Tag Archives: food

Billy Magee Magaw

TITLE: Billy Magee Magaw AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: Traditional, Public Domain KEYWORDS: death, bird, food EARLIEST PRINTED OR RECORDED REFERENCE: 1611 (Thomas Ravenscroft). Ravenscroft (c. 1588 – 1635) was an English musician, theorist and editor, notable as a composer of rounds and catches, and especially for compiling collections of British folk music. This is a minstrel show version of The read more »

Molly Malone

TITLE: Molly Malone AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: Traditional, Public Domain KEYWORDS: death, food, worker, ghost, disease, commerce EARLIEST PRINTED OR RECORDED REFERENCE: The famous cockles and mussels version was first published in the United States in 1883, attributed to James Yorkston. The Dublin wits who dubbed the statue of Molly Malone, “the tart with the cart”, as soon as read more »

Big Rock Candy Mountain

NAME: Big Rock Candy Mountain, The AUTHOR: Unknown; popularized by Harry “Haywire Mac” McClintock EARLIEST DATE: 1906 (version by Marshall Locke & Charles Tyner published) KEYWORDS: hobo, railroading, dream, food, drink The kids’ song that we know as The Big Rock Candy Mountain, with “lemonade springs where the bluebird sings,” is considerably different from the read more »

Fox, The

TITLE: The Fox AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: public domain, traditional KEYWORDS: animal, food, hunting EARLIEST DATE: 1810 (Gammer Gurton’s Garland) The earliest version of this piece appears to have been a Middle English poem found in British Museum MS. Royal 19.B.iv, and is thought to date from the fifteenth century. About as old is a strange version in read more »

Shortnin’ Bread

TITLE: Shortnin’ Bread AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: traditional, public domain KEYWORDS: food, illness, children EARLIEST DATE: 1915 (JAFL 28) Shortnin’ Bread originated among slaves working on plantations in the early 1800s. The gist of the song is that the doctor orders short’nin bread to help heal the sick children and it does work. Shortnin’ Bread was a treat that read more »

Bile Them Cabbage Down

 TITLE: Bile Them Cabbage Down AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: traditional, public domain KEYWORDS: fiddle, dancing, nonballad, animal, food, floatingverses EARLIEST DATE: 1924 (recordings, Uncle Dave Macon, Fiddlin’ John Carson) Boil Them Cabbage Down is a classic folk song usually played with a fiddle. “Some historians say that the origins of this song can be traced back to read more »

Bill Morgan and His Gal

TITLE: Bill Morgan and His Gal AUTHOR: Words by Will A. Mahoney, Music by Halsay K. Mohr CATEGORY: Author Known, Public Domain KEYWORDS: food, humorous, lover, money, comic EARLIEST DATE: 1906 HISTORICAL REFERENCES: John Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), mortgage banker, was probably the most powerful financier in American history; he controlled railroads, steel mills and the largest bank on Wall read more »

Everybody Happy?

TITLE: Everybody Happy? AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: Traditional, Public Domain KEYWORDS: children, days of week, food, work EARLIEST DATE: 1927 Pardology: Songs For Fun And Fellowship (Harbin) I’ve found this song on found on Document Records Field Recordings, Volume 8: Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi 1934-1947. Kids love singing this! 

Do You Know the Muffin Man?

TITLE: Do You Know the Muffin Man? AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: traditional, public domain KEYWORDS: playparty food commerce EARLIEST DATE: 1837 (Hone); c.1820 (Bodleian Douce Adds. 134(8), according to Opie-Game) HISTORICAL REFERENCES: In researching this song, I’ve found that despite its being a part of our collective subconscious, the song’s origins are quite obscure. In The Every-Day read more »

Goober Peas

TITLE: Goober Peas AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: traditional, public KEYWORDS: food, Civil war, nonballad, comic EARLIEST DATE: 1866 HISTORICAL REFERENCES: Civil war in the United States “Goober Peas” was a popular song sung by Confederate soldiers during the Civil War in the United States (1861-1865). The song was first published by Armand Edward Blackmar, who with his read more »

Beans, Bacon, and Gravy

TITLE: Beans, Bacon, and Gravy AUTHOR: unknown, although there were many claimants for authorship EARLIEST DATE: 1931 CATEGORY: Public Domain, Authorship Debated KEYWORDS: hardtimes, food. work HISTORICAL REFERENCES: The Great Depression in the United States which started in 1930 and lasted a decade. Pete Seeger writes in the liner notes to American Industrial Ballads that Beans, Bacon and read more »

Aiken Drum

TITLE: Aiken Drum AUTHOR: unknown CATEGORY: traditional, public domain KEYWORDS: clothes, death, food, humorous, talltale, children EARLIEST DATE: 1828 (Lyle-Crawfurd2) A fun children’s song. Many versions exist updating the verses but I love the original with the haggis-bag legs.