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Lyr Req: Whale of a Tale

Related threads:
Lyr/Chords Req: 'whale of a tale' Disney's 20 (13)
Lyr Req: mermaid minnie? / Whale of a Tale (3)


john_m_murphy@hp.com 01 Jul 98 - 07:08 PM
Craig 01 Jul 98 - 10:16 PM
Rob O 03 Nov 98 - 02:27 PM
Einnor 03 Nov 98 - 03:29 PM
MMario 03 Nov 98 - 04:28 PM
Susan of DT 03 Nov 98 - 05:27 PM
Einnor 04 Nov 98 - 01:25 AM
RobO 04 Nov 98 - 11:36 PM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 02:53 PM
Amos 21 May 02 - 02:57 PM
SharonA 21 May 02 - 03:05 PM
Wesley S 21 May 02 - 04:19 PM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 04:25 PM
MMario 21 May 02 - 04:46 PM
Amos 21 May 02 - 06:15 PM
SINSULL 21 May 02 - 07:29 PM
GUEST,Van Lingle 21 May 02 - 07:34 PM
Joe Offer 21 May 02 - 08:12 PM
GUEST,fretless, at work 22 May 02 - 09:04 AM
Mrrzy 22 May 02 - 09:07 AM
Snuffy 22 May 02 - 09:18 AM
GUEST,fretless, at work 22 May 02 - 10:55 AM
Dave Bryant 22 May 02 - 12:28 PM
GUEST,fretless, at work 22 May 02 - 01:09 PM
EBarnacle1 22 May 02 - 03:49 PM
Celtic Soul 22 May 02 - 05:37 PM
The Walrus 22 May 02 - 06:42 PM
GUEST 23 May 02 - 05:57 PM
GUEST,Erin 23 Sep 05 - 10:14 PM
Tannywheeler 24 Sep 05 - 12:26 PM
Allan C. 24 Sep 05 - 02:12 PM
Bard Judith 24 Sep 05 - 06:16 PM
Tannywheeler 24 Sep 05 - 07:02 PM
GUEST,Blackwater Hattie 13 Jul 08 - 11:25 PM
catspaw49 14 Jul 08 - 12:11 AM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 14 Jul 08 - 12:04 PM
GUEST,'Ray Bucknell 14 Jul 08 - 06:58 PM
GUEST,guest 01 Aug 11 - 10:36 AM
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Subject: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: john_m_murphy@hp.com
Date: 01 Jul 98 - 07:08 PM

Does anyone know either the title to this song? Or better yet have the entire lyrics?

I remember is going something like this:
Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads
A whale of a tale or two
'bout the flappin' fish and the girls I've loved
on nights like this with the moon above
....
I swear by my tattoo.

There was typhoon Hannah, had a kiss that felt like thunder
she would kiss me any time that I would ask her
then one evening her flame of love blew out
Pick me up and throw me down she swapped me for a trout
...

Thanks
Messages from multiple threads combined.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Craig
Date: 01 Jul 98 - 10:16 PM

The only time I ever heard that song it was sung by Kirk Douglas in the movie, "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" by Walt Disney. Craig


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Subject: Got a Whale of a Tale
From: Rob O
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 02:27 PM

Okay, I just picked up 75 Years of Magic, Disney's latest compliation of music from the archives, featuring 75 songs from over the years. (Not a bad collection in its own right: illustrated CD's, book of trivia on each movie and song, historical dates to keep it all in perspective, etc etc). On it is the song "Whale of a Tale" sung by Kirk Douglas in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Chorus goes like this: Got a whale of tale to tell you lads, A whale of a tale or two, 'Bout the flapping fish and girls I've loved, On a night like this with the moon above. A whale of a tale and its all true, I'd swear by my tattoo.

The versus are then about individual loves that came and went.

My question then is: Is this song a good representation of sailing songs, or is it just hollywood's facsimile that falls far short of what it should be? That, and does anyone have the chords?

Thanks

RobO


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Subject: RE: Got a Whale of a Tale
From: Einnor
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 03:29 PM

I had a 45 of that tune when I was 5 yrs. old. For some strange reason I loved the tune because it represented adventure to me. I'd love to get the lyrics to it. I think if you just tried the 1,4,5, steps of any key your voice is comfortable in, you will find works.


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Subject: Lyr Add: WHALE OF A TALE (Gimbel, Hoffman)
From: MMario
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 04:28 PM

lyrics:

Got a whale of tale to tell ya lads
a whale of a tale or two...
Bout the flappin’ fish and the girls I’ve loved,
on nights like this with the moon above...
A whale of a tale and it’s all true,
I swear by my tattoo...

There was Mermaid Minnie...
met her down in Madagascar
She would kiss me...
any time that I would ask her
Then one evenin’
her flame of love blew out
BLOW me down and PICK me up!
She swapped me for a trout!!

CHORUS

There was Typhoon Tessie
met her on the coast of Java...
When we kissed, I
bubbled up like molten lava
Then she gave me
the scare of my young life

BLOW me down and PICK me up!
She was the Captain’s wife!

CHORUS

Then there was Harpoon Hanna
had a look that spelled out danger
My heart quivered
when she said "Howdy stranger"
Bought her trinkets...
That sailors can’t afford...
And when I’d spent my last red cent
she tossed me overboard!

CHORUS



As a representative of sea songs, I would suspect this is less then nothing. As a song that makes people THINK they are hearing a sea song, though....


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Subject: RE: Got a Whale of a Tale
From: Susan of DT
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 05:27 PM

Rob - I would say it's mostly Hollywood, altho traditional sea songs are often about girls. Search for @sailor in the blue search box for LOTS of sailor songs, many traditional.


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Subject: RE: Got a Whale of a Tale
From: Einnor
Date: 04 Nov 98 - 01:25 AM

Hello Rob O, I just played this tune in G , and I thought it sounded close enough to acceptable.


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Subject: RE: Got a Whale of a Tale
From: RobO
Date: 04 Nov 98 - 11:36 PM

Hey all, I've been fiddling with this, but still can't get the chord progression to work. I tried it with 1, 4, 5 (in G that's G, C, D right?) but I fear I need a little more guidance than that.....

Thanks a ton for helping a hack

RobO


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Subject: Lyr Add: WHALE OF A TALE (Gimbel, Hoffman)
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 02:53 PM

Got a Whale of a Tale
(from JULES VERNE'S 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA)

Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads,
A whale of a tale or two,
'bout the flappin fish and the girls I've loved,
On nights like this with a moon above,
A whale of a tale and its all true,
I swear by my tattoo.

There was Mermaid Mini,
Met her down in Madagascar,
She would kiss me,
Anytime that I would ask her,
Then one evening her flame of love blew out,
Well knock me down and pick me up,
She swapped me for a trout!

- refrain -

There was Typhoon Tessie,
Met her on the coast of Java,
When we kissed I bubbled up like molten lava,
Then she gave me the scare of my young life,
Well knock me down and pick me up,
She was the captain's wife!

- refrain -

There was harpoon Hannah,
Had a face that made you shudder,
Lips like fish hooks,
And a nose just like a rudder,
If I kissed her and held her tenderly,
There's no sea monster big enough to ever frighten me!

- refrain -


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Amos
Date: 21 May 02 - 02:57 PM

LOL!! I haven't heard that since I was in knee-pants!! What a hoot!

Thanks, guest!

Oh, and no, I wasn't really in knee-pants. More likely Levi's....

A


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: SharonA
Date: 21 May 02 - 03:05 PM

I found a page with the lyrics plus a MIDI file at the bottom of the page for downloading. CAUTION: the tune will start playing automatically when the page opens. On my computer, it began playing in the background and then, a moment later, overdubbed itself by automatically starting the MIDI's scroll bar! I had to click the "stop" button on the scroll bar to end the overdubbed tune, but the background tune played on. With that warning, here's the page: http://www.geocities.com/Broadway/Stage/7840/whaletale.htm


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Wesley S
Date: 21 May 02 - 04:19 PM

What suprised me about Kirk Douglas when he was singing this song in the movie it that it was obvious that he had some kind of talent when it came to playing a stringed instrument. I'm guessing he was playing some kind of uke - but he wasn't faking it. The man knew how to play. With the number of unemployed musicians in this world I hate to see a film where some guy is just pretending to play. Rant over.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 04:25 PM

Charlton Heston plays classical guitar...But people only talk about his being in the NRA


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: MMario
Date: 21 May 02 - 04:46 PM

no - they also talk about his being Moses


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Amos
Date: 21 May 02 - 06:15 PM

And Ben Hur!

A


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: SINSULL
Date: 21 May 02 - 07:29 PM

And bare-assed naked in "Planet of The Apes"!


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,Van Lingle
Date: 21 May 02 - 07:34 PM

...and a horse's arse.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Joe Offer
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:12 PM

I couldn't quite believe it was written by Jules Verne, but I think the 1954 Disney movie was called Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, so I guess the above is correct. As for the song,
Music and Lyrics were by Norman Gimbel and Al Hoffman.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,fretless, at work
Date: 22 May 02 - 09:04 AM

A great thread about a wonderful movie tune. The only comparable cinema-shanty that I can think of was Spencer Tracy's in Captains Courageous (1937): "There's a place in my heart for the one I love best/And I still wear her picture tattooed on my chest." Does anyone have the rest of the words for THAT one?


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Mrrzy
Date: 22 May 02 - 09:07 AM

Ooh, I loved that one! Didn't he also sing something about Don't cry, little fish, don't cry don't cry? I'd love those lyrics too! What a great movie, portugee or not!


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Subject: Yeah Ho Little Fish - Sung by Spencer Tracy
From: Snuffy
Date: 22 May 02 - 09:18 AM

YEA HO, LITTLE FISH is in the DT Database.

WassaiL! V


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,fretless, at work
Date: 22 May 02 - 10:55 AM

Thanks, Snuffy!


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Subject: ADD Version: Little Fishes
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 22 May 02 - 12:28 PM

Sorry about the thread creep, but these are the words which I use for "Little Fishes". The second and fifth verses are my own
.

The crew are asleep and the ocean's at rest,
I'm singing this song for the one I love best.
Sing, Hey little fishes don't cry, don't cry.
Sing, Hey little fishes don't cry, don't cry.

The seas they do crash and the winds they do wail,
With our storm-jib close-reefed we will ride out the gale.

Now the ship sails along and the weather is fine,
The skipper's gone aft, laying out some more line.

Little fish when he's caught, fights just like a great whale,
And he thrashes the water with his tiny tail.

As the fish come aboard how the scales they do gleam,
While over our heads all the herring-gulls scream.

Repeat first verse.


Wasn't it a hurdy-gurdy that Spenser Tracy accompanied himself on in the film ? It's a great film, but I once heard that they wrote off quite a lot of lovely top-sail schooners making it - evidently it was during the depression and they bought them up dirt cheap.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,fretless, at work
Date: 22 May 02 - 01:09 PM

I have a memory of Spencer singing the song a cappella while he rowed a dory or skiff -- but it's been a long time since I've seen CC.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: EBarnacle1
Date: 22 May 02 - 03:49 PM

Tracy sang it on deck on the We're Here to Harvey Cheyne as a sort of lullaby, personifying Harvey as a little fish. It seems to have been adopted into the folk canon. Does this mean that it's a folk song now?


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 22 May 02 - 05:37 PM

"Whale of a Tale" is most definitely a Hollywood Shanty. Disney is famous for this. The "Oo-da-lolly" song in "Robin Hood" is an obvious rip off "Little Beggarman". What I want to know is, why not use the trad stuff? Not like they'll have to pay royalties, and it would be 1000 times better than the stuff they have their Hollywood musicians (who obviously have little knowledge of folk) write.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: The Walrus
Date: 22 May 02 - 06:42 PM

CS

"...What I want to know is, why not use the trad stuff? Not like they'll have to pay royalties..." It's quite simple, they wouldn't have to pay royalties, but they wouldn't be able to enforce copyright either and the do like their money a Mouschwitz.

Walrus


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST
Date: 23 May 02 - 05:57 PM

Bob Zentz - 'Hove to and Drifting' recording has a fine
rendition of this shanty
-
Blue Clicky Thing

voyager


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,Erin
Date: 23 Sep 05 - 10:14 PM


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 24 Sep 05 - 12:26 PM

There are sure better sea/sailor songs in the true folk canon than Hollywood dreams up. I remember Kirk D. using a concertina in the movie. Did they have him play both a stringed instr. and the squeezebox? Or is this a senior moment?          Tw


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Allan C.
Date: 24 Sep 05 - 02:12 PM

Kirk Douglas also played a "guitar" that was made from a sea turtle's shell.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Bard Judith
Date: 24 Sep 05 - 06:16 PM

(looks at Celtic Soul with a quizzical expression)

"What I want to know is, why not use the trad stuff? Not like they'll have to pay royalties, and it would be 1000 times better than the stuff they have their Hollywood musicians (who obviously have little knowledge of folk) write?"

Does this truly surprise you? (blinks innocently) After all, they don't use the traditional story lines they rip off... which were at least a hundred % better in the folk tales and fairy stories! I wonder if they would have had to pay Hans Christian Andersen's estate if they'd kept to his original concept and let the Little Mermaid die?   

Oh, sorry, don't want to 'creep' this into an anti-Disney thread! (quickly gets down and tugs her soapbox off into a quiet corner...)


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 24 Sep 05 - 07:02 PM

BTW, they played good music in "Moby Dick"--the Gregory Peck version. I mean real, or trad. music.      Tw


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,Blackwater Hattie
Date: 13 Jul 08 - 11:25 PM

I CAN NOT BELIEVE THIS. I thought I hallucinated this song... I had it on one of those old ass 45, with the little book and everything. I'm SO glad I found this site... I made the mistake of singing the chorus to my daughter (she's 5) and she demanded I learn it for her bedtime song. I thought I was seriously fucked. THANKS, YALL!


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: catspaw49
Date: 14 Jul 08 - 12:11 AM

Feel free to hang out around here or visit anytime. Glad to be of help. There are thousands of such hard to find things around here and if you don't see it.....ask! Lots of good researchers on folk music here too.

And btw, though you now have the lyrics and all is good but if you have tp sing this thing nightly, you're still seriously fucked......

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 14 Jul 08 - 12:04 PM

"20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" was considered a ground-breaking special effects film for its time. THis movie, with its giant squid sequence, while a bit crude for modern audiences jaded by computer technology, was the "Jurassic Park" of the early 1950's. Kirk Douglas (as Popeye?) was his "over-the-top" self throughout this one and no more so than during the song.


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Subject: RE: Got a whale of a tale to tell you lads....
From: GUEST,'Ray Bucknell
Date: 14 Jul 08 - 06:58 PM

The Serendipity Singers recorded "Whale of a Tale" during the folk scare; I learned it from one of their albums (the only one I had because at the time all my record-buying money went for Chad Mitchell Trio stuff).   Had no idea the song came from a movie score but I'd certainly have remembered it if I'd seen the movie, which obviously I haven't.   Anyway, the Serendipity's version always struck me as rather a novelty kind of thing, even back then.

                                 'Ray


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Whale of a Tale
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 01 Aug 11 - 10:36 AM

Tex Ritter also did a version


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