Lubly Fan

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LUBLY FAN. AKA and see "Buffalo Gals (1)," "Roundtown Girls," "Midnight Serenade (2)." American, Song Tune. The melody, usually known as "Buffalo Gals," or in the Upland South as "Round Town Girls," appears under this title in some mid-nineteenth century publications. "Lubly Fan" (dialect for "Lovely Fan(ny)") was a song by Cool White (John Hodges, 1821-1891) [1], a blackface minstrel with the Virginia Serenaders, first published in 1844. It became one of the earliest 'hits' of minstrelsy. Whether he wrote the melody or not is disputed, but several writers (e.g. John and Allan Lomax, Frank Brown) believe the tune to be traditional or an adaptation of a traditional air. A tune published in Knauff's Virginia Reels (Baltimore, 1839) called "Midnight Serenade (2)" resembles that of "Lubly Fan," and Alan Jabbour suggests the tune was in oral circulation prior to Hodges' song. Hodges' words, in dialect, begin:

John Hodges

As I was lumb'ring down de street,
Down de street, down de street;
A pretty girl I chanc'd to meet,
O she was fair to view.

CHORUS
Den lubly Fan will you cum out to night,
Will you cum out to night, will you cum out to night;
Den lubly Fan will you cum out to night,
An' dance by de lite ob de moon.

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