On 25 March 1963, Meredith Willson, who wrote "The Music Man", came on the TV show "I've Got a Secret", accompanied by a number of other people, who constituted his secret in some way. When the panel failed to guess the secret, the people arranged themselves on a small set of bleachers, holding cards. It turned out that these cards were their names, and as they spoke the names, the secret became clear.
UMPA // PAAR // UMPA // PAAR // UMPA // PAAR INDA // GOOD // OLD // SOMERSTEIN INDA // GOOD // OLD // SOMERSTEIN STROLIN // INDA // SHADY // LAYNE WITCHER // BEEBE // MINES HUGH HOLDER // HAND // BLANK // SEE // HOLDs // YOARS SAM DATZ // AVERY // GOOD // SINE SCHAYES // URE // TOOSIE // WOOSEY INDA // GOOD // OLD // SOMERSTEIN
The "UMPA PAAR" opening line involved just two people, who repeated their names. Similarly, "INDA GOOD OLD SOMERSTEIN" was sung three times, but by the same people. In the fourth line, Willson said he couldn't find anyone named "DOWNDA", so he had the "INDA" person sing her name there as well. In the seventh line, "GOOD" was also sung by the person in the "INDA GOOD OLD SOMERSTEIN" row.
The "BLANK" occurred because no one named "AND" could be found. The "HOLDs" was actually two people named "HOLD".
The actual lyrics to "In the Good Old Summertime" are:
In the good old summertime, In the good old summertime, Strolling through the shady lanes With your baby mine. You hold her hand and she holds yours, And that's a very good sign That she's your tootsie wootsie In the good, old summertime.
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