Froggy Went A Courtin - Chords, Lyrics and Origins

Origins

Although sung in the YouTube version on this page by the relatively contemporary Jimmie Rodgers, Froggy Went a Courtin' is in fact a very old song.  I've categorized it as Scottish because it was first published in 1548 in Wederburn's 'Complaynt of Scotland' with the unpromising title of 'The frog came to the myl dur'.  You can find out more about Forggy Went a Courtin's origins here.  There is a theory (my gut reaction is, an unlikley one) that the song is about Francois of Anjou's failed attempt to woo Queen Elizabeth I of England.  Whatever the truth of this, Froggy Went a Courtin' is a song that has appealed to generations of children.  And also to a surprising phalanx of well-known singers: as well as the recording by Jimmie Rodgers, there are versions by Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen.  Each has a slightly different takes on the lyrics.  The chords are very easy - one, five and four (for exemple, C, G and F).  You can pick which ever key you like to play the chords in - or just move your capo up and down the fret board until you find a key that works for you.

Chords

Capo at 6th Fret

Introduction:
C-Bb-C      C-Bb-C

C

Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride, uh-hum,

C                                                                         G7
Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride, uh-hum,

C7
Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride,

                F                                                          C
He had a sword and a pistol by his side, uh-hum.

Lyrics

Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride, uh-hum,
Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride, uh-hum,
Froggy went a-courtin' and he did ride,
He had a sword and a pistol by his side, uh-hum.

Well he rode up to Miss Mousey's door, uh-hum,
Well he rode up to Miss Mousey's door, uh-hum,
Well he rode up to Miss Mousey's door,
And he'd been there many many times before, uh-hum.

He said, "Miss Mouse, are you within?" uh-hum,
He said, "Miss Mouse, are you within?" uh-hum,
He said, "Miss Mouse, are you within?"
She said, "Yes, kind sir, I sit and I spin," uh-hum,

He took Miss Mousey on his knee, uh-hum,
He took Miss Mousey on his knee, uh-hum,
He took Miss Mousey on his knee,
He said, "Mousey, won't you please marry me?" uh-hum.

"Not without my uncle Rat's consent, uh-hum,
Not without my uncle Rat's consent, uh-hum,
Well without my uncle Rat's consent,
I wouldn't marry the president, uh-hum".

Uncle Rat laughed and he shook his fat sides, uh-hum,
Uncle Rat laughed and he shook his fat sides, uh-hum,
Uncle Rat laughed and he shook his fat sides,
To think his little iece is gonna be a bride, uh-hum.

Where will the wedding breakfast be? uh-hum,
Where will the wedding breakfast be? uh-hum,
Where will the wedding breakfast be?
Way down yonder in a hollow tree, uh-hum.

Well the next came in was a two-legged flea, uh-hum,
Well the next came in was a two-legged flea, uh-hum,
Well the next to come in was a two-legged flea,
And he did a little dance with a bumble-bee, uh-hum.

Well they all went for a ride on the lake, uh-hum,
Well they all went for a ride on the lake, uh-hum,
Well they all went for a ride on the lake,
Got swallowed up by a big black snake.

Well the owls all hooted and the birds all sang, uh-hum,
Well the owls all hooted and the birds all sang, uh-hum,
Well the owls all hooted and the birds all sang,
And through the woods the music rang, uh-hum.

Well there's bread and there's cheese upon the shelf, uh-hum,
Well there's bread and there's cheese upon the shelf, uh-hum,
Well there's bread and there's cheese upon the shelf,
If you want to hear more you're going to sing it yourself, uh-hum.

Other Scottish Folk Songs
Other Traditional Folk Songs