The Dirdy Birdies Jug Band

The Dirdy Birdies Jug Band


The Dirdy Birdies Jug Band is a musical hybrid. The repertoire includes traditional jug band tunes, gospel, folk, bluegrass, a bit of doo-wop, a few tasty and topical originals, and large dollops of energy and humor.


- May 14, 1965 - Montclair State College, Montclair, NJ. The very first performance of The Dirdy Birdies Jug Band, who, at that time, didn't even have a name.

- September 29, 1967 - The Birdies headline at Gerde's Folk City in New York City, a venerable Village club, notable for some of the first performances of a guy from Minnesota named Bob Dylan...whatever happened to him anyway?

- January 13, 1968 - The Dirdy Birdies win "The Big Break" a battle of the bands sponsored by Cousin Brucie and WABC Radio in New York City. The Birdies beat out 500 other bands, almost ALL of them of the rock and roll variety.

- June 12, 1987 - Birdies headline at The Half Moon in London, capping off a 10-day tour of the UK.

- October 21, 2006 - The Birdies celebrate their ONE MILLIONTH performance with an appearance at The National Jug Band Jubilee in Louisville, KY, the birthplace of jug band music! (See the video!)

Those are a few career highlights of a band that has been playing jug band music for more than 40 years.

The term "home-made music" is particularly appropriate in describing the musical meanderings of The Birdies...jug, washboard, washtub bass, kazoos and a plethora of percussion-producing devices combine artfully with banjo, guitar, fiddle and dobro to celebrate a truly American musical style, while dragging it kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

THE DIRDY BIRDIES JUG BAND are the descendants of a long standing tradition of jug bands, beginning during the early part of the 20th century as "spasm" bands, and consisting of street musicians with little or no formal musical training. These bands, including the Memphis Jug Band, and Gus Cannon's Jug Stompers, utilized few true musical instruments, but made up for that shortcoming with the imaginative use of home-made instruments and tight vocal harmonies.

The tradition was continued during the folk music revival of the 1960's by such new groups as the Even Dozen Jug Band and the Jim Kweskin Jug Band.

Of all these groups, only one, clinging to and reaffirming the Darwinian thesis of "survival of the fittest," remains...THE DIRDY BIRDIES JUG BAND, The World’s Most Dangerous Jug Band!.


Masculine Women, Feminine Men

Written By: Trad

Masculine Women, Feminine Men, which is the rooster, and which is the hen.

It's hard to tell 'em apart today and say.
Sister is busy learnin to shave and brother just loves his permanent wave.
It's hard to tell 'em apart today…

Oh…Boys were boys and men were men, when I was a tot.
Now we don't know who's who, or even what's what.
Knickers and trousers, baggy and wide,
Nobody knows who's walkin' inside.
Those Masculine Women and Feminine Men

Masculine Women, Feminine Men, which is the rooster, which is the hen
it's hard to tell 'em apart today, and say..
Sister is busy learnin to shave and brother just loves his permanent wave
It's hard to tell 'em apart today..oh yeah,
it's hard to tell 'em apart today.

My Gal

Written By: Trad

Well A Rich Gal, She Drives In An Automobile,
A Poor Gal, She Does Quite The Same.
My Gal, She Rides An Old Hay Wagon,
You Know She's Getting' There Just The Same.

Well I'll Be There In The Morning If I Live.
I'll Be There In The Morn' If I Don't Get Killed.
If I, Never No More See You Again,
Be Sure, To Remember Me.

A Rich Gal, She Drinks That Good Old Gramonier,
A Poor Gal, She Does Quite The Same.
My Gal, She Drinks Shoe Polish,
You Know She's Getting' High Just The Same.

A Rich Gal Will Hit You, She'll Bop You With A Stick,
A Poor Gal, She'll Hit Quite The Same.
My Gal Will Get A Rusty Old Razor, She'll Run You All Over Town,
Ya Know She's Killin’ you Just The Same.

A Rich Gal, She Goes out on a Saturday Night,
A Poor Gal, Will Kiss Just The Same.
My Gal She Stays Home With Me,
You Know She's Loving' You, Just The Same.

Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me

Written By: Trad

Well There Are Blues, That You Get From Loneliness,
And There Are Blues, That You Get From Pain.
There Are Blues When You Are Lonely, For Your One And Only,
The Blues You Can Never Explain.

And There Are Blues, That You Get From Sleepless Nights,
Oh But The Meanest Blues That Be -
That's The Blues That I've Got On My Mind,
I Mean The Ones That Are The Meanest Kind,
That's The Blues My Naughty Sweety Gives To Me.

There Are Blues You Get From Women,
When You See Them Goin' Swimmin'
And You Haven't Got A Bathing Suit Yourself.

There Are Blues You Get From Swicken',
When Your Drinkin' Lots Of Liquor
And Somebody Goes And Takes It Off The Shelf.

There Are Blues You Get When Everthing's In Hock Or When Your Girlfriend Doesn't Answer When You Knock.

There Are Blues You Get From Gettin'
In A Taxi Cab And Frettin',
Every Time You Hear The Bumper Jump A Car.

There Are Blues You Get From Cryin'
When Your Uncle Bill Is Dyin',
And He Afterwards Forgets You In His Will.

There Are Blues You Get From Kissin'
When Your Walkin' With Your Mrs.
And Another Lady Shouts "Hi Bill".

But The Blues That Make You Hot
And Want To Stop And Shake And Shiver
Are The Blues That Make You Want To End It In A River.

That's The Blues My Naughty Sweety Gives To Me, Oh Yeah!
That's The Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives To Me!

Zen Gospel Singing

Written By: Trad

I Once Was A Baptist, And On Each Sunday Morn,
I'd Be In Church Praying, As Sure As Your Born.

We’d Sing There Like Angels, In That Good Harmony,
But Sin And Salvation, Are No Longer For Me.

And Now I'm A Buddhist, I Chant My Mantra Each Day,
But I Miss That Hymn Singing, In That Good Gospel Way.

So Sing To Old Buddha, And The Wonders Of Zen,
We'll Meet In Nirvana, Yes We'll Be There Then.

My Old Friends Don't Like Me, Since I Shaved My Head,
And They All Talk About Me, As If I Were Dead.

My Good Old Zen Buddies, They Think I'm OK,
But I Can't Get Them Singing, More Than One Note A Day.

And As We Sit Here Cross Legged, Eating Brown Rice And Tea,
We Chant Out Our Mantras, In Four Square Harmony.

We Don't Sing Of Salvation, Or Heavenly Hope,
It's Zen Gospel Singing, Just Om, Om, Sweet Om.

Jug Band Music

Written By: Trad

Way down south in Memphis, Tennessee,
Jug Band music sounds so sweet to me,
Cause it sounds so sweet, Ohhh,
It’s hard to beat,
Jug Band music, certainly was a treat to me.

I was with my gal, put my hand on her knee,
She said you can’t play the jug, you can’t play with me,

Went back home turned on my radio,
Jug Band music mad me stomp on my toe.

I took off my socks, I took off my shoes,
I danced all night to the Jug Band blues,

Give to the Cause

Written By: Patrick Sky

Give To The Cause, Can't You Hear My Prayer
Give Us A Cent Or Two,
Give To the Cause, Relinquish Your Share,
And Buy Me A Bottle Of Booze.

Oh, Give To The Cause, Give Us A Share,
Give To The Cause, Help Make Us A Millionaire

Give For TB, Cancer And Red Cross,
Freedom It Costs A Dime,
The Blind Need To See Help Fight Leprosy,
And Give To The Man In The Mines.

Give To The Cause, Cause I Am Broke,
Be Charitable And Give,
Give To The Band, Give All That You Can,
Just Give, Give, Give, Give, Give,


'Endangered Species' - Guano Records DB0001
'Tracks' - Guano Records DB002

Set List

Typical Set List:
My Gal
Foggy Mountain Breakdown
Masculine Women
I've Just Seen A Face
Jug Band Waltz
Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian
Empty Boudoir Blues
Amelia Earhardt
I Went To The Doctor
Zen Gospel
Jug Band Music
Chewing Gum

We're used to doing two 45-minute sets during a performance, both chock-full of music, humor and enjoyment. When pressed, we can squeeze out a third set as well.

We don't do 'covers' in the generally-accepted sense, (we don't do Stairway to Heaven, for example) although most of our material has been recorded by others. We like to consider ourselves 'purveyors' of only the best in music from 2 entirely different, although consecutive, centuries.