The animation was inducted into the
National Film Registry in 2003.
Clearly the music is one extremely popular aspect of the film and is closely associated with the frog. For example, Looney Tunes message boards frequently see questions along the lines of "What is the name of that frog that sings "Hello My Baby, Hello my Darling"?" Fans - even casual ones - tend to remember some of the songs years after the experience.
But do they know anything about the songs themselves? I've had many pleasant conversations with fans who were curious about hearing more about these songs. They are eager to know whether they were "real" songs or if they written by the people who breathed life into the dancing frog. And what are those lyrics exactly? The songs are not familar to people today but it did seem rather distressing to hear one person ask about the misheard lyrics "Come back to wearin' my Barney my Barney" and another to wonder about whether "come over to my house and play like you're my little girl" was hinting at perversion and pedophilia (it is not).
I decided that I was overdue for creating another LT&MM webpage and so I decided to tackle this subject in detail. It is my sincere hope that fans of this film enjoy this little peek at some of the layers of musical trivia just beyond the frog and the people who brought it to life.
One of the most beloved films in the history of Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies features
a green frog. Although at the time of the film he was given no name, his popularity forced the director,
Chuck Jones, to create one. He first called him Michigan Frog but later added a middle
initial of "J" when a friend Jay Cox suggested it would sound better with a middle initial.
So the most famous frog in the history
of animation finally had a moniker: Michigan J. Frog.
Rip the horned toad - possible inspiration?
Hello, Ma Baby
Come Back to Erin
I'm Just Wild About Harry
The Great McCloskey Fight
Won't You Come Home to My House
Largo al factotum
Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone
Current Main Page
Hello Ma' Baby, a/k/a Telephone Rag (1890s vintage) Hello, Ma Baby - Words and Music by Ida Emerson and Joseph E. Howard 1899 Midi Come Back to Erin, 1866 (Claribel, 1830-1869 (pseud. for Charlotte Alington [Mrs. Charles Barnard])) Michigan Rag (ersatz song, created by Maltese) The Great McCloskey Fight (title?) "Won't You Come Home to My House" (1906) Words by Harry Williams, music by Egbert Van Alstyne I'm Just Wild About Harry (Eubie Blake, 1921) midi Largo al factotum (from Barber of Seville) Gioachino Rossini Born: 29 February 1792, Pesaro (Italy) Died: 13 November 1868, Passy (France) bio: http://www.naxos.com/mainsite/default.asp?pn=Composers&char=R&ComposerID=887 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gioacchino_Rossini Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone
"Hello Ma Baby", written in 1899 by Ida Emerson & Joseph E. Howard "Throw Him Down, McCloskey" was recorded by a gent named Charles Marsh, and hit #1 on 6/18/1892 remaining there for 3 weeks. "Won't You Come Home to My House" did not chart until 1907, sung by Byron G. >Harlan and charted again by Henry Burr a month later. Harlan teamed up with Arthur Collins (as Collins & Harlan) to do minstrel and ragtime songs. "Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone" by Sidney Clare, Sam H. Stept & Bee Palmer - http://www.rienzihills.com/SING/pleasedonttalkaboutme.htm charted first in 1931, sung by Gene Austin
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