Octopus (Slippery Fish)

 One of my family’s favourite songs to sing together is Octopus by Charlotte Diamond.  I asked Charlotte to give a little history of the song and this is what she wrote:

 ”When Matthew and Thomas were in preschool, I began writing songs for them.  My first song was “Octopus” (Slippery Fish)  which became a hit in all my early performances and workshops for families and teachers.  I recorded the song on my first album, “10 Carrot Diamond” in 1985.  Once kids heard the humongous whale sized “Burp” at the end, they were hooked. 

 The song also became known as “Slippery Fish” as the song begins with the Slippery Fish being eaten by an Octopus, which is eaten by a Tuna fish…a Great White Shark …and finally a Humongous Whale. I chose the title “Octopus” as I thought it was more interesting.

 As I speak French and Spanish, I translated the song into those languages and recorded the versions on my first French album, “Qu’il y ait toujours les soleil”  in 1988 as “La belle pieuvre” (le petit poisson) and on my first Spanish CD, “Soy un Pizza”  in 1994 as “Un Pulpito”.  So the song is swimming around the world in all three languages!  Through word of mouth, YouTube, my own web site and the educational web sites of others,  my song is now widely used by teachers and sung daily by children and families.  Many fans do not realize that it is my song.  The power of folk music…

 As I am now a grandma, my two little grandsons are inspiring new songs which I will introduce at the Festival.”

 It is true about the song taking on a life of its own. My own experience with the song started when my daughter came home from preschool and kept singing the song over and over.  Mackenzie, being three, garbled many of the words so her teacher wrote them down for me and show me the actions.  It quickly became a family foavourite.  We even taught the song to my mom, a speech pathologist, to use with her kids in therapy. It wasn’t until Mackenzie was in kindergarten and we went to see Charlotte Diamond at Kids Fest with her class, that I realized that Octopus was Charlotte’s song.  It truly has become as much a part of children’s lore as Itsy Bitsy Spider and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star (at least in our house :-).

 If you want to sing Octopus  with your little ones, I have included below one of the many YouTube videos of children singing and acting out the song.  We also have Charlotte’s 10 Carrot Diamond for sale in our online Festival Store and will be available for purchase on-site at the festival.

See you at Charlotte Diamond’s shows on our Mainstage, May 27-29!

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