THE THING - chords and comments
This vaudeville-like song is the first one I remember from my childhood. Moreover, it may have been a seed to my later musical acre. I've always had a passion for male solo baritone singers. About six years old, my family aquired a cabinet containing a 78 rpm player and a pile of crackling records, and THE THING was among them. I don't remember the B-side. I played it over and over again, until it ... cracked. I was sad.
A few years later I found another version at my aunt and uncle's house. It went the same way. Then the thing went into oblivion for some sixty years. Then, walking down the memory lane on You Tube, I stumbled across them again. At my age, I'm entitled to be childish.
My aunt and uncle's version was the original, recorded by Phil Harris on October 13, 1950 (RCA Victor). Our own was chuckling, jolly Arthur Godfrey, covered November same year (Columbia). On top of this, Danny Kaye released a cover in December (Decca). Several other things followed; I haven't bothered them.
The song is written by Charles Randolph Grean; at least the words. He borrowed the melody from the English folk song "The Chandler's Wife", again inherited from "The Lincolnshire Poacher". Who cares?
E A E
I was walking up and down the beach one bright and sunny day
G#m F# B7
I saw a great big wooden box a floating in the bay
E E7 A B7
I pulled it in and opened it up and much to my surprise
A #¤%& A B7 E
oh! I discovered a ☻ ☻ ☻ right before my eyes
The ☻ ☻ ☻ may be altered to whatever you want. Three drum beats are seemingly usual, but I don't carry a bass drum on my back, like legendary Don Partridge. I invented the #¤%& chord instead. It MAY be figured out to be BmM11/B (B minor major eleventh, B bass), but that's too sophistical for a busker. #¤%& is better. For God's sake, don't use that for ANY other purpose.