What's that song the ice cream truck is playing?- not turkey in the straw

It’s not do your ears hang low, or my dog has fleas or the entertainer.

I moved to a new apartment on Sunday. The icecream man has been playing this song for the last 2 afternoons and it’s driving me crazy that I can’t place it. Internet isn’t hooked up yet and every google search on my phone leads me to pages of the NPR story. Please help.

I’ll do my best to describe it but this is not my forte. The truck plays the same 8 bars over and over, as you might expect. The 2nd 4 bars are the same as the first 4 except for the last note. It’s in common time. It’s mostly eighth notes.

My memory tells me that this song doesn’t have lyrics. Also, that I remember hearing it in the late 70’s either on the radio or as a movie or tv show theme. And I feel like I’ve heard it again in the last decade or so.

I think these eight bars are pretty much the whole song. Maybe there was an introduction? I think it’s a piano song. Maybe a piano solo for a while and then more instruments gradually join in or it becomes more complex somehow.

I can’t get past the icecream truck version in order to get to the memory of the original song.

All or some of the above maybe wrong, but I only listed the things I’m mostly sure of.

Oof, that’s pretty vague. I once heard an ice cream truck playing The Music Box Dance, which fits some of your criteria. Other than that, they all play Turkey in the Straw, Old Zip Coon, or Do Your Ears Hang Low*

  • Yes, I know those are all the same.

Wow! You’re amazing! That is exactly it. Of course that’s not exactly the way I was remembering it but right on. Thanks a lot. I think I can lay that ear worm to rest.

If this was in New York it is probably the Mr. Sorted song. Many years ago I scouted the internet for this song to use on my answering machine. Even came to the Dope for help. Never found it.

The standard ice cream truck melody, different than the one helpfully provided by Greg Charles, is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZB6WXDuM1g

Incidentally, some of the 19th century lyrics applied to my linked tune are pretty distasteful.

I think if we’ve learned anything from 67,519 times this has come up on the Dope, it’s that there is no standard. There are lots of songs used by different trucks, companies, places, and even times.

It’s not THIS IC truck is it? (Go 2:00 minutes in)

Greg Charles, that was particularly awesome since I just realized I wasn’t clear on the fact that it was a popular song in the late 70’s and not an old folk tune. Well done.

Indeed. Everyone knows that Greensleeves is the standard.

it’s in Kill Bill.

If more ice cream trucks played Powerhouse, I’d buy more ice cream.

Thanks johnpost. I think you answered another of my questions. I’ll google as soon as I have an internet connection.

And it’s still going an hour and a half later. Yuck. Oh well. Could be worse. At least an can have soft serve if I want it.

The one I hear all of the time in the area where I live is Mister Softee.

The one i hear most often is
Oh I went to Chicago and I walked around the block,
And I walked right into a donut shop.
I picked up a donut right outta the grease and I handed the clerk a five cent piece.
He looked at the nickel and he looked at me and he said dear sir it’s plain to see there’s a hole in the nickel and goes straight
Said I there’s a hole in the donut too, Good bye.

Ours plays some Kenny G song.

Thousands of times.

Call the UN. That’s a war crimes violation.

I’ve never heard an ice cream truck play a song. They all rang bells.

Interesting. Around here, they all play songs. “Pop Goes the Weasel,” is another popular one, after with an obnoxious vocal “HELLO?!” after the end of the verse. ETA: Or sometimes a duck quack. ETA2: I need to record this, because I can’t seem to find any examples of it online.

Hey, I have a dog named after you. A bloodthirsty little beast who earned that name. :slight_smile:

The ice cream truck song I’ve always wondered about is used by The Firesign Theatre. On that video it starts about 28 seconds in.