Mama Lisa's World
International Music & Culture
Knees Up Mother Brown
(English Traditional Song)
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"Knees-up" now refers to a lively party in England, often a dance party. The term comes from this song by Harris Weston and Bert Lee written in 1939. It's not as popular as a term now... yet the song is still sung in pubs in England, especially the second version below.

Knees Up Mother Brown
Traditional Song

There came a girl from France
Who didn't know how to dance
The only thing that she could do
Was knees up Mother Brown.

(Chorus)

Oh, knees up Mother Brown,
Knees up Mother Brown,
Knees up, knees up, never let the breeze up,
Knees up Mother Brown.

Oh, hopping on one foot,
Hopping on one foot,
Hopping, hopping, never stopping,
Hopping on one foot.

(Chorus)

Oh, prancing up and down
Prancing up and down
Prancing, prancing, never dancing
Prancing up and down.

(Chorus)

And whirling round and round,
Whirling round and round,
Whirling, whirling, never twirling,
Whirling round and round.

(Chorus - Twice)
 
Watch
In the video below you can see the type of dancing the song refers to...

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Notes

Common Modern Lyrics in the UK:

Knees up Mother Brown!
Knees up Mother Brown!
Under the table you must go
E-I-E-I-E-I-O!
If I catch you bending,
I'll saw your legs right off*,
Knees up! Knees Up!
Don't get the breeze up,
Knees up Mother Brown!

Oh My! What a rotten song!
What a rotten song!
Oh, What a rotten song!
Oh My! What a rotten song!
What a rotten singer too!

Knees up Mother Brown!
Knees up Mother Brown!
Under the table you must go
E-I-E-I-E-I-O!
If I catch you bending,
I'll saw your legs right off,
Knees up! Knees Up!
Don't get the breeze up,
Knees - up - Mother - Brown!
Ow's yer farver**? All right!

*Or "We'll turn you upside-down".
**Literally, "How's your father?" It was a catch phrase in the music halls in Britain and then during WWII. It has a certain innuendo.

Comments



Here's one in a British pub…



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