Down by the Bay
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|"Down by the Bay"|
"Down by the Bay" is a traditional children's song. A famous version was performed by Raffi and appears on his 1976 album Singable Songs for the Very Young. It is possibly of Greek origin: a traditional Cephalonian kantada song called "Yialo Yialo" has the same melody. In recent years, the song had gained popularity as a campfire song among the Scouting Movement in Britain.
The song lyrics are usually as follows:
- "Down by the bay,
- Where the watermelons grow,
- Back to my home,
- I dare not go,
- For if I do,
- My mother will say:"
Usually the insertion lyrics follow some kind of variation of the question "Did you ever see a _____, _____ing a _____?", with rhyming words. For example:
- "Did you ever see a snake, baking a cake?"
- "Did you ever see a cat, wearing a hat?"
- "Did you ever see a whale, with a polka dot tail?"
In popular culture
- The song "Polka Dot Tail" from rock band Ween's 1997 album The Mollusk contains lyrics taken from "Down by the Bay," including original variations on the pattern.
- The song is sung on two occasions by Nellie in the 1995 film Angela written and directed by Rebecca Miller, including the rhyme 'Did you ever see a teacher kissing a creature?'.
- Sillywhim, the Jingleheimers and the Fruggy Frogs sang this song in "Wee Sing in Sillyville".
- In the feature film The Guns of Navarone, the Greek version of the song is sung during the wedding scene.
- A version of the song is featured on the album Diego, Dora & Friends' Animal Jamboree, performed by Dora and her cousin Diego of the series Dora the Explorer.
- Around the beginning of "Franklin Goes to Day Camp" on Franklin, the main characters perform a variation of the song.
- On the episode "The Berenstain Bears Go To Camp" of the animated television series The Berenstain Bears, Brother, Sister, and some other cubs sing this song on the way to camp.
- The Barney and the Backyard Gang video "Rock with Barney" features puppets and the lyrics, "Did you ever see a bee with a sunburnt knee?", "Did you ever see a goose kissing a moose?", "Did you ever see a whale with a polka-dot tail?", "Did you ever see a bear try to curl somebody's hair?", "Did you ever see a guy playing tennis with a fly?", "Did you ever see a green dog jumping on a yellow log?", "Did you ever see a rhino kissing a dino?", and "Did you ever see some friends having fun that never ends?".