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THE BALLAD OF MUK-TUK ANNIE (Wilf Carter / John Klenner / Bob Miller) Stompin' Tom Connors - 1974 Also recorded by: Jimmy Arthur Ordge Yeah, let me tell you the story about Muk-Tuk Annie Who came South to go to school With a see-through blouse and sealskin mini Old Annie sure looked cool She blew into Montreal in the early fall Like nothin' they'd ever seen With long black hair and reindeer underwear She weighed about two-sixteen She came a long, long way from Frobisher Bay People, doncha know now what I mean She had the boys all cryin' on the distant early warning line Old Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene Well she told her teacher that she wanted to dance Said she wanted to study ballet But she was four-foot-six with her mukluks off And I heard her teacher say "Now I ain't sayin' Annie that you can't dance No, I wouldn't wanna tell you that But I got a form here signed in triplicate Says you gotta learn to drive a cab" She says, "I don't wanna learn to cook or sew Build boats or drive no cab 'Cause I came South to sing and dance And groovy shit like that 'Cause I was Miss Baffin Island Beauty Queen For nineteen-seventy-four And I spent a whole weekend in Grise Fiord With the boys beatin' down the door She came a long, long way from Frobisher Bay People, doncha know now what I mean She had the boys all cryin' on the distant early warning line Old Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene Well she said, "Thank you for your trouble, Sir But I'll make it on my own And the word spread through the North like wildfire "Big Annie's comin' home" She got off o' the plane with a record player Ballet slippers on her toes And she opened up a little groovy club Where ev'rybody comes and goes She got Old Stompin' Tom on the record player And she serves good booze and grub And the folks around Baffin Island Figure it's better'n any old Playboy club You can drink tea, beer and anti-freeze Till you fall right off o' your feet And there's seal flippers and potato chips When you feel like somethin' to eat She came a long, long way from Frobisher Bay People, doncha know now what I mean She had the boys all cryin' on the distant early warning line Old Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene Well she packs that joint almost ev'ry night An' folks come from miles around And ev'ry night about ten o'clock All the houselights are turned way down And suddenly she's on the stage Wearin' that toothless grin Short fat Annie, the Goddess o' Love And she's gonna do her Dance of Sin Well she jumps and shouts, and huffs and puffs And does a little bump and grind And all she's wearin' is them ptarmigan feathers Scotch-taped to her behind Well she made about a hundred grand last year Which wasn't too bad at all And decided to take a little holiday So she flew down to Montreal It seems she ran into her teacher there You know, the one that she met before And she gave him a job tendin' the bar And takin' tickets at her Nightclub door She come a long, long way from Frobisher Bay People, doncha know now what I mean She had the boys all cryin' on the distant early warning line Old Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene Let me tell ya now, Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene Let me tell ya now, Muk-Tuk Annie could really make the scene (Transcribed by Mel Priddle - August 2005) ****** THE BALLAD OF MUKTUK ANNIE A Poem By Eric Linden There`s many a tale of the Great White North And you thought you'd heard them all, But there's one more story that needs to be told, And it isn't a barroom brawl. It's of Muktuk Annie who owned that joint – She'd headline the show now and then, With those ptarmigan feathers on her behind She danced like an Arctic hen! `Way back in the days when she was young And headed for Montreal, The government sent her to learn drivin' truck But Annie enjoyed a pub-crawl. There weren't many roads in Pangnurtung, The prospect of getting some – small. So drivin' a truck? Up in Pangnurtung? That didn't make sense at all! She really wanted to sing and dance – Become a great opera star. But drivin' a truck – there wasn't a chance… Just look how she strums a guitar. She packed up her things in a sealskin bag, Her mittens and mukluk boots, Then boarded a plane leavin' Montreal She headed back home to her roots. At first she built an igloo up there In Pangnurtung's downtown core. She called it "Big Annie's Bar & Grill", Rejecting "The Muskox Matador". Her booze she ordered from Newfoundland, That genuine homebrewed "Screech", And drummers came by from miles around, As far as the word could reach. On opening night the place was packed, There wasn't a seat to be had. The floorshow began at 9 P. M. Big Annie was driving them mad! She took up the stage like an opera star, Proceeded to take off her clothes, Except for her ptarmigan feathered behind And the seal flippers worn on her toes. She grunted and puffed across the whole stage, All hundred and sixty five pounds. At 5 foot 4 she wasn't too tall, Her pirouettes twirled round and round. The people applauded in frantic rage, Their yelling and screaming was loud – They never had witnessed ballet like this, Not one of them in that big crowd. Like wildfires ravishing trees down south, The word of Big Annie flew Across the vast lands of the Great White North, And her stature and fame simply grew. So often you'd hear the call of the wolves As they howled her name out loud – It was "Annie, Big Annie," in the still of the night To the moon or a passing cloud. Each Inukshuk guarding ravines and draws Heard the call and they passed it on; Every hunter who traveled the barren lands Knew Annie was Queen of the Dawn. They came from the islands and far-flung bays, They came from the ends of the world, They came to witness how Annie danced – How her ptarmigan feathers twirled. One day when the ice still covered the bay And the darkness was spread everywhere, Still long before the sun would be back To the land of the Arctic Hare, Big Annie was closing the Bar and Grill When a thought sauntered through her mind… She decided to sell her famous place And leave this town behind. She placed a sign at the igloo door – Which said that the place was "For Sale". In Pangnurtung the story spread – You could say it was more like a wail… From preacher man to the common man The people were stunned – one and all! They'd come to know ballet performed By their very own Muktuk doll. It didn't take more than a bat of an eye Till "For Sale" was transformed to "For Sold". That final performance Big Annie would give Will forever be rated as gold. Her audience screamed at the top of their lungs You'd swear crystal icicles cracked; She strutted her ptarmigan feathered behind And oh, how they loved her last act. Next day, though, she gathered her outfits and rings, Her seal flipper slippers and fins, Those endless mementos so dear to her heart – Stone carvings and ivory pins, A walrus head trophy from Repulse Bay, A narwhal tooth – rare and refined, And several more treasures. For a moment she wept, It was almost too much for her mind. A westwind was blowing the morning she left But it blew from the west every day. In mukluks and mittens, a parka with hood She was ready to get under way. All Pangnurtung came; they waved long goodbyes To the Muktuk, their Queen of the Dawn. Like frozen inukshuks – immobile and numb They watched till her light was long gone. Her komatik held almost all she possessed Wrapped snug and securely tied down. Up front was a brand new Skidoo which she bought From the snowmobile dealer in town. Big Annie's new goal lay in Frobisher Bay Where the lights twinkled shiny and bright. Her mind was made up: it was politics now And she smiled at the thought of a fight. ******

    


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