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Sunday, September 20, 2020

Information About The Cake Walk (with a 1903 Library Of Congress film clip & a reprint from streetswing.com)



Library of Congress, July 10, 2009

SUMMARY Five African Americans--three men and two women--perform a cakewalk, a dance featuring fancy strutting that was named after the prize awarded in the original contests. The dancers wear rather formal attire, with the men in dark suits and black tie and the women in full-length, high-collared dark dresses; one woman carries a small American flag. As they step in place against a light background, the center male--holding up a top hat and twirling a cane--moves toward the camera and briefly performs some fancy steps. As he moves back, the man at the left end of the line does a quick twirling step and links arms with his partner. The other two dancers also pair off as the center male leads them in a strutting movement around the stage. When they return to the original line, all five step towards the camera with the center man slightly ahead of the others. The film ends just as they stop the cakewalk. CREATED/PUBLISHED United States: American Mutoscope and Biograph Company, 1903. NOTES Copyright: American Mutoscope & Biograph Co.; 11May1903; H31674. Filmed at the Biograph New York City studio, perhaps on the roof. SUBJECTS Dance, Black--United States. Afro-American dance--United States. Dancers--New York (State)--New York. **** Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents information about the cakewalk dance in the United States and showcases a 1903 film clip of African American couples performing that dance.

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to the unknown creators of the cakewalk dance, and thanks to all those who are featured in this film clip and all those who are quoted in this post. Thanks also to the Library of Congress for publishing this film on YouTube.
-snip-
Click for a 2012 pancocojams post on this subject entitled "
The Cakewalk & The Grand March - The USA & Canada". That post is Part I of a series on The Cakewalk and The Grand March. (The Cakewalk began as an African American parody of The Grand March and other formal European dances).

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INFORMATION ABOUT THE CAKEWALK (DANCE) IN THE UNITED STATES
Pancocojams Editor's Note: I'm reprinting this information that was compiled by streetswing.com as it provides a concise but detailed history of The Cakewalk. However, please read the notes indicated by asterisks about the two offensive terms that are included in this writeup. 

From http://www.streetswing.com/histmain/z3cake1.htm
"Origins: The Chalk Line Walk as it was originally known in 1850 in the southern plantations later became very popular from 1895-1905 as the Cakewalk with a resurgence around 1915. It origins are in Florida by the African-American slaves who got the basic idea from the Seminole Indians (couples walking solemnly). Many of the special movements of the cake-walk, the bending back of the body, and the dropping of the hands at the wrists, amongst others, were a distinct feature in certain tribes of the African Kaffir* dances. The African Ring Shout has a certain tie to this dance as well (see Ring Shout.)

These "Walkers" as they were called, would walk a straight line and balance buckets of water on their heads. Over time the dance evolved into a exaggerated parody of the white, upper class ballroom dancers who would imitate the mannerisms

(namely the promenades and processionals) of the "Big House" (or masters house) that they observed the White's doing. These Slave's would have some fun with such a dignified walking, flirting, prancing, strutting, bowing low, waving canes, doffing hats, done in a high kicking grand promenade. The Master's and their guest found it amusing, while a few plantation owners frowned upon these shenanigans. For their 'Sunday entertainment', the plantation owners started having contests to prove to the other who had the best slave walker which would give the evolution of the Cake being given as a prize..

The idea of the Cakewalk was that of a couple promenading in a dignified manner, high stepping and kicking, mimicking whitey's high society. Some of the better plantation owners would bake a special cake called a hoecake wrapped in cabbage leaf and on Sundays and invite the neighbors over and have a contest of the slaves, different prizes were given but originally it was a Hoecake for the males and molasses pulled candy for the ladies and whichever slave(s) won, would get the cake / Candy ... thus varying terms such as "That Takes The Cake!" (Plus others such as 'It's a Cakewalk' = very easy, fun) and the name "Cakewalk" was now set. The dance grew in popularity even after the Civil War (1861-1865), but it would change and become more grand in style and clothing as time marched on.

The Breakdown, Buck dance, Jigs and the Chalk Line Walk would be mixed when the Minstrel Shows started using the Chalk Line Walk in their acts, a Minstrel parody, mixed, which later would be named the Cakewalk. The Minstrel shows of the time would paint their faces black and at the end of the show would do a "Grand Finale," which often times was the Cakewalk. The dance used little breaks in the prancing and strutting and only to allow the male to show off some dance moves and acrobatic like somersaults (Stearns: Jazz dance) while the woman would clap and admire his antics.

By the 1890's, the now named Cakewalk was the hottest thing around and Charles Johnson & Dora Dean are said to have introduced the Cakewalk in 1893 "The Creole Show", but it was already a featured dance in same show back in 1889. However in 1877, it was actually introduced in the Minstrel Show "Walking for dat Cake" and in 1892 the first Cakewalk contest were held in a New York ballroom hosted by Richard K. Fox (Stearn's says Madison Square Garden, but it wouldn't be built for another 20 years or so, so most likely it was a building at that location [or maybe Madison Sq. Roof Garden].) Coney Island also had Cakewalk Dance Contests. Williams and Walker inspired a Cakewalk in the play "Clorindy" Origin of the Cakewalk.

The Cakewalk sheet music would also list the March and Two-Step as dance options to the song so white audiences would be interested in buying it even if they did not know the  Cakewalk. It was first introduced upon the Broadway stage by Dave Genaro.

The competition dancers were called "Walkers" and these dance contests grew very big, such as the National Cakewalk Jubilee in New York City as well as others, where the champions would receive gold belts and diamond rings.

There were two categories of contests:

1) the "Grand Straight Cakewalk" (regular type) and

2)  the "Fancy Cakewalk," (dressed up type) the doors would open at 7:00p.m., Contest at 11:00p.m., and dancing would continue till 5:00am. These Cakewalk dance contests eventually would be held in big cities as Tin-Pan Alley would make a fortune off of the dance and the Rag-time music they would produce. There would be literally 100's of these contests given.

Historically, the Cakewalk was the first American dance to cross over from black to white society as well as from the stage (Minstrel shows) to ballroom. The Cakewalk would be the window for other African-American dances to enter white society in the future. Many of the upper class Summer and Seaside hotels would feature a Cakewalk at the end of the season. A man by the name of Dobbins (born in 1812) is said to have first introduced Cakewalk dancers to high society at Turners Hall in Brooklyn in 1866. The cakewalk lead the way for the future evolution of dances and the dancers to evolve with the contests proving invaluable to dancers personal inventions as eventually the dancers could do whatever dance inventions they wanted and at the end would Strut off with their partners.

The Cakewalk eventually died in the 1920's with the Charleston and other dances, but there were still traces of the Cakewalk in the newer, more modern forms of dance, even the Lindy hop had the Apache and the Cakewalk thrown in as can be seen in the "Shorty George" video clip in "After Seben / At the Jazz Band Ball" video. The Cakewalk music eventually evolved into the birth of Ragtime (around 1899).

The Cakewalks 'high stepping strut' (see strut) would also be adopted by marching bands (originally New Orleans) and later Drum Majors would incorporate the Cakewalk into their routines thanks to John Phillips Sousa who took his marches and cakewalks to London, Russia, France and elsewhere, featuring a "strutting" drummer who would "syncopate" his steps (DeBussey's "Golliwogs"** Cakewalk and Georgia Camp Meeting testify to his success abroad.) A later offshoot of the Cakewalk was the Strut (dance), it was used a lot in the Cakewalk's description of later days. The Champion Strut (1954) was a mixture of the Lambeth Walk, Cakewalk and Swing dance.

In Old Ireland, there was a practice of offering a cake to the best Jig dancer on the Sunday get together. These dancers would do a Penny Jig, which the dancer would pay the fiddler a penny after dancing, trying to win the cake. Quoting from Mrs. Lully's Book: "Although the fare of Sunday seldom rises beyond the accustomed potatoes and milk of the rest of the week, some few halfpence are always spared to purchase the pleasures which the Sunday cake bestows. This cake set upon a distaff is the signal of pleasure and becomes the reward of talent; it is sometimes carried off by the best dancer, sometimes by the achiest wag of the company."....
-snip-
*Read this note about the term "African Kaffir":
From https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Kaffir
"Definition of Kaffir

1archaic : a member of a group of southern African Bantu-speaking peoples

2often not capitalized, chiefly South Africa, offensive, see usage paragraph below —used as an insulting and contemptuous term for a black African

Usage Discussion of Kaffir

In South Africa, the use of the term Kaffir to refer to a black African is a profoundly offensive and inflammatory expression of contemptuous racism that is sufficient grounds for legal action. The term is associated especially with the era of apartheid, when it was commonly used as an offensive racial slur, and its offensiveness has only increased over time. It now ranks as perhaps the most offensive term in South African English.

First Known Use of Kaffir

1778, in the meaning defined at sense 1"
-snip-

** Here's some information about the word "Golliwog" from https://www.ferris.edu/jimcrow/golliwog/#:~:text=Apparently%20derived%20from%20the%20word,slur%20against%20dark%2Dskinned%20Arabs.
"
The Golliwog (originally spelled Golliwogg) is the least known of the major anti-black caricatures in the United States. Golliwogs are grotesque creatures,1 with very dark, often jet black skin, large white-rimmed eyes, red or white clown lips, and wild, frizzy hair.2 Typically, it's a male dressed in a jacket, trousers, bow tie, and stand-up collar in a combination of red, white, blue, and occasionally yellow colors. The golliwog image, popular in England and other European countries, is found on a variety of items, including postcards, jam jars, paperweights, brooches, wallets, perfume bottles, wooden puzzles, sheet music, wall paper, pottery, jewelry, greeting cards, clocks, and dolls. For the past four decades Europeans have debated whether the Golliwog is a lovable icon or a racist symbol.

The Golliwog began life as a story book character created by Florence Kate Upton. Upton was born in 1873 in Flushing, New York, to English parents who had emigrated to the United States in 1870. She was the second of four children. When Upton was fourteen, her father died and, shortly thereafter, the family returned to England. For several years she honed her skills as an artist. Unable to afford art school, Upton illustrated her own children's book in the hope of raising tuition money.

 In 1895, her book, entitled The Adventures of Two Dutch Dolls, was published in London. Upton drew the illustrations, and her mother, Bertha Upton, wrote the accompanying verse. The book's main characters were two Dutch dolls, Peg and Sarah Jane, and the Golliwogg. The story begins with Peg and Sara Jane, on the loose in a toy shop, encountering "a horrid sight, the blackest gnome." The little black "gnome" wore bright red trousers, a red bow tie on a high collared white shirt, and a blue swallow-tailed coat. He was a caricature of American black faced minstrels -- in effect, the caricature of a caricature. She named him Golliwogg.


The Golliwog's reputation and popularity were also hurt by the association with the word wog. Apparently derived from the word Golliwog,6 wog is an English slur against dark-skinned people, especially Middle or Far East foreigners. During World War II the word wog was used by the British Army in North Africa, mainly as a slur against dark-skinned Arabs."...
-snip-
Click https://blog.imagesmusicales.be/debussys-controversial-golliwog/ 
for information about (and a photo of the cover of the sheet music for) Debussey's Golliwog Cakewalk. 

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Visitor comments are welcome.

Saturday, September 19, 2020

What The Word "Strut" REALLY Means (With A Video Of Models Strutting On The Runway & A Tik Tok Clip Of The "Runway Walk" Challenge



Fashion Channel, June 17, 2020

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AMAZING TIKTOK STRUT CHALLENGE



TikTok Compilations, May 12, 2020

Credit given to all TikTok users.
-snip-
This is one of the latest tik tok clips featuring people walking (strutting) as models. This tik tok challenge is referred to as "
Runway Walk Challenge (Anime Is An Important Part Of Our Culture). Information about that challenge is given below.
 

****
Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents definitions of the word "strut" and showcases a video of models strutting and a video of people strutting (walking) like models.

Information about the May 2020 "Runway Walk" Challenge 
(Anime Is An Important Part Of Our Culture) is also included in this post.

The Addendum to this post presents information about and YouTube links to two additional songs that include the word "strut". 

The content of this post is presented for cultura, linguistic, and entertainment purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are featured in these videos and thanks to all those who are quoted in this post. Thanks also to the publishers of these videos on YouTube.
-snip-
My interest in this subject was sparked by the 1921 African American song "Strut Miss Lizzie".
Click 
https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2020/09/1921-ragtime-song-strut-miss-lizzie.html for the 2020 pancocojams post entitled "1921 Ragtime Song "Strut Miss Lizzie" (with YouTube Examples, Lyrics, & Lyric Explanations)"

"Strut Miss Lizzie" is the main source of the African American children's singing games "This A Way  Valerie" which is also know as "Here We Go Zudio", "Here We Go Willowbee" and other titles. Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2017/05/here-we-go-zoodio-zudie-o-zudiozodiac_8.html  for Part II of a 2017 pancocojams series on "Here We Go Zudio". That post showcases some YouTube videos of "Here We Go Zudio". Part I of that series provides some text (word only) examples of those games. 

Also, click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2020/09/information-about-cake-walk-with-1903.html  for a 2020 pancocojams post on the 19th African American strutting dance known as The Cakewalk.     

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DEFINITIONS OF THE WORD "STRUT"
From 
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/strut
"strut"
"intransitive verb
2a: to walk with a proud gait
2b: to walk with a pompous and affected air

[...]

noun
2. a pompous step or walk
3. arrogant behavior : SWAGGER"

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From https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/strut
"Someone who struts walks in a proud way, with their head held high and their chest out, as if they are very important."
-snip-
The lyrics "strut your stuff" are included in the 1921 (African American) Ragtime song "Strut Miss Lizzie". African Americans still often use that phrase. In "strut your stuff" the words "your stuff" means "your  your whole self (which also includes your spirit/attitude)".

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INFORMATION ABOUT THE "RUNWAY WALK" CHALLENGE (ALSO KNOWN AS "ANIME IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF OUR CULTURE")
"The Runway Walk" Challenge ("Anime Is An Important Part Of Our Culture") appears to be the latest tik tok challenge featuring everyday people (non-models) walking (strutting) as models. 

According to a note posted on https://genius.com/Unknown-artist-anime-is-an-important-part-of-our-culture-lyrics by ItsaJessMess  666 (posted in August 2020), the few seconds of recording that is used for this tik tok challenge ..."It’s a mix of the song Nursery by bbno$ and dialogue from the anime Danganronpa (3- Despair Arc)".
-snip-
Here's a definition of "anime" from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/anime:
"a style of animation originating in Japan that is characterized by stark colorful graphics depicting vibrant characters in action-filled plots often with fantastic or futuristic themes".

Here's the words from that record as found in that genius.com page: 

[Ryota Mitarai]

Anime is an important part of our culture!

[Junko Enoshima]

Awe look at him tremble!

He's gonna burst a blood vessel 'cause I dissed his waifu”

[bbno$ & Junko]

Don't you like it when these diamonds look like respect?

(Junko Enoshima!)

Come a lil' closer sussy boy and inspect (Skrrt, skrrt)

Sip a lil' Henny that's a cause and effect"
-snip-
Here's a definition of "waifu" from https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/waifu#:~:text=waifu%20(plural%20waifu%20or%20waifus,to%20whom%20one%20is%20attracted

"Etymology

Borrowed from Japanese ワイフ (waifu), in turn derived from English wife, from Middle English wif, wiif, wyf, from Old English wīf (“woman, female, lady, wife”), from Proto-Germanic *wībą (“woman, wife”), popularized by 4chan."

 Synonyms: wife, wifey"

ItsaJessMess 666 also wrote that the recording used for the tik tok challenges "was an edit made and popularized on tiktok for all you otakus and unfortunately the normies as well…

Here's a definition of "otaku" from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otaku#:~:text=Otaku%20(Japanese%3A%20%E3%81%8A%E3%81%9F%E3%81%8F%20or%20%E3%82%AA%E3%82%BF%E3%82%AF,particularly%20in%20anime%20and%20manga.&text=The%20definition%20of%20otaku%20subsequently,numerous%20classifications%20of%20otaku%20emerged.

Otaku (Japanese: おたく or オタク) is a Japanese term for people with consuming interests, particularly in anime and manga. Its contemporary use originated with Akio Nakamori's 1983 essay in Manga Burikko.[1][2] Otaku may be used as a pejorative; its negativity stemming from a stereotypical view of otaku as social outcasts and the media's reporting on Tsutomu Miyazaki, "The Otaku Murderer", in 1989. According to studies published in 2013, the term has become less negative, and an increasing number of people now identify themselves as otaku,[3] both in Japan and elsewhere."

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ADDENDUM- TWO OTHER AMERICAN RECORDS THAT INCLUDE THE WORD "STRUT".

1. Soulful Strut 
Information about this R&B instrumental from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Am_I_the_Same_Girl#:~:text=Although%20Barbara%20Acklin%20recorded%20the,went%20to%20%231%20in%20Canada.
"Am I the Same Girl?" is a popular song written by Eugene Record and Sonny Sanders. First recorded in 1968 by Barbara Acklin, "Am I the Same Girl?" charted most successfully in the US as a 1992 release by Swing Out Sister. However, the song had its greatest impact as a 1968–69 instrumental hit single by Young-Holt Unlimited under the title "Soulful Strut".

Background

Although Barbara Acklin recorded the song first, producer Carl Davis removed her voice from the track, replaced it with a piano solo by Floyd Morris, and released the resultant track in November 1968 as "Soulful Strut" credited to Young-Holt Unlimited; it became a #3 hit in the United States and went to #1 in Canada.[1] It became a gold record. Neither Eldee Young nor Red Holt is believed to have played on the track, which was the work of session musicians identified only as the Brunswick Studio Band.[2] Acklin's version was released in February 1969 and reached #33 on the R&B chart, crossing over and peaking at #79 on the pop listing.[3]

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From https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKYgtwsqnxs&ab_channel=LarryHinze
"USA #3 BILLBOARD, 1968 Young-Holt Unlimited (also known as Young-Holt Trio), were a U.S. soul and jazz instrumental musical ensemble from Chicago, Illinois, United States. Drummer Isaac "Red" Holt and bassist Eldee Young, formerly members of Ramsey Lewis' jazz trio, formed a new outfit called the Young-Holt Trio with pianist Don Walker in 1966. They met with modest success, including the minor hit with "Wack-Wack", which charted at number 40 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 1968, the group renamed itself Young-Holt Unlimited, and replaced Walker with Ken Chaney. Under their new name, the group scored a number three Hot 100 hit with "Soulful Strut," the backing instrumental track from Barbara Acklin's "Am I the Same Girl." "Soulful Strut" sold a million copies with the gold record awarded by the RIAA in January 1969, less than 3 months after the track's release. Follow-up releases failed to match the commercial success of "Soulful Strut", and the group disbanded by 1974, with Young and Holt continuing to play in Chicago small bands."...


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2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQ04gPb4LlY&ab_channel=todrickhall

Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels by Todrick Hall

todrickhall, May 23, 2019

WARNING: This song includes profanity and sexually explicit references.

Here's the lyrics to that song that include the word "strut":
"Girl, what did that girl just say, girl?
Girl, I don't dance, I work
I don't play, I slay
I don't walk I strut, strut, strut and then sashay (okay)"

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Friday, September 18, 2020

COMMENTS ABOUT THE PASSING OF UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JUSTICE RUTH BADER GINSBURG

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post is an exception to the usual subject matter of this blog. 

Instead, I want to extend my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Rest in Power, Ruth Bader Ginsburg. You fought the good fight and served as an inspiration and a role model for countless people. 

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Here's are two tweets from https://twitter.com/search?q=%22Supreme+Court%22

Vox

@voxdotcom

19m [September 18, 2020

"While her colleagues knew her as the mild-mannered Ruth Bader Ginsburg, many Americans, especially progressive feminists, knew her as a superhero.

[...]

Ginsburg's death puts her entire legacy in danger"...

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Alexandra Lee-Capps

@alexandrawlee

1h [September 18, 2020]

"Just told my 10yo daughter about #RBG. She had tears in her eyes. And then she did the Wakanda pose and said "#Ruthkanda forever" -- which is the sort of pop culture cross-over that I can celebrate"

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Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

 

 

 

 

  

1921 Ragtime Song "Strut Miss Lizzie" (with YouTube Examples, Lyrics, & Lyric Explanations)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents the original lyrics for the 1920 Ragtime song "Strut Miss Lizzie" that was composed by African Americans Henry Cramer and Turner Layton. This post also showcases a 1921 recording of that song. Explanations of some of the terms that are found in the original 1921 lyrics are also included in this post.

In addition, this pancocojams post presents the lyrics to the Broadway Empire (TV Series) version of "Strut Miss Lizzie" and showcases a YouTube sound file of that version. 

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to African American composer Henry Creamer and Turner Layton for their musical legacies. Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to those who are featured in these YouTube examples. Thanks also to the publishers of these examples on YouTube.  
-snip-
Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/04/strut-miss-lizzie-information-lyrics.html for a 2015 pancocojams post that includes some of the content that is found in this post.

Click 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Creamer for information about Henry Creamer.

Click https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turner_Layton for information about Turner Layton.

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ORIGINAL LYRICS - STRUT MISS LIZZIE

[Verse 1]

At the barber's ball in the barber's hall
All the dusky belles were there
Such a glancin', prancin', struttin' and a-dancin'
They were doing for fair
All the belles and beaus prancin' on their toes
Tried to do the cake walk swell
When a midnight blonde came prancing on
They were heard to yell

[Chorus]

Won't you strut Miss Lizzie, get busy
I want to see you walk
For the folks all state the way you syncopate
Is the whole town talk
When you move so pretty, it's a pity
The other girlies frown
But the men you meet
Like the way you shake your feet
Oh you knock 'em dizzy
Strut Miss Lizzie Brown

[Verse 2]
They were steppin' sweet, they were steppin' neat
They were steppin' super fine
To the singing, swinging, fancy pigeon winging
They were falling in line
Every dame and dude struck an attitude
For to win that cake they tried
But when Lizzie Brown came prancing 'round
Everybody cried

[Chorus]
Won't you strut Miss Lizzie, get busy
I want to see you walk
For the folks all state the way you syncopate
Is the whole town talk
When you move so pretty, it's a pity
The other girlies frown
But the men you meet
Like the way you shake your feet
Oh you knock 'em dizzy
Strut Miss Lizzie Brown

[Bridge]
Go down the street by the school
Pat your feet you steppin' fool
Strut your stuff, use your "Kerch" 
Trot your tootsies by the church
Through the alley, dodge the cans
Shake Miss Sally's pots and pans
Cool your dogs, we're coming through
Get set for Lenox Avenue

[Chorus]
Won't you strut Miss Lizzie, get busy
I want to see you walk
For the folks all state the way you syncopate
Is the whole town talk
When you move so pretty, it's a pity
The other girlies frown
But the men you meet
Like the way you shake your feet
Oh you knock 'em dizzy
Strut Miss Lizzie Brown

- online source:  https://genius.com/Lulu-whidby-strut-miss-lizzie-lyrics
Written By Turner Layton & Henry Creamer 
Accompanied By  Henderson’s Orchestra
Release Date: 1921

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SHOWCASE SOUND FILE- Mary Stafford & Her Jazz Band

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wwWChj0QfE&ab_channel=lindyhoppers

lindyhoppers, May 24, 2012 

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BROADWALK EMPIRE LYRICS FOR "STRUT MISS LIZZIE"

Won't you strut Miss Lizzie,
Get busy!
I wanna see you walk;
Oh, the folks all see the way you syncopate,
Hear the whole town talk!

When you move so preety,*
It's a pity
The other girlies frown,
But the men you meet
Like the way you shake your feet;
Oh, you knock'em dizzy,
Strut Miss Lizzie Brown!

Go down the street, by the school,
Pack your feet you struttin' fool!
Strut your stuff by the kirk,**
Trot your tootsies by the church!

Through the alley, dodge the cans,
Shake Miss Ellie's pots and pans.
Cool your dog, we're comin' through,
Except for Lennox Avenue!
-online source:  http://www.songlyrics.com/david-johansen/strut-miss-lizzie-lyrics/
Artist: David Johansen
Album: Boardwalk Empire, Volume 2: Music From the HBO Original Series
-snip-
*"Preety" is a typo for the word "pretty"

**I think this line is supposed to be "Strut your stuff, use your "Kerch" (as found in the original song lyrics). "Kerch" is probably a shortened form of "handkerchief". My guess is that that line meant "wave your handkerchief". 

"Kirk" is the Scottish word for "church". If that line is correct, the line that follows it "Trot your tootsies by the church" basically means the same thing. 

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YOUTUBE EXAMPLE- Strut Miss Lizzie

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3eh3of-UyA&ab_channel=DavidJohansen-Topic

David Johansen – Topic, July 25, 2018

Strut Miss Lizzie · David Johansen · Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks

Boardwalk Empire Volume 2: Music From The HBO Original Series

℗ 2013 Home Box Office, Inc.

Released on: 2013-01-01

Composer  Lyricist: Henry Creamer

Composer  Lyricist: Turner Layton

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SOME EXPLANATIONS FOR TERMS IN THE ORIGINAL LYRICS 
These explanations are given in 
alphabetical order and numbered for referencing purposes only.

 Additions and corrections are welcome.

1. dodge the cans = move out of the way of the trash cans

**
2. 
"dusky belles" = beautiful Black women 

**
3. "kerch" is probably a shortened form of "handkerchief". My guess is that that line meant "wave your handkerchief". 

**
4."knock 'em dizzy" - make them lightheaded and excited with admiration

**
5. "midnight blond" - perhaps a light skinned Black woman, formerly referred to as "high yellow" or "yellow" * or an attractive Black woman who isn't light skinned and doesn't have (dyed) blond hair.

I'm guessing at this definition as I have never read or heard this referent outside of this song (except for a commenter who shared information about it after reading the 2015 pancocojams blog post on this subject. That comment and my response is quoted below.  

*The terms "high yellow" and "yellow" haven't been used in the United States since at least the mid 1950s.

**
6."pigeon wing" - a plantation dance step associated with the Juba dance Click https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juba_dance for information about the Juba dance

**
7. "stepping sweet (neat, and fine") = dancing very well

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8. "struck an attitude" - similar or the same as "strike a pose"; [dancers] put on a particular facial expression and held their body in a way that conveyed poise, self-confidence, pride, insolence etc.

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9. "strut" 
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/strut
"
intransitive verb
2a: to walk with a proud gait

2b: to walk with a pompous and affected air

[...]

noun

2. a pompous step or walk

3. arrogant behavior : SWAGGER"

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From https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/strut
"Someone who struts
 walks in a proud way, with their head held high and their chest out, as if they are very important."

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9. "to strut your stuff"
"Your stuff" here means your body; your whole self (which also includes your spirit/attitude) 

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10. "syncopate" - dance moving to the music's rhythm and beat

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11.  "They were doing for fair" = probably a common African American saying at that time for "They were pretty good" [in this context] at dancing. Note that this is my guess. I've never heard this phrase or read it outside of this song.

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12. "Tried to do the cake walk swell" = tried to do the cake walk very well - The cakewalk is a 19th century African American originated dance in which couples strut in imitation of formal European dances. The couple who is judged to be the best calk walkers wins a cake as their prize.  

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/02/cakewalk-grand-march-usa-canada.html for a 2012 pancocojams post entitled "
The Cakewalk & The Grand March - The USA & Canada"

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13. "win the cake" = the best dance couple is awarded a prize of a cake which is why that strut is called "the cake walk".

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