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Summertime,
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

Summertime,
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



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/g/george_gershwin/summertime.html

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  • U
    +10
    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
    +4
    UnregisteredDec 18, 2011 at 11:39 pm
    I was just sitting here singing summertime to my 6 week old granddaughter in a successful attempt to get her to go to sleep. I thought of the original intent of the song - a simple slow moving song to quieten a crying baby and the way it is sung today with big bands and screeching sopranos - the meaning has been lost!
  • U
    +1
    UnregisteredMay 9, 2012 at 7:16 pm
    This song is a lullaby. For their community porgy is the rich man of the community and bess is the beauty. So she isn't selling a hope and a dream she is reassuring the baby and calming him to sleep like any mother would do in the summer time in a fishing community.
  • j
    +1
    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
    +1
    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.

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