James Likes Willie

Listen To The Hand ive   

James Asks: Who Was "Way Out Willie?" (Listen)


We.. Way Out Willie was part of the lyrics in the song "Hand Jive". The Hand jive is a dance particularly associated with rock and roll and rhythm and blues music of the 1950s.

Hand jives are set sequences of hand and arm movements performed mostly while sitting down in theatres that emerged in the 1950's. In particular it was done to Johnny Otis's number, 'Willie and the Hand Jive'. Alternatively, it could be "danced" by a bunch of teenagers grouped around the jukebox in a crowded 1950's diner or caf?. In this setting, dancing with their hands only could also be a good idea because of the lack of room.

It involves a complicated pattern of hand moves and claps at various parts of the body, following and/or imitating the percussion instruments. It resembles a highly elaborate version of Pat-a-cake. Hand moves include thigh slapping, cross-wrist slapping, fist pounding, chest slapping and pounding, hand clapping, elbow touching and hitch hike moves.

How To? It's Easy

  1. Pat hands two times on your knees or thighs.
  2. Clap your hands two times.
  3. Criss cross your hands right hand above
  4. Criss cross your hands right hand below
  5. Making 2 fists, hit your hands together twice with the right hand on top and twice with left hand on top.
  6. Make a thumbs-up sign with your right hand and point backwards over right shoulder twice, as if you were hitchhiking. (the mashed potato)
  7. Make a thumbs-up sign with your left hand and point backwards over left shoulder twice, as if you were hitchhiking.
  8. Repeat all steps until you run out of music.

The Lyrics

I know a cat named Way-Out Willie
 He got a cool little chick named Rockin' Millie
 He can Walk and Stroll and Suzy-Q
And do that crazy Hand Jive too

Papa told Willie You'll ruin my home
You and that Hand Jive has got to go
 Willie said Papa don't put me down
They doin' that Hand Jive all over town

Clapping hands

 Hand Jive,  Hand Jive, Hand Jive, doin' that crazy Hand Jive

 Mama mama look at Uncle Joe
He's doing the Hand Jive with Sister Flo'
Grandma gave baby sister a dime
Said do that Hand Jive one more time

Doctor and a Lawyer and an Indian Chief
Now they all dig that crazy beat
Way Out Willie gave them all a treat
When he did that hand jive with his feet
Hand Jive, Hand Jive, Hand Jive, 
Doin' that crazy hand jive

tapping shoes

Willie and Millie got married last fall
They had a little Willie junior and that ain't all
Well the baby got famous and it's plain to see
Doing the Hand Jive on TV
Hand Jive, Hand Jive, Hand Jive, Doin that crazy Hand Jive