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Elly Ameling sings Sondheim, 'Can That Boy Foxtrot'

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Published on Nov 21, 2012

Elly Ameling, in cross-over mode, joins forces with Louis van Dijk (piano) and John Clayton (double bass) to cover Stephen Sondheim's song 'Can That Boy Foxtrot' from his review 'Side by Side by Sondheim' (1976). The song was originally composed for the show 'Follies' (1971) but was dropped. Elly Ameling's recording dates from 1984.

The full text of the song is:

I know this grocery clerk,
Unprepossessing;
Some think the boy's a jerk.
They have my blessing.
But when he starts to move
He aims to please,
Which only goes to prove
That sometimes in a clerk
You find a Hercules.

He hasn't much that's plus
You might describe him thus ...

A false alarm,
A broken arm.
An imitation Hitler
But with littler charm.
But oh,
Can that boy foxtrot!

His mouth is mean,
He's not too clean,
What makes him look reptilian
Is the brilliantine.
But oh,
Can that boy foxtrot.

Who knows what I saw in him?
I took a chance.
Oh yes ... one more flaw in him.
He can't dance.

As dumbbells go,
He's rather slow
And as for being saintly,
Even faintly, no,
But who needs Albert Schweitzer
When the lights are low,
And oh boy, oh boy,
Can that boy ... foxtrot!

Right now as I speak of him
I hear those drums,
And oh the technique of him --
He's all thumbs!
His jokes are quaint and fairly faint,
He may be full of hokum but I've no complaint;
He often is a bore but on the floor he ain't
And oh boy oh boy
Can that boy ... foxtrot!

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