[Dixielandjazz] Re: Yama Yama Man - yet another possible clue?

Bill Haesler bhaesler at bigpond.net.au
Mon Jul 12 16:52:53 PDT 2004

Dear Bud,
You commented that "Musically, the song Yama Yama Man was from the show, The
Three Twins.  This dates back to about 1906 and the big number from that
show was Cuddle Up A  Little Closer" then opined "austensibly to protect the
girl from the Yama Yama Man.."
I have a source which says: "One of [Karl] Hoschna's song hits in 'Three
Twins' [288 performances from 15 June 1908], 'Yama Yama Man (lyric by Colin
Davis), is now nearly forgotten. It is a choice example of the benign
infantilism that remained voguish all through this period. Miss [Bessie]
McCoy introduced it in a satin clown outfit topped by a clown-shaped hat. A
second hit from the show still enjoys periodic revivals - 'Cuddle Up A
Little Closer, Lovey Mine'. Although the song is endearingly intimate, it
was given an elaborate staging with "A unique chorus setting representing
the seven ages of lovers from infancy to old age.""
I suggest that, from this extract, the two songs were separate entities and
probably unrelated within the context of the show.
"Yama Yama Man" was revived for another show 'Miss 1917' (Dillingham and
Ziegfeld) again featuring Miss Bessie McCoy Davis.
"Yama Yama Man" was later used in Fred and Ginger's film musical 'The Vernon
& Irene Castle Story' (RKO, 1939).
It was also used in the 1949 Warner Bros film "Look For The Silver Lining",
the 'story' of singer/dancer Marilyn Miller with June Haver and Ray Bolger.
There is a photo 'still' in one of my books of Bolger in the clown outfit
suggesting to me that he may have sung "Yama Yama Man". Can anyone recall if
he did? 
Very kind regards,

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