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Lyr Req/Add: The Whiz Fish Song

In Mudcat MIDIs:
Whiz Fish Song
Whizz-Fish (from the 1948 edition of Song Fest, by Dick & Beth Best)


captain@kingfisherfleet.com 23 Feb 99 - 12:31 PM
GUEST,mpf 28 Mar 03 - 08:34 PM
Sorcha 28 Mar 03 - 10:22 PM
GUEST 29 Mar 03 - 10:47 AM
Charley Noble 29 Mar 03 - 11:01 AM
vectis 29 Mar 03 - 04:06 PM
GUEST,mpf 29 Mar 03 - 04:15 PM
Sorcha 29 Mar 03 - 08:35 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 29 Mar 03 - 09:01 PM
GUEST,mpfGuest 30 Mar 03 - 12:04 PM
Joe Offer 16 Jun 03 - 03:36 PM
GUEST,VAUDEVILLE FOLK 17 Jun 03 - 08:19 AM
GUEST,vaudeville folk 26 Jun 03 - 10:41 AM
GUEST,davkbod@yahoo.com 27 Aug 03 - 01:32 PM
GUEST,Whizfish tune. 08 Oct 03 - 11:25 PM
GUEST,GUEST,vaudeville folk 11 Nov 03 - 09:50 AM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 03 - 11:47 PM
Barbara 31 Mar 04 - 02:35 AM
Joe Offer 19 Apr 04 - 02:55 PM
Jim Dixon 21 Apr 04 - 11:32 PM
Joe Offer 22 Apr 04 - 12:35 AM
Barbara 22 Apr 04 - 01:18 AM
GUEST,Dennis 12 Jul 04 - 09:42 PM
Barbara 13 Jul 04 - 01:50 AM
Joe Offer 13 Jul 04 - 12:37 PM
Barbara 13 Jul 04 - 12:51 PM
hatster 17 Jul 04 - 11:17 PM
hatster 17 Jul 04 - 11:22 PM
hatster 18 Jul 04 - 07:42 AM
Joe Offer 19 Jul 04 - 02:17 AM
Barbara 19 Jul 04 - 05:08 PM
GUEST,Dennis 20 Jul 04 - 01:38 AM
GUEST,dbls 10 Aug 04 - 11:10 AM
Barbara 10 Aug 04 - 02:28 PM
GUEST,sspackma@yahoo.com 22 Jan 05 - 04:19 PM
GUEST,Scott 03 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM
GUEST 17 Oct 05 - 08:59 PM
GUEST,Mauryh@nettally.com 14 Jun 06 - 04:43 PM
GUEST,S. Justice 06 May 07 - 02:24 PM
GUEST,Spencer Snow 04 Jun 07 - 11:33 AM
GUEST,D. Evans 17 Aug 07 - 12:36 PM
GUEST,guest, H Moore 17 Jun 08 - 11:51 PM
GUEST,Eleanour Snow 17 Sep 08 - 06:32 PM
GUEST,Bob Maximoff 03 Jan 09 - 04:31 PM
Artful Codger 05 Jan 09 - 02:47 PM
Haruo 05 Jan 09 - 03:09 PM
GUEST,Bob Maximoff 06 Jan 09 - 01:43 AM
GUEST,Guest, Dan Mills 09 Apr 09 - 11:51 PM
Haruo 11 Apr 09 - 03:29 AM
GUEST,D. Bone 14 Dec 09 - 11:45 PM
GUEST 26 Jul 10 - 11:10 AM
GUEST,dbls 23 Sep 10 - 08:58 PM
Jim Dixon 05 Oct 10 - 01:11 AM
GUEST,LaieLad 04 Feb 11 - 03:34 PM
GUEST 29 Mar 18 - 08:45 PM
GUEST 29 Mar 18 - 08:47 PM
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Subject: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: captain@kingfisherfleet.com
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 12:31 PM

I am looking for the lyrics and music to a song called "The Whiz Fish Song", artist unknown, written around 1922. It's about a monkey sitting in a tree above a stream and fishing with his tail. It might also be called "The Monkey Song" or "The Complete Angler".


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,mpf
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 08:34 PM

do you still want the lyrics to the whizfish song? I have them...


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: Sorcha
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 10:22 PM

If Captain doesn't, We/Mudcat do. Please post them, Guest mpf, and please use a Lyr Add: in the Subject box. Thanks!


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Subject: ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 10:47 AM

WHIZ FISH SONG

On the swaying limb of a rubber tree, ten thousand miles away,
On the banks of the Hoola river, in far off Uruguay,
There sits a nervous monkey, his eyes with fear agleam,
His tail adangling gently, within the limpid stream.

Just every nineteen minutes, he jerks it through the air,
With a south american whizfish, aflopping helpless there.
Now the teeth of a hungry whizfish are hard on a tender tail,
And as he sits there fishing, you can hear that monkey wail----
    "Shades of Izaak Walton! Was that another bite?
    If I didn't feel so hungry, I'd quit this job tonight.
    But I love the roasted whizfish, tho' his bite drives me insane.
    And ....I do so wish. To catch that fish. That...I manage to stand the pain."

Now there chanced to paddle along that way,with a jaw six feet by nine,
A south american jumbofish, who took hold of the monkey's line.
He started down the river, quite unconcernedly,
While the monkey screamed, and chattered, and clung to the rubber tree.

The tree stretched like a garter, a dozen miles or so.
When the fish let go, that monkey flew ---- like an arrow from a bow.
They say he still is flying. And if you care to try,
You can hear him softly murmur, as he whistles through the sky,

"Oh shades of Isaak Walton.. (reprise of chorus.)
E-mail sent to requestor.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 11:01 AM

What a strange little song! Thanks for posting it. I wonder whether it was accompanied with a cello run in the last verse.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: vectis
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 04:06 PM

Tune?? Please.


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,mpf
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 04:15 PM

I know the melody very well. It has been a lullaby in our family since 1929 if not earlier. I would love to know more about its origins though. Who is the Captain who was looking for it? (I just happened to stumble on his query looking for something else).

And how does one offer the tune? I have never been to this site before.


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: Sorcha
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 08:35 PM

Either abc or MIDI format. If you can't do either, can you scan/e mail to me, MMario, or Snuffy?


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 09:01 PM

Fly Fising is one of my passions and I immediately recognized the reference.

In 1652 The Compleat Angler, (not a spelling mistake) was written by Isaak Walton, then aged 60. It listed the twelve flies from the Treatyse. Through the conversation between the book's two characters, Mr Piscator and Mr Venator, we get a good view of how fishing with a rod and hook was done at the time. The tradition from Dame Juliana Bernet is clear: fishing was done for enjoyment.

http://freespace.virgin.net/fly.shop/history.htm

Sincerely,
Gargole


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Subject: RE: Want lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,mpfGuest
Date: 30 Mar 03 - 12:04 PM

Dear Sorcha, I am a complete novice, though willing to learn. How do I email you? And how would i write the music? I can probably find a friend who could write the melody from my singing...is that the first step? (I do not know what abc and MIDI refer to. Will my friend know?)

Thanks also for any further help anyone can give me about the other, Gaelic song which we always thought was about the "Cranberry Isles".


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Subject: RE: Want TUNE to The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 16 Jun 03 - 03:36 PM

I got an e-mail request for the tune to this song. Anybody know more about it?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,VAUDEVILLE FOLK
Date: 17 Jun 03 - 08:19 AM

I am the original inquiry for the lyrics to The Whiz Fish Song. I would be grateful for the tune as well, if there is any way to pass it on through this site. Time and events have passed since my original request, so I'm still trying to put together the reason, or inspiration to know this song in the first place. My gratitude to all who've provided lyrics, background and mutual interest!


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,vaudeville folk
Date: 26 Jun 03 - 10:41 AM

to guest mpf... you referred to this as a lullaby... your family knew from at least 1929... would you happen to recall who wrote this ... or if it was ever common knowledge? thank you!


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,davkbod@yahoo.com
Date: 27 Aug 03 - 01:32 PM

Amazing! I had looked for this song about two months ago, and couldn't find it, I wanted to send it with my son to camp, since that's where I learned it. Did a search today, and there it is!
(scrambles to add it to archives!). I can see if I can put together the tune that I leaned it to, and see if I can post...


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: WHIZ FISH SONG
From: GUEST,Whizfish tune.
Date: 08 Oct 03 - 11:25 PM

I could probably do a Midi, if I had a midi composer, but since I don't, I've put this together:

WHIZ FISH SONG

c       a    g a    a a# c g   g    g    f   g   f    d e
On the swaying limb of a rubber tree, ten thousand miles away,
f e   d      d e f d c f    f g   g a f g
On the banks of the Hoola river, in far off Uruguay,
c      a   g   a a# c g    g   f   g    f    d   a
There sits a nervous monkey, his eyes with fear agleam,
a# a    f g a A# a   f   g a a# f   c   c   f
His tail a-dangling gently, within the limpid stream.

c    a g a a#    c g    g f    g f       d   e
Just every nineteen minutes, he jerks it through the air,
f    e d    e f e d c   f    f g g    a f    g
With a south a-merican whizfish, aflopping helpless there.
c   c   a      a g a a# c g    g f    f g f d a
Now the teeth of a hungry whizfish are hard on a tender tail,
A# a f g a a#    a f    g a a# a    f   c c    f
And as he sits there fishing, you can hear that monkey wail----

C    a      g a a# c g    g   f    g f d   e
"Oh, Shades of Izaak Walton! Was that another bite?
f e d   e f    d c f    f   g    g    a   f g
If I didn't feel so hungry, I'd quit this job tonight.
c   c a   g   a   a#   c   g    g    g   f    a    g f a
But I love the roasted whizfish, tho' his bite drives me insane.
a#      a# a f g    a# a    f    g    a#    a# a    f c    g   f
And ....I do so wish. To catch that fish. That...I manage to stand the pain."

Now there chanced to paddle along that way, with a jaw six feet by nine,
A south american jumbofish, who took hold of the monkey's line.
He started down the river, quite unconcernedly,
While the monkey screamed, and chattered, and clung to the rubber tree.

The tree stretched like a garter, a dozen miles or so.
When the fish let go, that monkey flew ---- like an arrow from a bow.
They say he still is flying. And if you care to try,
You can hear him softly murmur, as he whistles through the sky,

"Oh shades of Isaak Walton.. (reprise of chorus.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,GUEST,vaudeville folk
Date: 11 Nov 03 - 09:50 AM

WOW! Just chanced a re visit to my inquiry today and discovered this!!!   Thank you all for your contribution to my search!!! And your success!! Will strum chords until the melody becomes obvious... but if it shows up on this sight as MIDI would be a real treat and victory! Thanks Again!


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 03 - 11:47 PM

I'd like a MIDI, too. If somebody can e-mail me a MIDI or a scan of the sheet music, I'll make sure it gets posted here.
-Joe Offer-
joe@mudcat.org


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 02:35 AM

Hi crew, I think we've finally managed to catch the Whizfish, with thanks to the poster above. He shipped me an mp3 file of himself singing it, and I've sent that to be posted in the MIDIs. So stay tuned.
The tune sounds familiar to me. I think maybe it's similar to a hymn I know. It sounds a bit like "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling", too. But I can't quite place it.
Oh, and the MIDI is the first verse and chorus.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 Apr 04 - 02:55 PM

Do we have songwriter and source information for this song?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Apr 04 - 11:32 PM

The only recording I can find of this song is by Ivan Stiles, on his album Promises Kept. He calls it WHIZZ FISH SONG.

The San Joaquin Valley Library System, which has apparently indexed all the songs in several California libraries, says that WHIZZ-FISH appears in a book called "Song Fest" written (or edited?) by Dick Best, and published in 1948. The Fresno County Free Library has a copy.

(That last link takes you to the search page for the index. It looks promising and I plan to bookmark it.)

THE WHIZZ FISH also appears in a "fake book" called Children's Song Favorites, (2003).


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Subject: ADD Version: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 12:35 AM

Whizz-Fish

On the swaying branch of a rubber tree, a thousand miles away,
On the banks of the Hula River, in far off Uruguay,
There sits a nervous monkey, his eyes with fear agleam;
His tail is dangling gently within that limpid stream.

Just every nineteen minutes it 'whistles through the air
With a South American whizz-fish a-dangling helpless there,
But the teeth of the hungry whizz-fish are hard on his tender tail,
And if you listen carefully, you can hear that monkey wail:
    Oh, shades of Izaak Walton,
    Was that another bite?
    If I didn't feel so hungry,
    I'd quit this job tonight.
    But I love the toasted whizz-fish,
    Though his bite drives me insane,
    But I do so 'wish to catch that fish
    That I manage to bear the pain.
One day a great big Juba fish
With jaws 'bout six by nine
Came swimming down the river,
And seized that monkey's line;
Continued on his journey
Quite unconcernedly,
While the monkey screamed and chattered,
And clang to the rubber tree.
The tree stretched like a garter,
A hundred miles or so;
When the fish let go, the monkey flew
Like an arrow from a bow;
They say he's still a-flying,
And if you'd care to try,
You can hear him sadly murmur,
As he 'whistles through the sky.

from Songfest, 1948 (not in later editions)

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 22 Apr 04 - 01:18 AM

Does the book post a tune, too, Joe? If so, you might compare it to the transcription I did, and post the book's tune instead of mine.
Blessings,
Barbara
    I knew you were going to ask that, Barbara.
    Yes, I hope to find time to transcribe the tune, but it's too complicated to do when I'm as sleepy as I am tonight..
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Dennis
Date: 12 Jul 04 - 09:42 PM

Unbelievable! I have wished many times that I had the Whiz Fish Song. We use to beg my Dad to play and sing it. He would only do so once in a while, every couple of years as I remember, just to keep the intrigue and suspense and to make it special. He died in 1970 and so did the song, I thought. The other day we were talking over dinner and the song came up. My wife said I'll look on the net. A couple of minutes later she said "I found it!" I replied, "Yeah right". Then she began reading the lyrics. I thought it had been just a family song and it was gone forever. Thanks all!

I too, would like to get the tune, written or preferably recorded. How do I go about it? I'm happy to provide my email address if it can be sent that way.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 13 Jul 04 - 01:50 AM

You go up to the top of this thread and click on the words "Whiz Fish Song" or to make it easier, Whiz Fish Song (Click on those words) and something should come up on your computer that plays the tune. If that doesn't work, check back and someone will tell you what to do next.
Blessings,
Barbara

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 13 Jul 04 - 12:37 PM

Hi, Dennis - I just posted the MIDI I made from Song Fest (1948 edition). Can somebody who actually knows the song, take a listen and tell us if my version and Barbara's sound anything like the song is supposed to sound?

If you like, I can e-mail you a scan of the tune from the 1948 Song Fest songbook. Just send me an e-mail.
-Joe Offer-
joe@mudcat.org

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 13 Jul 04 - 12:51 PM

I wonder if any of our scholars could tell us anything more about the source of this song. The Best book tune is in minor; the one David, up above sang into an MP3 file for me is major. I can see some relationship, but it would be nice to know what the original is.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: hatster
Date: 17 Jul 04 - 11:17 PM

Every few years, since I first came to the internet now nearly ten years ago, I have looked for the lyrics to this song. WOW so glad to finally see them.

I grew up singing/hearing this song. It was a staple of my father's family during gatherings and something that was usually sung in 4 part harmony by the whole family as we women folk cleared the table and washed the dishes. It brings back memories of summer nights by a lake in Maine, by the sound in Connecticut, and of people long since gone. Thank you so much for offering the lyrics.

The midis here suggest the harmony to the tune we used to sing but are not quite what I remember as the melody.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: hatster
Date: 17 Jul 04 - 11:22 PM

oops.. hit the submit button too soon. I believe the one we sang was in minor, and the tune posted sounds almost right. It could well be that I only remember the chorus well and the midi seems to leave that out.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: hatster
Date: 18 Jul 04 - 07:42 AM

OK, very very sorry about the multiple posts here, but the tune we sang is represented by the midi version you have here from 1948 edition of Song Fest. I only just found that midi...please please do pardon the clueless newbie


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 Jul 04 - 02:17 AM

Thanks for the confirmation, Hatster. That Song Fest tune was a bear to transcribe, but now I'm glad I did it.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 19 Jul 04 - 05:08 PM

Joe, next time just send me the GIF or PDF or whatever, and I'll transcribe it. I do it often and don't mind. But I haven't got or learned Noteworthy yet, so if you want it with the words attached, then it is still your job (or at any rate, not mine).
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Dennis
Date: 20 Jul 04 - 01:38 AM

Thank you Barbara and Joe and whomever else had anything to do with this. I have sent the info to my brothers, sisters and mother and all have been flooded with such wonderful memories. For me, I can't remember which tune my dad use to sing/play. There are shades of familiarity in both. Bless you all bunches!


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,dbls
Date: 10 Aug 04 - 11:10 AM

Well, what do you know. I've been looking for these lyrics for some time. Like Dennis, my father used to sing this for us (accompanying himself on his ukelele, which I have beside me as I type) during occasional "songfests". His melody was different than the ones in the MIDIs; it would be nice to have the chords to see how they match up with his tune.

This was just one of many songs we sang: "Aura Lee", "It Was Only An Old Beer Bottle", "The King of Caractacus" and "Desperado" (no, not Henley & Frey, but the one with the "war whoop": http://sniff.numachi.com/~rickheit/dtrad/pages/tiDESPRAD2;ttDESPRAD2.html
).

I'm going to a family reunion this weekend; it'll be great to have this. Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Barbara
Date: 10 Aug 04 - 02:28 PM

Please note that there are TWO tunes posted, one by me and one by Joe. Joe's is the official songbook one; mine was a transcription of a recording sung by one of the earlier posters.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,sspackma@yahoo.com
Date: 22 Jan 05 - 04:19 PM

Facinating!
I know the song well (I also thought this was just a "family song") but I know it by a different tune from either one posted above. Not sure how to upload a tune, but when I do I will. The second tune posted above is not too dissimilar, but hardly the same.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Scott
Date: 03 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM

Wow!! I was sitting on the back steps looking at the stars with my nine year old daughter,and thought back to my dad who passed away in 1998.And for some reason,the "Rubber Monkey" song popped in my head and I started to tell her all about it.He learned it at Camp Pemi in NH in the 30's and would sing it every once in a while after much begging when I was her age.Even grown up,with a little prodding,I'd get him to sing it.Surprisingly,like a lot of others on this board, it was a special family song that I thought no one else knew!So
I told her,for the fun of it,lets Google the song and here I am.
The words are exactly as I remember them,and the second song has almost the correct melody.The end doesn't seem quite right and the refrain seems to be missing but now I remember it and can sing it all.We've decided to start the tradition again,with me in the starring role of course!Thanks to all for reserching and contributing to the search-a very sentimental journey......
   Scott


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Oct 05 - 08:59 PM

The "rubber monkey" song is still sung at camp pemi.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Mauryh@nettally.com
Date: 14 Jun 06 - 04:43 PM

I don't know whether I am resubmitting this message, or whether I inadvertently deleted my first attempt.

Anyway, I have been singin "the Monkey Song" (as we called it)at parties and in performance (e.g. at retirement homes) for about 60 years. I learned it as a child from my uncle, and in all those years only met one person (until today) who had heard it before (She was from Buffalo, NY).

The melody I learned is quite different from those posted and simpler. In the key of C it would go as follows: On the shady limb of a rubber tree (ggeeeggaaa) ten thousand miles away (abbagc) On the banks of the HULA River, in far off Uraguay (repeat above melody) There ists a nervous monkey, His eyes with tears agleam (geeeg(aa accdd#e)"and his tail dangling gently within the limpid stream" (eeefeda abbedc) That's pretty much it -- same tune for the Chorus "Oh Shades of Izaac Walton...

Anyway, glad to know after all these years I'm not the only hippopotamus in the zoo!


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,S. Justice
Date: 06 May 07 - 02:24 PM

I actually have a mid to late 1800s song/music book with the whiz fish song, and many other wonderful pieces. My mother-in-law took the book from me and hid it. She won't give it back.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Spencer Snow
Date: 04 Jun 07 - 11:33 AM

re: Whiz Fish song. WOW. I thought my dad and I were the only ones who knew this one. I have Dick & Beth Best's books with the lyrics, but learned it first from my dad. He played guitar in the Cornell University mandolin club pre WW I, and toured with glee club which sang the song. He told me it was written by a Yale student around 1910, so I was interested to see that someone had it n a book dating to mid/late 1800's.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,D. Evans
Date: 17 Aug 07 - 12:36 PM

I'm currently at a small reunion of my wife's family. They're planning a talent show for tonight, so I thought I'd sing the "Monkey Song" to introduce them to a bit of my family's heritage. Since I also wanted help singing it, I decided to Google the first line to see if I could get a print-out of the words. That led me to this site, which I found very interesting. I also learned the song from my dad, who would sing it in the car to keep my sister and me entertained on long trips. I have no idea what the origin is, but my dad must have learned it in the 1920's or 30's in South Dakota, probably as a Boy Scout.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,guest, H Moore
Date: 17 Jun 08 - 11:51 PM

We couldn't believe this nine year old thread on an old favorite Whiz Fish Song. The tune isn't quite right, and there is some dispute about the lyrics, but we are so happy to see that others have this song. My husband's great grandparents sung this in the mid West (chicago suburbs).


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Eleanour Snow
Date: 17 Sep 08 - 06:32 PM

My Dad has sung this song for years, always a favorite with the kids--my sisters and I, and now our kids. Does anyone have a reference to the songwriter, and date? My daughter is doing a project for English class on her 10 favorite writings, and needs them to be properly referenced. I recall my dad saying it was written by a Yale student (so you Connecticut/Maine singers may have a close connection) in the late 1800's, but that is all I remember.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Bob Maximoff
Date: 03 Jan 09 - 04:31 PM

I first heard this song in 1957 from Bob Mixter, a New England-born neighbor in Dobbs Ferry, NY. His words -- which I of course prefer -- are given below. I've always wondered about its origin; Mixter didn't know, but said he'd heard it in his family since childhood.


                        The Whizz Fish

On the swinging branch of a rubber tree, about a million miles away
On the banks of the Uhruh River in far-off Uruguay,
There sits a lonely monkey; in his eyes there is a gleam,
And his tail dangles idly, just beneath that limpid stream.

Well now, once every nineteen minutes, he whirls it through the air,
And the South American whizzfish is a'dangling helpless there.
The bite of the hungry whizzfish is tough on the tender tail,
And if you pause to listen, you can hear that monkey wail,

        "Great shades of Isaac Walton! Was that another bite?
        If I hadn't been half so hungry, I'd have quit this job tonight.
        But I loves that tasty whizzfish, though its bite drives me insane --
        Still I do so wish for to catch that fish that I guess I'll stand the pain."

Now one fine day there come a jammerfish, with its jaws six feet by nine,
Come a'rambling down that river, grabbed ahold of that monkey's line.
That fish kept on a'rambling, most unconcernedly,
While the monkey screamed and hollered, and clung to that rubber tree.

Well, the tree stretched out like a garter, 'bout a million miles or so,
And the fish let go, and the monkey flew like an arrow from the bow.
Folks say he's still a'flying, and if you stop and try
You can hear that monkey murmur as he hustles through the sky,

        "Great shades of Isaac Walton! Was that another bite?
        If I hadn't been half so hungry, I'd have quit this job tonight.
        But I loves that tasty whizzfish, though its bite drives me insane --
        Still I do so wish for to catch that fish that I guess I'll stand the pain."


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Artful Codger
Date: 05 Jan 09 - 02:47 PM

Could any of you folks who recall the song supply an ABC or MIDI of what how YOU recall the tune, for comparison with the two tunes already posted?


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Haruo
Date: 05 Jan 09 - 03:09 PM

1948 Song Fest, eh? I'm sure it must have been missing from the '54 I was raised on.

Haruo, b. 1954


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Bob Maximoff
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 01:43 AM

We actually have a (poor) recording of the song being sung by Bob Mixter in about 1960. The melody is faintly similar to one of the others, but is more lively, direct, and dramatic. My wife, a musician, says she'll write it out in Allegro software as soon as she's able, and I'll post it then. (We're both 84 and she's recovering from some health problems.)


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,Guest, Dan Mills
Date: 09 Apr 09 - 11:51 PM

I have a dear friend who sings this song for us from time to time, and I've learned it from him. I have a recording of him in mp3 format if anyone should like a copy. Email me: dan mills at rattle brain dot com (no spaces, and do the obvious thing with "at" and "dot").


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Haruo
Date: 11 Apr 09 - 03:29 AM

Thanks, Dan! Got the mp3, and enjoyed listening to it. I'll probably take the song to Song Circle one of these days.

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,D. Bone
Date: 14 Dec 09 - 11:45 PM

Wow, what a stream of wonderful takes on a song that was sung at Camp Pemigewassett! My dad is 93 and I'm trying to make a CD of people singing some old songs (Pemi, Beta Theta Pi, Ohio State, 30's dance music) for him to go down memory lane. He still loves to sing!! Does anyone know of recordings of any of the Pemi songs? ( If not it would be great if the boys would make one!)


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 11:10 AM

Here is my version of the lyrics my grandfather used to sing. The current ones posted don't really fit in with the tempo/tune/melody of the song, but these fit in perfectly. So either my lyrics are wrong or my melody is wrong :p

On the swaying limb of a rubber tree, ten thousand miles away
On the banks of the Hula river in far off Uruguay
There sits a nervous monkey, his eyes in fear and gleam
His tail is hanging gently into a lipid stream

And every 90 minutes, he flips it through the air
With a South American whizfish dangling helpless there
But the bite of the angry whizfish is hard on the tender tail
and as he sits there fishing you can hear this monkey wail:

"Oh shades of Isaak Walton is that another bite?
If I didn't feel so hungry, I'd quit this job tonight
But I love those roasted whizfish, though it's bite drives me insane
and I do so wish to catch that fish that I manage to stand the pain"

Now one fine day a jummafish with a jaw 6 feet by 9
Chanced to paddle nearby; take hold of the monkeys line
He started down the river, quite unconcernedly
Until the monkey screamed and chattered and clung to that rubber tree

The tree stretched like a garter, a dozen miles or so
Until the fish let go and the monkey flew like an arrow from a bow
Now they say he's still a-flyin and if you care to try
You can hear him softly sobbing as he whistles through the sky:

"Oh shades of Isaak Walton is that another bite?
If I didn't feel so hungry, I'd quit this job tonight
But I love those roasted whizfish, though it's bite drives me insane
and I do so wish to catch that fish that I manage to stand the pain"


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,dbls
Date: 23 Sep 10 - 08:58 PM

It's amazing what you'll find on the internet. I found this thread, then discovered that I'd added a post myself six years ago, which I'd completely forgotten.

I was just visiting with my sisters and we went through the song (which, as we learned it, had a different melody for the chorus), but I'd love to hear the mp3s that are mentioned above, especially if there's any accompaniment, so I can tweak some of the chords.

Any luck?


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 05 Oct 10 - 01:11 AM

According to WorldCat.org, The British Library has sheet music described thus:

MONKEY MURMURS. THE WHIZZ-FISH SONG. Op. 24
Words, E. Littleton Fox. Music, Porter Steele.
New York: Brooks & Denton, 1901.


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Subject: RE: Req/ADD: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST,LaieLad
Date: 04 Feb 11 - 03:34 PM

My uncle used to sing this as his Paradestuck (showpiece) around the campfire every summer at our family reunions in Arizona. I wish I had a recording but, alas, he has passed on, and none of his kids remembers it. I have the tune in my head, though.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Mar 18 - 08:45 PM

dear sir, my grandfather taught me this song at a young age, later i beacame a musician. i play this song for the children and know allthe words, Michael Taylor, Boulder co.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: The Whiz Fish Song
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Mar 18 - 08:47 PM

dear sir, Michael Taylor here, jmtaylor712@gmail.com


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