Here's a Japanese hand clapping game about making rice cakes (mochi) on the moon.

Ayako wrote from Japan, "I enjoyed this hand-clapping game when I was a kid… The girls are wearing rabbit masks. We cerebrate the full moon in September (August 15 by the lunar calendar) and enjoy viewing the full moon and cerebrating the harvest. That is called 'Jugoya'. And we believe rabbits are making rice cakes on the moon! This game sings about this cerebration. That's why the girls are wearing the mask of rabbits!"

Notes

Notes about the last 3 lines:

Line 3: 'Okkoneta' is from 'koneta' = kneaded sometimes we add 'o' for the rhythm.
Line 4: These are sounds expressing a mallet.
Line 5: This line is the sound of clapping.

Sadao wrote…

"Three, three, & seven times are favorite rhythm for Japanese.

The song is Rice-cake (mochi) pounding in the full-moon-night or Rice-cake (mochi) making in the full-moon-night.

Maybe you know that Japanese people had been told 'there is a hare (or rabbit) on the moon' in old stories. Look on Wikipedia to read more about it."

Comments

Sadao wrote: You can hear an mp3 of this song online and the Japanese lyrics for that version are follows;

十五夜さんの餅つきは 
トーントン トッテッタ トーントン トッテッタ トッテ トッテ トッテッタ

These are sounds expression of mallet in another sound expression.

おっこねた おっこねた おっこねおっこね おっこねた
とっついた とっついた とっついとっつい とっついた
シャン シャン シャンシャンシャン シャン シャン シャンシャンシャン
トッテ トッテ トッテタ

The others are almost the same as the version in the youtube.

So English lyrics are;

The hare pounds 'Mochi' on the moon
Pom- pound, pom-pom-pound, pom- pound pom-pom-pound, pound-pound pom-pom-pound
Kneaded it, kneaded it, kneaded-kneaded, kneaded it
Pasted on, pasted on, pasted-pasted pasted on*
Clap, clap, cla-cla-clap, clap, clap, cla-cla-clap
Pound-pound pom-pom-pound

*One more meaning of とっついた (Tottsuita - 'pasted on') is 'pushed on'. So my English version can be;

'Pushed on by the mallet'

Or 'Pasted on the mallet'

3, My English version (Jugoya-3.mid: melody is the same as Jugoya-2)

The hare pounds 'Mochi' on the moon
Pom- pound, pom-pom-pound, pom- pound pom-pom-pound, pound-pound pom-pom-pound
Kneaded it, kneaded it, kneaded-kneaded in the mortar
Pasted on. pasted on, pasted-pasted on the mallet
Clap, clap, cla-cla-clap, clap, clap, cla-cla-clap
We all cheer him in his work.
(Refrain)

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Thanks and Acknowledgements

Thanks to Ayako Egawa for contributing this song, for the Japanese text and for helping with the English translation! Thanks to Sadao Mazuka for helping with the 1st English translation and for the other 2 versions and translations, for explaining the lyrics and for the midis.

Arigato gozaimasu!

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