Douglas Mountain

This winter gem is known to many of us from Raffi’s Christmas Album, though he credits the song to Arnold Sundgaard and Alec Wilder. Additional verses have been recorded in the Rise Up Singing Songbook. If your home is close to mountains, you might like to replace “Douglas” mountain with the local names as storytimers in my library system do.

This is a simplified version of the chords that my colleague Elizabeth shared with me. Most versions online use five chords, which gives the song a richer sound but requires the dreaded E chord. My voice complains if I try to sing too high, so I’m also including the version in F. Make sure to practice transitioning in and out of the G minor chord if you try this one in storytime.


Douglas Mountain (C)
C                       G       C

Snows are a falling on Douglas Mountain
Dm          [G]         C

Snows are a falling so deep
Dm          [G]         C

Snows are a falling on Douglas Mountain
Dm              [G]       C

Putting all the bears to sleep
G                     C

Putting the bears to sleep


Douglas Mountain (F)
F                       C       F

Snows are a falling on Douglas Mountain
Gm           [C]        F

Snows are a falling so deep
Gm           [C]        F

Snows are a falling on Douglas Mountain
Gm              [C]       F

Putting all the bears to sleep
C                     F

Putting the bears to sleep

Shake My Sillies Out

Our summer of action songs continues with this wonderfully wiggly storytime favourite (and with credit to the songwriters, Raffi and B & B Simpson).

The original version uses the chords D, G, and A7 (which you can transpose to C/F/G7 or G/C/D7 if that’s easier for you to sing or play). Since I like to keep things super-simple for storytime, I’ve chosen this two-chord version I found via the Queen City Ukes Songbook.


Shake My Sillies Out
F

I gotta shake, shake, shake my sillies out
C7             F

Shake, shake, shake my sillies out
F

Shake, shake, shake my sillies out
    C7                  F

And wiggle my waggles away

Verses
Clap...
Jump...
Yawn...

Willoughby Wallaby Woo

April is poetry month, so let me gush about Canadian poet Dennis Lee. As the author of Alligator Pie and Lizzy’s Lion, and lyricist for Fraggle Rock, he wrote the words to my childhood.

As a children’s librarian, I learned to love him even more. He wrote some of my favourite bounces and tickles with Pizza Pickle Pumpernickel, Dickery Dean, and The Bear and the Bees (aka Wiggle Waggle Went the Bear), as well as the sweet lullaby Rock Me Easy.

His name-play rhyme Willoughby Wallaby Woo is featured in his iconic poetry collection Alligator Pie. In 1976 Raffi included a version he and Larry Miyata adapted on the record Singable Songs for the Very Young, and they’ve been kind enough to share their chords and lyrics on Raffi’s website. My ending is slightly different than Raffis; I must have picked up the alternate version from another storytimer over the years.

Raffi’s chords are G/A/D. I’ve transposed to C/D/G7, but if your voice goes a little higher than mine, you can play with our favourite easy storytime chords, F/G7/C.

Willoughby Wallaby Woo
C                           D

Willoughby wallaby wee, an elephant sat on me
G7                                         C

Willoughby wallaby woo, an elephant sat on you

C                            D

Willoughby wallaby wames, an elephant sat on James
G7                                           C

Willoughby wallaby wemma, an elephant sat on Emma

C                            D

Willoughby wallaby winn, an elephant sat on Quinn
G7                                                            C

Oh willoughby wallaby, willoughby wallaby, willoughby wallaby woo