GIRLFRIEND OF THE WHIRLING DERVISH – Marilyn Armstrong

I always thought this goofy song was made up for a Looney Tunes cartoon. I vaguely remembered it as Daffy Duck, but it turned to be Porky Pig. Moreover, it’s a real song, written by Johnny Mercer et al. It has been performed by a variety of artists, including Bette Midler.

Why did this come up? Well, we were watching baseball and some dumb commentator referred to a player as “The Whirling Dervish.” And I started humming “She was the girlfriend of the whirling dervish …” and then, I simply had to find that cartoon.

After which, I had to find the song and the lyrics. It is still — even not as a cartoon — a silly song.



The Girl Friend of the Whirling Dervish

Song by Bette Midler

Lyrics:

One fine day, I chanced to stray
On a little side street in old Bombay
And met a sentimental oriental
She saw me and I saw she
Had a manner too bold and much too free
Her eyes were positively detrimental
When I asked about this gay coquette
I discovered much to my regret

She’s the girl friend of the whirling dervish
She’s the sweetest one he’s found
But ev’ry night, in the mellow moonlight
When he’s out dervishing with all his might
She gives him the run-around
All the boy friends of the whirling dervish
Are his best friends to his face
But there’s no doubt, when he isn’t about

They all come hurrying to take her out
She leads him a dizzy pace
He dreams of a Hindu honeymoon
He doesn’t dream that ev’ry night when he goes out
To make an honest rupee
She steps out to make a lotta whoopee
Oh, the love song of the whirling dervish
Has a sweet and tender sound

But will he burn if he ever should learn
That while he’s doing her a real good turn
She gives him the runaround
She’s got a nervish, throwin’ him a curvish
Which, of course, he doesn’t deservish
Poor old whirling dervish!


Songwriters: Johnny Mercer / Al Dubin / Harry Warren

The Girl Friend of the Whirling Dervish lyrics
© Warner/Chappell Music, Inc


So I decided to do it as a post. Because it’s silly and totally pointless and it makes me laugh.

These days, a laugh is about the only thing that really makes me feel better. It’s also the only thing that keeps me sane.



Categories: Cartoons, humor, lyrics, Music, Paths

Tags: , , , , , ,

5 replies

  1. It’s a classic — and got us into one of those silly arguments about “Whirling Dervish”.
    I always associate it with great dialogue from one of my favorite westerns, “The Professionals” (’66/Columbia) Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan, Jack Palance, Woody Strode, Ralph Bellamy and Claudia Cardinale. Dir: Robert Aldrich.

    The good guys have escaped the bad guys, thanks to Burt Lancaster who, heroically, heads off a bunch of baddies at the pass. He’s presumed dead. As the good guys wait for their monetary reward for saving the “kidnapped” Claudia, Robert Ryan spots a cloud of dust in the distance, saying “Looks like a whirling dervish…could be anything..Maybe Bill”. Lancaster clears the dust and Lee Marvin dryly offers, “And, that, Gentlemen, is the whirlingest Dervish of them all”. It’s a wonderful line leading into a terrific final sequence. Check it out if you haven’t seen this movie.

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