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Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker

DigiTrad:
MY GAL'S A CORKER


Related thread:
Lyr Req: The Rest of the Song (6)


GUEST,David, in Grand Ledge, MI 15 Dec 02 - 05:15 PM
catspaw49 15 Dec 02 - 05:20 PM
Doug Chadwick 15 Dec 02 - 06:10 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 15 Dec 02 - 08:46 PM
kendall 15 Dec 02 - 09:08 PM
Haruo 15 Dec 02 - 10:03 PM
Haruo 15 Dec 02 - 10:13 PM
Joe Offer 15 Dec 02 - 10:32 PM
Abby Sale 20 Feb 03 - 09:29 PM
Metchosin 20 Feb 03 - 10:06 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 20 Feb 03 - 10:11 PM
Metchosin 20 Feb 03 - 10:44 PM
dick greenhaus 20 Feb 03 - 11:07 PM
Abby Sale 20 Feb 03 - 11:31 PM
Harold W 21 Feb 03 - 12:39 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 21 Feb 03 - 12:54 AM
Joe Offer 07 May 03 - 02:15 AM
kendall 07 May 03 - 05:00 AM
GUEST,Q 07 May 03 - 08:45 AM
GUEST,Wordless Woman 07 May 03 - 11:07 AM
TheBigPinkLad 07 May 03 - 05:03 PM
JudyR 08 May 03 - 03:33 AM
fox4zero 08 May 03 - 07:35 PM
GUEST 08 May 03 - 07:56 PM
toadfrog 08 May 03 - 09:58 PM
GUEST,Moose 07 May 05 - 05:06 PM
Snuffy 07 May 05 - 06:43 PM
Big Al Whittle 09 May 05 - 10:22 AM
GUEST,deerhouse@aol.com 15 Mar 06 - 11:44 PM
Abby Sale 16 Mar 06 - 09:28 AM
Peace 16 Mar 06 - 10:03 AM
Cool Beans 16 Mar 06 - 02:42 PM
Cool Beans 16 Mar 06 - 03:24 PM
GUEST,Ray Valdes 09 Jul 06 - 01:39 AM
GUEST 09 Jul 06 - 05:00 PM
Joybell 09 Jul 06 - 09:01 PM
GUEST,Rowan 09 Jul 06 - 09:25 PM
Joybell 10 Jul 06 - 01:19 AM
GUEST,Joe_F 13 Jul 06 - 11:14 PM
GUEST 22 Aug 06 - 03:38 PM
GUEST,Joe_F 22 Aug 06 - 11:05 PM
GUEST,catherine yronwode 23 Aug 06 - 01:42 AM
GUEST,rosalie 23 Aug 06 - 10:22 PM
Bert 24 Aug 06 - 02:21 AM
Jim Lad 19 Jan 07 - 05:27 PM
GUEST,An old Navy Chief 24 Jan 07 - 09:38 PM
GUEST,Guest 09 Mar 07 - 09:01 AM
GUEST,Tim 20 Nov 07 - 06:02 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 20 Nov 07 - 07:37 PM
GUEST 30 Jan 08 - 03:20 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 04:03 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 04:07 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 05:21 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 05:35 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 05:40 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 30 Jan 08 - 05:46 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Jan 08 - 05:47 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 31 Jan 08 - 11:49 AM
GUEST,T.D.Foster 01 Nov 08 - 07:14 PM
GUEST,David W Solomon 02 Jan 09 - 09:26 PM
Azizi 02 Jan 09 - 10:20 PM
Azizi 02 Jan 09 - 10:26 PM
Joe_F 03 Jan 09 - 08:42 PM
Jim Dixon 05 Jan 09 - 10:36 AM
Joe_F 05 Jan 09 - 08:33 PM
GUEST,Joan E-T , Ottawa,, Canada 07 Jan 09 - 09:40 PM
GUEST,Yak Yak 08 Jan 09 - 05:53 PM
topical tom 09 Jan 09 - 04:50 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 09 - 11:14 AM
Joe_F 21 Feb 09 - 08:37 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 09 - 03:29 PM
Jim Dixon 31 Mar 09 - 09:52 PM
GUEST,teamkitty 31 Mar 09 - 11:22 PM
GUEST,RaeLyn 27 Jun 09 - 01:59 AM
GUEST,deutschman3 01 Jul 09 - 06:45 PM
Joe_F 02 Jul 09 - 06:27 PM
GUEST,girl with a heart 16 Jul 09 - 03:31 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Jul 09 - 06:49 PM
GUEST,Sarah 17 Jul 09 - 03:45 PM
GUEST,Ray Valdes 19 Jul 09 - 09:46 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Jul 09 - 10:14 PM
GUEST,pnedwards 11 Sep 09 - 10:25 AM
GUEST,Interested in the truth 22 Sep 09 - 03:48 PM
GUEST,my.own.recollection 25 Sep 09 - 01:21 AM
GUEST,Ellen 07 Dec 09 - 02:03 PM
GUEST,Nick ZooHowza 14 Dec 09 - 05:20 PM
GUEST,jerry 17 Mar 10 - 12:22 PM
GUEST,JBRD 08 Jul 10 - 10:45 AM
Tannywheeler 08 Jul 10 - 12:04 PM
GUEST 20 Jul 10 - 11:13 PM
Jim Dixon 26 Jul 10 - 09:44 PM
LadyJean 27 Jul 10 - 12:11 AM
GUEST,Ray Valdes 06 Jan 11 - 11:55 PM
GUEST,Debbie in England 24 Jul 11 - 05:11 AM
GUEST 09 Sep 11 - 10:46 PM
LadyJean 10 Sep 11 - 12:26 AM
GUEST,Memories in Song 06 Nov 11 - 10:36 PM
GUEST,bold Reynard 06 Nov 11 - 11:43 PM
GUEST,What the hek 16 Mar 14 - 07:40 PM
MGM·Lion 17 Mar 14 - 05:26 AM
GUEST,Jim the Frog 15 May 15 - 06:35 PM
Lighter 16 May 15 - 09:00 AM
GUEST 25 Apr 17 - 11:52 PM
Jim Dixon 10 May 17 - 11:56 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a corker,
From: GUEST,David, in Grand Ledge, MI
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 05:15 PM

Looking for words to "My Gal's a Corker, she's a New Yorker ....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a corker,
From: catspaw49
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 05:20 PM

In the DT....CLICK HERE

Spaw


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Subject: ADD Version: MY GIRL'S A CORKER
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 06:10 PM

MY GIRL'S A CORKER

My girl's a corker.
She's a New Yorker.
I buy her everything to keep her in clothes.
She's got a pair of eyes
Just like two custard pies.
That's where the money goes.

...She's got a pair of lips
Just like two greasy chips...

...She's got a pair of shoulders
Just like two great big boulders...

...She's got a pair of hips
Just like two battle ships...

...She's got a pair of knees
Just like two trunks of trees...

...She's got a pair of legs
Just like two wooden kegs...

...She's got a pair of feet
Just like two plates of meat...

Doug C


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a corker,
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 08:46 PM

"She's got a pair of hips,
Just like two battleships"

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a corker,
From: kendall
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 09:08 PM

She's got a head of hair just like a grizzly bear...


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Subject: Apologies to all the MIT coeds
From: Haruo
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 10:03 PM

My girl's from MIT
She is a travesty
Girls who go for engineering
Are not so hot-appearing

(This is actually not from the same song, but from "She Told Me So")

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a corker,
From: Haruo
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 10:13 PM

Since it's in the 1954 (Dick & Beth Best) Song Fest, I'm really surprised I can't find "She told me so" either in the DT or the Forum. Anybody know where it's hiding or does it need to be Lyr Add ed?

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: looking for words to 'My gal's a cork
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 10:32 PM

The camp director I learned this song from, Ray Sonnenberg, was really old, probaby fifty or so; and we counselors were enlightened teenagers. Ray loved to sing this song for the campers, and we counselors stood around nervously when he did it.

The song still makes me uncomfortable, but it brings back good memories of Ray, who was like a father to me for five summers. Maybe you don't have to be "enlightened" to be a good person.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: ADD Version: My Girl's a Corker
From: Abby Sale
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 09:29 PM

MY GIRL'S A CORKER

My girl's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style
She's got a pair of legs, just like two whiskey kegs
Hey boys, that's where my money goes-oes-oes

That's where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes
I buys her everything to keep her in style
She's worth her weight in gold, my coal black baby
Hey boys, that's where my money goes ...

When we go walkin', she does the talkin'
And when my arm's round her, how time does fly
She does the teasin', I do the sqeezin'
Hey boys,...

She's got a pair of eyes, just like two custard pies
And when she looks at me, I sure get a thrill
She's got a pair of lips, just like potato chips ...

She's got a pair of legs, just like two whiskey kegs
And when they knock together, oh what a sound
She's got a pair of hips, just like two battle ships

She's got a bulbous nose, just like a big red rose
And when the lights go out, it really does shine
She wears silk underwear, I wear my latest pair ...


In the closing years of the 19th century, John "Honey" Stromberg (1853-1902) gained fame as the composer for the Weber and Fields shows, staged at New York's Music Hall Theater. As a lad, he had taken music lessons with private tutors, and as a young man, he served as an arranger for Isidor Witmark's publishing house.

In 1895, when John was 42, Weber and Fields heard his song "My Best Girl's a New Yorker" or "My Best Girl's a Corker", (his own lyric). They engaged Stromberg to compose and direct for upcoming burlesques they were intending to produce in their own theater. Stromberg wrote the complete scores, and Edgar Smith was the principal lyricist.
(From American Popular Songs by David Ewen - also in Edward B. Marks collection: old time hits of the gay eighties--nineties.)

The song's kind of dumb but the tune's catchy. As a kid in the early 50's it seems all my friends knew a few verses. Still out there after 50 years. It just popped back into my head tonight. None of the verses or rhymes we sang were identical to the above. The tune was the same but the format was simpler than the above. We'd sing the burdon and a two-line rhyme for each verse:

My girl's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style
She's got a pair of legs, just like two piano pegs
Hey boys, that's where my money goes

My girl's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style
She's got a pair of thighs, just like ... ?
Hey boys, that's where my money goes

etc. But I cannot remember any more. If any remember any of the verses I used to sing, I'd appreciate it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: Metchosin
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 10:06 PM

Wow! This was the first tune I learned to play on the piano when I was about 5 or 6,(and your right it was about 50 years ago) I'd forgotten all about it. Also learned I Love Coffee, I Love Tea around the same time. Sorry, all I remember is the verse about the battleships and the whiskey kegs.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 10:11 PM

ABBY - thank you for a refreshing stroll down memory lane.

I had completly forgotten this one...and will now dash off to keyboard and clump it out.

Excellent addition. THANX!

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: Metchosin
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 10:44 PM

come to think of it, I remember a verse we sang as
    She's got a great big nose, just like a rubber hose,
    Hot dog that's where my money go-o-oes.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 11:07 PM

There are some verses in DigiTrad under "My Gal's A Corker"

Variants include "My gal's from Vassar, none cane surpass her"
and my favorite line is "She's got a movement like a two-dollar Ingersol"


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Subject: ADD: My Girl's a Vegetable
From: Abby Sale
Date: 20 Feb 03 - 11:31 PM

Rubber hose. Absolutely what we sang!
Didn't think of searching 'Gal.' Should have tried 'corker.' Same song as above.

Now I feel I have to add the Hash version. I've never actually been accused of having good taste but I admit I did hesitate on this one...

MY GIRL'S A VEGETABLE
Melody--My Girl's a Corker, She's a New Yorker

My girl's a vegetable,
She lives in a hospital...

CHORUS:
I'd do most anything
To keep her alive.

She has no arms or legs,
She looks like a pony keg...

She's got a new TV
They call it an EKG...

Her EKG does not rise,
But she still spreads her thighs...

My girl has long blond hair,
It's in patches here and there...

She can't get out of bed
Still she can give me head...

She's got no arms or legs,
She's got two wooden pegs...

I'm always guaranteed a blow,
Because she can't say no...

She has no feet or hands,
Her head's connected with rubber bands...

She might not live the night,
That means she won't fight...

My girl lives in an iron lung,
But she can still give real good tongue...

My girl has leprosy,
Parts are always landing on top of me...

She had an episiotomy,
That's a bigger hole for me...

She can not hear, she can not see,
But she's got an oral cavity...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: Harold W
Date: 21 Feb 03 - 12:39 AM

She has a pair of tits
Just like two baseball mitts.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 21 Feb 03 - 12:54 AM

She's got a pair of tits
Just like two battleships.

She's got a pair of hips
Just like two potato chips

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

This should be good therapy for Alzheimers...I don't doubt that R.R. could toss in a couple, even in his adled state.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joe Offer
Date: 07 May 03 - 02:15 AM

As I read Ewen's American Popular Songs, it appears that words and music were written by John Stromberg in 1895, and the original song title was "My Best Girls' a New Yorker (or, My Best Girl's a Corker)"
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: kendall
Date: 07 May 03 - 05:00 AM

But, is it folk?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 07 May 03 - 08:45 AM

A march composition was used by the band at the University of Texas in he 1950s. Student parodies included:
    My girl's- a porker
    She's an- Arkansawyer
Sung when Arkansas was played in the old Southwest Conference.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Wordless Woman
Date: 07 May 03 - 11:07 AM

Funny, I was thinking of this song the other day. We used it as a clapping song when we were children but said chorus girl rather than corker. In our version her hips were two battle ships and her lips were potato chips.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 07 May 03 - 05:03 PM

When I was little we had segregated schoolyards (boys and girls) and the 'infant' boys (under 7) had to play in the girl's yard. I was made to sing this ditty as I twirled a skipping rope. I also twirled to "On a mountain stands a lady, who she is I do not know ... All she wants is gold and silver, all she wants is a nice young man ...' Ah, yes, it all comes back to me now ;o)


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: JudyR
Date: 08 May 03 - 03:33 AM

Wow, us oldies. We girls used to dance to this in the 50's, when we were early teens -- the dance was CALLED the New Yorker -- you know, a step, step, step-back-step-forward, step (you know, one, two, one-two three, one, two one-two three). You can even do the Charleston to it (which our mothers taught us).

The last line of the first verse was "Yessir, that's where my money goes..."


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: fox4zero
Date: 08 May 03 - 07:35 PM

My late brother-in-law, whom I miss very much, returned from the army in 1945 with Malaria and these lyrics:

    She's got a pair of hips, just like 2 battle ships
    That's where my money always goes.

    I buy her pink chemise, she buys me BVD's
    That's where my money always goes.

Cheers, Larry


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 08 May 03 - 07:56 PM

The verses my mom sang were:

She drives a Cadillac I walk to work and back



She rides a limosine, I buy the gasoline

She has a head of hair, just like a grizzly bear


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: toadfrog
Date: 08 May 03 - 09:58 PM

Yeah, I had completely forgotten that one. Boy! Probably haven't heard it since 1950 or so.

The last time I thought of that song, I wondered, is it the same song, or the same tune, as:

My girl's from Vassar,
None can surpass her . . .

My girl's from Smith; She talkth like thith.
She taught me how to kiss, I love her tho,
And in my future life, she's going to be my wife.
How in the world do you know that? She told me so!

My girl's from MIT, she is a travesty!
Girls who go for engineering are not so hot appearing!
And in my future life, she's going to be my wife.
How in the world do you know that? She told me so!

That used to be in the college songbooks, but I've never heard it sung.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Moose
Date: 07 May 05 - 05:06 PM

We sang this song in grade school music class! Only the final phrase of the chorus was "That's why I love her so".

I remember "She's got a pair of lips, just like two poker chips".

That teacher must have been a little eccentric looking back on it now. He also taught "We are marching to Pretoria", which is a Boer War song!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Snuffy
Date: 07 May 05 - 06:43 PM

We had a slightly different version of this in England too in the early 60s:

My girl's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I'd do most anything to keep her in trim
She's got a ............ just like ............
That's where all my money goes.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 09 May 05 - 10:22 AM

when i was in the cubs in the 1950's we used to sing it to the tune I got rhythm


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,deerhouse@aol.com
Date: 15 Mar 06 - 11:44 PM

my girl's from bryn mawr
she won't get in my car
she says i go too far
maybe i do....

and in my future life..etc

my girl's from m.i.t.
she's a traversity
girls who study engineering
usually ain't so hot appearing

and in my future life...etc


my girl's from smith
she talks like thith
she tought me how to kith
i love her tho

and in my future life

my girl's from goucher
i'd like to couch her


etc.

dgm
lehigh. '61


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Abby Sale
Date: 16 Mar 06 - 09:28 AM

Maybe not - "We are marching to Pretoria" was quite popular in the Revival. Great, rousing tune. Contrary to popular opinion, people rarely get much into the politics of any song unless they're strong believers or protestors of the topic in the first place.

If it's upbeat or emotional and they like the tune they sing it.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Peace
Date: 16 Mar 06 - 10:03 AM

"Origins: My Girl's a Corker"

Worked in a winery did she?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Cool Beans
Date: 16 Mar 06 - 02:42 PM

My girl's from Holyoke
She taught me how to smoke.
She knows a dirty joke.
Now I know one, too.


(I bet my daughter never heard this song. She goes to Hampshire College, right in the middle of that Smith-Amherst-Mount Holyoke area.)


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Cool Beans
Date: 16 Mar 06 - 03:24 PM

Now that I'm thinking about it, there were verses about sororities, too. My girlfriend, now my ex-wife, taught me this one at Syracuse University in the late 1960s:

My girl's in SDT (Sigma Delta Tau)
She is in love with me.
We are in love to stay.
We do it twice a day...


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Subject: ADD Version: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST,Ray Valdes
Date: 09 Jul 06 - 01:39 AM

Was I surprised to read all those letters about the origins of "My Gal's a Corker"! The reason for the surprise is because I wrote that song and lyrics in 1941. Here is the story: My parents sent me to camp Marquette in Brattleboro, Vermont for three summers. The summer of 1941 it rained for thirty out of the 40 days we were there. A friend of mine, Billy Byrnes, and I put together a few skits that we presented to the rest of the gang. My family lived in Manhattan and I had a girlfriend that attended Marymount (91st and Fifth Ave.). I went to Loyola at 83rd and Park. I wrote the song and kept it a few years. In 1948 I typed it and saved it until the computer age. At that time, I saved it to the computer. If you find it strange that I have kept something for so long, please know that I still have stuff I wrote in grammar school. And here is exactly the way I wrote it:

MY GAL'S A CORKER

My gal's a corker,
She's a New Yorker.
And I do everything to keep her in style.

She's got a mop of hair
Just like a grizzly bear---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of eyes
Just like two lemon pies---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a big, long nose
Just like a fireman's hose---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of lips
Just like potatoe chips---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of tits
Just like two ice picks---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a swivel back
Just like Jaimaca track---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of hips
Just like two battleships---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of legs
Just like two whiskey kegs---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of feet
Just like the Navy's fleet---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

My gal's a corker,
She's a New Yorker.
And I do everything to keep her in style.


Unfortunately I can't reproduce the music here but it was a fast Dixieland Rag beat (like "Toot Toot Tootsie, or "Sitting On The Levee"

Bestest, RAY


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Jul 06 - 05:00 PM

I have been singing and teaching this song for forty years. (C-D7-G7-C). My students and I have made up some dandy verses.

She's got her teeth so bright/ They come out every night
That's where my money all goes.

She's got a pair of feet/ Take up the whole damned street
That's where my money all goes.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joybell
Date: 09 Jul 06 - 09:01 PM

hildebrand here: has anybody else noticed the similarity between "my gal's a corker" and certain versions of "nobody's business what i do"?
(particularly hillbilly versions). any information, any theories?
H


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Rowan
Date: 09 Jul 06 - 09:25 PM

From summer camps in Victoria (Australia) in the '40s the song was always called (from its first line) "My girl's a corker, she's a bushwalker." Almost all the versions were much as described in the thread above but I suspect the tune is different because it always was sung with a chorus that seems not to scan but then, I cant't read music let alone write it. Other Australian contributors who can read and write will probably help you out though. The following couplet made up the opening lines to each verse;

"My girl's a corker, she's a bushwalker,
I buy her everything to keep her in style."

Then the various contributions such as
"She has two lovely hips, just like two battleships,"
with each verse concluded by the line
"That's where all my money goes."

And always the Chorus
Oompah, oompah, oompah pah!
Oompah, oompah, oompah pah!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joybell
Date: 10 Jul 06 - 01:19 AM

True-love (roots in the American Midwest) sang a chorus too. He learned it from his sister's friends in the 40s.
It was:

Ring ling a-ling ding who told you so. (three times)
Better days are commin' by and by.

Also, just for the record, the verses of Woody Guthrie's Do-Re-Mi use this tune.
Cheers, Joy


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Joe_F
Date: 13 Jul 06 - 11:14 PM

Toadfrog et al.: The college stanzas belong to a distinct song, the Vassar Hygiene Song, which appears in The New Song Fest. It has a different tune. The first stanza is:

    Oh, we never used to bathe till we heard the doctor rave In the lectures that she gave how to behave;
    Now we take our daily bath even though we miss our math.
    How in the world did you know that?
    She told us so.

    When we grow older, then we'll be bolder,
    We'll take it colder, up to the shoulder.
    This we must do every day, even though we pass away.
    How in the world do you know that?
    She told us so.

    There are four more stanzas on that pattern, and then it launches into "She goes to Vassar, none can surpass her", "My girl's from Thmith, thhe talkth like thith", etc., etc., ending with

    My man's from Yale, he lands in jail, From drinking too much gin--ger ale. And in my future life I'm gonna be his wife. How in the world does he know that? I told him so.
Those stanzas may well have floated back & forth between the Vassar Hygiene Song, My Girl's a Corker, and perhaps others.

--- Joe Fineman    joe_f@verizon.net

||: Whatever is worth doing is worth doing badly. :||


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Aug 06 - 03:38 PM

My father used to sing a variant of My Girl's a Corker.We think he learned it while at Georgia Military Academy (now Georgia Military College) in Milledgeville, Georgia in the 1940s.He may have learned it at Fort Benning, Georgia. He said they used it as a marching song. He has been gone now 8 years, and we occasionally think of that tune, but can't remember the rest of the words in his version. Anybody out there know?

I walk upon the track
She drives a Cadillac
I work both day and night
To keep her satisfied

......

Refrain

She's my one black, two black sure enough true black
Chocolate to the bone.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Joe_F
Date: 22 Aug 06 - 11:05 PM

Guest: That refrain is stolen from another song, which I could have sworn I had the text of, but now I can't find it. Anyway, it begins "She's got eyes like Jezebel, teeth like pearls". And "sure enough true black" used to be "honest-to-God shoe-black".

--- Joe Fineman    joe_f@verizon.net

||: A millihelen is the amount of facial beauty required to launch one ship; a microhelen, to arouse one sailor. :||


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,catherine yronwode
Date: 23 Aug 06 - 01:42 AM

Unlike Abby Sale's "latest pair," we sang it this way in California, in the mid 1950s:

   She wears silk underwear, i wear my last year's pair

As for "Marching to Pretoria" -- we were taught that in school as well, and my mother, who was quite left-leaning, was shocked and proceeded to give me a long lecture about the evils of apartheid.

cat yronwode


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,rosalie
Date: 23 Aug 06 - 10:22 PM

I learned "My girl's a corker, she's a New Yorker" as a kid in Washington,D.C. with many of the words cited above. When I moved to New York City in 1956, they sang it as "There's where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes..."
My friend from the Ozarks sings, "She wears silk underwear, I wear my last year's pair." which I thought matched the phrase "that's where my money goes" better than any of the verses we sang as kids. She learned the song from a record (maybe Burl Ives?)
I looked in "The New Song Fest." They have the Vassar Hygiene Song followed by the parody of my girl's a corker with 14 college verses including those cited above (pages 54-55.)
We also learned "Marching to Pretoria" in school (probably in D.C. -more singing in the schools there.) The words are about doing things together, "as we march along."


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Bert
Date: 24 Aug 06 - 02:21 AM

She's got a pair of thighs
just like the bridge of sighs
Gee Ma that's where my money goes

She's got a pair of ears
just like two foaming beers

She's got a pair of knees
just like two bamboo trees


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Jim Lad
Date: 19 Jan 07 - 05:27 PM

Oh it's folk! I still remember the wee girls skipping to this one when I was a lad. One girl on either end of the rope and the rest waiting in line at one end. they would each jump for one verse and then run through to take their place in line at the other end. The chorus of twenty or so young girls singing at full volume and never missing a note could have put many choirs to shame.
Great stuff. Thank You.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,An old Navy Chief
Date: 24 Jan 07 - 09:38 PM

Forgot the following verse to My Girl's a Vegetable:

One day I played a joke,
Pulled the plug and watched her croak


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 09 Mar 07 - 09:01 AM

Here's another version, used on Petticoat Junction. The character (Steve Elliot) was singing about his daughter Kathy Jo:
    That's where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes
    I buy her everything, to keep her in style
    She's just about 1 year old and she's worth her weight in gold
    Yes sir, that's where my money goes
    Believe me, all for my little Kathy Jo


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Tim
Date: 20 Nov 07 - 06:02 PM

I learned the song when I was around 5 years old, and I think my day camp teachers used to say:

"That's where all the money go-o-oes!
Oom-pa oom-pa oom-pa-pa
Oom-pa-pa
Oom-pa-pa
Oom-pa Oom-pa Oom-pa pa
Oom-pa-pa-pa-pa HEY!
"

after each verse. Probably something they added on, but I was disappointed to see that it isn't part of the original lyrics.

Tim


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 20 Nov 07 - 07:37 PM

Posted in another thread.
Played by the University of Texas marching band.

My girl's a hullabaloo
She goes to Texas U
She wears her colors true
I'll say she do.
And in my future life
She's gonna be my wife-
(Shouted)-
How the hell you get that way?

She told me so!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 03:20 PM

The only one I didn't see was...

"She has a pair of lips, just like two poker chips."

"Hey man, that's where my money go-oe-oes."


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 04:03 PM

The idea behind "My Girl's a ..." could go back a ways. This song was mentioned in James Joyce. Lyrics posted by Jim Dixon - "My Girl's a Yorkshire Girl."
Look at the chorus- Different melody to this music hall song.

My girl's a Yorkshire girl-
Yorkshire through and through.
My girl's a Yorkshire girl,
Eh! by gum, she's a champion!
Though she's a factory lass
And wears no fancy clothes,
Still I've got a sort of a Yorkshire relish
For my little Yorkshire rose.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 04:07 PM

Sorry- wrong number-
My Girl's a Yorkshire Girl


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 05:21 PM

University of British Columbia Colours- Songs at UBC

My girl's a hullabaloo
She wears the Gold and Blue, ...

"...reprinted every year in the 1920's and 1930's in the predecessor of the "Inside UBC," known then simply as the "Student Handbook."


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 05:35 PM

The earliest reference I can find to "My Girl's a Corker is c. 1898, in the catalogue of the Kansas City Talking Machine Company, cylinder 4208, sung by tenor Frank Butts.

General link to website-
http://www.gracy.com

"The Kansas City Talking Machine Company And Its "Original" Recordings of 1898," by Tim Gracyk.
KCTMC


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 05:40 PM

Oh dear- the japanese strike. must now add initial 'k'- gracyk.com

Tim Gracy's website at KCTMC


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 05:46 PM

We used to sing this one at camp. By the way, Abby, you are not descended from the semi-immortal "Chick Sale," are you?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Jan 08 - 05:47 PM

Directly to the article on the Kansas City TMC- sorry, but I was using my old bookmarks-
www.gracyk.com/kansas.shtml

Kansas City TMC


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 31 Jan 08 - 11:49 AM

Have been unable to find the author of the lyrics to match the 1898 recording date.
Any ideas of where to look? Still have some of google to go through.

R. Frank Butts, in addition to a couple of comic songs, recorded many "Gospel" songs, especially "old time." In an archived article "Children in the Revival," in NY Times- "Like many of the other principal evangelists concerned in the great spiritual renaissancce in Brooklyn, R. Frank Butts, the moving and delightful Gospel singer, comes from Lima, Ohio." (Article found through google, pdf. I tried printing it, but got pages with headings only).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST,T.D.Foster
Date: 01 Nov 08 - 07:14 PM

I first heard this song,song by the sailors,when I went to sea back in 1952.Naturally,there were also obscene versions of her physical attributes.Does anybody know how old this song really is?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST,David W Solomon
Date: 02 Jan 09 - 09:26 PM

My girl's a corker. She's a New Yorker.
I buy her everything to keep her in style.
She's got a pair of legs just like two whiskey kegs.
Hot dog! that's where my money go-oe-oes.

Oompa oompa oompa pa pa,
Oompa oompa oompa pa pa,
Oompa oompa oompa pa pa,
Oompa oompa oompa pa pa.

My girl's a corker. She's a New Yorker.
I buy her everything to keep her in style.
She's got a head of hair just like a grizzly bear.
Hot dog! That's where my money go-oe-oes.

Oompa oompa oompa pa pa,
Oompa oompa oompa pa pa,
Oompa oompa oompa pa pa!

(N.B.) My Dad is 77, and that's how he used to sing it to me as a lad to go to sleep. Now it is my ring tone on my phone!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Azizi
Date: 02 Jan 09 - 10:20 PM

My junior high school music teacher, Mr. Sobrola, {New Jersey, 1960} taught this song in music class. I'm sure he didn't use the title "My Girl's A Corker" and he didn't teach the parody-like verses. Instead, the words to what I call "That's Where My Money Goes", are very much like those posted above by GUEST,Guest on 09 Mar 07 - 09:01 AM. Here's the words we learned:

That's where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes.
I buy her everything, to keep her in style.
She's worth her weight in gold.
My lovely la-a-dy.
Hey, boys, that's where my money goes.

-snip-

I remember that we would sing the chorus of "The Sweetheart of Sigma Chi" right before we sang "That's Where My Money Goes". I used to think that these two were just one song. As you can see by the words to that chorus, the two songs fit each other very well:

"The girl of my dreams is the sweetest girl
of all the girls I know.
Each sweet coed, like a rainbow trail,
fades in the afterglow.
The blue of her eyes and the gold of her hair
are a blend of the western sky,
And the moonlight beams on the girl of my dreams.
She's the Sweetheart of Sigma Chi.

-snip-

A link to a Mudcat thread about that Sigma Chi song is here.

**

I always wondered where that "Money's Worth" song came from. When I found out that there was really a song called "Sweetheart of Sigma Chi",I thought "That's Where My Money Goes" was just a verse of that song. But now I know that my music teacher was being creative by blending those two songs together. When i think back, I'm thankful for that teacher, and I better appreciate other examples of his creativity such as a Christmas musical that he wrote. I took this for granted when I was younger, but having met some-shall we say-uninspiring public school music teachers since then, I'm thankful that I had the opportunity to learn from that really nice teacher.

It's interesting to read the different versions of "My Girl's A Corker" and to learn that some children sung verses of that song while jumping rope.

I like those memories and I like mine too.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Azizi
Date: 02 Jan 09 - 10:26 PM

I meant to post the comment above on this thread thread.cfm?threadid=54687&messages=10
Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker

But as a link has been provided to each thread in both of these threads, I suppose the fact that my comment doesn't shed any light on the origin of the song will be forgiven.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: Joe_F
Date: 03 Jan 09 - 08:42 PM

I believe that the one in _The New Song Fest_ goes by the name of the Vassar Hygiene Song.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MY BEST GIRL'S A NEW YORKER (J Stromberg)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 05 Jan 09 - 10:36 AM

No author is named in this book, but it must be the song mentioned above, written by John Stromberg in 1895:

The American Metropolis: From Knickerbocker Days to the Present Time: New York City Life in All its Various Phases
by Frank Moss (New York: Peter Fenelon Collier, 1897), page 309:


MY BEST GIRL'S A NEW YORKER

1. Singing in praise of your sweetheart, describing her many perfections,
Is just now consider'd a high art, so I'll tell you all about mine;
Tommy and Johnny and Danny, whose sweethearts can rival most any,
Will turn emerald-hued all from envy when they hear of my charmer divine.

CHORUS: My best girl's a corker,
Not the kind that's slow,
Born and bred New Yorker,
I would have you know;
You may sing about your Mollie,
Your Mamie or your Pearl,
They're all back numbers when compared
With my best girl!

2. If you could see what she writes me when I'm away from the fireside,
You plainly could tell that she likes me, this dear young charmer of mine;
Mamma has faithfully taught her to be a most dutiful daughter,
And that's why I love her and court her, this girl that I think so divine.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joe_F
Date: 05 Jan 09 - 08:33 PM

Fragment remembered from the 1950s:

...She lets me under there --
Say, boys, that's where my money goes.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST,Joan E-T , Ottawa,, Canada
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 09:40 PM

I learned this as a teenager during World War two, probably by the summer of 1942 or 1943. The verses I remember--sung around the campfire in the Kawartha Lakes in Ontario, Canada-- sound as if it was a version sung in the US Navy.

My Gal's a corker. She's a New Yorker. I buy her everything to keep her in style.

She's got a pair of eyes Just like two lemon pies Oh boy, that's where my money go-o-oes.

A great big NOSE, Just like a rubber hose...

A pair of LIPS, Just like potato chips...

A pair of HIPS, Just like two battleships... A pair of LEGS, Just like two whisky kegs... A pair of FEET, Just like the U.S. fleet...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST,Yak Yak
Date: 08 Jan 09 - 05:53 PM

Slightly different lyrics from the medics.....

My girls got lovely eyes, just two holes full of flies....
but I would do anything, to keep her alive
My girls got rabies, no chance of babies....
but I would do anything, to keep her alive
and so on....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: topical tom
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 04:50 AM

She wears silk underwear,
I wear my last year's pair.
Hey, babe, that's where my money goes.

She has a pair of tits just like two rocket ships
Hey, babe, that's where my money goes.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 09 - 11:14 AM

She wears my B.v.D's
I stand outside and freeze

She drives my limousine
I buy the gasoline ... jee ma thats where my money goes


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joe_F
Date: 21 Feb 09 - 08:37 PM

Guest: Cf.

Let me call you sweetheart -- I'm in love with your new limousine.
Let me hear you whisper that you'll buy all the gasoline.
Keep the headlights burning, and your hands upon the wheel.
Let me call you sweetheart -- I'm in love with your automobile.

Perhaps, thru links of parody, all songs are connected.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 09 - 03:29 PM

My grandfather used to sing this to us lol
What I remember is
Hair...grizzley bear
set of feet....english fleet
legs...whiskey kegs


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Gal's a Corker
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 09:52 PM

I found this information at WorldCat.org:

MY GIRL'S A CORKER: OR, THE RACE TRACK GIRL
Words by William Jerome, music by John Queen
New York: T. B. Harms, ©1895.
First line: Oh, talk about your sweethearts fair.
First line of chorus: My girl's a corker.

This makes me wonder if all the versions quoted so far are parodies.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,teamkitty
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 11:22 PM

Both my grandfather (b. 1902) and my cousin (b. 1895) used to sing this song with some of the following stanzas:

"My gal's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style."

"She wears silk underwear, I wear my GI pair"

"She's got a pair of hips, just like two navy ships"

"She's got a head of hair, just like a grizzly bear"


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,RaeLyn
Date: 27 Jun 09 - 01:59 AM

I'm 23 years old and remember learning parts and pieces of this song when I was in preschool in the late 1980's and early 1990's. I was taught by "Grandpa" Schooley (not related but all the kids called him grandpa) who learned it when he served in the military and owned the daycare with his wife. They were both wonderful people. On weekends I would go to my Grandparents house and sing this song for my Grandma. As I got older I forgot about this song but occassionally my Grandma and I would talk about it and all I could ever remember was the battleship verse. I wish I had found this page before my Grandma passed away, she'd have gotten a kick out of finding lyrics. :)


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,deutschman3
Date: 01 Jul 09 - 06:45 PM

My mom and I have been trying to remember the words to this song for months now. My uncle (her brother) taught it to me (us) when I was really young.
My mom thinks a section of the goes..."she's my one black, two black, honest to goodness shoe-black, chocolate to the bone...(then some more lyrics which we can't remember)then into "she wear's my bvd's, I stand outside and freeze, hey boys, that's where my money goes".
Has anyone ever heard of that version?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Girl's a Corker
From: Joe_F
Date: 02 Jul 09 - 06:27 PM

deutschman3: See my posting above (22 Aug 06).


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,girl with a heart
Date: 16 Jul 09 - 03:31 PM

Thanks for completely ruining an otherwise pleasant and polite blog read. These words deeply offensive and they refer to acts that are illegal - rightly so. Seriously, if you find associating yourself with this kind of mentality appealing you have serious issues. Seek therapy.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Jul 09 - 06:49 PM

I remember the "one black ..." from Illinois, 1950s. A kids rhyme. Never heard it with the "corker" song.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Sarah
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 03:45 PM

My Pop-Pop always sang this with his daughters and granddaughters. He and my grandmother learned it on a hay ride when the oldest of their children were little.
His version:
My gal's a corker
She's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style
She's got a ...
*Mop of hair, just like a grizzly bear.*
Hot Dog! That's where my money goes!

*Pair of eyes, just like two custard (or pumpkin) pies.*
*Pair of lips, just like potato chips.*
*Pair of hips, just like two battleships.*
*Pair of gams, just like Virginia hams.*


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Ray Valdes
Date: 19 Jul 09 - 09:46 PM

In June of 2006, I wrote the following:

Was I surprised to read all those letters about the origins of "My Gal's a Corker"! The reason for the surprise is because I wrote that song and lyrics in 1941. Here is the story: My parents sent me to camp Marquette in Brattleboro, Vermont for three summers. The summer of 1941 it rained for thirty out of the 40 days we were there. A friend of mine, Billy Byrnes, and I put together a few skits that we presented to the rest of the gang. My family lived in Manhattan and I had a girlfriend that attended Marymount (91st and Fifth Ave.). I went to Loyola at 83rd and Park. I wrote the song and kept it a few years. In 1948 I typed it and saved it until the computer age. At that time, I saved it to the computer. If you find it strange that I have kept something for so long, please know that I still have stuff I wrote in grammar school. And here is exactly the way I wrote it:

MY GAL'S A CORKER

My gal's a corker,
She's a New Yorker.
And I do everything to keep her in style.

She's got a mop of hair
Just like a grizzly bear---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of eyes
Just like two lemon pies---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a big, long nose
Just like a fireman's hose---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of lips
Just like potatoe chips---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of tits
Just like two ice picks---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a swivel back
Just like Jaimaca track---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of hips
Just like two battleships---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of legs
Just like two whiskey kegs---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

She's got a pair of feet
Just like the Navy's fleet---
Yes boys, that's where my money goes.

My gal's a corker,
She's a New Yorker.
And I do everything to keep her in style.


Unfortunately I can't reproduce the music here but it was a fast Dixieland Rag beat (like "Toot Toot Tootsie, or "Sitting On The Levee"

Bestest, RAY

However, no one has referenced this in their messages. Would like to see comments. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Jul 09 - 10:14 PM

The corkers are a crowd of men, who loaf about the town,
Whose boarding bills are running up, and funds are running down,.....

Start of :"The Corkers," 19th c. song sheet

What? The wrong kind of corkers? Sorry.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,pnedwards
Date: 11 Sep 09 - 10:25 AM

To deutschman3
My mother used to sing this version:
She's my one black, two black, honest to goodness shoeblack, chocolate to the bone
If you see my gal walking down the street, you better leave her alone
She's got hair like a jezebel, teeth like pearls
Oh my lawd, she's a gift to the world...
etc.
that's all I remember but funny that just last week my sister was asking me if i remembered the words. if you think of any more please post.
thanks
P


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Interested in the truth
Date: 22 Sep 09 - 03:48 PM

It's funny that Ray Valdes claims to have written something in the 1940s that was already written by 1900. Making claims like that is not nice, especially when it's so easy to prove you wrong. It was written by John Stromberg in 1895.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Co
From: GUEST,my.own.recollection
Date: 25 Sep 09 - 01:21 AM

I got curious about the song, so I googled "to buy my baby clothes" and wound up here.

Like others growing up in NY in the '50s, I used to hear it (learned it from my father) as "That's where my money goes/To buy my baby clothes". It didn't say she was a NY-er. But we also had a couplet in there that I don't think anyone else has mentioned; I don't fully remember it, but it was "I buy her diamond rings/ and other things"....

Country singer Dick Curless had a rather salacious truck-driving song to the same tune: "I ride the interstate/searching for trucker bait".... There were lines about hot pants and miniskirts, if I recall correctly.

Two comments based on scanning this full thread:

1. It's amazing to me that it's been going on for EIGHT YEARS!

2. I find "My girl's a vegetable" to be as hilarious as it is sick.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,Ellen
Date: 07 Dec 09 - 02:03 PM

I taught this little ditty to my grandchildren this past week. I believe I learned it from my parents. My mother was born and raised in Brooklyn, my father in Pittsburgh but he moved to Brooklyn as a young man (just out of college).

I couldn't exactly remember all the lyrics ... I did remember we sang:
"She's got a pair of eyes, just like two pizza pies!" - but seem like from what I have read here, those aren't even the lyrics.   We made up some words based on body parts but now I can sing them the "original" words.

Thanks for the look back. BTW, I am 55, born and raised in Brooklyn till 1959, then Suffern NY. After college and marriage I moved to Indiana.

I also taught them the alternate lyrics to Row Row Row Your Boat and the event driven lyrics to "How dry I am..."   I felt like I was passing on an important part of my childhood - songs for every occasion :)


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Co
From: GUEST,Nick ZooHowza
Date: 14 Dec 09 - 05:20 PM

My dad use to leeringly sing the last two lines thusly, if memory serves me:
"She's got a pair of (jugs? dugs? doves?)
Big as Jack Dempsey's gloves.
Hot dog! That's where my money goes!"
Since I was too young/naive to process this at the time, I'm hazy on the word that rhymed( or maybe didn't) with gloves: I could be way off. I have completely forgotten any parts of the song that preceded these lines, though I don't think they involved any corkers or New Yorkers. Would be fun to know what the words were.
But, as far as I could tell, he seemed to be singing to the tune of the "Weenie Man" song, the above words with the part that goes:
"Some day I'll be his wife,
His little weenie wife.
Hot dog! I love my weenie man!"
My mom always gave my dad the stink-eye at these kinds of outbursts. I think he probably picked this ditty up while in the U.S. Navy during WWII, which seems to resonate with a previous response above.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,jerry
Date: 17 Mar 10 - 12:22 PM

My gal's a corker, she's a New Yorker
I buy her everything to keep her in style.
I bought her underwear, she showed it everywhere.
Oh man, that's where my money goes!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST,JBRD
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 10:45 AM

She wears my BVDs,
I stand outside and freeze,
Yes boys, that's where my money goes!


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 12:04 PM

Well, Guest Ray V., I think it's interesting that you believe you "wrote" a song in 1941 which was being sung already around the world & could be traced from versions actually written (even possibly recorded) in the late 1890s. Is it possible you just adapted a camp-song thingy you'd heard, & made a paper record of what you'd come up with? Tw


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Corker
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jul 10 - 11:13 PM

My gals a corker she a New Yoker Id buy her anything to keep her in style.
She got a head of hair
Just like a grizzly bear
Hey boys thats where my money goes,my money goes


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/My Best Girl's a Co
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 09:44 PM

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has the sheet music, described thus in its catalog:

Author: Stromberg, John, 1853-1902.
Title: MY BEST GIRL'S A NEW YORKER : latest waltz song and chorus / sung by the Washburn Sisters in Louis Robie's Fortuna Co. ; written & composed by John Stromberg.
Published: New York : Jos. W. Stern, c1895.
First line: Singing in praise of your sweetheart.
Chorus: My best girl's a corker.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: LadyJean
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 12:11 AM

My mom sang:

My girl's from Vassar
None can surpass her
She is the stroke ont he Varsity team.
And in my future life,
she's going to be my wife!
How in the heck did I find that out!
She told me so.

My gir's from Wheaton
She can't be beaten!
She's great out on a date.
She takes her liquor straight!
And in my future life etc.

(Mom went to Wheaton. That's Wheaton College for Women in Massachusetts, not the school in Indiana where Billy Graham went. Mom said the Wheaton boys visited her campus once and marched across the green staring straight ahead, rather than be corrupted by those Massachusetts radicals. Mom liked her whiskey with a little water.)


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,Ray Valdes
Date: 06 Jan 11 - 11:55 PM

This message is in response to: INTERESTED IN TRUTH, JIM DIXON and TAMMYWHEELER. In 1943 I was 11 years old.I have never heard of John Stromberg. I have no idea if the tune I made up resembles Mr. Stromberg's-- don't even know if my words resemble his lyrics. If any of you have his score, I would be glad to send you a CD of what I wrote for comparison. His is listed as a waltz; mine is a fast dixieland. My e-mail is: rayvaldes@earthlink.net. Thanks


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,Debbie in England
Date: 24 Jul 11 - 05:11 AM

In my school playground in England we also sang a version of this song in the 1970's

'My boy's a corker, he lives New Yorker
He'll give me anything to keep me in style
He's got a runny nose, just like a watering hose
That's why love my corker so, ho, ho, ho, umpa, umpa, umpa, umpa, umpa!

He's got a pair of ears, just like to Indian spears

He's got a pair of eyes just like to pork pies (very british!)

He's got a pair of legs just like to wooden peg


Good to be remembered of the song, I wonder how we got to sing it in a little English town school playground in the 70's?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Sep 11 - 10:46 PM

hot dog thats where my money goes thaats the original


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: LadyJean
Date: 10 Sep 11 - 12:26 AM

Another of my mother's classics:

My girl's from Vassar
None can surpass her.
She is the stroke on the
Varisty team. (rowing crew)
And in my future life
she's going to be my wife.
How in the heck did I find that out!
She told me so.

My girl's from Holyoke
She doesn't drink or smoke.
She knows a dirty joke,
and I do too.
and in my future life...

My girl's from Wheaton
She can't be beaten
She's great out on a date.
She takes her liquor straight.
And etc.

Mom went to what was then Wheaton College for women in Wheaton Massachusetts. Not the Wheaton College in Wheaton Illinois, where Billy Graham went. She did not take her liquor straight.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,Memories in Song
Date: 06 Nov 11 - 10:36 PM

Always heard this song from my dad after he had a couple.
Here's line nobody will understand in a few more years

She's got a pair of boobs,
just like two picture tubes...

Ah mam...memories.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,bold Reynard
Date: 06 Nov 11 - 11:43 PM

There's a good version collected by Alan Lomax on Singing in the Streets: Scottish Children's Songs. With the Oom pa pa chorus.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,What the hek
Date: 16 Mar 14 - 07:40 PM

Hey, this may make the Guinness Book of Records for the longest trivial pursuit.

As you all know, the Irish immigrated and many landed in New York. A Corker is a person from County Cork.

What did you think corker meant?


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 17 Mar 14 - 05:26 AM

World English Dictionary
corker (ˈkɔːkə)
? n
1.         slang
        a. something or somebody striking or outstanding: 'that was a corker of a joke' ···

.,,.,.
That's what I thought it meant; because that is what it does mean here: in "my girl"'s case, it would be her looks and attractiveness which were 'striking & outstanding'. There may, I suppose, just about be an element of the Irish ['from Co Cork'] derivation in the interpretation; but that sounds more to me suspiciously like one of those irritating post-hoc folk etymologies that keep cropping up.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST,Jim the Frog
Date: 15 May 15 - 06:35 PM

This was a fascinating thread (which I found searching for "She wears my BVDs, I stand outside and freeze, Yes boys that's where my money goes", which my dad sang for me in the 60's).

It's pretty clear that there are four different songs here. (Not that hard to tell if you check scansion and lyrics and do some YouTube searches)

1) "My Gal's a Corker" - waltz, written by John Stromberg in the late 1800's

2) "My Gal's a Corker" - rag, possibly written by Ray Valdes in 1941; perhaps filking an existing tune. This is a completely different song than #1, with different lyrics and meter, but shares the same title. It had traveled to Scotland by the mid 1950's to be recorded by Alan Lomax (http://www.allmusic.com/album/singing-in-the-streets-scottish-childrens-songs-mw0000655458)

3) "Vassar Hygiene Song" - shares a few lyrics with #2, but clearly a different song.

4) "Nobody's business what i do" - blues song that has a similar meter to #2 but different tune.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: Lighter
Date: 16 May 15 - 09:00 AM

To be a "corker" in the U.S. (not a word that used much anymore), something or someone needs only to be very remarkable, even surprising or mildly disconcerting, in some way.

To say "My girl's a corker" doesn't tell us much. In my experience it is more usually applied to actions than to looks.


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Subject: RE: Origins: My Gal's a Corker/...Girl's a New Yorker
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Apr 17 - 11:52 PM

My aunt a former US Army WAC, sang this ditty to me
When I was young. My gals a corker she's a New Yorker I buy her every thing. Yay boys that's where my money goes.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MY GIRL'S A CORKER (Jerome/Queen, 1895)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 10 May 17 - 11:56 PM

From the sheet music at University of Wisconsin-Madison:


MY GIRL'S A "CORKER," or "THE RACE TRACK GIRL
Words by William Jerome; music by John Queen. ©1895.

1. Oh, talk about your sweethearts fair,
And girls of high degree;
Your Bow'ry Pearls, and English girls
From far across the sea;
But I can't see where they come in,
They never were in line,
For up to date ideas, with
This racetrack girl of mine.

CHORUS: My girl's a "corker!"
She's a New Yorker;
She plays the races,
She gets the "dough!"
She loves me dearly,
And so sincerely!
Tell me how you found that out?
She told me so!

2. At Sheepshead Bay, in summer time,
She's simply "out of sight!"
She bets her "stuff" like Pittsburgh Phil
And always gets them right.
The "touts" they all take off their hats
And stand right in a line,
And look for information from
This racetrack girl of mine.

3. And when the racing season's o'er,
She goes across the "pond;"
I've heard some tales that dear old Wales,*
Of her, is very fond.
In Paris, on the Boulevard,
She never fails to shine;
For ev'ry day is Sunday with
This racetrack girl of mine.

[* In 1895, the Prince of Wales would have been Albert Edward, son of Queen Victoria, later to become Edward VII.]


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