|Pop? Goes me?|
Back when I was a "musician," in the early 1980s, I used to do this schtick between songs. I'd warn the audience about the "secret drug lyrics" in the beloved children's song -- you guessed it -- "Pop! Goes the Weasel."
|1937 sheet music|
In a Library of Congress Performing Arts Blog blog post in 2016, Sharon McKinley wrote of sheet music from 1856 she had found. "What I found amusing was that it had exhaustive dance directions printed on the last page," McKinley wrote.
Naturally The Three Stooges were fans of the song. In their 1934 short Punch Drunks, Curley goes wild -- and apparently gets supernatural strength -- every time he hears the song. Here's the climax of that exciting Stooge adventure.
Bill Haley & The Comets in 1952 did a rock 'n' roll version of a Weasel variant called "Stop Beatin' Around the Mulberry Bush" which had been recorded a couple of decades earlier by Les Brown, Tommy Dorsey and others. It's different words to a different melody (basically the kiddy song "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush", but close your eyes and you'll see a monkey chasing the weasel:)
The ever-cool Anthony Newley in 1963 performed this swinging version of Weasel, using the British lyrics, in 1963:
The Beatles recorded this instrumental for the BBC radio show Pop Go The Beatles in 1963:
In the early '90s, the forgotten white rap group 3rd Base brought "Weasel" into the hip-hop universe. Supposedly the Weasel in this version was 3rd Base's arch rival Vanilla Ice, who was depicted in this video by Henry Rollins:
And finally, Andy Kaufman in the '70s used to lipsych to a record of the song by something called The Crown Records Studio Group:
Check out Alan Sherman's parody of "Pop! Goes The Weasel" on this early Wacky Wednesday post
For more deep dives into songs, check out The Stephen W. Terrell Web Log Songbook