The Sweet, “Little Willy” and Jings, Crivens, Help Ma Boab!

One for the Scottish contingent of bloggers. Out and about yesterday evening tracking down the “Wullies” that have come to town via this summer’s Big Bucket Trail!

Oor Wullie is an iconic figure in the world of comic strips, and along with The Broons, kept generations of Scottish kids amused on a Sunday morning, as we read of their antics in the “funny papers” as the Americans call them.

Oor Wullie’s Big Bucket Trail will run for 11 weeks from 17th June to 30th August culminating in a series of Farewell Events and nationwide auctions in each of the five host cities, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness. Scotland’s first ever national public art trail aims to unite the country as it raises awareness and vital funds for Scotland’s children’s hospital charities.

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As for a song, what else to include but Little Willy by Sweet! Scottish born Brian Connolly could not have looked more different from Oor Wullie with his enviable long blond hair and “glam” clothes, but Sweet but were one of the biggest bands of the 1970s, first of all releasing records of the bubblegum pop persuasion but evolving into more of a hard rock band by the latter part of the decade. This single was one of their early ones from 1972 and looking at the clip I’m pretty sure I had a shirt/trouser/tank top combo very similar to the one worn by Brian at the time. It never ceased to amaze me how he could simultaneously look somewhat girly, but also very macho.

Anyway, a short picture post this one as I have lots to do before next weekend, as I have a trip planned. It’s going to be a blogging first for me and one I’m looking forward to immensely – Watch this space!

Little Willy Lyrics
(Song by Mike Chapman/Nicky Chinn)

North side, east side
Little Willy, Willy wears the crown, he’s the king around town
Dancing and glancing
Willy drives them silly with his star shoe shimmy shuffle down

Way past one and feeling alright
‘Cause with little Willy ’round they can last all night
Hey down, stay down, stay down down

‘Cause little Willy, Willy won’t go home
But you can’t push Willy ’round
Willy won’t go, try tellin’ everybody but, oh no
Little Willy, Willy won’t go home

Up town, down town
Little Willy, Willy drives them wild with his run-around style
Inside, outside
Willy sends them silly with his star-shine shimmy shuffle smile

Mama done chase Willy down through the hall
But laugh, Willy laugh, he don’t care at all
Hey down, stay down, stay down down

‘Cause little Willy, Willy won’t go home
But you can’t push Willy ’round
Willy won’t go, try tellin’ everybody but, oh no
Little Willy, Willy won’t go home

Little Willy, Willy won’t
Willy won’t, Willy won’t
Little Willy, Willy won’t
Willy won’t, Willy won’t
Little Willy, Willy won’t
Willy won’t, Willy won’t
Little Willy, Willy won’t
Willy won’t, Willy won’t

Little Willy, Willy won’t go home
But you can’t push Willy ’round
Willy won’t go, try tellin’ everybody but, oh no
Little Willy, Willy won’t go home

Little Willy, Willy won’t go home
But you can’t push Willy ’round
Willy won’t go, try tellin’ everybody but, oh no
Little Willy, Willy won’t go home

Little Willy, Willy won’t go home
But you can’t push Willy ’round
Willy won’t go, try tellin’ everybody but, oh no

Postscript:

Couldn’t get a picture of this one last night as inside the locked Shopping Centre. Got one today though, so that completes the set of 10 Wullies.

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Author: Alyson

Whenever I hear an old song on the radio, I am immediately transported back to those days - I know I'm not alone here and want to record those memories for myself and for the people in them. 50 years ago the song "Alfie" was written by my favourite songwriting team Bacharach and David - The opening line to that song was "What's it all about?" and I'm hoping that by writing this blog, I might find the answer to that question.

18 thoughts on “The Sweet, “Little Willy” and Jings, Crivens, Help Ma Boab!”

  1. There’s also a band (admittedly not Scottish) called The Little Willies. They have quite an attrition rate of…um…members as some simply don’t measure up.

    I was going to post something by them over the weekend, but I seem to have just used my best two jokes up. You’re welcome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah yes, so many jokes of such a nature but you’ll be pleased to see I restrained myself!

      Sorry if I’ve pre-empted your Little Willie post. We have a bit of a different readership though so wouldn’t want your followers to miss out and feel short-changed in the trouser department.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Pleased and impressed! I couldn’t make it through a comment without making a smutty innuendo, lawd knows how you managed to write all that.

        By the way, I don’t want you to think I’m besmirching the charitable aspect of your post: come payday I’ll be chipping in. Is there a link via which I can do so…?

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Yes, definitely some double-entendre there. Speaking of Scotsmen and willies: Why do Scotsmen wear kilts? Because sheep can hear zippers.

      What’s the difference between Mick Jagger and a Scotsman? Mick Jagger sings “Hey, you, get off of my cloud” while a Scotsman screams “Hey, McCloud, get off of my ewe!” 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Phillip – When I set out to write this post there certainly weren’t supposed to any double-entendres, just a celebration of our national comic strip icon, Oor Wullie. What with the song I suppose it was inevitable it would go in a certain direction though.

        As for the jokes, harsh indeed – You do know it’s mostly Scottish people who visit here right?!!

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        1. In my defense I can say that I am red-headed (or was, until chemotherapy changed the colour, though where the beard is not grey it is still red) and do have some Scottish ancestry. 😐

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  2. The Big Bucket Trail is fine but I preferred the sculpted dolphins we had in Aberdeen. The only Oor Wullie sculpture I’ve seen in Aberdeen is bright yellow and doesn’t look right.
    “Blockbuster” and “The Ballroom Blitz” are the only Sweet songs that got anywhere near my record collection.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, some look better than others and not so keen on the brightly coloured ones as I like when he still looks like a boy. Good fun seeking them out though and only one more to find in the Shopping Centre which was closed last night – Will add as a postscript.

      When we went to Dundee last year they had many many penguins (City of Discovery) scattered across town and we managed to catch a fair number of them during our stay.

      Yes I doubt if many of the blogging community would have purchased Little Willy or Wig Wam Bam!

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    1. Ah Neil – The antics of Oor Wullie will be lost on you as a very Scottish comic strip character but one much loved throughout our nation. He and his friends have amused and entertained since 1937 and whenever something really remarkable happened, the exclamation was always either “Jings”, “Crivens” or “Help ma Boab”, so much so that phrase is now part of our language and you always know Oor Wullie or The Broons (The Brown family) are about to be mentioned if you utter that phrase.

      I got Mr WIAA to take a photo of me with all the Wullies, some may have worked better than others!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “Jings, crivens, help ma Boab”? … I need a translation please! 🙂
    Great photos of those oh so colourful Oor Wullies (and lovely one of you too) and love the way these things work – hope it raises lots of money too. Here in the ‘ancient wool towns’ of England I’ve often thought we should have a trail of giant sheep models and I’d love to participate as an artist if so. A friend of mine recently took part in one where she lives with giant owls and created a wonderful winged Frida Kahlo ( or Frida Owlo as she named it).. beautiful. But the first time I came across this type of venture was over 20 years ago in Zurich of all places – the town was full of wonderfully painted cows and I couldn’t believe my eyes! Even better than the Milton Keynes concrete ones https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concrete_Cows
    Anyway I seem to have strayed off topic here but perfect choice of song too of course. I always wanted hair like Brian! And congratulations on your skilled innuendo avoidance!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just kinda explained the meaning of the words to Neil above, but being realistic, Jings, Crivens and “Help ma Boab” are all just a clean, DC Thomson, 1937 version of “for f***’s sake”. There can’t be many Scottish kids who weren’t gifted The Oor Wullie and The Broons annuals at Christmas but maybe they didn’t make the trip south of the border? Great fun making the trip round town capturing the various Wullies though and they each seem to have been placed so that pictures of them show a great backdrop. Yes, lots of places seem to be doing similar art projects nowadays and last year in Dundee (because of The Discovery and Scott of the Antarctic) they had colourfully painted penguins all around the city. If you ever have the time you could suggest the sheep project in your area and have one of your own? A retirement project perhaps…

      Yes, all innuendo carefully side-stepped but then Jez jumped in and did if for me!

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  4. Saw a few in Glasgow over the weekend.
    My brother sent a picture of my nephew beside one outside GOMA and the statue of the Duke of Cumberland with his traffic cone hat. Donald Dewar was also wearing a pokey hat!
    Hamilton had painted elephants a few years back which was nice.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve not been very original here as an awful lot of people are sharing pictures of themselves with the Wullies but I like them, so what the heck. DD and her boyfriend are about to head off to live in Glasgow, so going to be down in your neck of the woods quite a lot it seems. Hopefully I’ll catch that one beside the Duke with his traffic cone hat – Love the Glaswegian sense of humour.

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  5. Have the Wullies/Broons ever been turned into an animated tv-series? I wonder if the characters would then speak with a Scottish accent. Will be back to read about your planned trip

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    1. Sorry – missed this comment so returning to it. No Oor Wullie animations as far as I know although some other DC Thomson characters have been made into cartoons. I did find a little clip/song about Scotland’s oldest wee boy though and it really sums him up.

      https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=12&ved=2ahUKEwjeopHhnLrjAhVqThUIHcpQBc4QwqsBMAt6BAgKEAo&url=https%3A%2F%2Fm.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dn6Zef9XYzdU&usg=AOvVaw1Vs3uOrrkTsjvrnc-D99mE

      Liked by 1 person

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