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Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken

bobbi 18 Jul 01 - 03:29 PM
Giac 18 Jul 01 - 07:10 PM
RWilhelm 18 Jul 01 - 08:18 PM
raredance 18 Jul 01 - 10:10 PM
khandu 18 Jul 01 - 10:26 PM
RWilhelm 19 Jul 01 - 12:52 AM
bobbi 19 Jul 01 - 01:14 AM
Jim Dixon 15 Mar 02 - 11:29 PM
GUEST 16 Jul 10 - 09:54 PM
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Subject: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: bobbi
Date: 18 Jul 01 - 03:29 PM

I'm looking for the lyrics to an old song my mother used to sing: Some of the words in the chorus were: "Chicken, oh chicken, you better go up in a balloon.. Chicken oh chicken, you better hide behind that moon, chicken oh chicken you better roost up in that tree.. a hundred dollars reward for the chicken who could roost to high for me..." The verse was something like: "I came home from work one night, I came home real late, I looked all around the dinner table, no chicken was at my plate.." Anyone out there know this one?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: Giac
Date: 18 Jul 01 - 07:10 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: RWilhelm
Date: 18 Jul 01 - 08:18 PM

Here is a link to a thread where most of the song has been transcribed: Chicken You Can Roost Behind the Moon


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Subject: Lyr Add: CHICKEN NEVER ROOST TOO HIGH FO' ME
From: raredance
Date: 18 Jul 01 - 10:10 PM

This appears to be a related song, not nearly as complete as the one sought or the ones in the link. It comes from "Negro Workaday Songs" by H W Odum and G B Johnson (1926, Univ North Carolina Press)(reprinted 1969, Negro Universities Press)

CHICKEN NEVER ROOST TOO HIGH FO' ME

Ol' mass's chicken
Live in the tree,
Chicken never roost
Too high fo' me.

Went out strollin'
See what I can see
Chicken never roost
Too high fo' me.

Ever since the Yankee
Set-er me free
Chicken never roost
Too high fo' me.

They think the old lady
An' me agree.
Chicken never roost
Too high fo' me.

I's in jail,
Not long till I'm free
Chicken never roost
Too high fo' me.

The authors say that "In a somewhat different version, this song was popular as a minstrel some twenty years ago". That would have been in the early 1900's. Could the version at the link be more like the minstrel song?

rich r


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: khandu
Date: 18 Jul 01 - 10:26 PM

And there is Mississippi John Hurt's "Chicken" which obviously draws from older chicken songs.

khandu


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: RWilhelm
Date: 19 Jul 01 - 12:52 AM

The version from the link was recorded by Frank Stokes in the 1920's. According to _Saints and Songsters_ by Paul Oliver it is a version of "There is No Chicken That Can Roost Too High For Me" by W.J. Simons, published in 1899. That must be the minstrel song from rich r's reference. I'd love to see those lyrics.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: bobbi
Date: 19 Jul 01 - 01:14 AM

Thanks to all for your input... And I do believe the lyrics I seek are from the minstrel song...but I did recognize lyrics from the song that "EARL" gave a link to as well.. So perhaps what I heard was a combination.. Thanks again folks, for giving me your input... I just love this site... I grew up on old songs my mother used to sing to us children... and she came from a singing, performing family. Wish now, I had been more attentive!


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Subject: Lyr Add: DEM CHICKENS ROOST TOO HIGH
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 15 Mar 02 - 11:29 PM

I went looking for sheet music to the songs described above, and I haven't found them yet, but I did find this one. It looks like Frank Stokes' song is an answer to this one:

Transcribed from the sheet music at http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?ammem/aasm:@field(TITLE+@band(Dem+chickens+roost+too+high+))

DEM CHICKENS ROOST TOO HIGH
(Fred. Lyons, c1887)

Go and tell Uncle Zip and old Aunty Sue, dem chickens dey roost too high,
So dar's no use to git up dat barbecue. Dem chickens dey roost too high.
I went to a coop way down in de lane, and creeped in de doah very shy,
And grabbed for chicken, but I grabbed in vain. Dem chickens dey roost too high.

CHO. Adieu, farewell, sweet chicken meat, goodbye.
Oh what will us poor darkeys do? Dem chickens dey roost too high.

Dar is no more fowl fur da poor black man. Dem chickens dey roost too high.
So put out de fire and hang up de pan. Dem chickens dey roost too high.
Spring chicken is good cooked most any way, but gib me a nice chicken pie,
But dar's no use to talk, and so all I'll say, dem chickens dey roost too high. CHO.

No more I'll steal in da old chicken coop. Dem chickens dey roost too high.
Nor ease my palate on nice chicken soup. Dem chickens dey roost too high.
De ole turkey gobblers am a-getting smart, and de chickens am getting very shy.
Oh, it's almost a-broken my poor black heart. Dem chickens dey roost too high. CHO.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Chicken Oh Chicken
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Jul 10 - 09:54 PM

look for old blues artists singing chicken oh chicken or john hartford if you want the nice harford bluegrass sound


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