Lil Johnson and Black Bob: Press my Button, Ring My Bell (1932)

 |   |  <1 min read

Lil Johnson and Black Bob: Press my Button, Ring My Bell (1932)

When Anita Ward scored a big disco hit with Ring My Bell in '79, the saucy yet somewhat lyrically bland song was in a long tradition of "ring my bell" metaphors in popular music.

As far back as '32 the raunchy Lil Johnson -- about whom little is known other than her catalogue of songs about sex, getting drunk, sex and more sex -- was singing "press my button, give my bell a ring" and even more graphically "c'mon baby let's have some fun, put your hot dog in my bun".

And this song was even then considered "trad". These barely coded messages about sex had been around since . . . possibly since Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden.

In Johnson's catalogue were titles like Anyone Want to Buy My Cabbage, Take You Hands Off It, Buck Naked Blues, Get 'Em from the Peanut Man (Hot Nuts) and the ever popular My Stove's in Good Condition.

Lil Johnson seems to have had a very . . . satisfying? . . . life, and makes Anita Ward (below) sound like she's inviting a gentleman around for tea and cake.

(For more such rudeness, see also Shave 'Em Dry, Bed Spring Poker and the more contemporary All the Things She Said at From the Vaults)

.

For more oddities, one-offs or songs with an interesting backstory check the massive back-catalogue at From the Vaults.

 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

Frank Sinatra: Strangers in the Night (1965)

Frank Sinatra: Strangers in the Night (1965)

Frank Sinatra hated Strangers in the Night which he took to the top of the charts, shoving out the Beatles' Paperback Writer in the US. "He thought it was about two fags in a bar,"... > Read more

Screamin' Jay Hawkins: Alligator Wine (1963?)

Screamin' Jay Hawkins: Alligator Wine (1963?)

When Oasis celebrated cigarettes and alcohol on their debut album Definitely Maybe, they were onto something. These twin poles of working people are traditionally the escape from the drudgery of... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

TRASHY OLD MOVIES, TRASHY YOUNG PEOPLE (2021): Sex and drugs and out of control

TRASHY OLD MOVIES, TRASHY YOUNG PEOPLE (2021): Sex and drugs and out of control

Every now and again we need to remind ourselves just how appalling young people are. They smoke and drink, they take drugs and skip off from school or work. They are... > Read more

GUTTER BLACK; A MEMOIR by DAVE McARTNEY

GUTTER BLACK; A MEMOIR by DAVE McARTNEY

A few years ago when I was in Australia interviewing the re-formed Cold Chisel, I took a chance afterwards to talk with their songwriter Don Walker, who had written an exceptional, literary and... > Read more