Mole in the Ground (Bragging on my students' original compositions!)
Hi! I’m Raina and I’m taking a little writer’s privilege this week to brag on my students. 🤗
We sang “Mole in the Ground” together last week and I told everyone their “homework” was to try writing a verse of the song themselves! “Mole in the Ground” has a really rich history of each musician making up their own fanciful verses. No two versions of this song are alike, and that’s a big part of the beauty of this old folk tune. I particularly love the videos of Blind Boy Paxton’s Playing For Change and The Tallest Man on Earth. (Isn’t the banjo playing in both of these versions amazing?!)
This is a super common and wonderful trait of folk music, that lyrics are constantly being adapted to fit whatever is meaningful to the person singing the song. This is basically what we try to do in Music Class all the time with substitution songs asking the kids what they want to sing about! “Mole in the Ground” just takes this idea to another level with full rhyming verses. Try it yourself, it’s fun I promise! BUT FIRST CHECK OUT THESE AMAZING VIDEOS OF MY KIDS KILLING IT!!!
EK’s lyrics: Oh I wish I was a monkey in the tree.
Oh I wish I was a monkey in the tree!
If I was a monkey in the tree, I’d go “hee hee hee hee hee."
Oh I wish I was a monkey in the tree.
Verse 1: Oh I wish I was a bunny on the hill. (hop!)
Oh I wish I was a bunny on the hill. (hop!)
If I was a bunny on the hill, I’d hop and then be still.
Oh I wish I was a bunny on the hill. (ooooohhhhh!)
Verse 2: Oh I wish I was a turkey on my plate. (blehblehbleh = turkey noise 🦃😂)
Oh I wish I was a turkey on my plate. (blehblehbleh)
If I was a turkey on my plate, I would taste so great!
Oh I wish I was a turkey on my plate.
Look at that amazing creativity and musicality!!! Now I hope this has inspired you to gather the family together and make up your own verse! Pick an animal, pick a place, pick a rhyme, and have fun! My one hot tip is to pick a place for your animal that’s easy to rhyme because a tiger in the forest can basically only ever grow up to be a florist because I have no idea what else rhymes with "forest." 🤷♀️