Mama Lisa's World
International Music & Culture
Oh Little Playmate
(American Hand Clapping Song)

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Here's a clapping song for kids around 4 to 9...

Oh Little Playmate
Hand Clapping Song

Oh Little Playmate - American Children's Songs - The USA - Mama Lisa's World: Children's Songs and Rhymes from Around the World, Intro Image


Oh little playmate,
Come out and play with me,
And bring your dollies three,
Climb up my apple tree,
Slide down my rainbow,
Into my cellar door,
And we'll be jolly friends,
Forever more, more, more!

Notes

2nd Verse

Leann Slayter wrote:

Growing up in Boston we had a second verse for "Oh Little Playmate"

Oh jolly playmate, I can't come play with you.
My dolly has the flu, boo hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo.
I have no rainbow, ain't got no cellar door,
But we'll be jolly playmates for ever more more more.

*****
Joanne L. Ladd wrote: "I found the words to the way we used to sing 'playmate' back in the 1930's and '40's.

As a group of ladies that were in the pre-school story hour program at the Flint Public Library (Flint Michigan) meet for lunch weekly to discuss everything from world issues to aging health problems... yesterday we tried to remember "Playmate"... your version seems to be a more updated."

Here's the version Joanne and the ladies remember:

Say, say, oh playmate,
Come out and play with me,
And bring your dollies three,
Climb up my apple tree.

Shout down my rain barrel,
Slide down my cellar door,
And we'll be jolly friends,
Forever more, more, more, more, more!

Say, say, oh playmate,
I cannot play with you,
My dolly's got the flu,
Boo hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo.

Ain't got not rain barrel,
Ain't got no cellar door,
But we'll be jolly friends,
Forever more more more.

Thanks for sharing your version Joanne! -Mama Lisa

Here's a slightly different version by Candace:

Oh little playmate
Come out and play with me
And bring your dollies three
Climb up my apple tree
Slide down my rain barrel
Into my cellar door,
And we'll be jolly friends
Forever more!
One Two Three Four!

Oh little playmate
You would not play with me
So take your dollies three
Climb down my apple tree
Climb up my rain barrel
Out through my cellar door
And we'll be jolly friends
No more no more!
One Two Three Four!

Uly wrote:

You have this song on your site (Oh Little Playmate), but you don't have the instructions, so I don't know if you played it the way I learned growing up. Ana has finally mastered this one and we can go at a reasonable pace, though we can't go fast yet:

You start facing each other (two people) with your right hand up and your left hand down.

Oh little
(1. Reverse your hands on oh, clapping your partner on the way up/down, then repeat for lit- and clap your own hands together for -tle)

Playmate

(2. Clap right hand to right, then your hands together. Then clap left to left and your hands together twice.)

Come out and

(3. Clap the backs of your hands to the backs of your partners hands, then clap the palms of your hands to the palms of your partner's hands, then clap your own hands together)

Play with me

(Repeat step 2)

Play with my/dollies three

(repeat steps 2 and 3... aw, heck, keep doing that until the end of the song, which you know)

Climb up my apple tree/slide down my rainbow/right to my cellar door/and we'll be jolly friends/forever more one two three four

(on "one two three four" you break the pattern (you should have just finished step 3 again) and clap right hand to right hand four times)

Then you can repeat it faster if you like.

*****

Edward Jay Blume sent this version that his grandfather (Samuel Perin of the Bronx NY) used to sing to his 2 sisters:

Oh little play---mate,
Why don't you play with m---e
And bring your dollies thre---e
Climb up my apple tre---e
Slide down my rain bar---rel
Into my cellar do---or,
And we'll be jolly friend---s
Forever mo---re!

(2nd Part)

"It was a rainy da---y, I couldn't come out any pla---y! And with a sigh I cry---'d:"

Ooooh little play---mate,
I cannot play with yo---u,
My dolly's has the fl---u,
O' boo hoo hoo hoo hoo ho------o.

Ain't got not rain bar---rel,
Ain't got no cellar do---or,
But we'll be jolly friend---s,
Forever mo-------------re!

***

Jo wrote:

"On the 'little playmate' song I was taught that it had a bridge between the two verses. It went, 'she couldn't come out to play, it was a sunny day. With tearfilled eyes she breathed a sigh and I could hear her say.' I'm sorry playmate etc etc.

Unfortunately, I am unable to write the music here and there is a shift in the melody for the bridge. Perhaps another of your viewers might be able to get the melody to you."

Jo Sak
Oregon, USA

*****

Katrina Kuhn wrote:

"I remember hearing 'Oh Little Playmate' as a little girl, but my mother and I sang it differently than what you have here.

Oh, say little playmate
Come out and play with me,
We'll have such fun you see,
Climb up my apple tree.

Say, say little playmate,
Come open up your door,
And we'll be special friends,
Forever more.

Oh, my dear playmate,
I can't come play with you,
I've gone and got the flu,
And I'm so sick, boo hoo!

Oh say my playmate,
Just wait for me one day more,
And we'll be special friends
Forever more!

It may have just been three generations, myself, my mother and grandmother, singing it wrong, but we certainly had fun with it!"

Comments

I sang this song while growing up in the 70's on Long Island, N.Y. -Mama Lisa

Thanks and Acknowledgements

Thanks to Leann Slayter for sending a 2nd verse to this rhyme! Thanks to Joanne, Candace and Eddie for sending their versions! Thanks to Uly for the hand-clapping directions. Thanks to Katrina Kuhn for sending her family's version.

Thanks to Gracie Gralike for the drawing!

Many thanks to Melanie Combs for singing this song for us!

Thank you very much!

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