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HOLIDAY RESOURCES like the JINGLE BELLS DANCE, Krampus, and Wassail History of the Philadelphia Mummers

2013 Folkways Holiday Music Map
The Christmas, Chanukah, and Kwanzaa holiday traditions feature an incredibly diverse range of musical accompaniment. This sampling from the Smithsonian Folkways collection includes 56 songs from 24 nations.

 

Jingle Bells Dance

Collected by Karen Ellis on Wed, 3 Dec 1997 from Ruth A. Shortreed

For all of you who could use a good activity to channel some of that boundless energy the children have this time of year, here are directions for a good mixer dance to Jingle Bells:

Formation: Double Circle with children having partners 

1. On the first phrase, "Dashing throught the snow in a one horse open sleigh," partners walk CCW with inside hand joined, continuing through "Laughing all the way."

2. At the beginning of the phrase beginning with "Bells on bob-tail ring," partners change direction and walk clockwise together around the circle through the remainder of the verse.

3. At the beginning of the chorus, partners drop hands and face one another. On the words, "Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle all the way", the children clap hands 3 times in front of themselves, then 3 times behind their backs, the 3 more times in front, followed by a patty-cake with their partner on the word "way".

4. On, "Oh what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh" children do a right elbow swing with their partner one time around ( or a do-si-do).

5. Repeat the hand claps and patty-cake pattern, followed by a left elbow

6. The outer circle of partners each slide one step to the right and take a new partner to begin the next verse, again walking CCW with their inside hands joined. 

(With older kids I have the inside circle also step to the right simultaneously with the outer circle for the partner change and it makes   I have a repeat function on my CD player at school and it's great to pop in the CD from Book 2 (p. 188 in the text) of Silver Burdett Ginn "The Music Connection" and just let the children dance until they have changed partners several times! 

I remember seeing the directions for the clapping part of this dance somewhere in print, but after years of using it and adapting it, the source is unknown. If anyone recognizes this, please fill us in so that we can give credit where credit is due!

Happy Holidays!

Ruth Ann Shortreed
Brill Elementary
Klein, ISD - Texas

Jingle Bell Square Dance with Caller

 

Santa in a Red Canoe -Hawaii Dance Activity for Grade level 1 - 5
Need a Space large enough for group to Hula dance. Lesson Objective (Psychomotor and/or Cognitive):Cultural awareness, dance and movement. Teaching Hints: Keep your knees bent. Separate movement and song to begin with. Teach by mirroring.

Here comes Santa
In a red canoe
Paddling on a
Magic sea of blue
With a stocking
Full of toys
For every girl
And boy

Here comes Santa
In a red canoe
Now he's coming
Got his eyes on you
Jolly old Santa
With a heart so true
And a wiki, wiki
Smile for a happy
Hula isle

Here comes Santa
In a red canoe
It's Christmas
In Aloha land
On the sunny
Beach as white
As snow
And all the
Children understand
Santa Claus is on
The go, go, go, go

Here comes Santa
In a red canoe
Paddling on
A magic sea of blue
With a Ho'o ma li me li
Merry Christmas to you
Here comes Santa
In a red canoe

Hula R
Hula L
Hula R
Hula L
Hula R foot
(point step) Hula L foot (point step

Same as before
Hula R
Hula L
Hula R
Hula L
Hula R
Hula L


Same as before
Hula R
Hula L
Hula R
Hula L

Hula R
Hula L
Hula R
Hula L

Same as before
Same as before
Hula R Hula L
Same as before

Coax (beckon) 2 times on R side
(Palms together fingers pointed down) boat motion on L side
Paddle motion on R side
Water motion on L side
Both hands wave low at R foot

Girls-make two circles
Boys-R hand straight up

Coax (beckon) 2 times on L side
Wave hands at eyes, then point R hand
Brag motion (thumbs in cheeks)
Wave hands over heart
Hands wave at mouth
Circle hands to waist to meet
in front (forming a circle)

 



Make large circle in front
Wave hands at mouth then out
Make sun (hands up)
Twinkle hands down in front

Hands give out in front
Think motion on R side
Circle hands over stomach
Hitchhike motion over L shoulder


Brush up your arms
Hands give out in front


White Christmas

By Irving Berlin is the biggest selling Christmas song of all time.

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the treetops glisten,
and children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days be merry and bright
And may all your Christmases be white

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days be merry and bright
And may all your Christmases be white



THE MARVELOUS TOY! - appropriate for up through the 8th grade.
Words and Music by Tom Paxton Recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary in the 1960's.

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Verse I
When I was just a wee little lad
Full of health and joy,
My father homeward came one night
And gave to me a toy.

A wonder to behold it was
With many colors bright;
And the moment I laid eyes on it,
It became my heart's delight!

(Chorus)
It still goes"Zip" when it moves
And"Pop" when it stops,
And,"Whirrr" when it stands still.
I never knew just what it was
And I guess I never will!

Verse II
The first time that I picked it up
I had a big surprise.
Cause right on the bottom
Were two big buttons
That looked like big green eyes.
I first pushed one and then the other,
Then I twisted it's lid.

And when I set it down again,
Here is what it did:

(Chorus)

Verse III
It first marched left,
And then marched right.

Then marched under a chair.
And when I looked where it had gone
It wasn't even there?
I started to cry, but my daddy laughed
Cause he knew that I would find...
When I turned around my marvelous toy
Would be chugging from behind!

(Chorus)

Verse IV
The years have gone by too quickly it seems,
I have my own little boy.
And yesterday I gave to him
My marvelous little toy.
His eyes nearly popped
Right out of his head,

And he gave a squeal of glee!
Neither one of us knows just what it is
But he loves it just like me!

(Chorus)

DOMINICK THE DONKEY
(THE ITALIAN CHRISTMAS DONKEY)

Lou Monte - 1967

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Hey! Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
It's Dominick the donkey.
Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
The Italian Christmas donkey.
(la la la-la la-la la la la la)
(la la la-la la-la la-ee-oh-da)

Santa's got a little friend,
His name is Dominick.
The cutest little donkey,
You never see him kick.
When Santa visits his paisans,
With Dominick he'll be.
Because the reindeer cannot,
Climb the hills of Italy.

Hey! Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
It's Dominick the donkey.
Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
The Italian Christmas donkey.
(la la la-la la-la la la la la)
(la la la-la la-la la-ee-oh-da)

Jingle bells around his feet,
And presents on the sled.
Hey! Look at the mayor's derby,
On top of Dominick's head.
A pair of shoes for Louie,
And a dress for Josephine.
The labels on the inside says,
They're made in Bruccalin'. (Brooklyn)

Hey! Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
It's Dominick the donkey.
Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
The Italian Christmas donkey.
(la la la-la la-la la la la la)
(la la la-la la-la la-ee-oh-da)

Children sing, and clap their hands,
And Dominick starts to dance.
They talk Italian to him,
And he even understands.
Cummare's and cumpare's
Do the dance 'a tarantell',
When Santa Nicola comes to town,
And brings 'o ciucciarell'.

Hey! Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
It's Dominick the donkey.
Chingedy ching,
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
The Italian Christmas donkey.
(la la la-la la-la la la la la)
(la la la-la la-la la-ee-oh-da)
Hey! Dominick! Buonn Natale!

(hee-haw, hee-haw)
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
(hee-haw, hee-haw)
(hee-haw, hee-haw)

 

Merry Christmas Sung by Clyde McPhatter and the Drifters (1954)

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This rendition of White Christmas was recorded by Clyde McPhatter and the Drifters in 1953. It was #2 on the charts in 1954. (Bill Pinkney sings the bass lead, Clyde McPhatter sings the falsetto)
Cartoon by Joshua Held (2002)
White Christmas was written by Irving Berlin for the Movie "Holiday Inn" and recorded by Bing Crosby in 1942, and received the Academy Award in that year. Crosby recorded it again in 1947, and that recording has become the standard. It was also featured in the 1954 movie White Christmas with Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera-Ellen.

HOLIDAY RESOURCES like the JINGLE BELLS DANCE, Krampus, and Wassail History of the Philadelphia Mummers

What was the first known Santa song?

The first mention of Santa in the American sense that is Santa Claus rather than a Nicholas or Father Christmas is here:

The First References to Santa

"Old Santeclaus with much delight
His reindeer drives this frosty night.
O'er chimney tops, and tracks of snow,
To bring his yearly gifts to you.....
Each Christmas eve he joys to come
Where love and peace have made their home"

William B. Gilley, - A Children's Friend, 1821.
In  1821 a small booklet of sixteen pages in length was published by William Gilley it was  entitled A New Year's Present, to the Little Ones from Five to Twelve Number III : The Children's Friend. It had eight engravings and told the story of a man who  delivered  presents to children. The name of the man was Santeclaus.

KRAMPUS

 

 

The name of the Krampus goes back to the old German word for claw "Krampen". The custom of the Krampus orginates from the time before the Inquisition, when dressing up as a devil-like creature was punished with death. Today, the gruesome fellows have a place as St. Nicholas' dark alter ego. Though costumes vary, the Krampus usually have long horns, cloven hoofs, and long hair. Bavaria's scary Christmas tradition The goat-headed, troll-like monsters come out at night and roam Christmas markets and villages are part of southern German tradition during the holidays. With a stick and metal chains, the Krampus are out to do St. Nick's dirty work: terrifying naughty children. According to tradition, these horned creatures come out mainly during Christmas to drive away winter with loud noises. The goat-headed, troll-like monsters come out at night and roam Christmas markets and villages are part of southern German tradition during the holidays.

Krampus
Santa Claus is a Christianization of a handful of traditional winter solstice figures, who morphed into St. Nicholas after the Catholics swarmed into Austria. Krampus is one of those quirky survivals of a pagan tradition that preceded Christianity. Much like Santa himself.

Horror for the holidays! Penn folklore student uncorrupts Xmas
Horror For The Holidays: Meet The Anti-Santa
A Krampus roams the streets during a "Krampuslauf" near Merano, Italy, last weekend. People around America are also taking up the European Alpine folklore tradition, dressing like the creature who steals naughty children around Christmastime.For generations the Christmas season has been infused with sweetness, but some families in Philadelphia are adding a dash of horror.
There are no Christmas lights up at Janet Finegar's house in the Northern Liberties neighborhood of Philadelphia. She does not deck her halls with boughs of holly. Instead, hundreds of rib bones leftover from a neighborhood barbecue hang on a clothesline strung across her backyard. They're bleaching in the sun. "They have been scraped, boiled, scraped again, bleached and are now strung on strands and hanging out to dry," she says. "They smell. Rib bones, as it turns out, are incredibly nasty." She will drape the bones over herself and wear them like a grisly tunic. It's her Krampus costume.
The Krampus is a character from European Alpine folklore, common in Austria and Switzerland. The creature stands on two hooves and has horns growing out of its skull. An extremely long tongue hangs out of its mouth, and it carries a basket to haul away naughty children.

 

The First Christmas Tree - download PDF
The first documented use of an evergreen tree in a Christmas celebration was in Riga, Latvia, in the year 1510 according to many sources. Little is known about the original Riga tree other than the fact that it was attended by men wearing black hats, and that after a ceremony, they burn the tree. The winter traditions of the year 1510 and indicate that the tree was decorated with paper flowers and dried fruits. The tree was burned with a celebration in the square on or about the 6th of January of the new year. http://www.firstchristmastree.com

Ancient English Christmas Carols 1400 - 1700

American History Through Christmas Cards
Americans have been exchanging holiday cards for more than 150 years, and thousands of them have made their way into correspondence donated to the Wisconsin Historical Society. For the last several decades, archivists have set aside especially beautiful or evocative cards in a separate collection that now fills eight large boxes. This year, just in time for the holidays, they have scanned and posted more than 200 of the most interesting Christmas cards online.

Modern Day Christmas Samples - Deck the Halls etc.

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AMERICA'S FIRST CHRISTMAS CARD?
Printed at the Ephrata Cloister press in 1769, this Christmas greeting begins with the Scripture verse: “And she shall bear a son, whose name shall be Jesus because He shall save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). (Facsimile of the original, Ephrata Cloister, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.)


PHILADELPHIA
Wassail History
& Mummers

CULTURE OF HONOR
New Year and Wassail History that is closely related to the mumming traditions.
Roger Abrahams in his classes at Penn building on the work of rough music, skimmington, whitecaps, and other related European-American masking traditions and community morality.

 

CULTURE OF HONOR

Bryan Palmer article explains the connections between charivari, rough music and forerunners of the KKK in American Southern history in a Canadian journal called Labour.  There's new scholarship on Klan history, including the role of women in the Klan.
Primarily the KKK hated Catholic, Jewish, Black and Franco-American, French Canadian communities. Roger Abrahams in his classes at Penn on public display events pointed out the CHARIVARI / KLAN connections, building on the work of rough music, skimmington, whitecaps, and other related European-American masking traditions and community morality.

 

Wassail History

"Wassail - An etymology of this word wassale [is that] common people do - often, on those nights, wash their throats with ale." - Thomas Blount's Glossographia, 1656

Plays For Wassailing
Wassail is closely related to the mumming traditions. Mummers also travel from door to door. They perform plays and drama do tricks and sing.  This  play dates from the 15th century and is a good piece of drama to add to your Wassail experience.

See Irish Wassail History The Origins of British Mummers' Plays

A 2-hour radio documentary about the tradition of Christmas mummering.

Philadelphia Mummers

Philadelphia Mummers Parade and Tradition Over 25,000 "Mummers" from different clubs spend a year preparing elaborate routines and ornate costumes for the parade. On New Year's Day they wear their costumes and strut along the parade route. Parade starting points Immigrants from Sweden and Finland celebrated the New Year by banging pots and pans and shooting guns. Other cultures have also left their mark on the New Year holiday, especially the Germans whose word "Mummer" means mask. The earliest known Mummers club was formed in the 1840s and the first official "Mummer's Parade" was held in Philadelphia in 1901. History, club info, picture gallery. Fancy Brigades Directory

Fralinger String Band's Swashbuckler's Serenade performance in the Philadelphia Mummers Parade on January 1, 2004 FYI: . Buccaneer is an Irish Word

Fralinger Wins in 2004!

HOLIDAY RESOURCES like the JINGLE BELLS DANCE, Krampus, and Wassail History of the Philadelphia Mummers

 

"Oh Dem Golden Slippers" doing the mummers strut.


OH, DEM GOLDEN SLIPPERS!
(Original words by James A. Bland, 1879)
Composer, Lyricist, Arranger: Words and Music by James Bland, of Sprague's Georgia Minstrels. Arr. by F. Louis.
F. Louis Publication: Boston: John F. Perry & Co., Music Publishers, 13 West Street, 1879.

Oh, my golden slippers am laid away
Kase I don't 'spect to wear 'em till my weddin' day,
And my long-tailed coat, dat I love so well,
I will wear up in de chariot in de morn;
And my long white robe dat I bought last June,
I'm gwine to git changed kase it fits too soon,
And de ole grey hoss dat I used to drive,
I will hitch him to de chariot in de morn.
Cho.
Oh, dem golden slippers! Oh, dem golden slippers!
Golden slippers dat I'm gwine to wear beca'se dey look so neat;
Oh, dem golden slippers! Oh, dem golden slippers!
Golden slippers I'm gwine to wear to walk de golden street.

Oh, my ole banjo hangs on de wall
Kase it ain't been tuned since way last fall,
But de darks all say we will hab a good time,
When we ride up in de chariot in de morn;
Dar's ole Brudder Ben and Sister Luce,
Dey will telegraph de news to Uncle Bacco Juice,
What a great camp meetin der will be dat day,
When we ride up in de chariot in de morn.

So, it's goodbye, children, I will have to go
Whar de rain don't fall er de wind don't blow,
And yer ulster coats, why yer will not need,
When yer ride up in de chariot in de morn;
But yer golden slippers must be nice and clean,
And yer age must be just sweet sixteen,
And yer white kid gloves yer will have to wear,
When yer ride up in de chariot in de morn.

Although not folk, this song by the Afric-American composer James A. Bland, has been used in many ways by folk singers. It is not in the DT. The original sheet music is in the Brown University Collection and is on the American Memory Library of Congress site.

DECEMBER

 

Chanukah, the Festival of Lights, is a joyous celebration about the miracle of the oil that burned for eight days when there was only enough oil left in the temple for one day! Chanukah begins on the 25th day of the month of Kislev in the Jewish calendar (November/December). All About Chanukah. Chanukah or Hanukkah? Why do some people write Chanukah while others say Hanukkah?
Information about Hanukkah, covering the history and meaning of the holiday and how to celebrate, complete with blessings, songs, activities, recipes for traditional foods, the meaning of "gelt," and a virtual dreidel game. Chag sameach! (Happy holidays!) From the Jewish Outreach Institute.

Kwanzaa

 

Kwanzaa is celebrated on December 26 by the lighting of the first candle on a candleholder called the kinara.
Kwanzaa is an African-American holiday about the festival of the first harvest of the crops. It begins on December 26, and lasts for seven days. The name Kwanzaa, sometimes spelled Kwanza, comes from a phrase which means "first fruits" in Swahili, an East African language. Kwanzaa ties African-Americans to their roots. Also see The Official Kwanzaa Web Site includes a greeting from Dr. Maulana Karenga, who created Kwanzaa.

Winter Solstice Hundreds of years ago, in a Roman culture celebrated its major festival on the Winter Solstice. When Julius Caesar instituted a new calendar in Rome, the festival fell on December 25, a date that was retained for many years. About 1600 years ago, Pope Julius I chose this date for Christmas in order to replace the pagan tradition with a Christian one. Many Christmas traditions, including the Yule log, evergreen, and mistletoe are rooted in ancient Yule traditions.

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