Archive for the 'Humor/games/children' Category



Drill Ye Tarriers


h1 Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Drill, Ye Tarriers, Drill” is an American folk song first published in 1888 and attributed to Thomas Casey (words) and much later Charles Connolly (music). The song is a work song, and makes references to the construction of the American railroads in the mid-19th century. The tarriers of the title refers to Irish workers, drilling holes in rock to blast out railroad tunnels. It may mean either to tarry as in delay, or to terrier dogs which dig their quarry out of the ground [1]

In the early 1960′s, Pete Seeger took the lyrics from an old Ukrainian folk song mentioned in the Russian novel And Quiet Flows the Don (1934) and the music from “Drill, Ye Tarriers, Drill” to create the folk song “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” with additional lyrics added later by Joe Hickerson.

Lyrics:
[Am] Every morning about seven o’clock
[E7] There were twenty tarriers drilling at the rock
[Am] The boss comes along and he says, “Keep still
[E7] And bear down heavy on the cast iron drill.”

Chorus
[Am] And drill, ye [G] tarriers, [Am] drill
[C] Drill, ye [G] tarriers, [Am] drill
For it’s [Am] work all day for the [G] sugar in you tay
[F] Down beyond the [E7] railway
And [Am] drill, ye [G] tarriers, [Am] drill
And blast, and fire.

The boss was a fine man down to the ground
And he married a lady six feet ’round
She baked good bread and she baked it well
But she baked it harder than the holes of …..

Chorus

The foreman’s name was John McCann
You know, he was a blamed mean man
Last week a premature blast went off
And a mile in the air went big Jim Goff.

Chorus

And when next payday came around
Jim Goff a dollar short was found
When he asked, “What for?” came this reply
“You were docked for the time you were up in the sky.”

Chorus

First verse

Chorus

Skip To My Lou


h1 Friday, August 1st, 2008

In early America, respectable folk in Protestant communities have always regarded the fiddle as the devil’s instrument and dancing as downright sinful. Faced with such a religious prejudice for socializing, young people of the frontier developed the “play-party,” in which all the objectionable features of a square dance were removed or masked so that their grave elders could approve.
No instruments were permitted – the dancers sang and clapped their own music. In time, the play-party acquired a life of its own. It became an ideal amusement for teenagers and young married couples. In many a frontier community, the bear hunters, Indian fighters, the rough keel-boat men and the wild cowboys could be seen dancing innocently with their gals, like so many children at a Sunday school picnic.
“Skip to My Lou” is a simple game of stealing partners. It begins with any number of couples hand in hand, skipping around in a ring. A lone boy in the center of the moving circle of couple sings, “Lost my partner what’ll I do?” as the girls whirl past him. The young man in the center hesitates while he decides which girl to choose, singing, “I’ll get another one prettier than you.” When he grasps the hand of his chosen one, her partner then takes his place in the center of the ring and the game continues. It’s an ice-breaker, a good dance to get a group acquainted to one another and to get everyone in the mood for swinging around.
It’s interesting to note that “loo” is the Scottish word for “love.” The spelling change from “loo” to “lou” probably happened as our Anglo ancestors, and the song, became Americanized.

I decided that since I was allowed to play musical instruments, I would use guitar and banjo on this song.

Source: The Folk Songs of North America, by Alan Lomax, Doubleday.
Recordings on file by: Carter Family, Lead Belly, Mike & Peggy Seeger, Pete Seeger.

Lyrics:

[G] Lost my partner,

What’ll I do?

[D] Lost my partner,

What’ll I do?

[G] Lost my partner,

What’ll I do?

[D] Skip to my lou, my [G] darlin’.

[G] Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

[D] Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

[G] Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

[D] Skip to my Lou, my [G] darlin’.

I’ll get another one

Prettier than you,

I’ll get another one

Prettier than you,

I’ll get another one

Prettier than you,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Can’t get a red bird,

Jay bird’ll do,

Can’t get a red bird,

Jay bird’ll do,

Can’t get a red bird,

Jay bird’ll do,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Fly’s in the buttermilk,

Shoo, fly, shoo,

Fly’s in the buttermilk,

Shoo, fly, shoo,

Fly’s in the buttermilk,

Shoo, fly, shoo,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Cat’s in the cream jar,

Ooh, ooh, ooh,

Cat’s in the cream jar,

Ooh, ooh, ooh,

Cat’s in the cream jar,

Ooh, ooh, ooh,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Off to Texas,

Two by two,

Off to Texas,

Two by two,

Off to Texas,

Two by two,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip, skip, skip to my Lou,

Skip to my Lou, my darlin’.

Old Blue


h1 Thursday, November 1st, 2007


Blue Dog Painting by George Rodrigue

We recorded Old Blue on Dr. Byrds & Mr. Hyde in back 1968. I’d heard it performed live by Gibson and Camp at the Gate of Horn in Chicago in 1961 and had always loved it. There’s a version by Jim Jackson on the Harry Smith Anthology but it’s completely different, a lot more of a blues.

When I sing this in concert I ask the audience to clap along, following an unusual pattern. It’s fun to hear them get the syncopation right. But someone always claps in the wrong place and makes everybody laugh.

Lyrics:
Old Blue (trad.)

[D] Well I had an old dog and his name was Blue
Yes I had an old dog and his [A] name was [D] Blue
Well I had an old dog and his name was Blue
I bet you five dollars he’s a [A] good dog [D] too

Old Blue chased a possum up a holler limb
Blue chased a possum up a holler limb
Blue chased a possum up a holler limb
The possum growled, Blue whined at him

[D] Bye Bye [Bm] Blue, [G] you good dog [D] you
Bye Bye [Bm] Blue, you [G] good dog [D] you

When old Blue died he died so hard
He shook the ground in my back yard
We lowered him down with a golden chain
and every link we called his name

My old Blue was a good old hound
You’d hear him holler miles around
When I get to heaven first thing I’ll do
is grab my horn and call for Blue

The Byrds “Dr.Byrds And Mr.Hyde”
Columbia Records 1968″

Housewife’s Lament


h1 Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

I learned “Housewife’s Lament” at the Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago around 1958. It’s kind of a bitter portrayal of the lot of women in the not-so-distant past. There is a verse at the end where the poor housewife dies and gets covered with dirt, which is supposed to be funny, but I thought there was enough hardship in this song without adding insult to injury, so I left it out.
Lyrics:
[G] One day I was walking,
I heard [Am] a complaining,
I saw a [D] poor woman
The [C] picture of [G] gloom.
She gazed in the mud
On her [Am] doorstep (’twas raining),
And [D] this was her song
As she [C] wielded her [G] broom:

Chorus:

[G] O life is a trial,
[D] And love is a trouble,
[G] Beauty will fade
[D] And riches will flee,
[G] Wages will dwindle
And [Am] taxes will double
And [D] nothing is as I
Would [C] wish it to [G] be.”

In March it is mud,
It’s slush in December,
The midsummer breezes
Are loaded with dust.
In fall the leaves litter,
In muddy November
The wallpaper rots
And the candlesticks rust.

Chorus:

It’s sweeping at six
And i’s dusting at seven, ( I know I sang 11 but it should be 7 :)
It’s victuals at eight
And it’s dishes at nine.
It’s potting and panning
From ten to eleven.
We scarce break our fast
Till we plan how to dine.

Chorus:

Last night in my dreams
I was stationed forever,
On a far distant rock
In the midst of the sea.
My one task of life
Was a ceaseless endeavor,
To brush off the waves
As they swept over me.

Chorus X2

Katie Morey


h1 Saturday, July 1st, 2006

Bob Gibson sang this on his “Folk Songs of Ohio” album in the early 1950s. It’s funny because it points out the age old adage that a man will chase a woman until she catches him. Men think they have it all under control and are always amazed to find that they have invariably been outwitted by clever, creative women. But hey, what a way to go!
Lyrics:
A] Come all you young and [E] foolish lads who [A] listen to my [E] story
I’ll [A] tell you how I [E] fixed a plan to [B7] fool miss Katie [E] Morey
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-ry e-do-[C#m] dandy
[E] I’ll tell you how I [A] fixed a plan to [B7] fool miss Katie [E] Morey

I told her that my sister Sue was in yon lofty tower
And wanted her to come that way to spend a pleasant hour
But when I got her to the top, say nothing is the matter
But you must cry or else comply, there is no time to flatter
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-dandy
I’ll tell you how I fixed a plan to fool miss Katie Morey

She squeezed my hand and seemed quite pleased
Saying “I have got no fear sir, but father he has come this way
He may see us here sir. If you’ll but go and climb that tree
Till he has passed this way sir, we may gather our grapes and plumbs
We will sport and play sir.”
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-dandy
I’ll tell you how I fixed a plan to fool miss Katie Morey

I went straight way and climbed the tree not being the least offended
My true love came and stood beneath to see how I ascended
But when she got me to the top she looked up with a smile sir
Saying “you may gather your grapes and plumbs
I’ll run quickly home sir.”
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-dandy
I’ll tell you how I fixed a plan to fool miss Katie Morey

I straight way did descend the tree coming with a bound sir
My true love got quite out of sight before I reached the ground sir
But when the fox hide did relent to see what I’d intended
I straight way made a wife of her, all my troubles ended
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-dandy
I’ll tell you how I fixed a plan to fool miss Katie Morey

Time to stop this foolish song, time to stop this rhyming
Every time the baby cries, I wish that I was climbing
Come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-two-dit-a-ray come-a-two-dit-a-rye-do-dandy
I’ll tell you how I fixed a plan to fool miss Katie Morey

Mary Had A Little Lamb


h1 Wednesday, February 1st, 2006

marie.jpg

Thomas Edison, the father of audio recording recited the first stanza of this poem in testing his new invention, the phonograph in 1877, making this the first audio
recording to be successfully made and played back. It was all done on tin foil.

They say the song springs from a true story:

As a girl, Mary Sawyer (later Mrs. Mary Tyler) kept a pet lamb, which she took to school one day at the suggestion of her brother. A commotion naturally ensued.

Lyrics:
Written By: Sarah Josepha Hale, editor of Godey's Lady's Book, 1830's
Copyright Unknown

[G] Mary had a little lamb,
[D] Little lamb, [G] little lamb,
Mary had a little lamb,
Its [D[ fleece was white as [G] snow

And everywhere that Mary went,
Mary went, Mary went,
Everywhere that Mary went
The lamb was sure to go

It followed her to school one day
School one day, school one day
It followed her to school one day
Which was against the rules.

It made the children laugh and play,
Laugh and play, laugh and play,
It made the children laugh and play
To see a lamb at school

And so the teacher turned it out,
Turned it out, turned it out,
And so the teacher turned it out,
But still it lingered near

And waited patiently about,
Patiently about, patiently about,
And waited patiently about
Till Mary did appear

'Why does the lamb love Mary so?'
Love Mary so? Love Mary so?
'Why does the lamb love Mary so?'
The eager children cry

'Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know.'
Loves the lamb, you know, loves the lamb, you know
'Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know.'
The teacher did reply

There's A Hole In The Bucket


h1 Saturday, October 1st, 2005

leakyBucket.jpg

There's A Hole In The Bucket

A circle song is one that comes back to where it started and begins again. It can go on indefinitely. This is the amusing story of Henry and Maria. Their bucket leaks and she wants him to fix it, but that never happens.

A true 'catch 22.'

Lyrics:
There's a [A] hole in the [D] bucket Maria, Maria
There's a [A] hole in the [D] bucket Maria, [E] there's a [A] hole

Then why don't you fix it dear Henry, dear Henry
Then why don't you fix it dear Henry, dear fix it!

With what shall I fix it Maria, Maria?
With what shall I fix it Maria, with what?

With straw dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
With straw dear Henry, dear Henry with straw.

But the straw is too long Maria, Maria
The straw is too long Maria, too long

Well cut it dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
Well cut it dear Henry, dear Henry just cut it!

With what shall I cut it Maria, Maria?
With what shall I cut it Maria, with what?

With an axe dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
With an axe dear Henry, dear Henry, with an axe!

But the axe is too dull Maria, Maria,
The axe is too dull, the axe is too dull

Then sharpen it dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
Then sharpen it dear Henry, dear Henry then sharpen it!

With what shall I sharpen it Maria, Maria?
With what shall I sharpen it Maria, with what?

With a stone dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
With a stone dear Henry, dear Henry, with a stone!

But the stone is too dry Maria, Maria
But the stone is too dry Maria, to dry

Then wet it dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
Then wet it dear Henry, dear Henry dear just wet it!

With what shall I wet it Maria, Maria?
With what shall I wet it Maria, with what?

With water dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
With water dear Henry, dear Henry with water.

But how shall I get it Maria, Maria
But how shall I get it Maria, but how

In the bucket dear Henry, dear Henry dear Henry
In the bucket dear Henry, dear Henry in the bucket

There's a hole in the bucket Maria, Maria
There's a hole in the bucket Maria, there's a hole

Erie Canal


h1 Monday, August 1st, 2005

Erie.gif

This is a comic story about a tragic boat ride down the Erie Canal. I decided to sing this in the style of the late 50s – early 60s college folk groups. I can see the audience sitting an a large hall, the men wearing three button jackets and skinny ties and the ladies in pretty dresses.

The Erie Canal opened in 1825. The Ohio and Erie Canal, joining Cleveland and Portsmouth, was completed in 1845. For 25 years these canals were busy trade routes, piloted by burly, aggressive boatmen on long narrow craft. These keelboats were sharp at both ends, built on a keel and ribs.

Gradually the railroads replaced the keelboat as a form of commercial transportation and the canal traffic was greatly reduced.

Lyrics:
E-RI-E CANAL

[A] We were forty miles from Albany
Forget it I [E] never [A] shall.
[A] What a terrible [E] storm we [A] had one [D] night
[A] On the E-ri-e [E] – [A] Canal.

chorus:
O the E-ri-e was a-rising
And the gin was a-getting low.
And I scarcely think we'll get a drink
Till we get to Buff-a-lo-o-o
Till we get to Buffalo.

We were loaded down with barley
We were chock-full up on rye.
The captain he looked down at me
With his gol-durned wicked eye.

Two days out from Syracuse
The vessel struck a shoal;
We like to all be foundered
On a chunk o' Lackawanna coal.

We hollered to the captain
On the towpath, treadin' dirt
He jumped on board and stopped the leak
With his old red flannel shirt.

The cook she was a grand old gal
Stood six foot in her socks.
Had a foot just like an elephant
And her breath would open locks.

The wind begins to whistle
The waves begin to roll
We had to reef our royals
On that ragin' canal.

The cook came to our rescue
She had a ragged dress;
We h'isted her upon the pole
As a signal of distress.

When we got to Syracuse
Off-mule, he was dead;
The nigh mule got blind staggers
We cracked him on the head.

The cook is in the Police Gazette
The captain went to jail;
And I'm the only son-of-a-sea-cook
That's left to tell the tale.

Go Tell Aunt Rhodie


h1 Friday, August 1st, 2003

goose.gif

This is a very popular children's song in spite of its rather dark lyrics.
Lyrics:
[G] Go tell, Aunt Rhodie
[D] Go tell, Aunt [G] Rhodie
Go tell, Aunt Rhodie
Her [D] ole gray goose is [G] dead

Th one she's been savin'
Th one she's been savin'
Th one she's been savin'
T' make a feather bed

Th goslins are dyin'
Th goslin is cryin'
Th goslin is dyin'
Because his Mama's dead

Th gander is weepin'
Th gander is weepin'
Th gander is weepin'
Because his wife is dead

Go tell, Aunt Rhodie
Go tell, Aunt Rhodie
Go tell, Aunt Rhodie
Her ole gray goose is dead

Railroad Bill


h1 Sunday, September 1st, 2002

RRB.jpeg

Lyrics:
[C] Railroad Bill [E7] Railroad Bill

He [F] always worked

And he [C] always will

[C] Ride [G] Railroad [C] Bill

Railroad Bill, up on a hill

Lightin’ a seegar

With a ten-dollar bill.

Ride Railroad Bill

Old policeman sold him a train

Never did lose boys

Always did gain

Ride Railroad Bill

Mounted them train cars all piggyback

Some on the road boys

And some on the track

Ride Railroad Bill

Sometimes a freight train sometimes a van

If anyone gets there

You know that he can

Ride Railroad Bill

One time he had to fill in for this guy

Bi!! had to bless that

Old train goin’ by

Ride Railroad Bill

Got off the rails and got into wine

Now he goes off

To France in his mind

Ride Railroad Bill