Mama Lisa's World
International Music & Culture
Een Nederlandse Amerikaan
(Belgian Kids Song)
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"The song is about the antics of an American from the Netherlands." -Niklas

Een Nederlandse Amerikaan
A Dutch American
Children's Song
(Dutch)
Children's Song
(English)

Een Nederlandse Amerikaan
Die zie je al van verre staan
Een Nederlandse Amerikaan
Die zie je al van verre staan.

(Refrein)
Van voor naar achter
Van links naar rechts
Van voor naar achter
Van links naar rechts.

Zijn hoofd lijkt wel een varkenskop,
er staat zowat geen haar meer op
Zijn hoofd lijkt wel een varkenskop,
er staat zowat geen haar meer op

(Refrein)

Zijn buik lijkt wel een lucht ballon,
ik wou dat ik er in prikken kon
Zijn buik lijkt wel een lucht ballon,
ik wou dat ik er in prikken kon

(Refrein)

Zijn hemd lijkt wel een prentenboek,
het hangt een meter uit zijn broek
Zijn hemd lijkt wel een prentenboek,
het hangt een meter uit zijn broek

(Refrein)

A Dutch American,
You can see him from afar.
A Dutch American,
You can see him from afar.

(Chorus)
Go forward, go backward,
Go from left to right
Go forward, go backward,
Go from left to right.

His head looks like a pig's head,
On it there are barely three hairs.
His head looks like a pig's head,
On it there are barely three hairs.

(Chorus)

His belly looks like a balloon,
I wish I could prick it with a needle.
His belly looks like a balloon,
I wish I could prick it with a needle.

(Chorus)

His shirt looks like a picture book,
It hangs several yards* out of his trousers.
His shirt looks like a picture book
It hangs several yards* out of his trousers.

(Chorus)
 
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Notes

*Literally, "meters".

Game Instructions

Niklas sent this note about how to play this game:

"I know the 'Nederlandse Amerikaan' from my days with the boy scouts where we used it as a 'shunkel' song. You probably know songs like this in English: You sit on a bench, most of the time with a table in front of you, and lock arms with the person to your left and right. And then you as a group move left, right, bow, stand up, sit down... on command. In particular the chorus 'Van voor naar achter...' gives detailed instructions..."

Van voor (from the front) --- Everybody bows forward.
Naar achter (to the back) --- Everybody sits up straight again.
Van links (to the left) --- Everybody leans left.
Naar re-hechts (to the ri-hight) --- Everybody leans to the right.
Van voor (from the front) --- Everybody bows forward again.
Naar achter ... van links ... naar rechts --- As above.

I have also encountered a slightly different version:

Van voor (from the front) --- Everybody bows forward.
Naar achter (to the back) --- Everybody sits up straight again.
Van links (to the left) --- Everybody leans left.
Naar re-hechts (to the ri-hight) --- Everybody leans to the right.
Van boven (from up) --- Everybody stands up.
Naar onder (to down) --- Everybody sits down again.
Van links (to the left) --- Everybody leans left.
Naar rechts (to the right) --- Everybody leans to the right.

Comments

Niklas wrote:

The music is the same as folksong in a South-German/Austrian dialect that goes like this:

A Bueren-liebele mag I nicht,
Das sieht man mir wol an. Juch-he
A Bueren-liebele mag I nicht,
Das sieht man mir wol an. Juch-he

Translation:

A peasant sweetheart I do not care for,
You see it on my face, hoo-ray.
A peasant sweetheart I do not care for,
You see it on my face, hoo-ray.

There is a longer version of this song in Swiss German on Mama Lisa's Switzerland song pages.

Thanks and Acknowledgements

Many thanks to Lyndsey Haezebrouck for contributing and translating the 1st verse and the chorus of this song. Thanks to Niklas Oberfeld for sharing and translating the other verses and the game instructions.

Dank u wel!

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