Dropout Boogie lyrics

[alert_box type=”info”]Originally appeared on Safe As Milk[/alert_box]

You wanna do what?, you wanna do what?
I told you what, I told you what
You wanna do what?, you wanna do what?
I told you what, I told you what

Go t’school, go t’school
Go t’school, go t’school
Just cain’t, just cain’t
Just cain’t, just cain’t
Dropout, dropout, dropout, dropout

Cain’t get a job, cain’t get a job
Don’t know what it, don’t know what it
What it’s all about, what it’s all about
You told her you love her so bring her to mother
You love her, adapt her, you love her, adapt her
Adapt her, adapter, adapt her, adapter
‘n’ what about after that
what about after that

Support her, support her
She says you’d support her
Get a job, get a job
Get a job, get a job
You gotta support her
You told her you love her so bring her to mother
You love her adapt her, you love her adapt her
Adapt her, adapter, adapt her, adapter
‘n’ what about after that
‘n’ what about after that

(1967)

Transcribed from the album by Steve Froy, with amendments suggested by Bob Mehling, Melissa Downe, Pete Wulforst, Geoff Balme and David Curtis

When introducing this song at one of the Magic Band reunion shows John French said that Don had written Dropout Boogie about the situation he found himself in. Don was still living at home with his girlfriend Laurie Stone. He hadn’t been to school that much and the few jobs he’d managed to get – Helms bakery van delivery (for his father), shoe salesman, vacuum cleaner salesman – hadn’t lasted very long or amounted to much.

Here for comparison are the original lyrics of the song as written out by Herb Bermann:

Do – wha-a-a-a-at ?
Do – wha-a-a-a-at ?
I tole ya what! (2)

go ta skool! (2)
just kain’t (2)
drop out (2)

kain’t get a job (2)
don’t know what-it (2)
what-it’s all about!

y’ tole ‘er y’ love ‘er
so bring ‘er t’ mudder
if  y’love her, adapt her! (2)
adapt her, n’ what about after dat!

supporter, supporter,
sesheee za border!
get a job (2)
y’ gotta supporter!

Do – wha-a-a-a-at ?
I tole ya what!

(1966)

2 Comments

  1. A better job than many; well done Steve, Bob, Melissa, Pete, Geoff and David.

    But “Adapt her, adapter” why?? I can hear no difference. You could just as easily argue for “Adapter, adapt her”, or even “Adapt her adapter”!

    Since there are already two females in the lyrics, “bring her to mother” (assuming that IS what he’s singing), I’m afraid “Adapt her, adapt her” strikes me as being far more likely (sadly, because I’ve always thought of it as the adapter song, and I got the LP at the time).

    Any idea what the line means? Could it actually be adopt!?!?!?!

  2. I think the ‘adapter’ idea was mooted by someone as one of those verbal puns that Donalways liked to use and it seemed a good idea! But going back to the lyrics as written by Herb Bermann it is just ‘adapt her’. I’ve now added them to this page for comparison.

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