Who Sang The Real American Folk Song (Is a Rag)? Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald Ella Fitzgerald Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Song Book cover art
Release information
Writer(s): George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin
Release Date: 1959
Genre: Jazz Pop
Style: Vocal/Swing
length: 3:44
producer: Norman Granz
engineer: Val Valentin
arranger: Nelson Riddle
conductor: Nelson Riddle
lead vocals: Ella Fitzgerald
performer: Nelson Riddle and His Orchestra
composer: George Gershwin
lyricist: Ira Gershwin
Near Barcelona, the peasant crooned
The old traditional Spanish tunes
The Neapolitan street song sighs
You think of Italian skies

Each nation has a creative vein
Originating a native strain
With folk songs plaintive and others gay
In their own peculiar way

American folk songs, i feel
Have a much stronger appeal

The real American folksong is a rag
A mental jag
A rhythmic tonic for the chronic blues

The critics called it a "joke song" but now
They've changed their tune, and they like it, somehow

For it's inoculated with a syncopated sort of meter, sweeter
Than a classic strain, boy you can't remain, still or quiet, for it's a riot

The real American folksong
Is like a fountain of youth
You taste, and it elates you, and then, invigorates you
The real American folksong, the masses coaxed on, is a rag

The real American folksong is a rag
A mental jag
A rhythmic tonic for the chronic blues

The critics called it a "joke song" but now
They've changed their tune, and they like it, somehow

For it's inoculated with a syncopated sort of meter, sweeter
Than a classic strain, boy you can't remain, still or quiet, for it's a riot

The real American folksong
Is like a fountain of youth
You taste, and it elates you, and then, invigorates you
The real American folksong, is a rag

Tracklist
12" Vinyl 1
  • 1 Ambulatory Suite (instrumental)
  • 2 The Preludes (instrumental)
  • 3 Sam and Delilah
  • 4 But Not for Me
  • 5 My One and Only
  • 6 Let's Call the Whole Thing Off
  • 7 Beginner's Luck
  • 8 Oh, Lady Be Good
  • 9 Nice Work If You Can Get It
  • 10 Things Are Looking Up
  • 11 Just Another Rhumba
  • 12 How Long Has This Been Going On?
    12" Vinyl 2
  • 1 's Wonderful
  • 2 The Man I Love
  • 3 That Certain Feeling
  • 4 By Strauss
  • 5 Someone to Watch Over Me
  • 6 The Real American Folk Song (Is a Rag)
  • 7 Who Cares?
  • 8 Looking for a Boy
  • 9 They All Laughed
  • 10 My Cousin in Milwaukee
  • 11 Somebody From Somewhere
    12" Vinyl 3
  • 1 A Foggy Day
  • 2 Clap Your Hands
  • 3 For You, for Me, for Everyone
  • 4 Stiff Upper Lip
  • 5 Boy Wanted
  • 6 Strike Up the Band
  • 7 Soon
  • 8 I've Got a Crush on You
  • 9 Bidin' My Time
  • 10 Aren't You Kind of Glad We Did?
  • 11 Of Thee I Sing (Baby)
    12" Vinyl 4
  • 1 "The Half of It, Dearie" Blues
  • 2 I Was Doing All Right
  • 3 He Loves and She Loves
  • 4 Love Is Sweeping the Country
  • 5 Treat Me Rough
  • 6 Love Is Here to Stay
  • 7 Slap That Bass
  • 8 Isn't It a Pity?
  • 9 Shall We Dance?
  • 10 Love Walked In
  • 11 You've Got What Gets Me
    12" Vinyl 5
  • 1 They Can't Take That Away From Me
  • 2 Embraceable You
  • 3 I Can't Be Bothered Now
  • 4 Boy! What Love Has Done to Me!
  • 5 Fascinatin' Rhythm
  • 6 Funny Face
  • 7 Lorellei
  • 8 Oh, So Nice
  • 9 Let's Kiss and Make Up
  • 10 I Got Rhythm