Ta ra ra boom de ay

Parodies of the 1890s tune "Ta rah ra boom de ay" come in two distinct versions: one about a dead teacher, and one about sex. If there's one about bodily functions out there, it'd be a regular trifecta!

I don't know the REAL "Ta ra ra boom de ay" song at all, but I do know the dead teacher version. It's because of this that I thought sauerkraut was a type of fish for years:

Ta ra ra boom de ay
we had no school today
our teacher passed away
we threw her in the bay
she scared the fish away
she won't come out
she smells like sauerkraut
ta ra ra boom de ay
.

I first heard this the same day I heard "Joy To The World The Teacher's Dead." They were sung in a medly by a kid who sat behind me in first grade. Sherman (book at right) collected versions dating it back to at least the 1960s.

Other versions from around the same time (dated to at least the 70s, and probably going back at least 20 years before that) feature variations like:

Ta ra ra boom de ay
how did I get this way?
Was it the boy next door?
He pushed me on the floor
He lifed up my skirt
he said it wouldn't hurt
and now before my eyes
I see my tummy rise


Kay Shapero collected this one from Brent B:


Ta rah rah boom de ay
I met a girl today
I paid her fifty cents
To go behind the fence
Her mother was surprised
To see her tummy rise
Her father jumped for joy
It was a baby boy


From Southern California, '70s

Meanwhile, across the pond, Iona Opie collected this on in the 70s:

Ta ra ra boom de ay
my knickers flew away
they had a holiday
they came back yesterday

55 comments:

  1. I learned one from my dad, who probably learned it in Toronto, circa 1958.

    Tra la la boom de yay
    Did you have yours today?
    I had mine yesterday
    That's why I walk this way!

    I always thought it was supposed to be about inoculations, but I never actually asked my dad.

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  2. Ta ra ra boom de ay;
    I'll take your pants away,
    And while you're standing there
    I'll take your underwear.

    Seattle, 1970s

    Haven't thought about these in ages. Great website by the way.

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    Replies
    1. that's the one my mom taught me. remembered it while doing laundry today, looked it up and this is what I found. Awesome.

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  3. Ta ra ra boom de ay
    There's no more school today
    Our teacher flew away
    She landed in the bay
    Ta ra ra boom de ay

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  4. Tah rah rah boom-de-ay,
    I met a girl today,
    I gave her fifty cents,
    to go behind the fence

    I pulled her panties down
    and laid her on the ground,
    it was such a surprise
    to see her belly rise....

    SW Mo, 6th grade classoom, around, 1977...

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  5. This is very close to a previous posting, but I think it's pithier, terser, and closer to the sparest poetry and gets to the point in nothing flat, containing a whole series of ideas in just a few words. I first heard this in Omaha in the early 50's, maybe in 1934.

    Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay,
    How Did I Get this way,
    It was the boy next door,
    He laid me on the floor,
    My mommy was surprised,
    To see my tummy rise,
    And now my baby cries,
    Ra Ra Ra Boom

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  6. Chicago, early 90's:

    Ta ra ra boom de ay
    I stole your pants away
    and left you standing there
    In day-old underwear (or dirty underwear)

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  7. Mom used to have a little diddy from her school years (Seattle, early 1950's) but cannot remember the last verse... it was:

    Tra la la la boom de ay
    Have you had yours today?
    I had mine yesterday
    Thats why I walk this way
    He laid me on the couch
    All I said was ouch......

    Then there were two more lines but she cannot remember them!!! Anyone else know this version?

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    Replies
    1. Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay
      Have you had yours today?
      I had mine yesterday
      A girl upon the way

      I laid her on the couch
      And all she said was ouch!
      Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay
      Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay

      Delete
  8. Ta ra ra boom de ay
    we had no school today
    our teacher passed away
    we threw her in the bay
    she scared the fish away
    and when we pulled her out
    she smelled like sauerkraut

    USA 1970s

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  9. My cousin sings this version:

    ta la la boom de-ay
    I lost my pants today
    I found them yesterday
    ta la la boom de-ay

    Cincinnati, 2010

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  10. San Joaquin Valley, Ca - Late 70's elementary school..we had the long version.

    Tra ra ra boom de ay
    I met a boy today
    He gave me fifty cents
    To go behind the fence
    He pulled my panties down
    Then pushed me on the ground
    He lifted up my skirt
    And said it wouldn't hurt
    My mommy was surprised
    To see my belly rise
    My daddy jumped for joy
    It was a baby boy!

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    Replies
    1. My wife and I read thru all of these and be it coincidental we are from the San Juaquin Valley and this was the exact song as we remember....

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  11. Bakersfield, CA 1957

    Tra la la boom de ay
    have you had yours today
    I had mine yesterday
    that's why I feel this way
    he laid me on the couch
    and all I said was ouch
    now junior's on the way
    tra la la boom de ay

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  12. Tra la la boom de ay,
    I'll take your pants away,
    And while your standing there,
    I'll take your underwear!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Tra la la boom dee day my knickers flew away, they went on holiday,
    They came back yesterday.

    They said they had some fun,
    they found another bum.
    .....
    My father knows the rest but wont tell me.

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  14. My mom told this is what she learned when she was in fifth grade:

    Tra ra ra boom de ay
    How did I get this way
    It was the neighbor boy
    He laid me on the floor
    He stuck it into me
    Then took it out again.....

    I don't know the rest.

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  15. Tra la la boom de ay
    Did you get yours today?
    I got mine yesterday
    From the boy across the way
    He gave me fifty cents
    To go behind the fence
    He pulled my panties down
    And threw me on the ground
    My mommy was surprised
    To see my belly rise.
    I can't go out to play
    'Cause Junior's on the way.

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  16. Maumee, OH around 1970

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  17. Tra la la boom deay
    my teacher died today
    we threw her in the bay
    to scare the sharks away

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    Replies
    1. Eugene Oregon 1960's

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    2. Tra la la boom see ay
      they took my pants away
      they made me sit there
      without my underwear.
      St Louis 60s

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  18. Tra la la boom see ay
    they took my pants away
    they made me sit there
    without my underwear.
    St Louis 60s

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  19. My grandfather used to sing it Tra La La Boom De A
    They took my pants away
    They threw me in the air
    Without any underwear.

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  20. My mom in the 80's taught me it this way:
    Ba da ba boom she ay
    She took my clothes away
    And left me standing there
    In just my underwear!

    But my mother is also known for making up lyrics when she can't remember the real ones!

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  21. Ta ra ra boom de ay
    I pooped my pants today
    De de de de dede
    I have to go peepee

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  22. I herd one, something about gay rape

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  23. Tra la la boom de ay
    I met a boy today
    He gave me fifty cents
    To go behind the fence
    He counted 1 2 3
    And stuck it in to me
    He counted 4 and 5


    I forgot the rest. Oakland, ca 1977 or so

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    Replies
    1. I learned almost exactly this one in Vancouver BC but second half goes:

      He stuck a thing in me
      and counted 1-2-3
      He pulled it out again
      and counted up to 10!

      ... then there was more but I can't remember it at all.

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  24. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  25. "Ta ra ra boom de ay
    ta ra ra boom de ay
    I had my lunch today
    with the boy across the way
    he threw me on the couch
    and all I said was ouch
    my mother wss suprised to see my stomach out!"

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  26. Btw I learned this on the playground in the 70's while in grammar school. ahh recess.

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  27. Tra la la boom be yay, have you had your's today? I got mine yesterday, from the girl across the way. Heard on playground in the early 60's. San Fernando Valley

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  28. I heard this version in Elmhurst, Queens, circa 1946. I learned it from a friend and sang it to my mother, who was not amused.

    Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay
    Did you get yours today?
    I got mine yesterday,
    from a boy across the way.
    My mother was surprised
    to see my stomach rise.
    Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay, Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay.”

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  29. Maybe its just my way of thinking but if you sbile from rigeing it slow it sounds like la dona mobile from rigeletto.

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    Replies
    1. YES!! you just answered the question I've been racking my brains for: what famous opera aria is this based on??

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  30. If you sing it slow ... and i rememtber the chrus from the sixties in nj

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  31. Maybe its just my way of thinking but if you sbile from rigeing it slow it sounds like la dona mobile from rigeletto.

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  32. ta ra ra boom de ay
    what shall i wear today
    when you come up to play
    ta ra ra boom de ay

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  33. I remember this version from the early 1970's Philadelphia area...

    Tra la la boom de ay
    We have no school today
    Our teacher passed away
    We shot her yesterday.
    As for the principal
    he's in the hospital,
    As for the secretary
    She's in the cemetery.
    As for the janitor
    He ran off to Canad(er)
    Tra la la boom de ay
    We have no school today.

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  34. from late 50s early 60s MT

    ta da da boom de eh
    how did I get this way
    it was the boy next door
    he laid me on the floor
    then to my surprise
    my tummy began to rise
    I remember still how hard
    how hard my mommy cried

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  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  36. Ta ra ra boom de ay
    My wife had twins today
    She has them every day
    Except for Saturday!

    My dad made up his own words I think! I still sing this 20 years on!

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  37. When I was a kid in the the town of Poplar Bluff in Southeast Missouri (early 1960's), we sang it as:

    Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay
    My cat had pups today.
    She laid them yesterday.
    Ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay

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  38. Tra la la boom de ay
    We have no school today
    Our teacher passed away
    She died of tooth decay
    We threw her in the bay
    She scared the fish away
    And when we took her out
    She smelled like sauerkraut!

    ReplyDelete
  39. We are the Can Can girls
    We wear our hair in curls
    We wear our [can't remember what this word was]
    Way up above our knees
    We wear our father's shirts
    We are a bunch of flirts
    We are the Can Can girls
    Hip hip hooray!

    1960 Kankakee, Illinois (yes the same Kankakee mentioned in "Lydia the Tattooed Lady" by Groucho Marx) I would love to know if anyone else ever heard this version and knows what that missing word is. It's bugged me for years.

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  40. 1970s-early 80s metro Boston area:

    Tra la la boom de ay
    How did I get this way?
    It was the boy next door
    He pushed me on the floor
    He shouted 1 2 3
    He stuck it into me
    My mother was surprised
    To see my belly rise
    My father jumped for joy
    It was a baby boy!

    The baby boy part was always said with a sweet little, cutesy turn of voice. Children celebrating rape - what a world...

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  41. 1969 in St. Paul, Mn.

    Tra ra ra boom de ay
    They took my pants away
    And threw me in the air
    Then I lost my underwear
    And when I hit the street
    I skinned up both my knees
    And what was left of me
    Was nothing for you to see

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  42. Ta Ra Ra Boom De ay
    I'll take your pants away
    ZIP!

    ReplyDelete
  43. Ta Ra Ra BOOM de ay
    I met a boy today
    He paid me fifty cents
    To go behind the fence

    He stuck a thing in me
    and counted 1-2-3
    He pulled it out again
    and counted up to 10

    After this I'm not sure but I think it went:

    My mother was surprised
    To see my belly rise
    My father _?_ _?_ _?_
    And threw me out the door!

    This was Victoria, BC, very late 70s or early 80s.

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    Replies
    1. Possibly "My father hit the floor/Then threw me out the door" ??

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  44. Ha, this is awesome. I looked this is up remembering the "our teacher passed away" version and was reminded of the dirty version. I learned it in mid 1970's Cleveland Ohio as

    Tarara Boom De Ay
    I met a boy today
    He gave me fifty cents
    To go behind the fence
    He pushed me to the ground
    He pulled my panties down
    He stuck it into me
    Oh gosh oh golly gee
    My mommy was surprised
    to see my belly rise
    My father jumped for joy
    It was a baby boy

    ReplyDelete

PLEASE tell us where and when you heard your version (ie, "Chicago, early 1950s). And please be aware that the information may end up in a book sooner or later.