Thursday, June 22, 2017

Conceptualizing Collecting & Sharing Contemporary Black Children's Rhymes

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents statements about why and how I collect, document, study, and share English language children's recreational material.

The word "rhymes" in this post is a generic term "rhymes" that refers to multiple children's recreational compositions including jump rope rhymes, hand clap rhymes, singing games, parodies, "choosing it' rhymes, chants, children's cheerleader cheers, and the sub-set of cheerleader cheers that I call "foot stomping cheers" but which some people call "steps".

Since I began informally collecting children's recreational rhymes in 1985, I've been most interested in Black children's rhymes -particularly contemporary (post 1960s) African American children's rhymes. I'm most interested in this sub-set of children's recreational rhymes in part because I'm African American and also because it appears to me that there has been very little collection, documentation, and sharing of those sub-sets of children's recreational material. And, if I were to drill down even farther, "foot stomping cheers" are the types of African American children's rhymes that I really most interested in.

I've recently published this post in which I critique the analysis of a children's parody that appears to be widely known among African American children and non-African American children: "Were African Americans The Originally Composers Of "I Believe I Can Fly" Parodies?"

This evening I happened upon this second online excerpt that provides a number of analysis of contemporary African American children's rhymes: "Children's Rhymes from 1971 to 2001" in The Man who Adores the Negro: Race and American Folklore by Patrick B. Mullen,
While I very much agree with Mullen's conclusion that [certain] "play activities [can be] "part of the process of racial and gender identity formation", I very much disagree with some conclusions that that researcher/writer made about certain rhymes that I'm very familiar with. I believe that Muller relied too heavily on literal meanings and gave far fetched explanations for specific words and for famous fictional and real characters who were named within those rhymes. I wondered if Muller had paid too little attention to the possibility of rhyming word play as the reason for those words and for some of those character placements. Also, it seems to me that Muller ascribed political and/or sociological meanings to specific rhymes in general and to specific lines or verses in those rhymes although the rhyme's contributors (informants) didn't indicate those were the meanings of those rhymes and when it didn't at all appear to me that those meanings were warranted.

Reading that excerpt led me to this decision to write what it is that I believe is important about how and why I collect, document, and share children's recreational material. I do so for my own clarification and for those who might be interested.

Recognizing that anyone can disagree with me, and that different people who are interested in the same subjects may have different methodologies and interests, here's my list of what I consider when I'm collecting, documenting, studying, and sharing children's recreational rhymes, with special attention to African American rhymes (i.e. rhymes that I directly collected from African Americans and/or have collected online and elsewhere which are either attributed to African Americans or are said to be performed by African Americans and/or which meet certain textual structures, textual content, are percussive, and -usually- have some performance activities)

[I've numbered these points although they might not be in any real order of preference.)

1. Text and performance activity

I'm interested in documenting the text (words), the performance activity (if any), and as much demographic information as I can [including race, ethnicity (i.e. Latino/a or any other ethnicity) nation, city, state, neighborhood, age when recited or learned/heard this rhyme, age range who performed this rhyme, year or decade when first recited this rhyme, and gender (girls only or boys only?).

Also, with regard to the rhyme, I'm very interested in document the vernacular meanings of the text for those who are sharing that example, and their meanings of any topical elements in that example. I'm also interested in documenting how the rhyme contributor learned that rhyme, and if she or he knows any other versions of that rhyme.

With regard to the performance activity, I'm interested in documenting whether the rhyme is a sung/chanted in unison or in a call & response pattern. And if it is performed in a call & response pattern, I'm interested in documented what form of call & response pattern is used.

I'm also interested in knowing the tune and tempo of the rhyme. When I collected rhyme examples face to face, I taped the examples. When I collect text only rhyme examples online, if the words and the textual structure are the same or similar as an example that I already know (from direct collection), I can assume that the tune and tempo are the same, but I can't be certain of that. I check YouTube to see if I can find a video (or less often, a sound file) of that rhyme, and often YouTube has examples. Of course,
that still doesn't mean that the text only online example that I found has the same tune and performance activity. But it's likely that it does.

2. Textual structure

I'm interested in how the rhyme is written (structured) i.e. the rhyming pattern, whether the rhyme is made up of strung together verses that are often unrelated and are often found as "floaters" in certain other rhymes, or could be used as standalone (independent rhymes).

Certain types of rhymes (traditionally*) have their own characteristic textual structure. For instance, "Foot stomping cheers" have a textual structure and a performance style that is distinct from hand clap rhymes, jump rope rhymes, other cheerleader cheers, and other categories of children's recreational rhymes. Foot stomping cheers "traditionally"* have a signature group call & consecutive soloist response structure. "Group call" means that the entire group (or the group minus the first soloist) is heard first. "Consecutive soloist"' means that in that cheer is immediately repeated from the beginning so that every member of the squad can an opportunity to be the soloist. Each soloist's performance is the same length. Some foot stomping cheers have several group calls followed by brief responses by the soloist before the soloist has a somewhat longer verbal and/or movement response. Other foot stomping cheers have one or two group calls followed by the soloist's verbal and/or movement response.

*By traditional, I mean the way that foot stomping cheers were performed by African American girls in the late 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, and perhaps also in the early 2000s to dste. I've noticed changes in the way that these cheers are performed as they become more mainstream (i.e. are performed by White or predominately White cheerleader squads.)

3. Dating rhyme examples, and ascertaining the possible source/s for specific rhymes and

I'm interested in finding early or the earliest example of rhymes and I'm interested in comparing those early rhyme examples to other early (and later children's rhymes) as well as to recorded songs, poems, folk sayings, television ads, etc.

I'm interested in comparing the performance activity of contemporary rhymes with the "old school" performance activities such as "show me your motion circle singing games".

4. Examine Societal influences on Rhymes

I'm interested in exploring how other aspects of African American culture influenced/influence children's recreational rhymes. For instance, I believe that foot stomping cheers were greatly influenced by "stomp and Shake cheerleading, Funk music, and Go Go music, all of which were developing around the same time and around the same geographical area.

I also believe that racialized rhymes such as the "I Love Coffee I Love Tea" versions with their "Step back white boy/You don't shine/ Imma get a black boy to beat your behind" verses were/are influenced by the nation's racial tensions and (also possibly) with experiences with integration in schools.
June 22, 2017 [11:17 AM]
Here's an excerpt of my comments in this 2012 pancocojams post: Racialized Versions Of "I Like Coffee I Like Tea"
"I believe that children's playground rhymes often reflect the mores of the society in which children live, move, and have their being. Therefore, girls (or boys) who recite rhymes with racial content are usually echoing what they have absorbed from society in myriad (often unconscious) ways. Just as I don't think that every mention of race or ethnicity is racist, I don't think that every mention of race in children's playground rhymes is racist."...
-end of addition-

5. taboo words, "dirty" content

I examine whether the rhyme has profanity and/or other taboo words, other risque content, and I am interested in how the contributors describe these examples- for instance a statement like "My mother would have whipped my butt if she saw how I was shaking my hips when I said that rhyme" or "If my mother knew that I said that rhyme I wouldn't have been allowed out for years".

6. Rhyme types & rhyme family

I document the category of rhyme that the example is (if possible, based on the contributor's comments, and/ or based on its performance activity). I also note what "family" of rhyme that example belongs to (based on its words, textual structure, tune, and performance activity).

7. Collect multiple versions of each rhyme

I'm interested in collecting multiple examples of each rhyme to document how that rhyme is the same or different within populations (including the same race and other races/ethnicities, age groups, and perhaps also genders) at the same time within the same city, state, nation, and/or within other cities, states, nations.

I'm also interested in reading comments about what the contributors think their version of the rhyme is about.

8. Continuity and change

I'm interested in examining multiple versions of a particular rhyme to ascertain if that rhyme's text, textual structure, tune, tempo, and/or performance activity has remained the same over time or how it has changed within the same population and with different populations at different times.

9. Values and Concerns

I'm interested in studying (analyzing) the text of a rhyme or families or rhymes to consider what values and/or concerns that rhyme or those rhymes may be expressing. For instance, I believe that many "foot stomping cheers" promote the twin values of being "hard" (tough, assertive, able to defend yourself against anyone who might attack you verbally or physically) and also "sexy" (physically attractive and stylish in the latest Black urban street "fly girl" fashions).

10. Rhymes as opportunities to play, to be creative, and to excel

I'm interested in documenting the fact that children play because they like to play. Rhymes provide opportunity to develop, reinforce, and enhance children's creativity. Rhymes also provide opportunities to learn and reinforce social skills and gross motor skills while having fun. Children performing hand clap routines or jumping single rope or double Dutch, or doing step routines are memorizing words or quickly thinking of new responses, or new rhyming lines that fit the rhythm of a foot stomping cheer while at the same time remaining on the beat of a synchronized, choreographed foot stomp routine. Mastering these elements is work, but it's also enjoyable- and also is a way for children to learn self-confidence and gain status if they do well. Sometimes -maybe a lot of the time- the performance (which is often play acting in the dramatic sense) is more important than the words.

11. Preparing for adulthood

I'm interested in how certain rhymes in particular say about adult roles and adult experiences, and since most rhymes are performed by girls, I'm particularly interested in the ways that rhymes's words and performance activities help prepare girls and teens to be women.

12. Influence and impact on Black people

I'm interested in whether and how specific rhymes help Black people cope and confront racism. For instance, although it's not a contemporary example I believe the words of the African American singing game"Johnny Cuckoo" were composed to help Black children learn how to develop self-esteem that would help them (us) in the withstand verbal racial attacks. I'm specifically thinking of the "Johnny Cuckoo" being told "You are to black and dirty" and then answering "I'm just as good as you are".

13. Giving credit where credit is due

I'm interested in helping to ensure that African Americans and other Black people get credit for recreational material that we originated or adapted.

Too often African Americans' creative products are appropriated and our contributions are denied or minimized. I see that happening already with the foot stomping cheers.

I may add to this list in the future. Thanks for reading!

The content of this post is presented for folkloric and cultural purposes.

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Visitor comments are welcome.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

References To "The FBI" In Children's Rhymes Before The "I Believe I Can Fly I Got Shot By The FBI" Parodies

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post documents various examples of American children's rhymes that include references to the FBI that were known before the children's parodies of R. Kelly's 1996 inspirational song "I Believe I Can Fly".

The oldest children's parody example of "I Believe I Can Fly" that I've collected (directly and via the internet) is from 1999. Here's that example:

I believe I can fly.
I got chased by the FBI. (or "I'm being chased by the FBI").
It's all because of those collards greens
that I ate with those chicken wings.
I believe I can fly.
See me running through that open door.
I believe I can fly.
I believe I can fly.
-African American boys & girls (ages 7-12), Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, collected by Azizi Powell, 1999

In contrast, the earliest example that I've found online of a children's rhyme that mentions "the FBI" is from the mid to late 1940s. That example is given below as A #1.

Note that according to, the United States government department that is now know as the FBI was created in July 26, 1908. However, that department wasn't named "Federal Bureau of Investigation" (FBI) until 1935 and therefore no children's rhymes with that acronym could have existed before 1935.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post.
Click and for pancocojams posts that include examples of "I Believe I Can Fly" parodies.

This post is not meant to be a comprehensive compilation of children's rhymes (songs) that include a reference to "the FBI". Please add to this compilation in the comment section below, especially if you know any children's rhymes that mention "the FBI" in other rhymes besides those given in this post. Don't forget to add demographic information (particularly decade and geographical location such as city & state). Thanks!

These examples are given in rhyme sub-categories and are numbered within those categories. The examples within those sub-titles are given in no particular order.

When an entire long rhyme is given, the verse that includes "The FBI" is written in italics to highlight that particular verse.

These sub-categories are presented in order according to the number of examples with "the FBI" references that I have found (to date), with "the rhyme/song family" with the most examples given first.

A. I WOKE UP SUNDAY MORNING" RHYMES (also known as "Roaches and Bedbugs", "The Wiffer Woofer" and other titles)

Numbers #1 and #2 in this sub-category

Pancocojams Editor's Note:
I'm prefacing these two "The FBI" examples with the following excerpt from the book Bald Mountain Childhood by Roland Anderson:
"Centered around Mary Pawlak, this is an autobiographic, biographic and historical description of growing up in a Carpatho-Rusyn family on Bald Mountain near Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania during the 1920's and 30's.


Verses [of "Beetles And The Bedbugs"] similar to the ones that Mary recite occur in innumerable versions of folk songs popular during the early 1900's. A version that appears to be one of the oldest concerns the trepidations of a vagrant in New York City. That the song was also popular in the Wilkes-Barre and the surrounding Luzerne County area is attested to by the fact that there is a version of the New York City song that has been modified so that it refers to Luzerne County. The verses are included in the song "I don't want no more of this army life" which was popular during World War II. This comic description of army life was sung by Bugs Bunny in a Warner Brothers cartoon film during the war years. This version of the song is frequently resurrected when the United States engages in new conflicts. Additionally, the verses about the bedbugs playing baseball are quite popular and often occur in songs built up from bits and pieces taken from a number of sources. Below are a few of the folk songs in which contain verses similar to the one that Mary recalls."...

[Pancocojams Editor: I've numbered these selected examples from that book.]


1. This song version evidently comes from Oregon. The secret agent occurring in a verse in "Bedbugs and Skeeters" above, has here become a german and hints at a WWII origin

My mother was a German
My father was a spy
And if you don't believe me
Just call the FBI

Someone, likely wanting to keep the song up-to-date during the 1950's, replaced the German spy verse above with the following:

My mother is a Russian
my father is a spy
And if you don't believe me,
just ask the FBI"
Roland Anderson indicates that the German spy verse is from the 1940s [World War II]

3. From
{Comment] A fellow camper
September 12, 2006 at 11:04 am
How I learned it:

"I woke up Sunday morning
and looked up on the wall
the beatles and the bed bugs
were playing a game of ball

The score was seven-nothing
The beatles were ahead
The beatles hit a home run
and knocked me out of bed

I’m singing
eenie-meenie and a minie moe (oh oh oh)
catch a whipper-whopper by the toe (oh oh oh)
and if he hollers hollers hollers
let him go (oh oh oh)
eenie-meenie and a minie moe

I went downstairs to breakfast
I ordered ham and eggs
I ate so many eggs
The ham rolled down my legs!

I’m singing…

My mother was a German
My father was a spy
And if you don’t believe me
Just call the FBI

I’m singing…

I fell into the sewer
That’s where I plan to die
Some people call it murder
I call it sewer-cide

I’m singing…"

4. From
"I Woke Up Sunday Morning
I woke up Sunday morning, and looked upon the wall
The skeeters and the bedbugs were playing a game of ball
The score was three to nothing, the skeeters were ahead
The bedbugs hit a home run, and knocked me out of bed

I’m singing, eener meener and a miner mo
Catch a whipper whopper by the toe,
And if he hollers, hollers, hollers, don’t let him go
Im singing, eener meener and a miner mo

I went downstairs for breakfast, I ordered ham and eggs,
I ate so many pickles, the juice ran down my legs
My mother gave me a nickel, my father gave me a dime
My sister gave me a boyfriend, who kissed me all the time
My mom’s a secret agent, my father is a spy
And I’m the little big mouth, that told the FBI

5. From The Whipper Whopper Song (Eener Meener); contributed by Sue Moore
"I woke up Sunday morning,
I looked up on the wall,
The beetles and the bedbugs
Were playing a game of ball.

The score was 6 to nothing,
The beetles were ahead,
The bedbugs hit a homerun
And knocked me out of bed.

I'm singing - Eeny meeny and a miney mo, mo, mo, mo
Catch a Whipper Whopper by his toe,
And if he HOLLERS, HOLLERS, HOLLERS, let him go.
I'm singing - Eeny meeny and a miney mo, mo, mo, mo
I went downstairs for breakfast,
I ordered ham and eggs,
I ate so many eggs
The ham ran down my legs.

I went outside to play,
I looked up in the sky,
I saw a little bluebird,
It poo-pooed in my eye.

My mother is a butcher,
My dad's a side of beef
And I'm the little hot dog
That runs around the street.

My father is a crook,
My mother is a spy,
And I'm the little big-mouth
That told the FBI.

I fell into the sewer,
And this is where I'll die,
Some people call it suicide,
I call it sewer-cide.
6. This verse is found in another example of this rhyme that was contributed by Aubrey:
"My mother is a banker,
My father is a spy,
And I'm the little big mouth,
Who told the FBI."

7. From I Woke Up Saturday Morning
Example posted by Paul Kyle:

I woke up Sunday Morning
I looked up on the wall
The beetles and the bedbugs
were playing a game of ball

The score was 6 to nothing
The beetles were ahead
The bedbugs hit a home run
and knocked me out of bed

I’m singin’, Eenie-Meenie and uh, Minie-Moe
Catch a tigger tiger, by his toe
If he hollers hollers, let him go
I’m singin’, Eenie-Meenie and uh, Minie-Moe

I went downstairs for breakfast
I ordered ham and eggs
I ate so many eggs
the ham rolled down my legs.

I’m singin’, Eenie-Meenie and a, Minie-Moe
Catch a tigger-tiger, by his toe
If he hollers-hollers, let him go
I’m singin’, Eenie-Meenie and a, Minie-Moe.

My father is a baker
my mother is a spy
and if you don’t believe me
go ask the FBI

8. From the Comment section of that post:
Suzy January 18, 2010
"Well, I have heard this as "the cooties and the bedbugs".


My father is a commie
my mother is a spy
and I'm the little hotdog
that told the FBI

Midwest during the 1980's but I heard them from my dad who grew up in Iowa in the 50's and 60's.”

9. Patrick, July 13, 2016
"So many different versions. I lived in Kansas City, and a new neighbor from “who-knows-where” taught it this way (but my mother banned us from singing it any more.):

My mother was a commie
my father was a spy,
I’m the little “blankty-blank”
that told the FBI."

10. From
"I woke up Sunday morning
And looked up on the wall
The cooties and the bedbugs
Were having a game of ball.

The score was six-to-nothing,
The cooties were ahead.
The cooties hit a home run
And knocked me out of bed!


I'm singin
Eenie meenie and a-miny-mo
Boom boom boom
Catch a whifferwhaffer by the toe
Boom boom boom
And if he holler hollers let him go
Boom boom boom
Eenie-meenie and a-miny-mo

My father gave me a nickel
My mother gave me a dime
My sister has a boyfriend
Who looks like Frankenstein


My father is a lawyer,
My mother is a spy
Me and my big mouth
I told thee FBI!


I went downstairs for breakfast
I ordered ham and eggs
I ate so many eggs
That the yolk ran down my leg


I went into the sewer
And that is how I died
They didn't call it murder
They called it "sewer-side!"

submitted by guest"

11. [with note] From
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Roaches and Bedbugs?
From: GUEST,cosmos42
Date: 21 Aug 15 - 10:15 PM

"May I repeat that you people are amazing?

I have a list of songs which I need to add to my songbook, some of which I don't have the words for. Guess what song I added to that list yesterday.

Catch A Wiffer Woffer!

It's now stuck in my head, but it's worth it.

Another verse which we used:

My mother is an Indian
My father is a spy
And if you don't believe me
I'll call the FBI"

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Roaches and Bedbugs?
From: GUEST,cosmos42
Date: 21 Aug 15 - 10:26 PM

"And, skimming other internet songbooks, it seems like most peoples' mothers were something that made more sense than "an Indian" - a German, a Russian, or even a banker or martian."

#1. From
Subject: RE: Folklore: Lady's alligator purse? Her own thread
Date: 27 Feb 11 - 01:54 PM

Kids Dont jump rope to this song im in the fourth grade and we just sing it we dont do any movements to the song
Miss Suzie had a steam boat
The Steamboat had a bell
Mrs.Suzie went to heaven
The steamboat went to

Hello Operator
Give me number 9
if you disconnect me
I'll kick you from

Behind the refrigerator
there was a piece of glass
Miss Suzie sat upon it
And broke her little

Ask me no more questions
ill tell you no more lies
The boys are in the bathroom
Zipping down their

Flies are in the meadow
Bees are in the grass
The boys and girls
Are kissing in the

Darker than the ocean
Darker than the sea
Darker than the black boy
That's chasing after me

Dark is like a movie
A movie is like a show
A show is like a T.V. set
And that is all I...

Know my dad is a robber
I know my mom is a spy
I know that I'm the little brat that
Told the F.B.I.

My mom gave me a nickel
My dad gave me a dime
My sis' gave me a girlfriend
And I know she's is witch

she made me wash the dishes
she made me wash the floor
she made me wash her underwear
So I kicked her out the door

I kicked her over London
I kicked her over France
I kicked her to Hawaii
Where she did the Hoola Dance!

I reformatted this example to separate its strung together verses.
[#2 & #3] Two similar versions of this rhyme, but with the first line "Mrs. Lucy Had A Steamboat" and "Miss Lucy Had A Steamboat" can be found at One of those versions has "the FBI" verse as exactly given above, and one has that verse without the "I know" preface to those lines.

Note: Neither of those "bussong"s versions have the "black boy chasing after me" verse.

(besides those given above, including "I Believe I Can Fly" parodies)
#1. From
"Don't say 'ain't'.
Your mother will faint.
Your father will fall
In a bucket of paint.
Your sister will cry.
Your brother will die.
Your dog will call the FBI.

Source: Hastings (1990)"

#2. From

Subject: RE: Law Officers in Songs &Children's Rhymes
From: Cool Beans
Date: 19 Apr 08 - 09:49 AM

My country tis of thee
Sweet land of Gernmany
My name is Fritz.
My father was a spy
Caught by the FBI
Tomorrow he will die.
My name is Fritz.

(Learned in the 1950s when I was a little kid.)

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Monday, June 19, 2017

"Ooh Ungowa", "Funky Chicken" & Five Other Camp Songs & Cheers From Contemporary African American Sources

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post showcases seven American children's camp songs or cheers that I believe have their source in contemporary (post 1960) African American songs, rhymes, cheers, or rhymes.

These examples are from the website [the Girl Scout camp named Camp Maripai in Prescott, Arizona].

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and recreational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post.
This post is not meant to be a comprehensive listing of contemporary children's camp songs or cheers that have African American sources.

I believe that some song examples* on that showcased website may be post 1960s variant forms of older African American (or Caribbean) songs or rhymes. However, in this post I chose to focus on post 1960s examples or post-1960s songs or rhymes.

*For example, "Little Sally Walker, walkin’ ‘round the street" is a contemporary form of the very old singing game "Little Sally Walker".

I happened upon this web page of children's camp songs while looking for examples of children's rhymes that include the term "FBI". After reading the example entitled "Emerald’s Chant" on that website's page and given below, I published a pancocojams post on the 1988 Hip Hop track (song) "Rollin With Kid N Play"

I consider children's rhymes, cheers, singing games, camp songs etc. to be folk material and as a self-identified "community folklorist", I'm interested in documenting sources for folk material-including demographic information (race, ethnicity, gender, geographical location). Also, as a community folklorist, I'm interested in documenting how rhymes are spread across geographical areas, including nations- in this case from the United States to Canada.

I'm also interested in documenting continuity or changes in the lyrics and/or performance activities of American children's rhymes, cheers, singing games etc. over time or in different populations at the same time.

No songs from that camp's website mention race, and I consider a few examples to racially offensive- the most offensive example is entitled "The Washerwoman" which (I believe) stereotypes Asians -note the speech patterns and the references to doing laundry in that example:

Washerwoman Song
I live-ee in-ee a teeny weeny house-ee
I live-ee on-ee the thirty-first-ee floor
I take-ee in-ee the dirty dirty laundry
Ruffles on the petticoat ten cents more.
I like a pow pow better than a chow chow
I like a little girl, she like-a me.

One day in Hong Kong
Bigga Momma come along-a
Take away my little girl
Poor poor me.'

That website also includes a form of the traditional African American song "Dry Bones" that includes the African American dialectic use of the word "dem" for "them": .
"Dry Bones
Dry bones sittin’ in a canyon, some of dem bones are mine
Dry bones sittin’ in a canyon, some of dem bones are mine
Some of dem bones are (enter person or unit name here)
Some of dem bones are mine
Some of dem bones are (enter person or unit name here)
Some of dem bones are mine"

Also, given the racist use of "monkeys" as a derogatory referent for Black people, the line in the example entitled "Emerald's Song" which is given below "Those girls are funky/Always acting like monkeys!" could be considered offensive or could at least be problematic if Black or Brown girls were part of the group who was singing this song.

These example provide me with an opportunity to share the following links to some of the pancocojams posts that I've published about children's rhymes and race: "Racialized Versions Of "I Like Coffee I Like Tea"

** "Anti-Asian Rhymes - I Went To A Chinese Restaurant"

** "Stereotypical References To American Indians In "I Went To A Chinese Restaurant" Rhymes"
Here are comments that I wrote from some of those posts:
I believe that the stereotypical content in playground rhymes should be documented for the folkloric record, and also for the purpose of encouraging people interested in an eradicating stereotypes to the presence of this content.

In spite of children's attachment to the version of a rhyme that they first learned, given the large number of non-stereotypical versions of "I Went To The Chinese Restaurant, I believe that children can be complimented for their creativity but still be redirected to alternative, non-stereotypical examples of that rhyme. It's up to adults to educate the children in their care that the words and/or accompanying actions of these & some other playground rhymes are problematic and hurtful.

The children's rhyme "Eenie Meenie Miney Mo" stands as a strong testimony to the fact that offensive references can be completely excised from playground rhymes, as many adults today who grew up with that rhyme and are surprised to learn that it once included a pejorative reference for Black people.

Although most of the video examples and, presumably, also most of text examples that I've found of this rhyme are from White children and White adults, I'm including this subject in this blog that focuses on Black cultural indices because non-offensive and some offensive examples of "I Went To A Chinese Restaurant" appears to have become a part of the cultural body of playground rhymes in the United States and in some other English language nations to a large extent regardless of children's the race/ethnicity. Note that a link given below to another pancocojams post given includes a video of two young Black women who indicate that they remember reciting this rhyme in their childhood. Also, there are people with Black/Asian (or Asian/Black) descent in the United States and elsewhere. Therefore, this topic is quite suitable for a blog about Black culture & customs in the United States & throughout the world.

It's important to consider that the words to examples of "I Went To The Chinese Restaurant" may appear to be non-offensive, but those words might be accompanied by the gesture of holding the skin at the ends of both eyes to mimic a squinting look. And while there should be no question that gesture is offensive, it clearly is something that children have to be made aware of, even if they don't intend to be hurtful or otherwise cause offense.

Some of the examples featured in this post are from the sub-category of children's recreational material that I call "foot stomping cheers". Here's a quote from one of several pancocojams post on foot stomping cheers "At The Playground" - A Foot Stomping Cheer That Combines Words From A TV Commercial, The "Homey Don't Play That" Saying, & A Kiddie Hip Hop Record
"Foot stomping cheers" is the term that I coined in 2000 for a relatively new category of children's recreational play that is (was?) performed mostly by preteen and younger girls and that involves chanting and choreographed foot stomping combined with (individual) clapping movements.

Foot stomping cheers" have a textual structure and traditionally* have a performance style* that is distinct from hand clap rhymes, jump rope rhymes, other cheerleader cheers, and other categories of children's recreational rhymes. That record featured four examples of African American girls from Washington D. C. performing cheers in 1973-1975.

*By traditional, I mean the way that foot stomping cheers were performed by African American girls in the 1980s and 1990s, and perhaps in the early 2000s. I've noticed changes in the way that these cheers are performed as they become more mainstream (i.e. are performed by White or predominately White cheerleader squads.)"...


Pancocojams Editor:
These examples are given in alphabetical order on this pancocojams website. I've assigned numbers to these examples for referencing purposes only.

A link to a pancocojams posts about (what I believe are) the African American sources for these examples is given below the camp example itself.

[website Last Updated: May 20, 2009

1. A Boom Chicka Boom
(a repeat song)
I said a boom-chicka-boom!
I said a boom-chicka-boom!
I said a boom-chicka-rocka-chicka-rocka-chicka-boom!
Uh huh!
Oh yea!
(Put next name of style here) style!
Underwater: sing with fingers dribbling against your lips
Loud: as loud as you can!
Slowly: as slow and drawn out as possible
Opera: sing in an opera voice
Alien: high-pitched, beep sounds
Valley Girl:
I said, like, boom-chica-boom!
I said, like, boom chicka-boom!
I said, like, booma-chicka, like, rocka-chicka, like, rocka-chica like boom!
Like, uh-huh!
Like, for sure!
Like, same thing...
Janitor style:
I said a Broom-Pusha-Broom,
I said a Broom-Pusha-Broom,
I said a Broom-pusha-mopa-pusha-mopa-pusha-broom.
This is listed in that camp song website under "FAST songs"

I've categorized "A Boom Chicka Boom" as a song (chant) with an African American source even though I haven't been able to track down the earliest example of that song/chant. "A Boom Chicka Boom"'s text (words) and its call & response format are the elements that strongly suggests to me that it originated among African Americans (or was composed in imitation of African American cheers). I've collected similar foot stomping cheers such as "A Rah Rah A Boom Tang" in the 1980s among African American girls in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

2. "Big Fat Pony
Ride around that big fat pony
Ride around that big fat pony
Ride around that big fat pony
This is how she does it:
Front to front to front my baby
Back to back to back my baby
Side to side to side my baby
This is how she does it.
Actions: This is a dancing game that is done in a circle. One girl is in the center of the circle, and while the whole group sings the first three lines and claps, the girl in the center gallops like a horse around the circle. When the fourth line of the song is reached,the girl much stop in front of the girl she is nearest, and both shimmy towards each other, then turn and shimmy away from each other, then turn to the side and shake their hips back and forth. The partner for the center girl now becomes the new center girl."
This is listed on that camp song page under "DANCING/GAME/CHANT songs"

Click for a cocojams2 post about this game song.

3. "Emerald’s Chant
(repeat song)
Oh-la, oh-la, eh!
Roll, roll, roll to the beat, now
I don’t know
Just what it is
Those girls are crazy
Always shakin’ their daisies!

Oh-la, oh-la, eh!
Roll, roll, roll to the beat, now
I don’t know
Just what it is
Those girls are funky
Always acting like monkeys!"
This is listed on that camp song page under "DANCING/GAME/CHANT songs"

Click for the lyrics and videos of the 1988 Hip Hop song "Rollin With Kid N Play".

4. "Funky Chicken
(Leader) Let me see your funky chicken!
(Leader) Let me see your funky chicken!
(All) WHAT'S THAT YOU SAY? I said....

Chorus: (everyone)
Ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo,
One more time, now!
Ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo, ah-ah-ah ooo,
One more time now!

Other Verses: Dracula, Orangutan, Elvis Presley, Cleopatra, John Travolta, do the polka, shopping car

(Actions: During first and third line of chorus, do silly movement that corresponds with verse)
This is listed in that camp song website under "FAST songs"

Published on Dec 25, 2014
Provided to YouTube by Universal Music Group International

Click for a video of the 1970 Jackson 5 R&B song "How Funky Is Your Chicken"

[Since I can find no record that I've previously posted online the example that I collected around 1999 from three sisters under the age of 12 years (Faith, Grace, and ?, I remember that her name wasn't "Charity", African American girls in Braddock, Pennsylvania), here's that example- The girls said it was a cheerleader cheer:

[chanted in unison]

How funky is the chicken
How loose is the goose
So come on everybody
and shake your caboose
Shake your caboose
Shake your caboose.

[The girls shook their butt to the side while saying "Shake your caboose".)

5. "Gigalow

Person 1: Hey (insert Person 2’s name here)!
Person 2: Hey what?
1: Hey (Person 2’s name!
2: Hey what?
1: Show us how you gigalow, I said, show us how you gigalow!
2. My hands are high, my feet are low, and this is how I gigalow.
All: Her hands are high, her feet are low, and this is how she gigalows!"
This is listed on that camp song page under "DANCING/GAME/CHANT songs"

Click for the pancocojams post "The Children's Rhyme "Gigalo" - Examples & Probable Sources"

6."Humpty Dumpty Song
Hump-dee, dump
Hump, hump, dee, dump-dee dump-dee
Hump-dee, dump
Hump, hump, dee, dump-dee dump-dee
(enter any nursery rhyme and sing for 12 beats of song)

(I.e.) Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet, eating her curds and whey (HEY!)
Along came a spider and sat down beside her…|
Singing UHH! Ain’t that funky now?

End song with the Humpty Dumpty rhyme."
This is listed in that camp song website under "FAST songs"

Click for the pancocojams rhyme "Pre-The Dozens Girls' Foot Stomping Cheer "Hump De Danda""

7. "Ooh Ungowa
My back’s a-breakin’, my belt’s too tight
My hips a-shakin’ from left to right
Singin’ ooh Ungowa, (enter person or unit name here)’s got the power
You know it, you said it,
And now you represent it.
Singin’ OOH UNGOWA (enter name here)’s GOT THE POWER!"
This is listed on that camp song page under "DANCING/GAME/CHANT songs"

The lines "my back's achin and my bra's too tight" are found in the African American children's rhyme "Bang Bang Choo Choo Train". However, those children's rhymes lifted those lines from African American military cadences and the risque social song "Bang Bang Lulu".

Also, click for the pancocojams post entitled "The REAL Origin Of The Word "Ungawa" & Various Ways That Word Has Been Used In The USA"

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visiting comments are welcome.

Kid N Play - Rollin With Kind N Play (information, video, lyrics, & vernacular explanations)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post showcases the 1988 Hip Hop track (song) "Rollin With Kid N Play" and includes information about that track and a clip from the movie House Party that features that track. In addition, this post provides explanations about American vernacular English terms and sayings that are found in "Rollin With Kid N Play" lyrics.

The content of this post is presented for cultural, linguistics, entertainment, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Kid N Play for their musical legacy. Thanks to all who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publisher of this video on YouTube.
The idea for this post came to me as a result of happening upon a website that features text (word only) examples of more than seventy camp songs - Camp Maripai, a Girl Scout camp in Prescott, Arizona. One of those camp songs clearly borrowed its beginning lines from "Rollin With Kid N Play". Here's the link to the pancocojams post that features that camp song and several other camp songs from that website that include lyrics from contemporary (post 1960) African American sources:

Kid 'n Play is an American hip-hop act from New York City that was popular in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The duo was composed of Christopher "Kid" Reid (born April 5, 1964) and Christopher "Play" Martin (born July 10, 1962) working alongside their DJ, Mark "DJ Wiz" Eastmond.[1][2] Besides their successful musical careers, they are also notable for branching out into acting.[3]

Music career


Kid 'n Play recorded three albums together between 1988 and 1991: 2 Hype (1988), Kid 'n Play's Funhouse (1990), and Face the Nation (1991). Hurby "Luv Bug" Azor, the producer for Salt-n-Pepa (who had been a member of The Super Lovers with Play) served as Kid 'n Play's manager and producer during the early portion of their career. All three albums focused upon positive lyrics backed by pop-friendly instrumental tracks. Among the group's most successful singles were 1989's "Rollin' with Kid 'n Play" (#11 on the Billboard R&B singles chart), 1990s "Funhouse" (#1 on the Billboard rap singles chart), and "Ain't Gonna Hurt Nobody" (another #1 rap hit). The group's stage show highlighted their teen-friendly personalities, and dances such as their trademark, the Kick Step. Kid's visual trademark was his hi-top fade haircut, which stood ten inches high at its peak. Martin regularly wore eight-ball jackets.

Kid 'n Play were also notable for their dance known as the Kid n' Play Kickstep, first seen in their video "Do This My Way," and described in the song "Do the Kid n' Play Kickstep," from their first album, 2 Hype. Also affectionately known as the "Funky Charleston," it was influenced by the 1920s era dance The Charleston. The Kid n' Play Kickstep featured the new jack swing-aerobic dance moves typical of late 1980s urban street dancing. Unlike the original Charleston, The Kid n' Play Kickstep requires two participants instead of one. This dance also was made quite popular in Kid 'n Play's feature film House Party, in which Kid and Play have a dance competition with Tisha Campbell and A.J. Johnson.

Acting careers
In addition to their music, Kid 'N Play have starred together in five feature films, all of them based around hip hop characters and themes. The duo also appeared on the soundtrack albums to these films. Four of the Kid 'n Play films were entries in the House Party series.[4] The first two House Party films (1990's House Party and 1991's House Party 2) also featured the then-relatively unknown Martin Lawrence and Tisha Campbell, later stars of the TV sitcom Martin. House Party 3 (1994) featured hip-hop/R&B girl group TLC as the music group Sex as a Weapon. Kid 'n Play were absent from the fourth film House Party 4 (2001), which has no connection to any of the prior films or the subsequent film, House Party 5 (2013) in which the duo make a cameo appearance, revealing how successful their characters have become since the events of House Party 3....

Kid 'n Play even had their own NBC Saturday morning cartoon, Kid 'n Play, for one season from 1990 to 1991. On the show, Kid 'n Play were regressed to teenagers, but their recording careers remained intact, as did their comic personas"...
Additional information & (pancocojams) editorial comments:
Kid 'N Play's 1988 track "Rollin' With Kid 'N Play" samples Ripple's 1973 track "I Don't Know What It Is, but It Sure Is Funky"
"Sample appears at 0:32 (and throughout)",-but-It-Sure-Is-Funky/

"Rollin With Kid N Play" uses the call & response format that is characteristic of Washington D.C.'s Go Go music* throughout the track, with the rappers Kid and Play taking turns being the caller or responder or completing each other's sentences. The background singers also use call & response while singing the catchy chorus "O la o la eh/Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now".

* Read information about "Go Go" music below.

"Rollin With Kid N Play" serves three purposes besides the creation of a highly danceable jam:
1. Introduce "Kid N Play" (as well as the duo's DJ & producer) and promote the duo, largely through self-bragging, but also with some taunting unnamed Hip Hop competitors
2. Introduce/promote Go Go music
3. Encourage listeners to become their fans

Example #1: Rollin' With Kid 'N Play - Kid 'N Play (1988)

djbuddyloverootsrap, Uploaded on Oct 25, 2011

"Rollin' With Kid 'N Play" was the most successful single release from "2 Hype", the debut album by rap duo Kid 'N Play. The album was released in 1988 for Select Records and was produced by Hurby 'Luv Bug' Azor and The Invincibles. "2 Hype" was a success for the duo, reaching #96 on the Billboard 200 and #9 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and being certified Platinum by the RIAA. Three singles found success on the Hot Rap Singles chart, "Rollin' with Kid 'N Play" (#2), "2 Hype" (#19) and "Gittin' Funky" (#24). In 2008, "Rollin' With Kid N Play" was ranked number 63 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop.

Kid 'N Play is a hip-hop and comedy duo from New York City that was popular in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The duo was composed of Christopher 'Kid' Reid (born April 5, 1964 in The Bronx, New York City), and Christopher 'Play' Martin (born July 10, 1962 in Queens, New York City), working alongside their DJ, Mark 'DJ Wiz' Eastmond (born March 21, 1966 in Queens, New York City). Besides their successful musical careers, Kid 'N Play are also notable for branching out into acting. This channel is dedicated to all the great rap music from back in the day. The music that started the whole hip-hop revolution, the incredible music from the 70s, the 80s, and the early 90s . . . The Roots Of Rap are here!
I reformatted this YouTube video summary to increase its readability.

Example #2: Kid N' Play - Rollin' With Kid N' Play (Video)

kennylavish, Uploaded on Aug 24, 2010

This is a scene from the first House Party movie.

(as performed by Kid N Play*)

O la oh la eh.
(O la oh la eh.)
Rollin rollin rollin with Kid and Play now.
(Rollin rollin rollin with Kid and Play now.)
O la oh la eh.
(O la oh la eh.)
Rollin rollin rollin with Kid and Play now.
(Rollin rollin rollin with Kid and Play now.)

Kid - Now ,Play, I don’t know what is it about that beat that we have here,
but it sure is funky.

O la O la eh.
(O la O la eh.)
Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.
(Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.)
O la O la eh.
(O la O ha eh.)
Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.
(Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.)

Play: Yo, Kid,
I don’t know what is it about this groove that here makin us move,
but it sure is funky.

O la O la eh.
(O la O la eh.)
Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.
(Rollin rollin rollin with Kid N Play now.)

Play- It is time to rap.
Kid - Shall we?
Play - Sure.
Kid- Kid N Play back goin strong.
Play- Dope and dap, we can get funky with the best.
We just hypin it up.
Kid - You know, just how it had to be.
Play - Just take a look around, boy. Can’t you see that
I’mma bum rushin.
Kid - Girls are just watchin,
Play - Wiz got the scratchin
Kid - while Hurby’s all percussion.
We’re settin the stage
for the stage to get set off
I want some rhyming and dancing to jet off.
So get off ‘cause you bit off
Play- more than you can chew.
Kid- Now watch the dynamic duo
do a little go go thang.
Play - Come on, rock and swing.
You gotta
Kid - roll with Kid N Play.
Play - Now everybody say:


Kid- Now we’re the stars of stage,
wax, and video.
Play- We’re here to tear it up.
Kid and Play - So come on, here we go.
Kid- So pump it up, this is hot power stuff.
Play - Kid N Play can’t get enough
Kid and Play - of that funky go go rhythm.
Play - You wanted a dope jam
Well, that’s what we’re givin.
Play - We’re headed for fame
Kid - cause Kind N Play’s drivin.
Play- Boy we don’t shirk
Kid - and large is how we livin.
Play- We stay paid.
Kid- You know the boys have got it made.
Play- You see I’m a tramp.
Kid- And I’m am the fella with the high top fade.
Play- Gettin down to the sound.
Kid- You know, we ‘bout to turn it out.
Play- Come on with Kid N Play.
Kid and Play- Everybody shout:


Kid - Now, I bet you ladies
Kid and Play - wanna see
Play - P. L. A. Y.
Kid - and K. I. D.
Kid and Play - We’re not like the rest.
Our style is def
and we present ourselves
Play - as the very best
Kid - on the microphone.
We relay to the
Kid and Play - soul.
Kid - Your whole damn body we will control.
stay calm, don’t get alarmed.
Gonna relax you ladies with a deadly charm.
Play - Gonna go to work on you fellas too
to make you wanna do the things we do.
Kid - ‘cause when ah
Play - Kid N Play is in your town
Kid - you gotta
Play - keep rockin to the go go sound.
Kid - You gotta
Play - keep rockin all day all night
‘cause we’re different.
Kid - We’re like dynamite on the mic.
Kid and Play - So shake
Play - your butt, shake it down
‘Cause we got the best
music all around.
Kid - Hurby’s our producer.
Play - Wiz is the DJ.
Kid and Play - Roll with Kid N Play.
Now, everybody say:

This is my transcription of "Rollin With Kid N Play". I made this transcription because i couldn't find the lyrics for this track online.

The words in the chorus that are given brackets designate that they are sung in response to the preceding "call".

Additions and corrections (including which of the duo spoke those lines) are welcome.

Also, if you know the name/s of the composer/s of this Hip Hop track, please share it in the comment section below. Thanks!


Unless otherwise indicated, I'm sharing what I believe are the meanings for these American* vernacular English terms/sayings in the context of this song. I've written those words in italics to emphasize their importance, since vernacular terms often have multiple meanings. One quote from the lyrics that include these terms is given in parenthesis after some of these definitions.

This list also includes the meanings of certain lines in this Hip Hop composition.

Additions and corrections are welcome.

*I believe that most of the terms and sayings that are included in those lyrics are from African American Vernacular English.

A, B

"Bit off more than you can chew" - tried to do more than you are capable of doing ( in this context, other rappers can't do better than Kid N Play)

"Bum rushin" -a play on word with “bum" here meaning (a lady's) "butt" (meaning, trying to "romantically" pursue (meet up with) the ladies

C, D

"Come on with Kid n Play" = invitation to become fans of Kid N Play (This is another way of saying "Come roll with Kid N Play")

"Dap" - (from the word "dapper") someone who looks good, stylish

"Def" (from the word "definitely", without any doubt very good ["Our style is def"]

"Dope" = very good; exceptional ("Dope and dap, we can get funky with the best."

"Drivin" -determined to succeed ("‘cause Kid N Play is drivin)"

E, F

Music that has a particular feel or groove.

"Earl King recently told me I was the first guy he ever heard use the term funky about music..."

" 'Think about Foley, how funky and dirty he stinks and smells. Think about playing the music just like that."

-Earl Palmer, Backbeat: Earl Palmer's Story
"Damn, that's funky!"

by bbmatt September 22, 2009"

G, H
"Get off" - [in the context of this Hip Hop track] spoken to any potential Hip Hop competitors]- leave the stage, leave the Hip Hop competition

"getting down to the sound" - really feeling the music and/or performing the music really well

"Going strong" - "from American English (still) going strong
​to still be successful after having existed for a long time:

"Go go" (sound’ music)
"Go-go is a popular music subgenre associated with funk that originated in the Washington, D.C., area during the mid-60s to late-70s. It remains primarily popular in the Washington metropolitan area as a uniquely regional music style...

Inspired by artists such as the groups mentioned above, go-go is a blend of funk, rhythm and blues, and old school hip-hop, with a focus on lo-fi percussion instruments and funk-style jamming in place of dance tracks, although some sampling is used. As such, it is primarily a dance hall music with an emphasis on live audience call and response. Go-go rhythms are also incorporated into street percussion….
In the mid-1960s, "go-go" was the word for a music club in the local African American community, as in the common phrase at the time going to a go-go popularized by a million-selling hit of the same name by The Miracles”...
I added italics to highlight that sentence.

Here's some more information about "Go Go music" from From The Beat!
Go-Go Music from Washington, D.C. by Kip Lornell and Charles C. Stephenson, Jr:
"Its [Go Go music] super-charged drumming and vocal combinations of hip-hop, funk, and soul evolved and still thrive on the streets of Washington, D.C., and in neighboring Prince George's County, making it the most geographically compact form of popular music.

Go-go--the only musical form indigenous to Washington, D.C.--features a highly syncopated, nonstop beat and vocals that are spoken as well as sung”....

"Got it made" - "is certain to be successful and have a good life, often without much effort" ("The [Kid N Play} boys have got it made.")

"In music, groove is the sense of propulsive rhythmic "feel" or sense of "swing". In jazz, it can be felt as a persistently repeated pattern. It can be created by the interaction of the music played by a band's rhythm section (e.g. drums, electric bass or double bass, guitar, and keyboards). Groove is a key of much popular music, and can be found in many genres, including salsa, funk, rock, fusion, and soul.
…Musicologists and other scholars have analyzed the concept of "groove" since around the 1990s. They have argued that a "groove" is an "understanding of rhythmic patterning" or "feel" and "an intuitive sense" of "a cycle in motion" that emerges from "carefully aligned concurrent rhythmic patterns" that stimulates dancing or foot-tapping on the part of listeners."

"High top fade"
"A hi-top fade is a style of haircut where hair on the sides is cut off or kept very short while hair on the top of the head is very long.[1]

The hi-top was a trend symbolizing the Golden Era of hip hop and urban contemporary music during the 1980s and the early 1990s.[2] It was common among young black people between 1986 and 1993 and to a lesser extent in the mid-1990s (1994–1996).[3]"...
High top fades are usually considered a Black male (natural) hair style ; “Kid” [one member of the Hip Hop duo “Kid N Play”] wore his hair in a high top fade, but all high top fades weren’t (aren’t) as high as his.

"Hypin it up" - raising the energy of the [at the] event or with the music, making it more exciting

I, J
"Jam" - a musical record, track, tune ("a dope jam")

"Jet off" = move fast "I want some rhyming and dancing to jet off"

K, L
"Livin large" - being rich and living a life surrounded by luxury ("large is how we livin")

M. N
"N" - and ("Kid N Play")

O, P,
"On the mic - microphone; referent to a MC (rapper) rapping (spitting bars)

"Pump it up" - raise the energy, excitement higher (synonym - "Get hype") ("So pump it up, this is hot power stuff)

Q, R
"Rockin" - dancing to, moving to, performing ("Keep rockin to the go go sound")

Rollin (with Kid N Play) - "hanging with" (traveling with)Kid N Play, but with the meaning "becoming fans of this Hip Hop duo; the lyrics "Come on with Kid N Play" basically have the same meaning as "Rollin With Kid N Play"

S, T
"Scratching, sometimes referred to as scrubbing, is a DJ and turntablist technique used to produce distinctive percussive or rhythmic sounds and sound effects by moving a vinyl record back and forth on a turntable while optionally manipulating the crossfader on a DJ mixer. While scratching is most commonly associated with African-American hip hop music, where it emerged in the mid-1970s, it has been used in the 1990s and 2000s in some styles of rap rock, rap metal and nu metal. Within hip hop culture, scratching is one of the measures of a DJ's skills."

"Tear it up" - do something exceptionally well (contemporary African American Vernacular English synonyms; "murdered" [it], "killed" [it] ) ("We’re here to tear it up")

Thang = thing

"Tramp" = Play's persona in the Kid N Play duo; In the context of this Hip Hop duo, "tramp" is a man who is a "playa" (note "Play's" stage name), a bad boy [man] or "dirty" man who has a lot of women (i.e. "loves them and leaves them", travels from one woman to the next; "bad" here means the opposite of good"; (I wonder was Kid's persona in this duo is a man who acts like a kid, providing some comic elements in his interactions with Play & others, and also providing a comic element regarding the height of his high top fade hair style.)

Turn it out – do really well (synonym "tear it up") ("We ‘bout to turn it out")


W, X
Wax = record, album, Cd

"We stay paid" = we always have money from gigs (work; concerts, record sales etc.)

"We’re settin the stage for the stage to get set off" - we're introducing ourselves (via this album) so that our successful career will begin

"Yo" = Hey

"You bit off more than you can chew" - "to try to do something that is too big or difficult to do"

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