Past masters: Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera (and Shug Fisher)Posted: August 2, 2012
From the 1955 MGM cartoon “Pecos Pest.”
Uncle Pecos got him some mad movez!
The song has been heard by many people (as “Froggie Went A-Courtin'”) in the 1955 Tom and Jerry cartoon “Pecos Pest,” which uses a version arranged and performed by Shug Fisher, in character as “Uncle Pecos.” In Pecos Pest, Jerry’s Uncle Pecos stays with him while getting ready for a television appearance, and continues to pluck Tom’s whiskers to use as guitar strings throughout the cartoon. It is an improvised version with many lyrics that are unintelligible, and many changed. For example, he stutters and gives up when he tries to say “hickory tree” and says “way down yonder by the–,” stammers out the names of several types of trees, finally settling (ironically) on “eucalyptus.” He also mentions while continuing the music “That’s the hard part right in there, n-n-n-n-nephew!” and “there’s a yodel in thar somewhar, but it’s a little too high f’r me.”
Some refer to this song as “Crambone” as it is repeated at the end of many lines and said more clearly than the other words in this version. For example the line is “Froggie went a-courtin’ he did ride/Crambone.” Fisher, in character as Pecos, delivers the coda with a glottal stutter on the letter c.
(Clip from MGM or Time-Warner or Sony or whoever the hell holds the rights these days.)