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Susannah's a ? man

DigiTrad:
SUZANNA'S A FUNICLE MAN
THE OLD SOW (2)
THE OLD SOW SONG


Related threads:
Help: 'One day I met a wee little pig' (14)
Lyr Add: The Sow Song (Suzanna's a Funicle Man) (72)
lyr/info req: Old mother sow (4)
Lyr Req: Suzannah was a mighty fine ham (10)
Lyr Req: Suzanna's a Funniful Man (36)
Help: The Old Sow (3)
Lyr Add: Sow Song / Oor Little Pigs (2)


SlowAlan 04 May 00 - 08:11 AM
Bob Bolton 04 May 00 - 08:24 AM
Terry K 04 May 00 - 09:27 AM
Terry K 04 May 00 - 09:33 AM
Sandy Paton 04 May 00 - 10:56 AM
Bert 04 May 00 - 11:34 AM
Malcolm Douglas 04 May 00 - 12:20 PM
Uncle_DaveO 04 May 00 - 05:48 PM
GUEST,Justin Kodner - Princeton Folk Music Society 05 May 00 - 04:24 PM
Jacob B 05 May 00 - 04:39 PM
SlowAlan 14 May 00 - 09:55 AM
GUEST,Mrr 15 May 00 - 09:49 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 16 May 00 - 08:37 AM
GUEST,rowf39 24 Dec 08 - 02:52 PM
Jack Blandiver 24 Dec 08 - 03:17 PM
The Villan 24 Dec 08 - 04:17 PM
Azizi 24 Dec 08 - 05:42 PM
Azizi 24 Dec 08 - 06:17 PM
Derby Ram 24 Dec 08 - 09:38 PM
GUEST,tron27 13 Dec 09 - 12:11 PM
Steve Gardham 13 Dec 09 - 02:52 PM
Amos 13 Dec 09 - 03:30 PM
beeliner 13 Dec 09 - 04:06 PM
Gurney 13 Dec 09 - 04:31 PM
GUEST,Tom 16 Sep 11 - 03:44 PM
GUEST 03 Sep 12 - 07:30 AM
Don Firth 03 Sep 12 - 01:39 PM
MGM·Lion 04 Sep 12 - 09:20 AM
Steve Gardham 04 Sep 12 - 03:34 PM
McGrath of Harlow 04 Sep 12 - 05:00 PM
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Subject: Susannah's a ? man
From: SlowAlan
Date: 04 May 00 - 08:11 AM

I was reminded of a strange nonsense song recently which is partly sung in the Australian film "Crackers".

The chrous has snorting and donkey noises including a pig grunt, and the line "Susannah's a runtical(?)man" or somesuch.

I think it comes from England somewhere, and I have heard it sung only by Malcolm Clapp of Bristol and New South Wales.

Can any one help with the words please, can't find them in my usual sources or the digitrads.

SlowAlan


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 04 May 00 - 08:24 AM

G'day SlowAlan,

I have heard the same song (which seems to fit in with other "Zummerset" comical songs in rustic dialect), though I can't remember Malcolm singing it. I have to 'phone him tomorrow and I'll ask about it then.

Regards,

Bob Bolton


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Terry K
Date: 04 May 00 - 09:27 AM

The song is called "The Old Sow".

It starts "There was an old farmer who had an old sow" then goes into the grunting routine). The next verse is "This old sow she had some little pigs etc.

I seem to remember the queried word sounded like "funniful" on the version I heard. This was an old 78 (remember those?) by Leslie Sarony who was noted for such comedy numbers. It must be over 40 years ago when I heard it.

Cheers, Terry.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Terry K
Date: 04 May 00 - 09:33 AM

Just as I submitted the last message it occurred to me that I should have searched the DigiTrad. Which I did and there it is.

Look under "The Old Sow" and under "Suzanna's a Funicle Man".

Terry


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 04 May 00 - 10:56 AM

Richard Dyer-Bennett recorded it many years ago.

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Bert
Date: 04 May 00 - 11:34 AM

A great song. I've sung it a couple of times on Mudcat Radio. Take a look at episode 4 and episode 15.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 04 May 00 - 12:20 PM

There is a version on Topic Records' Voice of the People No. 7 (TSCD657), First I'm Going to Sing You a Ditty: Rural Fun and Frolics, sung by Albert Richardson; this was originally released in 1928 on the Zonophone label, as "b" side to Buttercup Joe, and was responsible for a revival of interest in the song.  I understand that the people who recorded it wouldn't let him include the line: These little pigs shit in the farmer's hat.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 04 May 00 - 05:48 PM

Life ain't easy for a boy named Suzanna

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,Justin Kodner - Princeton Folk Music Society
Date: 05 May 00 - 04:24 PM

Rudy Vallee recorded this English music hall song in the 30's:

There was an old man an' he had an ol' sow

(inhaled snort) sow! (razzberry) sow! (raucus whistle) Hi diddle dow!

There was an old man an' he had an ol' sow, Lasses araow de lay, Oh, Susannah's a funny ol' man,

(snort) man! (razz) man! (whistle) Hi diddle dan!

Susannah's a funny ol' man.

(at this point you stop and ask the audience to join in)

2nd verse:

Now this old sow had nine little pigs,

(same 3 noises with) pigs! pigs! Hi diddle digs!

Now this old sow had nine little pigs, Lasses araow de lay, Oh, Susannah's a funny ol' man,

(snort) man! (razz) man! (whistle) Hi diddle dan!

Susannah's a funny ol' man,

(At this point you express disapointment with the audience inability to do the sounds. "I was in Chicago last week and the audience was great. I know Chicago's the windy city, but...after all, what's a little -razzberry- between friends?)

Last verse is "They tried to climb over the garden wall" etc., etc.. with "Hi diddle dall".


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Jacob B
Date: 05 May 00 - 04:39 PM

That reminds me of a song I heard Oscar Brand sing once. It had a chorus that started with

Pigs! Pigs! Pigs!

and ended with

(inhaled snort)(razzberry)(whistle) on the trembling ground.

I was thinking of starting a thread to ask if anyone knew it.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: SlowAlan
Date: 14 May 00 - 09:55 AM

Thanks Bert and others for your help...I listed to the radio episode, Bert...which also turned me on to this highly professional and enjoyable show.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,Mrr
Date: 15 May 00 - 09:49 AM

Also reminds me of the Odetta song There one was a sow who had three little piggies... the old sow always went (snortygrunt! x3) but the piggies went Wee wee wee. The piggies decide to try grunting because going wee wee wee is so childish, and end up starving themselves to death in the effort, and the moral is Don't ever try to go Grunt Grunt Grunt when you ought'er go Wee wee wee. Great song, and Odetta sure can grunt!


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 16 May 00 - 08:37 AM

My grandfather (the bike industry toolmaker cum mandolin player cum tap dancer cum beach photographer, not the roadmender/decorator) used to sing this one but he sang "funicle" man rather than "funny old" man, probably just to emphasise the nonsense element.
Pity he died when I was about 9 or I might have got him to treach me to playt an instrument (or at least work out how he could produce china eggs from my ear!)
RtS


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,rowf39
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 02:52 PM

I remember hearing Frank Fontaine (as his Crazy Guggenheim personna) sing this in the 40's/50's.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 03:17 PM

Here's the Albert Richardson classic:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=vm61Dz7Nr5g


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: The Villan
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 04:17 PM

Here is a live video By Carl Peterson

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=kHNdt-3DTfY&feature=related


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Azizi
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 05:42 PM

And here's a link to a video of singing the same song:

Rufe Davis - The Old Sow Song

pappyredux
July 29, 2008

"pre-Petticoat Junction Rufe takes a bite out of the old Rudy Vallee hedge-apple."

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=xBMBkeCafjQ&feature=related


A boy playing the accordian accompanies the singer.

Btw, why was the man named "Susannah"? And what does the poster mean by the Rudy Valle "hedge-apple"?


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Azizi
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 06:17 PM

This song was featured on The Muppet Show:

The Muppet Show - Is This the Old Sow
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=LDy1d1U8gA8&feature=related

"Scooterpiety
September 14, 2008

"From episode 415, Anne Murray. Milton Miller and His Farmyard Philharmonic Trio sing a traditional British nonsense song. He gets his in the end"...

-snip-

It appears that the man is singing "Susannah's a funicle man", and not "a funny ole man". But I'm not sure.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Derby Ram
Date: 24 Dec 08 - 09:38 PM

The very best version of this song I ever heard was by Ken Langsbury with the Songwainers in the early Seventies - though I know they were singing it long before that. Funniest and most extraordinary thing you've ever seen or heard - fantastic!


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,tron27
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 12:11 PM

My mom use to sing us many an old song when we were little & waiting for the school bus. There was the song "Susannah's a Funny Old Man" she would sing. I still sing it to my kids & they still laugh at age 15 & 16.

There are 3 noises you make just prior to the same word that is repeated. First – inward snort through the back of your nose & throat (like a pig snorting), Second – tongue stuck out & blowing out a rasping sound (excuse my description sounding like a fart), Third - a short whistle.

The words as I remember them:

There was an old sow who had 9 little pigs
        (1st sound) - igs, (2nd sound) – igs, (3rd sound, whistle), 9 little pigs.
There was an old sow who had 9 little pigs
Chorus: Susannah's a funny old man,
                 (1st sound) - an, (2nd sound) – an, (3rd sound, whistle), an,
                 Susannah's a funny old man,

She he took them down to the slaughter house,
        (1st sound) - ouse, (2nd sound) – ouse, (3rd sound, whistle), slaughter house.
She he took them down to the slaughter house,
Chorus:        Susannah's a funny old man. . . .

She cut them up into 9 pork chops,
        (1st sound) - ops, (2nd sound) – ops, (3rd sound, whistle), pork chops.
She cut them up into 9 pork chops,
Chorus:        Susannah's a funny old man. . . .

They paid her off with 9 sixpence,
        (1st sound) - ence, (2nd sound) – ence, (3rd sound, whistle), 9 sixpence.
They paid her off with 9 sixpence,
Chorus:        Susannah's a funny old man. . . .


This is as close as I can remember. I seem to remember there was another verse or two in the middle, but have not seen or recalled what they were. I also remember that my mother said these were some camp songs they would sing in camp when she was young. If you want the tune to the song you will have to email me and give me an email address where I can send you an .mp3 file of me singing the song. (my email – ebiz@rkemery.net)


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 02:52 PM

I'm sure there is another thread on this where I posted some historical details. The early 19thc supper room version was just titled 'Little Pigs' and this version is found on broadsheets.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Amos
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 03:30 PM

The hedge-apple is a deceptive inedible orange which grows in OSage Orange trees, often used for making animal-control barriers before the days of barbed wire. The hedge-apple is also called the horse-apple, monkey-ball, brain fruit, etc.

I think the colloquialism used upthread was referring to the song as a sort of foolish piece of work.

A


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: beeliner
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 04:06 PM

"Richard Dyer-Bennett recorded it many years ago."

D-B's version was called, I beleive, 'Little Pigs' and went SOMETHING like this MORE OR LESS:

Little pigs lie in the best of straw
With a (animal sounds)

Little pigs maketh the best of pork
With a (animal sounds)

Oh Lily Bolay, O Lily Bolay, O Lily Bolay, O Lily Bolay,
Oh, my daddy's a bonnie wee man,
With a (animal sounds).

It never failed to bring down the house at a live performance.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Gurney
Date: 13 Dec 09 - 04:31 PM

SlowAlan, next time you see Malcolm Clapp, remember me to him.
Chris Marden of Auckland, once a member of Tiddley Pom Pom Pom with Malcolm and John Jones.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST,Tom
Date: 16 Sep 11 - 03:44 PM

I learned this song on an episode of Three's Company. Jack and his father sing that song on there.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Sep 12 - 07:30 AM

I remember it being done by Spike Jones! Hysterical! We used to laugh ourselves to tears listening to his records!!!


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Don Firth
Date: 03 Sep 12 - 01:39 PM

Richard Dyer-Bennet sings it on "With Young People in Mind," on his own label, Richard Dyer Bennet #6.

I heard him do it live at the U.N. Pavilion at the Seattle World's Fair in 1962 when he joined a bunch of us in one of our regular Sunday afternoon "hootenannies."

Everybody cracked up, and the kids loved it!

(For those who don't particularly like Dyer-Bennet because of his light tenor voice and classical approach, they really should have heard him live. He could really put a song across! Not a folk singer;   a minstrel of the ancient tradition. Also, he was a helluva nice guy!)

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 04 Sep 12 - 09:20 AM

I have always heard the word as "funnical", which I take to be a somewhat tautologous portmanteau word for "funny & comical"?

~M~


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 04 Sep 12 - 03:34 PM

I recently came across a 19th century printed American version which is the earliest I've seen that actually specifies the noises. It is very possible that the noises were added in in America, when you think that many of the minstrel songs from the 1840s onwards came from America to Britain. I'll have a look to see if I can find this version. It might throw some light on 'funnical'.


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Subject: RE: Susannah's a ? man
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 04 Sep 12 - 05:00 PM

I'd imagine it's jocular combination of funny and comical.


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