Ice Cream (I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream)
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"Ice Cream" or "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream" is a popular song, first published in 1927, with words and music by Howard Johnson, Billy Moll, and Robert A. King. After initial success as a late 1920s novelty song, the tune became a traditional jazz standard, while the lyrics refrain "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream" has remained a part of popular culture even without the rest of the song.
1920s novelty song
The song was one of a series of comic novelty songs set in "exotic" locations, one of the earliest and most famous being "Oh By Jingo!" The verses of "Ice Cream" talk of a fictional college in "the land of ice and snow, up among the Eskimo", the college cheer being the chorus of the song "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream".
Traditional jazz standard
In New Orleans in 1944, William Russell recorded a small jazz combo with George Lewis and Jim Robinson for his American Music label. Robinson cut loose with an unexpectedly virtuosic performance on an instrumental of the tune "Ice Cream". The side was issued as by "Jim Robinson's Band". The tune became a standard for Robinson, imitated by other Dixieland jazz trombonists including Chris Barber, and remains in the traditional jazz repertory.
When Barber's band first recorded the song in 1954, they basically knew the instrumental Lewis version. The record producer asked them to sing it, which was slightly problematic, since they didn't know the full lyrics. So trumpeter Pat Halcox invented his own lyrics, These are nowadays better known than the original 1920's version.
- The song is featured in the 1931 Krazy Kat cartoon Soda Poppa.
- The refrain is used in what becomes a prison chant in the 1986 film Down by Law.
- In the comic series Spawn, the character Billy Kincaid recites the song several times.
- The song is featured in two episodes of the first season of Barney & Friends.
- American rapper RZA interpolated "Ice Cream" on his debut album Bobby Digital in Stereo (1998) in the song "My Lovin' is Digi".
- One episode of Masters of Horror was titled We All Scream for Ice Cream.
- Songwriter Tyler Joseph of the American duo Twenty One Pilots wrote "I scream, you scream, we all scream 'cause we're terrified," in their 2011 song "Forest", as a play on words with this popular song.
- Bunk'd Hazel sings the main part.
- Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer Stink sings a similar song
- The song was recited in the science fiction show Farscape by its protagonist Jon Crichton (Ben Browder)
- One episode of Charmed was titled We All Scream for Ice Cream.
- Paul Winchell and his ventriloquist dummy Jerry Mahoney recorded a version of the song in the 50s.
- The refrain is used in an early 1990’s commercial for Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup.
- Johnson, Howard; Moll, Billy; King, Robert (1927). I scream, you scream, we all scream for Ice Cream: Popular Standard, Single Songbook. Roba Digital Sheets. ISBN 978-3841800381. Retrieved 2015-06-11.
- Russ Tanner (2010-03-14), We All Scream For Ice Cream Hershey's Commercial 1991, retrieved 2019-03-13
- on YouTube