Friday, October 21, 2005

Two more Halloween songs

These were both requested in the "Rise Up Singing" class I lead on Thursday nights (it's a songbook published by SingOut magazine).

Ann Boleyn
R.P.Weston and Bert Lee, 1934

In the Tower of London, large as life,
The ghost of Ann Boleyn walks, they declare.
Poor Ann Boleyn was once King Henry's wife -
Until he made the Headsman bob her hair!
Ah yes! he did her wrong long years ago,
And she comes up at night to tell him so.

With her head tucked underneath her arm
She walks the Bloody Tower!
With her head tucked underneath her arm
At the Midnight hour -

She comes to haunt King Henry, she means giving him 'what for',
Gad Zooks, she's going to tell him off for having spilt her gore.
And just in case the Headsman wants to give her an encore
She has her head tucked underneath her arm!

Along the draughty corridors for miles and miles she goes,
She often catches cold, poor thing, it's cold there when it blows,
And it's awfully awkward for the Queen to have to blow her nose
With her head tucked underneath her arm!

Sometimes gay King Henry gives a spread
For all his pals and gals - a ghostly crew.
The headsman carves the joint and cuts the bread,
Then in comes Ann Boleyn to 'queer' the 'do';
She holds her head up with a wild war whoop,
And Henry cries 'Don't drop it in the soup!'

The sentries think that it's a football that she carries in,
And when they've had a few they shout 'Is Ars'nal going to win?'
They think it's Alec James, instead of poor old Ann Boleyn
With her head tucked underneath her arm!

One night she caught King Henry, he was in the Canteen Bar.
Said he 'Are you Jane Seymour, Ann Boleyn or Cath'rine Parr?
For how the sweet san fairy ann do I know who you are
With your head tucked underneath your arm!'

When they mentioned this next song, I remembered I used to hear it when Zed was little - he had a friend who could chant all these words in perfect rhythm, eerily and tunelessly. Over and over again. Zort of like a zombie...

Zombie Jamboree
C.E. Mauge, Jr.

Well, now, back to back, belly to belly
Well I don't give a damn 'cause it doesn't matter really
Back to back, belly to belly at the Zombie Jamboree

Zombie Jamboree took place in a New York cemetery
Zombie Jamboree took place in Long Island cemetery
Zombies from all parts of the island
Some of them are great Calypsonians
Hey, since the season was Carnivale
They got together in Bacchanal

One female zombie wouldn't behave
She say she want me for a slave
In the one hand she's holding a quart of wine
In the other she's pointin' that she'll be mine
Now believe me folks, yes I had to run
Husband of a zombie ain't no fun
I says "Oh, no my turtle dove,
That old bag of bones I cannot love"

Right then and there she raise a fit
"I'm a-going to get you now, my sweet,
I'm gonna make you call me Sweetie Pie"
I says "Oh, no, get back-you lie"
I may be lyin' but you will see
After you kiss this dead zomb-ie
No, I've never seen such a horror in me life
Can you imagine me with a zombie wife?

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At 11:27 AM, Blogger MaryB said...

Two more winners!

At 8:49 PM, Blogger Kel said...

Those are cool songs. You should blogroll me!

At 8:00 AM, Blogger panthergirl said...

Those were great! I love Halloween.

(I'm also totally amused by the comment above me.)

Here via michele, and because you visited me today too.

At 8:36 AM, Blogger Miriam Jones said...

Wow! I have known the chorus of the Anne Boleyn song for as long as I can remember -- my parents sang it to us, along with "Luverly Bunch of Coconuts" and other music hall favourites -- but I have never tried to track down the rest. How wonderful to have the words. Do you know if anyone has ever recorded it? I can't read music but would love to know the tune.

At 12:29 AM, Anonymous Julienne Thursby said...

The very best recording of it in my opinion was Satnley Holloway.....

At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Elaine Pallister said...

I have an uncle who sings this song. It is a favourite at family gatherings. When it comes to the part where "She holds her head up with a wild war whoop" an Aunt lets out a blood curdling scream which adds to the charm of the song.


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