[Ads-l] Profiting without honor

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Sun Jan 29 01:04:35 EST 2017

To add insult to injury, after "The Joker" lifts the "peaches" line from
"Lovey Dovey," it goes on, "Lovey dovey, lovey dovey, lovey dovey all the

On the peach-tree-shaking theme, Larry noted back in '05 that Charlie
Poole's "If the River Was Whiskey" (1930) has the line, "If you don't like
my peaches, don't shake my tree."


A check of Michael Taft's Pre-War Blues Lyrics Concordance finds similar
lines in these earlier songs:

Frank Stokes, "Mr. Crump Don't Like It" (1927)
William Harris, "Hot Time Blues" (1928)
Joe Linthecome, "Pretty Mama Blues" (1929)

Also from 1929 is Blind Lemon Jefferson's "Peach Orchard Mama":

"Peach orchard mama, you swore nobody'd pick your fruit but me
I found three kid-men, shaking down your peaches tree."


On Sat, Jan 28, 2017 at 9:33 PM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:

> Broadcasting - Page 39
> https://books.google.com/books?id=leRDAQAAIAAJ
> 1974 - ‎Snippet view
> Abounding with the "hooks" that top-40 program directors like ("Really love
> your peaches, want to shake your tree"), the single [The Joker, by the
> Steve Miller Band] made steady gains after its appearance on the "Playlist"
> in November 1973.
> The Clovers - Wikipedia
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Clovers
> The Clovers are an American rhythm and blues/doo-wop vocal group that
> became one of the biggest-selling [black] acts of the 1950's.
> Lovey Dovey - Wikipedia
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lovey_Dovey
> Single by The Clovers · A-side, "Little Mama". Released, 1954 · Genre ·
> R&B. Length, 2:54. Label · Atlantic Records 45-1022. Writer(s) · Memphis
> Edward Curtis, Ahmet Ertegün. "Lovey Dovey" is a popular American rhythm
> and blues song originating in the 1950's and written by Eddie Curtis and
> Ahmet Ertegün, with the latter usually credited using his songwriter's
> pseudonym, "Nugetre" - Ertegun spelled backwards.
> [Doo-wop intro followed by the lyrics]
> Well, you're the cutest thing
> That I did ever see
> I really love your peaches
> Going to shake your tree
> Lovey Dovey
> Lovey Dovey all the time
> Lovey Dovey
> I can't get you off of my mind

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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