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HANDA WANDA CHANT

****** VERSE ONE *************************
INDIAN!!!!
INDIAN FROM HAN DOUAH MAKE LOU AH!!
SAID UPTOWN RULERS AND DOWNTOWN TOO,
SAID THE WILD MAGNOLIAS GOT INJUN BLUE!
HEY BOY WE (BE?) READY, YA'LL WE RIGHT
HANDA WANDA , OH MAMA!
WE THE PRETTIEST IN THE CITY ON MARDI GRAS
HANDA WANDA, OH MAMA!
OH KEDDIE-FAY-HACKO-MA-HO-NA-NAE
HANDA WANDA, OH MAMA!
OH TELL ME BOY WHAT THE INJUN SAY
HANDA WANDA , OH MAMA!
LITTLE BITTY BOY AND LITTLE BITTY GIRL
HANDA WANDA, OH MAMA!
****** VERSE TWO *********
ON MARDI GRAS MORNING THEY WON'T GO WRONG
HEY COME HERE BOY WON'T YOU STAND BY ME
I'M THE PRETTIEST BIG CHIEF YOU EVER DID SEE!
HEY HANDA WANDA HAN DAN DEY
SAY RING THEM DRUMS ON A HOLIDAY
MARDI GRAS MORNING, IT WON'T BE LONG
THEM INJUN RULERS GONNA SING THEIR SONG
RUN GET YOUR MAMA AND YOUR PAPA TOO
HEY THEM INDIAN BOYS GOT INDIAN BLUE
******* VERSE THREE ********
DON'T DENY YOUR NAME YOU GOT YOUR GANG
DON'T DENY YOUR NAME YOU GOT YOUR FAME
NOW HANDA WANDA YA HA NA NEY
HEY WATCH THEM BOYS IN A MARDI GRAS DAY
ON THE PRETTIEST IN THE CITY THE WHOLE DARN LAND
HEY MARDI GRAS MORNING WE DON'T GIVE A DAMN
RUN GET YOUR MAMA, PAPA TOO,
******VERSE FOUR *********
OH THEM INJUNS COMING, GOT INJUN BLUE!
OH TELL ME BOYS WHAT THEM INJUNS SAY
SAY HANDA WANDA HA NA NEY
HEY PRETTIEST IN THE CITY ON A HOLIDAY
HEY REX IS THE RULER MARDI GRAS MORN
I'M A INDIAN RULER GON' CARRY ON'!
HEY SPY BOY JUMPING UP AND DOWN
OH SPY BOY SAID WE GOIN' DOWNTOWN
OH JAK E MA FINO PUT HOLE IN THE GROUND
PUT A HOLE IN THE GROUND AND DANCE ALL AROUND
JAK E MA FINO MA HO NA RAY
OH JAK ON A HOLIDAY
MARDI GRAS MORNING HERE THEY COME
OH THEM INUJUN BOYS GONNA HAVE THEIR FUN
HAN-DIE-KIL-A-WAY
***** VERSE FIVE **********
OH DO LIKE YOU WANNA ON A MARDI GRAS DAY!
OH YA'LL WE READY, YA'LL WE RIGHT
WE THE PRETTIEST IN THE CITY OM MARDI GRAS
HEY COME HERE BOY, WON'T YOU STAND BY ME
I'M THE PRETTIEST BIG CHIEF YOU EVER DID SEE
HAN-DIE-KIL-A-WAY
HAN-DIE-KIL-A-WAY
OH JAK E MO FINO ON A HOLIDAY
OH BOY WE READY YA'LL WE RIGHT

Submitter comment: THE HANDA WANDA CHANT IS ONE OF THE OLDEST AND BEST KNOWN CHANTS
SUNG BY THE WILD MAGNOLIAS INDIAN GROUP. WHEN THEY DO THEIR CHANTS ON
MARDI GRAS, THEY ARE USUALLY MARCHING IN THE STREETS. THE HEAD
INDIAN CALLS THE RHYMES, WHILE THE TOLL OF OTHER INDIANS
AND THE PEOPLE MARCHING ALONG, SING THE PHRASE 'HANDA WANDA, OH
MAMA'. THE INDIANS KEEP IN TIME TOGETHER BY SHAKING
TAMBOURINES, AND BEATING DRUMS. THIS CHANT WAS LATER PUT TO
MUSIC ON RECORD BY THE MAGNOMIA (MAGNOLIA?) INDIANS
IN MY ATTEMPT TO CONVEY THE PROCESSIONS OF AN INDIAN ON
MARDI GRAS DAY. I WOULD FIRST LET MY FRIENDS LISTEN TO THE
RECORD "HANDA WANDA."
IT EXPLAINS SOME OF THE PRESTIGE AND PREPARATIONS
THESE BLACK PEOPLE PUT INTO THE ACT OF AN INDIAN ON MARDI GRAS DAY.
UPON HEARING THE RECORD, INSTANT DISLIKE ON THEIR PART. I INTERPRET
THE WORDS OF THE SONG AND TRY TO GET THEM TO LISTEN TO ONLY
THOSE WORDS THEY CAN CLEARLY UNDERSTAND, THE REST IS
WHAT WE CALL MARDI GRAS BLUES. I THEN TRY TO EXPLAIN WHAT
IS BEING SAID BASICALLY IN EACH VERSE. I DIVIDE THE SONG INTO
FIVE VERSES, AND I TRY TO SHOW THEM THAT THIS SONG OF THE INDIAN
IS ONLY A PREP SONG OR RALLY SONG.
FROM FIRST VERSE-- 'HEY BOY WE READY , YA'LL WE RIGHT'--
THE INDIAN IS
INDICATING THROUGH WORDS THAT ARE NOT EASILY UNDERSTOOD IN ENGLISH,
THAT THEY ARE GETTING READY TO START.
FROM VERSE TWO IS THE INDICATION OF HOW THE INDIAN LOOKS UPON
HIS WARDROBE, 'I'M THE PRETTIEST BIG CHIEF YOU EVER DID SEE.'
FROM VERSE THREE IS ANOTHER PROCLAMATION BY THE INDIAN THAT HE IS
'THE PRETTIEST IN THE CITY THIS DAY, GO GET YOUR MAMA AND YOUR PAPA,
TELL THEM I'M COMING YOUR WAY'.
FROM VERSE FOUR, YOU SHOULD KNOW THAT THE INDIAN HAS STARTED
ON HIS LONG JOURNEY TO DOWNTOWN NEW ORLEANS.
THEY ARE DEEP INTO THE SONG
NOW AND WANT TO KNOW IF THE PEOPLE FEEL AS GOOD AS THEY DO, SO THE
LEADER ASKS WHAT DOES THE INDIAN SAY. THE PEOPLE REPEAT A CHORUS
'HANDA WANDA YA HA NA NEY.'
CONTINUATION OF VERSE FOUR, THE LEADER KNOCKS THE KING OF CARNIVAL,
REX. HE SAYS REX IS THE RULER ON MARDI GRAS DAY, I'M AN INDIAN
RULER GONNA CARRY ON.' HE THEN GOES INTO AN INDIAN TYPE DANCE.
'PUT THE HOLE IN THE GROUND ME GON' DANCE AROUND.'
FROM VERSE FIVE THE INDIAN WANTS TO KNOW IF EVERYONE HAS GOTTEN
THE MESSAGE. SO HE STATES HIS PROPOSITION ONE MORE TIME. 'OH DO
LIKE YOU WANNA ON A MARDI GRAS DAY'.
IF YOU NOTICED THAT IN VERSE ONE, TWO AND FIVE, THAT THE INDIAN
WAS TELLING THE PEOPLE TO DO WHATEVER THEY WANTED TO DO BECAUSE
THIS IS MARDI GRAS DAY, THEN YOU CAN PROBABLY READ THE VERSES
AGAIN AND THEN THROUGH LISTENING TO THE SONG AGAIN, YOU SHOULD BE
ABLE TO FEEL, IF NOT UNDERSTAND, THE EXCITEMENT AND GAIETY THE
INDIANS ARE TRYING TO GENERATE FOR THIS MARDI GRAS DAY.

Where learned: LOUISIANA ; New Orleans

Subject headings: 663 Mardi Gras
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