Daisy Bell

This song (by Harry Dacre, 1892), also sometimes referred to as, "A Bicycle Built for Two" was on my mind a lot, so here's more than you ever wanted to know and hear about it. It really was quite the rage in its day! And it's not dead yet. I think it may be the single most quoted song in both science fiction (Dr. Who, Farscape [episode 202, "Liars, Guns and Money, Part 3]], 2001: A Space Oddyssey in 1968) and fact (Alexander Graham Bell's first phone demo, John Kelly of Bell Labs' speech synthesis demo in 1961). Btw, I found it nearly impossible to find good information on the origins of most of the additional lyrics below.

Listen to Daisy Bell:
Really Good MIDI File
Rock Version by Blur, MP3 [2.7 MB]    ...live version, MP3 [2.7 MB]
HAL 9000's last words


Other Daisy Bell Sites:

From American Popular Songs by David Ewen:

When Dacre, an English popular composer, first came to the United States, he brought with him a bicycle, for which he was charged duty. His friend (the songwriter William Jerome) remarked lightly: 'It's lucky you didn't bring a bicycle built for two, otherwise you'd have to pay double duty.' Dacre was so taken with the phrase 'bicycle built for two' that he decide to use it in a song. That song, Daisy Bell, first became successful in a London music hall, in a performance by Kate Lawrence. Tony Pastor was the first one to sing it in the United States. Its success in America began when Jennie Lindsay brought down the house with it at the Atlantic Gardens on the Bowery early in 1892.


The Song:

Daisy, Daisy, Give me your answer do?
I'm half crazy, All for the love of you!
It won't be a stylish marriage,..I can't afford a carriage,
But you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two!

There is a flower within my heart, Daisy, Daisy!
Planted one day by a glancing dart,
Planted by Daisy Bell!
Whether she loves me of not, Sometimes its hard to tell;
Yet I am longing to share the lot of Beautiful Daisy Bell!

(chorus)

Daisy, Daisy, Give me your answer do?
I'm half crazy, All for the love of you!
It won't be a stylish marriage,..I can't afford a carriage,
But you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two!

(chorus)

We will go "tandem" as man and wife, Daisy, Daisy!
Ped'ling away down the road of life,
I and my Daisy Bell!
When the road's dark we can dispise P'licman and "lamps" as well;
There are "bright lights" in the dazzling eyes
Of beautiful Daisy Bell!

(chorus)

I will stand by you in "wheel or woe, Daisy, Daisy!
You'll be the bell(e) which I'll ring, you know!
Sweet little Daisy Bell!
You'll take the lead in each trip we take,
Then if I don't do well; I will permit you to use the break,
My beautiful Daisy Bell!!!


Additional Choruses:

Harry, Harry, here is your answer true.
I'd be crazy to marry a jerk like you.
There'll never be any marriage
If you can't afford a carriage
And I'll be switched (As is hit with a switch)
If I'd get hitched
On a bicycle built for two.

Richard, Richard, here is your answer true.
You're half crazy if you think that will do.
If you can't afford a carriage,
There won't be any marriage.
Cause I'll be switched
If I'll be hitched
On a bicycle built for two.

Daisy,Daisy the coppers are after you,
If they catch you,you know what they will do.
They'll tie you up with wire
Inside a Black Maria
So ring your bell and pedal like hell
On a bicycle made for two!

Peter, Peter, here is your answer true.
I'd be crazy, to marry a lad like you.
If you can't afford a carriage -
there won't be any marriage.
And I'd be dead, before I'd wed
on a bicycle built for two.

Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do
I'm half crazy, just to make love to you
You make me all hot and sexy
So let us call a taxi
My kind of fun, just can't be done
On a bicycle built for two.

Michael, Michael, here is my answer true
I won't cycle, it leaves me all black and blue
There won't be any marriage
If you don't get a carriage
for I'll be blowed
If I'll be stowed (towed?)
On a bicycle made for two

Michael, Michael, here is your answer true:
I won't cycle, all for the love of you.
If you can't afford a carriage,
There won't be any marriage.
'Cause I'll be damned
If I'll be crammed [jammed? slammed?]
On a bicycle built for two.

Maxie, Maxie, here is your answer true:
I'm not crazy all for the likes of you.
If we can't afford a carriage,
There won't be any marriage,
'Cause I'll be damned if I'll be crammed*
On a bicycle built for two.

*Variant for respectable company: "I'll be switched if I'll be hitched".

Barkeep, Barkeep, give me your answer true:
I'm half crazy over the foamy brew.
I haven't got any money,
But wouldn't it look funny,
Me staring at you, across the bar,
Without a drink in my hand.

Daisy, Daisy, send me some email, do
I'm half-crazy all for a byte of you
I can't afford a modem
I don't know how to code 'em
But you'd look good
Upon a node
Of the internet built for two.

[Insert male name, twice], here is your email true
I'd be crazy to interface with you
Why don't you get a clue be-
Fore ranting like a newbie
And I'll be damned
If I'll be spammed
On an internet built for two.

Daisy Daisy
For Heaven's sake drop dead, do.
I've gone crazy
Listening to songs of you.
If you'll only skip the marriage
I'll furnish a handsome carriage
For you and your beau
Laid two in a row,
A coffin that's built for two.     *


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