Heptune presents:Photo of Don Redman

Shakin' the African

    (Koehler-Arlen)

Transcribed from Don Redman and His Orchestra, vocals by Don Redman; recorded September 24, 1931.
From Don Redman and His Orchestra, 1931-1933; The Chronogical Classics 543.

Spoken: Boy, it looks like we picked out the wrong spot this evening. 'Course, this sweet music's all right, but man, we want to go where there's some pep, some excitement! And I really know the spot, too, where there's some real excitement! Get your hat and coat, let's get out of here! I want you to come along with me. I mean, I'm gonna take you to a place where it's just too bad!

Isn't that better, boy?
That guy's hiking it! Hike it there, now, cats!

When shadows start creepin' and stars are peepin' to the rhythm of the band,
Downtown's uptown, boy,
When they get to shakin' that African!

A brand-new movement, boy, but what an improvement!
Gang goes loco, man,
Ever since they started shakin' that African;

Cornet licks, red hot licks, they'll mow you down!
You want to treat your feet to a lowdown beat,
You'll want to go to town!

Better than the Black Bottom, boys, it's really in there!
It started up here, too!
Oh, shakin' that Afro-can!

Now, let me tell you, this is the biggest craze in New York City, boy!
And if you miss this dance, boy, what a pity!
Shakin' that thing! 


Transcribed from Don Redman and His Orchestra, vocals by Don Redman; recorded October 15, 1931.
From Don Redman and His Orchestra, 1931-1933; The Chronogical Classics 543.

Spoken: Gang, it looks like we've picked out the wrong spot this evening, don't it? Huh? You know this sweet music's all right, but we always been a bunch that go in for plenty pep and excitement! I know where to go. Let's get our coats and hats and get out this joint, huh?  Come on then, let's go where we can have some fun, I mean.

When shadows start creepin' and stars go peepin' to the rhythm of the band,
Boy, downtown's uptown,
Shakin' that African!

It's a brand-new movement but, boy, what an improvement!
You know, a gate that goes loco, man,
Doin' the African;

Cornet tricks and red hot licks, they'll mow you down!
And if you want a treat to your lowdown beat,
Boy, come on uptown!

Better than the Black Bottom, it's really in there!
It started up here, too!
Oh, shakin' that Afro-can!

Let me tell you, boys, this is the biggest craze in New York City!
And if you don't learn this dance, what a pity, a pity!
 



 

Return to the Heptune Jazz and Blues Lyrics Page.
 

Published 2/28/99.

Return to the Heptune Jazz and Blues Lyrics Page.

Published 11/1/00.


 
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