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George Gershwin
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George Gershwin

Summertime lyrics

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George Gershwin – Summertime lyrics

And the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'
And the cotton is high

Oh, Your daddy's rich
And your mamma's good lookin'
So hush little baby
Don't you cry

One of these mornings
You're going to rise up singing
Then you'll spread your wings
And you'll take to the sky

But until that morning
There's a'nothing can harm you
With your daddy and mammy standing by

And the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'
And the cotton is high

Your daddy's rich
And your mamma's good lookin'
So hush little baby
Don't you cry

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  • u
    UnregisteredJul 21, 2012 at 3:41 pm
    I feel like so many of us get upset without really considering the intent. Yes, in the old south, the "mammy" was a servant- perhaps even a slave. The meaning is deeper. It's about life. Summer time is the time to be enjoying what god has given you. A time for sowing and reaping, yes, also a time to give thanks for the protections you have. And then one day you will "fly away"- but be at peace- you are being cared for. Your rich daddy may be a reference to a privileged child then, but it's also a reference to all of us- who have a heavenly father. My two bits.
  • u
    UnregisteredAug 21, 2012 at 4:40 pm
    Might I suggest to some (most?), posting comments here that you get the dvd of porgy & bess? Then you'll know what you're talking about. Or at least read the damn wikipedia page.
    No slaves, no privileged white babies, no cotton-pickin' - p&b was set in "catfish row," on the waterfront in charleston, south carolina, in the 1930s.
    That's what it refers to - nothing else - it was a contemporary tale, not historical.
  • j
    jadgitApr 24, 2011 at 6:52 am
    Notice the subtle difference in wording. Baby's "mama" is good-looking, meaning the master's wife. But the well-being, until death arrives, will come from daddy's power and wealth, and from protection and love by "mammy" - not mama. Mammy is the black female who's singing the song, and who loves the child whose mama can't be bothered to take much time for it. As my friend who was raised in the South reports, that was sometimes the Southern way, as it was for him.
  • l
    LenellamaxJun 21, 2010 at 4:32 pm
    You have to realize that this was written as a old south lullabye sung by a nursemaid. Summertime in the south brought about an easier way of living if there was such a thing. But it wasn't cold, and many slaves didn't even have shoes or outerware. This is further supported by the fact that the child's parents were rich, most likely plantation owners. People back then were either rich or poor. There wasn't a middle class. It talks about how the child will be protected while in it's parents care. But like all children they grow up and spread their wings and begin their own life. - A tribute to the first day of summer today.
  • u
    UnregisteredMar 6, 2012 at 3:00 am
    This song is a lullaby about how the kid shouldn't worry. That its parents will take care of it, and when its ready to be on its own, it can, but until then they will take care of it. Also, when a person sings their own version of this song, it doesn't really count as a cover, because thi song is a standard, and it is normal for a good singer to make their own version of this wonderful song. (i wonder what would happen if lady gaga made a version of it. *Shudder*)

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