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Way Down Yonder In New Orleans

"Way Down Yonder In New Orleans" is a popular song by Joe Turner Layton, Jr. with Henry Creamr contributing. First published in 1922, Creamer and Layton advertised it as "A Southern Song, without A Mammy, A Mule, Or A Moon", a dig at some of the Tin Pan Alley clichés of the era. The song tells of New Orleans, the destination which the singer desires. The chorus is:

Way down yonder in New Orleans
In the land of dreamy scenes
There's a garden of Eden
That's what I mean,
Creole babies with flashing eyes
Softly whisper with tender sighs— Stop!
Oh! won't you give your lady fair a little smile, Stop!
You bet your life you'll linger there— a little while
There is heaven right here on earth
With those beautiful queens,
Way down yonder in New Orleans.
Second chorus ending:
They've got angels right here on earth
Wearing little blue jeans,
Way down yonder in New Orleans.

The song has been recorded many, many times from the early 1920s into the 21st century. Notable uses have included being the theme song for the radio program "This Is Jazz" in the 1940s. The song was revived successfully in 1953 by Frankie Laine and Jo Stafford. According to Dick Biondi, Freddy Cannon's 1959 version became the first record in the rock era to have a full brass section. It reached number 3 on the Billboard chart in early 1960.



  • Layton, John Turner; Creamer, Henry. "Way Down Yonder In New Orleans" (sheet music). New York : Shapiro, Bernstein & Co. (1920).

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