Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
#1
Old 01-03-2005, 06:45 PM
Charter Member
Charter Member
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Not here. There.
Posts: 18,680
That song about the daring young man on the flying trapeze

I don't know if kids still go through a period of being attracted to the circus, but when I was a kid, most of us still did at some point. As a result, we all knew at least the chorus of that song about the man on the trapeze. Or at least the line that goes:

He flew through the air with the greatest of ease,

And this song would propagate through generations of children as older ones sang it to younger ones.


But does anyone know where this song came from? It's sung in the 1934 movie It Happened One Night, but it seems older than that.
#2
Old 01-03-2005, 06:55 PM
Member
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Cloud Cuckoo Land
Posts: 28,043
The man who inspired the song was Jules Leotard (1838-1870) and the song was written by George Leybourne in 1868. Leotard is also credited with the suit of the same name. Surprisingly, considering his relative youth at the time of his death, he did not die from a fall but from smallpox.
#3
Old 01-03-2005, 06:57 PM
Guest
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Memphis
Posts: 5,891
I know the rest of the chorus (or maybe it's a verse):

He flies through the air with the greatest of ease,
This daring young man on the flying trapeze.
His movements are graceful, all girls he does please,
And my love he has taken awa-aaay.


It's one of the universal Life Experiences, this losing one's girlfriend to a dashing young trapeze artist.
#4
Old 01-04-2005, 09:52 AM
Charter Member
Charter Member
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Not here. There.
Posts: 18,680
Quote:
Originally Posted by jackelope
I know the rest of the chorus (or maybe it's a verse):

He flies through the air with the greatest of ease,
This daring young man on the flying trapeze.
.


.
After a lifetime of only knowing these two lines, it was fun to hear the entire song in It Happened One Night, as well as the band arrangement--singer, guitarist, and fiddler.
#5
Old 01-04-2005, 10:59 AM
Guest
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Gumi, S. Korea
Posts: 9,123
It's also used in a Popeye short (Fleischer bros. era).
#6
Old 01-04-2005, 11:13 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: The land of the mouse
Posts: 43,494
It's also played by the ship's band in The Bridges at Toko-Ri, when Mickey Rooney is being transported to another ship via breeches buoy.

James Thurber's The Middle-Aged Man on the Flying Trapeze is hilarious.

The full lyrics
Quote:
This young man by name was Signor Bona Slang,
Tall, big and handsome, as well made as Chang.
Where'er he appeared the hall loudly rang
With ovation from all people there.
Um, yeah, okay.

Spike Jones' version is the best.
#7
Old 01-04-2005, 12:46 PM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,785
The tune, played on calliope and minus words) showed up a couple of times of the 1960's show The Wild Wild West, as incidental music. Jim West was looking for someone in what I believe was a seemingly deserted carnival.
#8
Old 01-04-2005, 02:35 PM
Guest
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Silicon Valley
Posts: 4,190
Doodles Weaver's version (as part of Spike Jones and his City Slickers) is pretty funny.
#9
Old 01-04-2005, 03:20 PM
Eve Eve is offline
Guest
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 22,064
Quote:
Tall, big and handsome, as well made as Chang.
A joke no one gets anymore. From a circus-poster site: "In 1881, when James Bailey and P.T. Barnum entered into their new partnership, they traveled under the title Barnum and Great London Circus. It was at this time that Chang-Tu-Sing, the Chinese Goliath, was an attraction in their combined shows. According to the text which accompanies the Asian titan on the poster, Chang was the most gigantic and finely proportioned man in existence."
#10
Old 01-04-2005, 04:00 PM
Guest
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Eighth & Forty-Deuce
Posts: 3,744
I don't know what y'all be talkin' 'bout.

It's DJ Kool.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Kool
Now I'ma rap a rhyme with the greatest of ease
And swing it like the man on the flying trapeze
And if you don't like it you grab on these
And now I need some help from the maestro please

Jam, Ha! So look it here check the flavor of the rhythm I wrote
And while I got a chance here, let me clear my throat.

Don't you people know ANYTHING?
#11
Old 01-04-2005, 04:25 PM
Guest
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Obama country
Posts: 14,955
John Major, a former UK Prime Minister, was considered rather boring.
Apparently he ran away from the circus to become an accountant.
#12
Old 01-04-2005, 05:16 PM
Guest
Join Date: Mar 1999
Posts: 802
Royal Crown Review had that line in their song, [i]Rise and Fall of the Great Mondello[i]:

This cat was flying through with
The greatest of ease
All of a sudden he missed the trapeze
Down and down, down and down
Kersplatty on the ground

Come and see where Mondello did land
The poor fellow is in the Lord’s hands
Oh me oh my what a shame
Nothing left, just a stain
#13
Old 01-08-2005, 02:28 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: SEC
Posts: 13,700
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spectre of Pithecanthropus
It's sung in the 1934 movie It Happened One Night, but it seems older than that.
Interestingly, the same year as the "Our Gang" short Mike Fright.
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:53 AM.

Copyright © 2017
Best Topics: girlfriend moving amerika meaning 100 native american hulu port forwarding cinematographer vs dp food containing glucosamine butt crack porn road runner dsl whale on someone poop catheter nfl holder cynical pessimist salmon expiration date apartment key celery ribs kitten energy deutschland vs germany short sword size toenail layers 3 dimensional rectangle detonator box pk nails survey lobster arachnid skin darkening pills tolo dance valet keyfob reddit toenail fungus let faucets drip sand trout dune 60s earring west addison angalo irish xo liquor nasa collectors green licorice rope american beer sucks best way to find a leak in an air mattress can rabbits eat mushrooms what is a wry sense of humor how to attach w2 to tax return irs how much did the palace of versailles cost judge judy ebay scammer should i put my daughter on birth control weight gain supplement for cats do antidepressants show up in urine tests numb spot on leg below knee recharging car battery after jump start emery board for teeth grilled cheese sandwich without butter my ear cartilage hurts ground beef raw brown undercover boss fires employee on the spot how long does a corolla last clearplay dvd player walmart my cat killed a mouse in my house how to make my older cat gain weight pathfinder srd bag of holding how to find original blueprints for your house what is a rimshot using visine with contacts mixing acid and base wear underwear under swim trunks what is a paper mill connect turntable to receiver without phono input one eye is weaker than the other who makes mr pibb my name is mudd origin car takes long time to warm up light vs dark kidney beans turbo cold air intake