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Friday, July 21, 2017

Bahamian Children's Game Song/Hand Clap Rhyme "I Went Up On The Hill" ("Rock The Cherry")


Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post showcases the Bahamian (Caribbean) children's singing game/hand clap rhyme "I Went Up The Hill" (This singing game/rhyme may also be known as "Rock The Cherry".)

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to all those who are featured in the videos that are embedded in this post. Thanks also to the publishers of these videos on YouTube.
-snip=
WARNING: The video given as Example #2 in this post features children performing seductive dances that some people may consider to be unsuitable for children.

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RHYME WORDS
Rhyme Example #1
I WENT UP ON THE HILL
I went up on the hill
With a bucket on my head
The road so rocky
Till my bucket fall down

Rock-a-my-cherry, one two
Rock-a-my-cherry, three four.

From http://www.mamalisa.com/?t=es&p=737
"Many thanks to Josephine Justilien for contributing this song. Thanks so much!"

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Rhyme Example #2
I went up on the hill
With a bucket on my head
The road so rocky
Till my bucket fall down
(Rock my cherry)
one and two
(Rock my cherry)
One and two
(Rock my cherry)
three and four
(Rock my cherry)
five and six
(Rock my cherry)
seven and eight
(rock my cherry)
nine and ten
(Rock my cherry)
That’s the end!


Source: This is my transcription of the rhyme that is shown in the video given below as Video Example #1. I couldn't fully decipher the first portion of the rhyme (before the first iteration of the words "Rock my cherry"). Because of that, I used the first part of the lyrics given as Example #1 above. I'm confident that the girls chanted those words (or very similar words) because of the words that I understood and because the girls imitative actions fit all of the words to the first part of that rhyme.

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[Added July 21, 2017 11:31 AM]

Rhyme Example #3
I went up on the hill
With my bucket on my head
My road fall down
with my bucket on my head
Rocka a my cherry
One two
Rocka a my cherry
three four
Rocka a my cherry
five six
Rocka a my cherry
seven eight
Rocka a my cherry
nine ten
Rocka my cherry.
That's the end.

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAGjxqjoCko Show Me Your Motion: The Ringplay Games of The Bahamas (52:53- 52:59)

The words to this example are given as sub-titles in this documentary.

This ring play is performed as a girls' circle game with one person in the middle. A boy on the outskirts of the circle accompanies the girls singing on a drum that is strapped over on of his shoulders,

The girls hold both hands near their head, as a representation of holding a bucket on their head [?] . On the words "rock my cherry", the girl in the middle dances in front of someone forming the circle, but in this portion of the video the girl barely moves her hips. The other girls forming the circle sing and clap while watching the middle girl, but don't imitate her dancing.

I don't believe this ring play is known in the United States. Click for two other examples of "I Went Up On The Hill" ("Rock The Cherry").

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SHOWCASE VIDEOS
Video Example #1: Bahamian Ringplay ("Rock My Cherry"*)



Kimberley Minors Published on Apr 18, 2013
-snip-

I'm not familiar with the "I Went Up The Hill" (Rock My Cherry" rhyme being performed in the United States. I think it originated either in the Bahamas or in another Caribbean nation.

*This is my name for this rhyme from a repeated phrase in that rhyme. I've named this video to distinguish it from two other videos published by Kimberley Minor that have the same "Bahamian Ringplay" title:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnSgPM0cqlY. That video features three girls performing a version of the African American originated rhyme "Bang Bang Choo Choo Train" and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0WGQfk-DIo.

The video whose link is given last features four girls performing a version of a singing game that is known as "This a Way Valerie" in the United States, but is called "This a Way A Bellabee" in a documentary on Bahamian game songs (at 18:37 of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAGjxqjoCko. "This A Way Valerie" ("This A Way Ballabee") may have originated either in the Caribbean or in the United States (African Americans who may or may not have been of Caribbean descent).

The only "Ringplay" video that Kimberley Minor published on YouTube that includes the title of a ring play is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7lpzGSpd5Z8 "Bahamian Hand Games/Ringplay: Twe Lee Lee" "Twee Lee Lee" (or similarly spelled words) is an African American originated hand clap rhyme that is based on the Pop/R&B song "Rockin Robin". In that video that rhyme is combined with another rhyme whose words I can't fully decipher.

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According to ring play is a "US, Caribbean, African" [term] that refers to "Any of various types of games played in a circle with dance movements and singing."

In the "Bahamian RingPlay" video that is featured in this post, the term "ring play" is used as a general term for children's recreational singing games and rhymes and not just circle games that are performed by people forming a ring (circle).

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Performance Description For Video Example #1:
Pancocojams Editor's Disclaimer:
This description doesn't mean that this is the way that this ring play is always performed.

I'm not very good at describing children's recreational play. Please improve this description. Thanks!

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Bahamian Ring Play "Rock The Cherry" ("I Went Up The Hill")
General description:
Two girls stand in one horizontal line facing two other girls with a little bit of space in between the two lines. The girls stand in place and perform imitative movements while chanting this rhyme.

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Actions for Specific Words & Phrases:
In the beginning of the rhyme, they hold both of their hands to the side of their head and hold their head down in sadness while slightly bouncing up and down to the beat.

When the girls start saying the counting lines, they raise their heads and begin holding up fingers to correspond with the numbers that they say. They continue to stand in place and slightly bounce up and down to the beat without rocking their hips.

After the number five, they hold up both hands and move them back and forth regardless of the numbers that they are saying. They continue to stand in place and slightly bounce back up and down to the beat.

On the line, "and that's the end", they throw both hands up in the air, smiling.

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Video Example #2: Show Me Your Motion Trailer



Ward Minnis Published on Nov 30, 2006

A Trailer for a documentary on Ring play games from the Bahamas. Directed by Ian Strachan.
-snip-
Click https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAGjxqjoCko for a link to this complete documentary. Unfortunately, that video has no comments to date.

WARNING: This documentary features children performing seductive dances that some people may consider to be unsuitable for children.

A pancocojams post that transcribes the words to the few hand games/singing games that are featured in this documentary will be posted ASAP and that link will be added to this post.

Here is my Video description for the "Rock the cherry" portion of this pancocojams featured video (beginning around .017):
Girls and boys form a large circle with one child in the middle. The middle child moves around the inside of the ring while the other children sing. On the words “rock my cherry”, the middle child moves directly in front someone she or he chooses and does a very seductive wining dance [hip rotating dance while moving up and down]. At the end of that rhyme, the girl she stood in front of becomes the new middle child and the singing game begins from the beginning.

Compare this game song with the African American [?] originated children's singing game "Ride The Pony" that is showcased in this post on my cocojams2 blog: https://cocojams2.blogspot.com/2014/11/little-sally-walker-ride-that-pony_9.html
-snip-
Here are three comments from that video's discussion thread:
Ms. Missi, 2010
"WoooooW! Some o'dese lil girls on here too SLACK! We wasn't slack like dat wit our ring play nah! Dey's run rite oat dread! Muddoes! Need dey hip cuttt! LoL! But, some of the clips are "clean" and show the traditional style of Ring Play. Love it. Thanx for posting!
-snip-
"Slack" = acting or being "nasty" ("dirty"), in this case, dancing sexually seductively. (noun: "slackness"). The opposite of "slack" is "clean".

**
cstar88, 2011
"Ring Play the rite of passage. That was a good documentary. I recorded it a few days ago. If I had the opportunity to play Ring Play and Pawkin again, I would be there. Good job :)

I don't know what the word "pawkin" means, but a brief clip of a competitive ball throwing game for boys by that name is shown around 26:21 in the "Show Me Your Motion: The Ringplay Games of The Bahamas" documentary whose link is given above.

**
Shan Russell, 2013
"Wow... No wonder we was so wamanish man! Singing dese kinda songs! SMH!!"
-snip-
"Womanish" is a term that is (also) used among African Americans (who may or may not be of Caribbean descent). "Womanish" is usually an at least mildly negative adjective that refers to girls acting like they are grown woman. "Manish" is a comparable term for boys who act like they are grown men.

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Visitor comments are welcome.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Videos Of "Four White Horses" Caribbean Hand Clap Rhyme (Part II)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part Ii of a two part pancocojams series on the Caribbean folk song "Four White Horses" that is often used as a children's hand clapping rhyme.

This post showcases five videos of "Four White Horses" hand clap games. The Addendum to this post provides several suggested performance instructions for this hand clapping game.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2017/07/four-white-horses-caribbean-song-hand.html for Part I of this series. Part I presents selected comments from Mudcat folk music discussion thread and from other online sources about the origin of the song/rhyme "Four White Horses". Text (word only) examples of this song's lyrics are also included in this post.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to the unknown composers of "Four White Horses" and thanks to all those who have collected this song. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post, thanks to all those who are featured in these videos, and thanks to the publishers of these videos on YouTube.

PANCOCOJAMS EDITOR'S NOTE
Judging from its presence on the internet-including lyrics pages, questions about its origin and meaning, and YouTube videos, the song "Four White Horses" appears to be relatively familiar in the United States, at least compared to many other Caribbean songs. Although there is general agreement that "Four White Horses" is a Caribbean song, some websites give its origin as the United States Virgin Islands while others indicate that this song comes from Jamaica. Given the number and quality of the sources that say that this song is from the United States Virgin Island, I believe that origin is the correct one.

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SHOWCASE VIDEOS
These videos are given in chronological order based on their publishing date on YouTube, with the oldest dated video given first. All of these videos are from the United States.

Example #1: Four White Horses



Vincent Bates Published on Mar 23, 2011

Four white horses on a river. Ay, ay, ay, up tomorrow. Up tomorrow is a rainy day. Come on, join in our shadow play. Shadow play is a ripe banana. Ay, ay, ay, up tomorrow. Up tomorrow is a rainy day

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Example #2: Four White Horses Clapping Games



Julie Jacobsma Published on Nov 3, 2011

6th Graders create 4 or 8-beat clapping patterns to go with the Jamaican song, "Four White Horses" and perform them for the class.

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Example #3: Four White Horses clapping game



Clover Ridge Music, Published on May 19, 2014

Learn the clapping game to the Caribbean folk song, then make up your own pattern!

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Example #4: Four White Horses Clapping Game



Josh Manfroni, Published on Jun 22, 2016

Some of our 2nd grade students demonstrating the clapping game for "Four White Horses." Great job ladies!

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Example #5: 12-9-16 Fabulous Friday Winner



Ms. Flatebo Published on Dec 9, 2016

This is Mrs. Groen's fourth grade class performing "Four White Horses", which is a folk song from the Virgin Islands. This class did a great job learning this tough hand-clapping game. Some of the groups even alternated going over and under with their "high tens".

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ADDENDUM: SUGGESTED PERFORMANCE INSTRUCTIONS
These performance instructions are given in no particular order.
Quote #1:
From http://kodaly.hnu.edu/song.cfm?id=723
"Four White Horses"....

Kodály Center. The American Folk Song Collection ... Four White Horses. Analysis Share .... Collected by Floice Lindgren Lund, Virgin Islands, 1960. Informant

Directions: Two sets of partners form a square ("ones" and "twos"),
each person standing across from his or her partner.
On first 8 beats all clap hands out to the side, clapping each neighbors' palm.
For the remaining 8-beat phrases, the pattern is as follows. (One number = one beat)
1. The "ones" clap partners palms above shoulder level, the "twos" below.
2. All clap own hands together.
3. The "ones" clap partners palms below, and the "twos" above.
4. All clap own hands together.
5. The "ones" clap palms of neighbor on the right, the "twos" to the left.
6. All clap own hands together.
7. Reverse 5. (the "ones" turning to the left, etc.)
8. All clap own hands together"

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Quote #2
From http://www.mamalisa.com/?t=es&p=2200
"Four White Horses

Game Instructions

A Four Player Game

Four kids stand in a cross. Two kids face each other on one line of the cross, while the others face each other on the other line of the cross. One pair claps high in the air and the other pair claps low down. Then they switch.

Clapping Instructions:

On the First 4 Lines: Clap partner's hands, clap your hands, clap partner's hands, clap your hands.

On the 5th line: Go to the side partner - clap side partner's hands, clap your hands.

On the 6th Line: Go to the other side partner - clap side partner's hands, clap your hands."

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This concludes Part II of this series on "Four White Horses"

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

"Four White Horses" Caribbean Song & Hand Clap Rhyme, Part I: Speculative Origins & Lyric Examples

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part I of a two part pancocojams series on the Caribbean folk song "Four White Horses" that is often used as a children's hand clapping rhyme.

This post presents selected comments from Mudcat folk music discussion thread and from other online sources about the origin of the song/rhyme "Four White Horses". Text (word only) examples of this song's lyrics are also included in this post.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2017/07/videos-of-four-white-horses-caribbean.html for Part II of this series. Part II showcases five video examples of "Four White Horses" hand clap games. The Addendum to this post provides several suggested performance instructions for this hand clapping game.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to the unknown composers of "Four White Horses" and thanks to all those who have collected this song. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post.

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PANCOCOJAMS EDITOR'S NOTE-
Judging from its presence on the internet-including lyrics pages, questions about its origin and meaning, and YouTube videos, the song "Four White Horses" appears to be relatively familiar in the United States, at least compared to many other Caribbean songs. Although there is general agreement that "Four White Horses" is a Caribbean song, some websites give its origin as the United States Virgin Islands while others indicate that this song comes from Jamaica. Given the number and quality of the sources that say that this song is from the United States Virgin Island, I believe that origin is the correct one.

"Four White Horses" is described as an "old Caribbean song". Since that song has no known composers and no known composition date (or even century or decade that I've found), it can properly be considered a "traditional" Caribbean song and a "folk song". I have, however, found two collection dates for this song: Floice Lindgren Lund, Virgin Islands, 1960 http://kodaly.hnu.edu/song.cfm?id=723 and Karen Ellis, 1976 on St. Croix, United States Virgin Island http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=9634.

In addition, this comment about the collection of the song "Four White Horse" was posted to a YouTube discussion thread for a video of that hand clap rhyme: "elorenz57, June 2017: "Lois Choksy, the amazing Kodaly music educator who taught at the University of Calgary for many years, collected this song and game from the Caribbean island where she had a home..." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aqr44wfy9lA

As is the case with most if not all folk songs and rhymes, there are many different versions of "Four White Horses" and there are various meanings that have been attributed to this song's (rhyme's) lyrics.
I'm not interested in judging whether one version or another is correct or incorrect. However, it seems to me that it might be possible to determine which versions may be older than others, if not "the oldest known" versions. And it also seems to me that it's appropriate to speculate about the early origins of this folk song whether those speculations can be proven or not.

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SELECTED COMMENTS ABOUT "FOUR WHITE HORSES" FROM MUDCAT DISCUSSION THREAD
From http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=9634 Four White Horses??

Pancocojams Editor:
These selected comments are numbered for referencing purposes only.

1.
"Subject: Four White Horses??
From: Cleo
Date: 13 Mar 99 - 01:05 AM

I once heard a group of kids sing this song...
Four white horses on the river,
aye, aye, aye, up tomorrow,
up tomorrow is a rainy day.
Come and join our shadow play.
Shadow play is a ripe banana,
aye, aye, aye, up tomorrow,
up tomorrow is a rainy day.
I just wondered where it came from and if it's only supposed to be a nonsense song, or it actually means something. Any help?

Thanks, Cleo"

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2.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: GUEST,Sheila
Date: 06 Apr 04 - 01:36 PM

Karen Ellis collected this in 1976 on St. Croix, USVI. A live sound field recording was made and submitted to the Folk Archive at the Library of Congress at that time. The words at that time were:
4 white horses on a rainbow
Hey hey hey up tomorrow
Up tomorrow is a rainy day
Come on out and let's shadow play
Shadow play is a ripe banana
Hey hey hey up tomorrow. (a salty sexy rhyme).
Still another version goes "4 white horses on the river" and "Come on up to the shallow bay/ Shallow bay is a ripe banana." "

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3.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 04:01 PM

Here are the original lyrics to the song:

Four white horses, on the river,
hey, hey, hey, up tomorrow.
Up tomorrow is a rainy day,
come on up to the shallow bay.
Shallow bay is a ripe banana,
up tomorrow is a rainy day!

It is an old carribean folk song"

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4.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: GUEST,Ripe Banana
Date: 16 Dec 05 - 04:48 AM

This jaunty tune actually originated in 1963 in the Caribbean, and is closer to the version posted by Cleo:

Four white horses, on the river
Aye, aye, aye, up tomorrow
Up tomorrow is a rainy day
Come on and join the Shadow Gay
Shadow Gay in the last cabana
Aye, aye, aye, up tomorrow
Bite my banana."

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5.
"Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Four White Horses
From: MickyMan
Date: 10 Jan 06 - 06:25 PM

When I learned this children's game in the late 70s as a graduate level music educationn student at the Kodaly Musical Training Institute, we were told that the "up tomorrow" was derived from an erlier lyric of "hope tomorrow". These Kodaly Method people sourced their stuff bigtime ... and the lyric makes more sense when you know this. I taught it as a children's clapping game song similar to the one listed earlier. I'll bet there are many variants, one for every neighborhood girl gang in the Carribean. Great kid's game song!"

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6.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: GUEST,k
Date: 19 Apr 09 - 05:35 PM

well im caribbean and it seem to me as if it is said differently then the way i learned it when i was a child for i've learned it as

4 white horses on a rainbow
hey hey hey up tomorrow
up tomorrow is a rainy day
come on down to the shallow bay
a shallow bay is a rotten banana
hey hey hey down tomorrow"

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7.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 20 Apr 09 - 05:19 PM

GUESTk, that sure sounds like the folk process at work!"

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8.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 01 Aug 09 - 07:18 AM

This is pure uninformed guesswork, but might the song be descended from a shanty? I've never heard it, but on reading the words one of those 'Sally Brown' sort of tunes seemed to be struggling for utterance.

Could 'Shadow day is a ripe banana' once have been 'Sally Brown's a bright mulatta?'

'Four white horses' appear in versions of 'Jordan', which is sometimes a spiritual and sometimes closer to a shanty.

Valmai"
-snip-
From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea_shanty:
"A shanty (also spelled "chantey," "chanty") is a type of work song that was once commonly sung to accompany labor on board large merchant sailing vessels".

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/04/sally-brown-sally-sue-brown-sea-shanty.html for information about and some examples of "Sally Brown" (also known as "Shallow Brown") shanties.

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9.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: Dave Hunt
Date: 02 Aug 09 - 04:51 AM

I learnt this song in Barbados when I was there a couple of years ago as a visiting artist - looking at how they teach their traditions in school. The words they use are

Three white horses, in a stable
hey hey we go up tomorrow
Up tomorrow at the break of day
Come along with your shallow plate
Shallow plate is a white mulatto
hey hey we go - up tomorrow
Up tommorrow at the break of day
Come along with your shallow plate

Tendency noew to sing green banana in place of white mulsatto - in fact they have fun changing the coloutr of the banana - blue, gold, red, whatever one child shouts out."

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10.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 12:52 PM

Valmai said exactly what I was thinking! I was immediately reminded by

Shallow Bay is a ripe banana

Shadow play is a ripe banana

Shadow Gay in the last cabana


of "Sally (Shallow) Brown is a bright mulatta" and the shanty. Dave's hearing of the song seems to confirm this. I would love to hear the tune this is sung to."

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11.
"Subject: RE: Four White Horses??
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Apr 16 - 08:02 AM

four white horses
in the stable
hey hey we go
off tomorrow
off tomorrow is a break up day
come along with your shallow plate
shallow plate is a white banana
hey hey we go
off tomorrow"

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OTHER SELECTED COMMENTS ABOUT "FOUR WHITE HORSES" (INCLUDING OTHER LYRIC VERSIONS) FROM OTHER ONLINE SITES
Pancocojams Editor:
These selected comments are numbered for referencing purposes only.

1. From http://www.newworldrecords.org/liner_notes/80427.pdf
"31. FOUR WHITE HORSES ON A RAINBOW
Schoolgirls, St. Thomas, 6/8/82
This hand-clapping game was performed by eight- and nine-year-old girls during recess
at school.

Four white horses on a rainbow,
Eh, eh, eh, up tomorrow,
Up tomorrow is a rainy day,
Come on down to the shadow play,
Shadow play is a ripe banana, Eh, eh, eh, up tomorrow...."
-snip-
This is the 31st song that is featured in this pdf file. That file also includes a rather extensive write up about the history of the United States Virgin Island as well as information about certain music forms including "Quadrille", "Masquerades" and "Scratch bands (also called "Fungi music" in the British Virgin
Islands).

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2. From http://www.mamalisa.com/?t=es&p=2200 "Four White Horses"
"This is a traditional Caribbean song. In one interpretation, it's about four white horses traveling on a river in a boat or on a barge. It's going to rain the next day, so they'd better come back up river to where it's safe in the shallow bay.

Four White Horses
Hand Clapping Rhyme
Four white horses, on the river,
Hey, hey, hey, up tomorrow,
Up tomorrow is a rainy day.
Come on up to the shallow bay,
Shallow bay is a ripe banana,
Up tomorrow is a rainy day.

Notes
Alternate lyrics:

Four white horses on a rainbow,
Hey, hey, hey, up tomorrow*
Up tomorrow is a rainy day,
Come on down to the shadow play,
Shadow play is a ripe banana,
Hey, hey, hey, up tomorrow.

*"Up tomorrow" may have originally been "hope tomorrow". There are versions with it as "for tomorrow"....
-snip-
This page also includes performance instructions. Those instructions are posted in Part II of this pancocojams series.

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3. From https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aqr44wfy9lA
sysphus13, 2012
"Great video, thanks. Being my kids even thought both of these versions were strange and senseless, as did I , i'm changing it to: Hey, Hey, Hey, Hope tomorrow, hope tomorrow is a rainy day, come on up to the shallow bay, shallow bay has some ripe bananas, hope tomorrow is a rainy day. :)"

*****
From https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aqr44wfy9lA
Elorenz57, June 2017
"Lois Choksy, the amazing Kodaly music educator who taught at the University of Calgary for many years, collected this song and game from the Caribbean island where she had a home. The words were: "Come on up to the shallow bay. Shallow bay is a ripe banana, Up tomorrow is a rainy day." "Shallow Bay" was the name of the bay close to her home. It was in the shape of a banana, hence "Shallow bay is a ripe banana."Thought you might be interested in the history of the text. Enjoy."

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This concludes Part I of this pancocojams series on "Four White Horses".

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Is This Old Children's Cheer The Source Of VSU's "Who Cheers The Best" Stomp & Shake Cheer?

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams posts points out the close similarities between a text (word) version of an old children's foot stomping cheer with two texts and video examples of Virginia State University (VSU)'s often imitated stomp & shake cheer "Who Cheers The Best". Given those similarities, dependent on their composition dates, it seems likely to me that a version of this children's cheer is the source for VSU's cheer.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the Virginia State University Woo Woo cheerleaders who are featured in this post's embedded videos. Hat tip to Ebony Janice Peace. the publisher of a YouTube video about Black children's rhymes, and hat tip to Nikkole Salter, a commenter on that video's discussion thread in 2015 whose comment I've highlighted in this post.

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PANCOCOJAMS EDITOR'S NOTE:
Whenever the spirit moves me, I visit YouTube in search of examples of specific categories of children's rhymes and cheers, or examples of specific rhymes or cheers. Yesterday, I happened upon this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KfzHL_1PdbY "Let's Discuss: Black Girl Childhood Hand Games and Sing Songs" published by Ebony Janice Peace, Published on Aug 4, 2014. In that video Ebony Janice Peace discusses her memory of children's hand clap rhymes and marvels about how so many of the same rhymes are known and performed by Black girls throughout the United States. Ms. Peace also discusses how some of those rhymes from her childhood and some contemporary Black girls rhymes have inappropriate lyrics.

As a collector of African American children's rhymes and cheers I was interested in hearing Ms. Peace's opinions on this subject. And I was delighted to read several examples of rhymes and cheers that were posted by commenters in that video's discussion thread. As it turns out, I had forgotten that I had watched this video before and had previously added some examples from that video's discussion thread to my collection of what I refer to as "foot stomping cheers", including this comment that was posted by Nikkole Salter in 2014:
"This is an L.A. perspective:... This first one is not so much a hand game as much as it is a cipher: You know, I shake the best, hey, hey/ You know, from the east to the west! My name's (enter your name) and my favorite color's black (or whatever color you like) / I took your man and you won't get him back, hey hey / You know, I shake the best, hey, hey/ You know, from the east to the west! (and every person gets a chance, state your color and your bravado in rhyme)... Then there was this other call & response cipher (which I don't hear too many people mention outside my generation and region)... Tether ball, tether ball/Oosha, asha!/Tether ball, tether ball/Oosha, asha! My name's (enter your name) (tether ball), super cool, (tether ball) You mess with me (tether ball) You's a fool (tether ball) I got this man (tether ball) On my mind (tether ball) You mess with him (tether ball) Your butt is straight up mine. Oooh. Tether ball, tether ball/Oosha, Asha! etc. -- You make up your own rhyme of bravado...

Unfortunately, Ms. Salter didn't include which decade these examples come from. However, her comment that few people "outside of her generation" know these examples suggests that they probably come from the 1990s, or earlier. I've collected three examples of "Tether Ball" -including Ms. Salter's example- and each of these examples are from Los Angeles, California.* A woman who shared an example of "Tether Ball" on my no longer active cocojams website indicated that she remembered it from the early 1990s. If Ms. Salter's version of "Tether Ball" (which is very similar to the other two that I've collected) is from the 1990s, then it's reasonable to assume that the other example in that comment "You know, I Share The Best" is also from the 1990s. As of this date, I haven't found any other "I Cheer The Best" children's cheers except those cheers that are patterned after Virginia State University's very popular stomp & shake cheer entitled "Who Cheers The Best".
-snip-
*Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2016/09/foot-stomping-cheers-alphabetical-list_22.html Foot Stomping Cheers Alphabetical List (P- Z)

Also, click Here's an excerpt from https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2013/05/an-overview-of-foot-stomping-cheers.html and https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2013/05/overview-of-stomp-shake-cheerleading.html

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CHILDREN'S FOOT STOMPING CHEER - "YOU KNOW, I CHEER THE BEST"
You know, I shake the best,
hey, hey/
You know, from the east to the west!
My name's (enter your name)
and my favorite color's black (or whatever color you like)/
I took your man and you won't get him back,
hey hey /
You know, I shake the best,
hey, hey/
You know, from the east to the west!


(and every person gets a chance, state your color and your bravado in rhyme)...
-Nikkole Salter (Los Angeles, California), comment in discussion thread for vlog https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KfzHL_1PdbY
Let's Discuss: Black Girl Childhood Hand Games and Sing Songs")
-snip-
I reformatted this example from sentence form to line form.

Nikkole Salter introduced this cheer by saying "This first one is not so much a hand game as much as it is a cipher". I also want to highlight her points that these were "call and response ciphers", that "every person gets a chance, state your color and your bravado in rhyme", and that "you said your name" and "make up your own rhyme of bravado". These descriptions fit the conclusions that I've made about the recreational sub-category of children's cheers that I refer to as "foot stomping cheers". Prior to some of these cheers being adapted by mainstream children's cheerleading squads, these cheers were usually informally performed by two or more African American girls between the ages of 5-12 years who were pretending to be cheerleaders. "Traditionally", these call & response cheers had one soloist for each iteration. At the "end" of the cheer, the group repeated the complete cheer with a new soloist and this pattern continued until every person in the group had an equal turn as the soloist. (Notice Nikkole Salter's comment that "every person gets a chance, state your color and your bravado in rhyme".

In contrast, the stomp & shake cheer "Who Cheers The Best" isn't a call & response cheer, but is chanted by the squad in unison.

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VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY CHEER WHO CHEERS THE BEST

VSU Woo Woo's 2008 "Who Shakes The Best"



BlaWaiian2008, Published on Mar 17, 2013

VSU Cheerleaders (Virginia State University)
-snip-
Here's the words to that cheer:
Shake it to the east.
Shake it to the west.
It really doesn't matter who shakes the best.
Shake it to the east.
Shake it to the west.
It really doesn't matter who shakes the best.
Shake it to the east.
Shake it to the west.
Cause everybody knows that we shake the best.
-Virginia State University Woo Woos, transcribed by Azizi Powell from the video.
-snip-
In a 2011 video of the Woo Woos performing "Who Shakes The Best" the words are slightly changed, but the routine is basically the same. Here's that text example and that video:

VSU Woo Woo (Who shakes Da Best)



TrueVSU1882 Published on Mar 31, 2011

WHO SHAKES DA BEST [version #2)
Shake it to the east.
Shake it to the west.
It really doesn't matter who shakes the best.

Shake it to the east.
Shake it to the west.
It really doesn't matter who shakes the best.

Ah hey!
'Cause we shake the best
Everybody knows that we shake the best
To the East.
To the West.
Shake it!
-from VSU Woo Woo (Who shakes Da Best video, Mar 31, 2011,
This is my transcription of that cheer from that video

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The earliest example of this stomp & shake cheer that I've found is a 2007 video of a Virginia high school cheerleading squad (Prince Edward High School's Sassys) performing "We Shake The Best" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jnwq5Pq40A SASSY (We Shake The Best). The words to that cheer are the same as the words to "Who Shakes The Best".

Several commenters writing in the discussion thread noted that that squad learned that cheer from the Virginia Woo Woos at cheer camp & because their cheerleader was a member of the Woo Woo squad.

Here's that video: Prince Edward High School, Virginia - "We Shake The Best"



Uploaded by woowooworkit on Feb 17, 2007
-snip-
Prince Edward High School, Virginia (Sassy cheerleaders, 2007 (This is a Virginia State University cheer that this squad learned by attending the cheer camp conducted by the VSU Woo Woo cheerleaders).

Notice that the name of the publisher of that video refers to the "Woo Woos".

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PANCOCOJAMS CONCLUDING NOTE:
In addition to the similar titles, the old children's cheer (that Nikkole Salter referred to as a "cipher") and VSU's stomp and shake cheer have
1. very similar titles
2. references to "the east and the west"

I don't know when the cheer "You Know, I Shake The Best" was first chanted, or when Virginia State University (VSU) first performed their stomp & shake cheer "Who Shakes The Best". My position is that it's likely that someone from VSU's Woo Woo squad creatively adapted this children's cheer. I'm not sure that VSU's Woo Woos are happy aabout this, but currently it seems that their "Who Cheers The Best" cheer has become one of the most imitated stomp & shake cheers today by high school, middle schools, and community stomp & shake cheerleader squads as well as by mainstream children's cheerleader squads that incorporate modified stomp & shake cheers and movements into their repertoires.

If you know this children's cheer, for the folkloric record, please share the example that you know, along with when you learned it (the decade) and the city/state where you learned it in the comment section below. Thanks!

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