Song or Story
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"Bye-Bye Longjohns" is a musical representation of how most Mainers feel by the time March rolls around. For some, this feeling comes even earlier. The song was written in western Maine over the course of the late twentieth century.
1. I put them on October 1, that was orders from my hon, How long, longjohns? They’ll keep me warm all winter long, I want to tell you in this song, How long, longjohns? They were closer to me than a friend, next year to Sears again I’ll send; I kind of miss this underwear, for several months we were a pair, Longjohns, bye-bye!
2. They got smelly towards the end, it was even hard to bend, Bye-bye longjohns! I bought red but they turned black, I should really take them back, Bye-bye longjohns! I must admit that I was glad to shed them, but for months they really warmed my aft end; There were times I thought I’d freeze, especially when I felt a breeze, Longjohns, bye-bye!
3. I’d have shed my underwear, I don’t care I’ll go bare, Bye-bye longjohns! They were very close to me, they tickled me, tee hee hee, Bye-bye longjohns! If you see them you’ll know where to find me, how I miss that old trap door behind me; I have shed my underwear but I don’t care I’ll go bare, Longjohns bye-bye!
Jim Cahill, Dot Ruppell, Jeff McKeen, Bingham, Maine, Grange, Patrons of Husbandry, Myrtle McKinney, Norridgewock, Dottie Abbott, The Forks, longjohns, folksong, Bye-bye Blackbird
Ethnomusicology | Folklore | Oral History
Cahill, Jim and Dot Ruppell. 1991. “Bye-Bye Longjohns.” NA2245, CD2172.13. Northeast Archives of Folklore and Oral History, Raymond H. Fogler Special Collections Department, University of Maine.