Note: This song is associated with the English city of Liverpool, where it was first collected 1891 as a child's skipping tune by Frank Kidson, who noted that "The air [melody] is somewhat pleasing, and the words appear old, though some blanks caused by the reciter's memory have had to be filled up." (This was duly accomplished as other versions turned up.) Marlene Dietrich learned a version from Ewan McColl and sang it in cabaret. Fritz Spiegel, flutist for the Liverpool Philarmonic Orchestra, and his wife Bridget Fry later arranged the melody as the musical theme for the TV show "Z-car." Alan Lomax also claims to have forgotten the words, filling in with whistling and diddling.
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