The Dixie Cups
had a big hit with the definitive version of Chapel of Love
in 1964. Iko Iko
was a surprise hit in 1965.
"Jock-a-mo" was the original version of the song "Iko Iko" recorded by The Dixie Cups in 1965. Their version came about by accident. They were in a New York City studio for a recording session when they began an impromptu version of "Iko Iko," accompanied only by drumsticks on studio ashtrays.
Said Dixie Cup member Barbara Hawkins: "We were just clowning around with it during a session using drumsticks on ashtrays. We didn't realize that Jerry and Mike had the tapes running". Session producers Leiber and Stoller added bass and drums and released it.
Follow the link in the quoted text to see the original Dixie Cup lyrics.
First verse and chorus:
My grandma and your grandma, were sittin by the fire,
My grandma told your grandma, I'm going to set your flag on fire,
Takin bout hey now, hey now
Iko! Iko! an de'
Jackomo fe no nan e' , Jackomo fe nan e'
It's sung a capella
with only rhythm, drumsticks on ashtrays at the start, so you may have heard in on an oldies station.
I liked the detective work in tracing the lyrics back to Old French. I speak just enough French, badly enough, to aggravate a Frenchman or a Québecois Tongue-Trooper, but with the explanation I could see where the words came from. For instance, "wa
" came from "roi
" (king) in one example given. Although it wasn't explained why "deye
means 'after', 'behind', or 'rear' ... ," I'm sure it came from the Old French word deriere
(with no accents according to the AHD), which became the Modern French derrière
(behind). I'm just not sure whether deye
is pronounce "day" (dā), "day-ay (dā-ā), or "day-yay" (dā-yā). It's such an old thread at Mudcat that I wonder if it shouldn't be left alone.
Alas, I rarely dress in green ...