YES! We Have No Bananas!


From: $3.00

You won’t have to buy any bananas, you’ll GO bananas over this arrangement!


This novelty song by Frank Silver and Irving Cohn was published July 19, 1923. It became a major hit in 1923, placing No. 1 on the charts for five weeks, when it was recorded by at least a half dozen singers.

Frank Silver discussed the origins of the piece in an interview: he was performing at a hotel, and nearby was a fruit stand owned by a person of Greek heritage, and the owner began every sentence with “Yess” no matter what else was said afterwards. Silver was obsessed with this peculiar language “tick” and finally wrote lyrics, to which Irving Cohn provided music.

It’s possible that the piece was also influenced by banana shortages caused by Panama Disease that nearly wiped out the Gros Michel banana.

This arrangement is an enormous amount of fun to play, especially if you can get people to sing along. It’s on the harder side of early intermediate, with more fingerwork than usual, but the patterns stay consistent, making it a quick study. Full lyrics are included.

Key: C major

Mood: playful, teasing.

Pedagogy: cut time, fermatas, staccato, syncopation, dynamics, 1st and 2nd endings.


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