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Day-o, Day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Day, me say day, me say day, me say day
Me say day, me say day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Work all night on a drink a' rum
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Stack banana till the mornin' come
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Come, Mister tally man, tally me banana
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Come, Mister tally man, tally me banana
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Lift six foot, seven foot, eight foot BUNCH!
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Six foot, seven foot, eight foot BUNCH!
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Day, me say day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Day, me say day, me say day, me say day...
Daylight come and me wan' go home

A beautiful bunch a' ripe banana
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Hide the deadly black tarantula
Daylight come and me wan' go home

It's six foot, seven foot, eight foot BUNCH!
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Six foot, seven foot, eight foot BUNCH!
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Day, me say day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Day, me say day, me say day, me say day...
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Come, Mister tally man, tally me banana
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Come, Mister tally man, tally me banana
Daylight come and me wan' go home

Day-o, day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Day, me say day, me say day, me say day
Me say day, me say day-ay-ay-o
Daylight come and me wan' go home



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/h/harry_belafonte/banana_boat_song.html

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  • u
    +2
    UnregisteredDec 13, 2011 at 7:14 am
    I don't believe it had anything to do with slavery. A slave wouldn't need the bananas to be tallied. Only the person being paid for them would. It would either be someone harvesting and selling their own crop or someone working on a plantation for pay.
  • m
    +1
    Mishle CruzAug 22, 2013 at 9:48 pm
    Actually, it IS "hide the deadly". Check some of the footages posted online of Mr. Belafonte performing the song live. His lips move more correspondingly to "hide the deadly" than "bite be deadly". You can clearly hear the "h" being projected at the beginning of the verse.
  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredJul 15, 2012 at 5:24 am
    Harry belafonte was working down at the docks loading bananas. He would be there since the morning. He wrote this song in one sitting for the mere fact that he couldn't wait to get home.
  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredJun 28, 2012 at 1:07 pm
    Like any other hard, hot, thankless job, all you want to do the whole time is get the truck out of there!
  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredJun 25, 2012 at 1:05 pm
    There's no secret meaning to the tarantula bit. Tarantulas (the spiders) really do hide in bunches of bananas, and most people think they're deadly (they're not, at least not those).

    By the way, bananas are generally imported from central and south america, not africa.

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