Negro Folk Rhymes Wise & Otherwise - online book

A detailed study of Negro folk music, includes lyrics & sheet music samples.

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those found to be clearly of this kind may be men­tioned "The Great Owl's Song," "Tails," "Red­head Woodpecker," "The Snail's Reply," "Bob-white's Song," "Chuck Will's Widow Song," and many others.
The Folk Rhymes were not often repeated as such or as wThole compositions by the "grown-ups" among Negroes apart from the Play and the Dance. If, however, you had had an argument with an antebel­lum Negro, had gotten the better of the argument, and he still felt confident that he was right, you probably would have heard him close his side of the debate with the words: "Well, 'Ole Man Know-All is Dead.' " This is only a short prosaic version of his rhyme "Old Man Know-All," found in our collection. Many of the characteristic sayings of "Uncle Remus" woven into story by Joel Chandler Harris had their origin in these Folk Rhymes. "Dem dat knowT too much sleep under de ash-hop­per" (Uncle Remus) clearly intimates to all who know about the old-fashioned ash-hopper that such an individual lies. This saying is a part of an­other stanza of "Old Man Know-All," but I cannot recall it from my dim memory of the past, and others whom I have asked seem equally unable to do so, though they have once known it.
As is the case with all things of Folk origin,