Subject: RE: Hiawatha bunny rabbit (Smothers)
From: keberoxu
Date: 21 Nov 15 - 12:27 PM

"Now the fur upon the rabbit
Has the warm side fur side outside..."

From this verse forward, in the Milton Rosen/Smothers Brothers version, the words are sung to the tune of:

"O-le, O-le-an-na,
O-le, O-le-an-na...."

No wonder they like this song around the Cub Scout campfires: an old familiar tune, whether they recognize it or not.

Before that verse, however, there is no trace of the Oleanna tune; particularly not when cribbing "On the shores of Gitchee Goomee" from Longfellow.   For the opening verses the music is a sort of march, and I don't know where the tune comes from. Goes into double time for "Oh, he hunted over woods..." and so to "Oleanna."


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