Song Lyric Sunday was created by Helen Vahdati from This Thing Called Life One Word at a Time and author Jim Adams from A Unique Title For Me is our current guest host. For complete rules or to join in the fun, click here.
The theme for Song Lyric Sunday this week is “La.”
I thought of this childhood jingle while my children were still here for the holidays. They dared me to use it. You’d think they’d know better by now. 😀 😀 😀
While the origins of this SLS selection are obscure, some evidence places its roots with vaudeville and theatre acts of the late 19th century and early 20th century popular in immigrant communities.
The indefinitely repetitive John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt shares many characteristics with My Name Is Jan Jansen, a song that can trace its origin to Swedish vaudeville in the late 19th century.
I remember my mom singing this song with my siblings and me and I sang it with my children, not to mention, we all sang it at school, summer camp, and while just hanging out with friends. The last line of the song was always La, la, la, la, la, la, la, la. Imagine my shock and surprise when Google searches led me to lyrics that included Da, da, da, da, da, da, da, da.
I was flabbergasted!
Subsequent searches were absolutely and completely useless… until I clicked on a random link for children’s songs and I found my lyrics–of course, with no explanation or details.
I grew up in Michigan, and don’t know if the lyrics are regional or generational… but I found videos for both sets of lyrics.
Which lyric did you grow up singing?
- By the mid-20th century, the song appears to have already become widely known.
- Versions of this song also appear in other languages, such as the Spanish rendition, Juan Paco Pedro de la Mar.
- John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt is the name of Robin Williams’ character in the 1995 movie, To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar.
- A 1941 Milwaukee Journal article also refers to the song, with the same alternate spelling of “John Jacob Jingleheimer Smith“.
The first video is by The Boogers. Their version uses this week’s prompt–La–and is just as silly as their name.
The second video is a Muffins Song and I didn’t include it for it’s alternate lyrics, but for the DANCING!
Lyrics are in the videos!
See my Song Lyric Sunday selection for Nesie’s Place!