Mudcat Café message #3894495 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #163299   Message #3894495
Posted By: Senoufou
18-Dec-17 - 08:40 AM
Thread Name: Jingle Bells Originally Performed in Minstrel Show
Subject: RE: Jingle Bells Originally Performed in Minstrel Show
The film 'Cool Runnings' depicted, I seem to remember, a Jamaican bobsled team competing in the Winter Olympics. Part of the interest may have been because they were black, but mainly because they had never seen snow (and they succeeded in their event!).

I suppose it's the incongruity of black people having a sleigh ride in the snow which struck me. In all the years of singing this song, I've never imagined it was set in USA, nor that it was about African Americans in a sleigh.

As a child, I often saw blacked-up 'Pierrot' performers at English seaside resorts. They sang many different sorts of songs, not in any way connected to black people. I couldn't understand then why they had painted their faces black, as it didn't seem relevant. I still can't really...