Date: Thu, 13 Jun 1996 17:50:58 -0400 From: Craig LaPresto <email@example.com> [...] a silly dance in America called the "Hokey Pokey"? It is danced at many weddings, is well known, but I don't know how old the song is. The (large) group forms a circle and follows the silly instructions to the song: "You put your right hand in, You take your right hand out, You put your right hand in And you shake it all about. You do the Hokey Pokey And you turn yourself around. That's what it's all about." This now continues with left hand, right leg, left leg, whole self. The dance is easy enough for everyone including young children. In the USA the word "hokey" can mean stupidly simple- lie we get the word "provincial" from the Parisians' distain for country folk. However, I don't know if the word predates the song or vice versa.
To: Roland Bauer <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: the Hokey Pokey choreographer Date: Tue, 18 Mar 97 13:20:47 -0500 From: "Patrick D. McMonagle" <email@example.com> [...] Recently I met somone who was at the funeral of the man who choreographed the Hokey Pokey. The funeral was well attended and lasted a long time, live music was playing. The funeral took so long because they did not just lay him to rest in the earth. No: they had to: Put his left foot in. Take his left foot out. Put..... Shake.... :-( The Hokey Pokey, is I more seriously believe, not a dance at all but a "Play Party Game". The distinction; as a game certain religous fundamentalists could play it. They were forbidden to dance. That category dates its American popularity to the 1930s, at latest, when the need for the distinction expired. When alcolhol prohibition was repealed in the USA, 1932, a lot of religious supported local laws that prohibited record companies from selling sinful dance music went with it. The Hokey Pokey is certainly older than the 30s. I would not care to guess on its ancestry. The rumor in Seattle, about the Chicken dance, is that it originated in Peru . The rumor probably belongs in the same file as the funeral story. [...]