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Lyr Add: Merry Minuet (Kingston Trio/Harnick)

03 Jun 02 - 04:00 PM (#722256)
Subject: Lyr Add: MERRY MINUET (Kingston Trio)^^^
From: Deda

I found myself hearing this old (gloomy, witty) ditty in my head recently, remembered from some old Kingston Trio album:

The Merry Minuet

They're rioting in Africa (whistle)
They're starving in Spain (whistle)
There's hurricanes in Florida (whistle)
And Texas needs rain (whistle)
the Whole world is festering with unhappy souls
The French hate the Germans, the Germans hate the Poles
Italians hate Yugoslavs, South Africans hate the Dutch
And I don't like Anybody very much.

But we can be tranquil and thankful and proud
For man's been endowed with a mushroom-shaped cloud
And we know for certain that some lucky day
Someone will set the spark off
and we will all be blown away

They're rioting in Africa
There's strife in Iran
What nature doesn't do to us
Will be done by our fellow Man

-- Sheldon Harnick @1958 ^^^

I didn't know the title and didn't find it in the DT either under its first line or, once I found the title via Google, under that. Is this too un-folk-y for the DT?


03 Jun 02 - 04:09 PM (#722264)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Genie

That should be -- "Sheldon Harnick 1958." *g*

BTW, did you know that Sheldon Harnick also co-wrote [with Jerry Bock] the songs for Fiddler On The Roof?

This song is also in Rise Up Singing.

Genie


03 Jun 02 - 04:12 PM (#722265)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Deda

PS Not critical, just curious. And it's a sorry thing that the lyrics wouldn't need much updating after 30-some years. The starving is more in Africa, and rioting all over the place, depending on the week.


03 Jun 02 - 04:25 PM (#722274)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Mrrzy

I've had the rioting in Africa line in my head for decades now, no idea it was by these folks or that this was the rest of the song! Thanks, Mudcat! I guess if asked I'd a guessed Phil Ochs... Did he do it too?


03 Jun 02 - 04:26 PM (#722276)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Genie

It is in the DT.

here


03 Jun 02 - 04:35 PM (#722284)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Genie

Deda, FWIW, I found it in the Digitrad and Forum Search by typing in "rioting in Africa," and I found it in the DT Lyric search by typing in "merry minuet," but when I typed "They're Rioting In Africa" into the DT Lyric search, I got nothing--even though that is one of the two alternative titles given in the DT. Same thing with just "rioting in Africa." I also did a forum search for "minuet" and did not find it.

Go figure.

Genie


03 Jun 02 - 04:49 PM (#722292)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Ferrara

Yeah, Deda, I've sung it over to myself through the years when the news was getting me down. I remember singing it at an Open Sing, about the time the Ayatollah came into power in Iran - "There's strife in Iran," it said, and by golly the song was right.

BTW this weekend I heard a moving prayer for peace, written by a rabbi about 200 years ago. It still applies. I've asked for the words, will post them in a new thread if I get them soon.

Keep whistling, it does the heart good.... Rita


03 Jun 02 - 11:52 PM (#722546)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Mudlark

Thanks for posting this, Deda...it is a song that has stuck in my head for 40 some years, but I never can remember all the words.


04 Jun 02 - 11:10 AM (#722806)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet
From: Naemanson

Does anyone have the chords for this?

I too have been singing/whistling it for as long as I can remember. Once I considered rewriting the words to bring it up to date but most of that would only have been changing places and not the terrible things going on.

Do the Europeans still hate one another like it says in the song? I haven't had the opportunity yet to get over there and scope it out for myself. Where are our European 'Catters?


04 Jun 02 - 01:41 PM (#722877)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet (Merry Minuet)
From: Joe Offer

Well, Naemanson, here are the chords printed in Rise Up Singing:

G - G-D G / C G C-D G / 1st / C-D G C-D G -
They're rioting....

G C A D / C G A D / 1st / C G-D G -
The whole world is festering...

/ " / " / " / C G CD G
They're rioting....fellow man


Not being much of a guitarist, I have to say this thing doesn't make complete sense to me, but there you have it. Dashes mean repeat the previous measure, quotes mean same as the line above, 1st means same as the first line. Slashes divide lines.

-Joe Offer-



04 Jun 02 - 02:18 PM (#722903)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet (Merry Minuet)
From: Genie

Actually, Joe, and Naemanson, if you know the tune, just fit those simple chords in where they sound right.

But here's how I play it.

They're (G)rioting in [Em]Africa - la la la (D)la la (G)la la
They're (C)starving [D7]in (G)Spain - (C)la la la (D)la la (G)la
There's (G)hurricanes in [Em]Florida - la la la (D)la la (G)la la
And (C)Texas (D)needs (G)rain - (C)la la la (D)la la (G)la

The (D)Whole world is [D7]festering with (G)unhappy souls
The (C)French hate the (G)Germans, the (A7)Germans hate the (D)Poles
I(D)talians hate [D7]Yugoslavs, South (G)Africans hate the Dutch
And (C) I don't like (D7)anybody very (G)much. (C) (D) (D7)(G)

But (G) we can be (C)tranquil and (A7)thankful and (D)proud
For (C) man's been en(G)dowed with a (A7)mushroom-shaped (D7)cloud
And (G)we know for (C)certain that (A7)some lovely (D)day
(C)Someone will set the (G)spark off
and (C)we will all be (D7)blown a(G)way -
la(G) (C)la (D)la la (D7)la (G)la

They're (G)rioting in [Em]Africa - la la la (D)la la (G)la la
There's (C)strige in [D7]I-(G)ran - (C)la la la (D)la la (G)la
What (G)nature doesn't [Em]do to us - la la la (D)la la (G)la la
Will be (C)done by our (D7)fellow (G)Man
(End with gawdawful dissonant 'chord'.)

The chords in sqared brackets -- e.g., [Em]--are optional. You can also use C, D, G, and A with no 7ths if you prefer, of course.


04 Jun 02 - 10:34 PM (#723262)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio Minuet (Merry Minuet)
From: Naemanson

Thanks Joe and Genie. I'll try these out tomorrow.


12 Jan 03 - 04:24 PM (#865370)
Subject: Lyr Add: MERRY MINUET (Sheldon Harnick)
From: Joe Offer

The version in the Digital Tradition is the one I've usually heard sung. I think the following is the original version, which appeared in the 1953 musical, Almanac. It has one additional verse (shown in italics).
-Joe Offer-

MERRY MINUET
(Sheldon Harnick)

Intro:
There are days in my life
When everything is dreary
I grow pessimistic
Sad and world weary.
But when I'm tearful and fearfully upset,
I always sing this merry little minuet.

They're rioting in Africa.
They're starving in Spain.
There's hurricanes in Florida,
And Texas needs rain.

The whole world is festering
With unhappy souls.
The French hate the Germans,
The Germans hate the Poles.
Italians hate Yugoslavs
South Africans hate the Dutch
And I don't like anybody very much.

In faraway Siberia
They freeze by the score.
An avalanche in Switzerland
Just got fifteen more.


But we can be grateful
And thankful and proud
That man's been endowed
With a mushroom shaped cloud.
And we know for certain
That some lovely day
Someone will set the spark off
And we will all be blown away.

They're rioting in Africa.
There's strife in Iran.
What nature doesn't do to us
Will be done by our fellow man.


source: Their Words are Music: The Great Theatre Lyricists and Their Lyrics, edited by Lehman Engel, 1975


02 Jul 03 - 07:21 PM (#975552)
Subject: RE: Kingston Trio: Merry Minuet (Harnick)
From: GUEST,rhfiscus@yahoo.com

As someone above noted it's been in my mind a long time. Intifada Iraq Mandela. It's appalling that it is still so timely.


06 Jan 21 - 06:43 PM (#4086807)
Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Merry Minuet (Kingston Trio/Harnick)
From: GUEST,Pam

today , Jan 6, 2021, it's "they're rioting in Washington"