April 21, 2005

"Willie and the Hand Jive."

Driving in to work this morning, I had the satellite radio set at the 1950s decade channel, and I came in at the middle of Neil Sedaka's "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do," which I greatly enjoyed. Even better was the next song, The Johnny Otis Show doing "Willie and the Hand Jive." One of the many things I love about this song is that even though the title and the first two verses convince you it's about masturbation, they build deniability into the lyrics with lines like this:
Mama, Mama look at Uncle Joe
He's doin' that hand jive with sister Flo
Grandma gave baby sister a dime
Said, do that hand jive one more time...

Willie and Millie got married last fall
They had a little Willie Junior, and a-that ain't all
You know, the baby got famous in his crib, you see
Doin' that hand jive on TV.

So if you think the song is about masturbation, there must be something terribly wrong with you! Great joke all around.


Ron said...


Got any Link Wray on that channel? He's my favorite from the '50's...and Jerry Lee Lewis of course!

Link for Link!

Uncle Jimbo said...


You took me back to football camp one summer as a boy. Our fullback and tackle were brothers who had just moved up from Atlanta. They taught us the hand jive which was done sitting forward on a chair and slapping the inside and outsied of the thighs and chest. It was a kind of percussion accompaniement for dancing. They also did fancy little riffs to show off.

This site has a description
How to Hand Jive

That said you are dead on that the song is all about double and maybe even quad entendres as I have heard references to the burning of certain herbs mentioned also.


Uncle J
Military Matters

Uncle Jimbo said...

My bad the hand jive site is here

How to Hand Jive

wayne said...

Check out the lyrics for another multi-entendered classic: Cyndi Laupers "She bop". Its good for quite a few smirks.

wifi said...

Thanks Ann & Uncle Jimbo for the info. The song was a little ahead of my time, but after coming of age, I did always wonder about it ....

So now how about telling me about Chuck Berry's song, "My Ding-a-Ling".

Another one I've wondered about while in high school in the 70's.
(uh, N-O ..... I am NOT fixated on self abuse songs!!!)

Bill (w/ a son named Willie, of course!!)