Whiskers in the Jar

by Marc Gunn

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about

Introducing Whiskers in the Jar: Irish Songs for Cat Lovers! If you love cats and Celtic music, you will love this latest offering from Marc Gunn & The Dubliners' Tabby Cats.

It all began with a phone call. I started meowing in the middle of “Wild Rover”. Then I wrote my first cat song. Irish Drinking Songs for Cat Lovers was born. The CD was wildly popular. Before I knew it I had people asking when I would release my next Cat CD. Sure, I had a few songs already written, but not enough for a second CD. I spent the next two years writing some songs and asking fans of the first album to submit some lyrics. The results are now here!

The album features twelve songs and two sets of Irish tunes. The songs are a mix of Irish and Scottish songs rewritten about cats. You'll hear songs about cats eating catnip, waking you up in the middle of the night, staring off into nothingness. You'll laugh as cats take over a dairy farm, splashing milk all over the place or a nice feline friendly twist to the Sylvester and Tweety Bird cartoon. Cats fight off canine pack recruitment and Harry Potter makes an appearance as does cat cloning. No really! It's twisted, but amazing fun.

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released January 1, 2008

The CD was produced by Celtic music lover, Rich Brotherton, and it shows. Whiskers in the Jaris an album of purrlicious fun for cat lovers everywhere.

The graphics were designed by Celtic artist, Ingrid Houwers.

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Marc Gunn Birmingham, Alabama

Marc Gunn is a rhythm and folk musician inspired by Celtic culture, science fiction, fantasy, and cats. He breathes new life into the autoharp, which continues to surprise musical veterans and fans a like for it’s unique sound and spirited energy. It’s like a satirical jam session between The Clancy Brothers and Weird Al Yankovic. It’s Celtic music, the traditional and the twisted. ... more

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Track Name: What Shall We Do With a Catnipped Kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
Ear-laye in the morning

Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Ear-laye in the morning

A few different verses:

Blow some bubbles and watch him chase them

Touch him on the back and watch him jump high
Pry him off your bleeding shoulders

Put him in his cat bed till he’s sober
Put him there again when he jumps out

Put him in the bed of your sleeping father
You should’ve seen your sleeping father
He screamed like your little sister
Your dad jumped up on top of the bed post
Track Name: Molly Malone, the Cat’s Perspective/Planxty Hewlett
In Dublin’s fair city, when I was a kitty,
I first cast my gaze on sweet Molly Malone,
I was but a kitten, but I was quiet smitten,
With her cockles and mussels
Alive alive-o

alive alive-o, alive alive-o
sparing cockles and mussels
alive alive-o

She was a fish monger
feeding cats who did wander
just like her father and mother before
and they all wheeled their barrows
feeding cats fat and narrow
sharing cockles and mussels
Alive alive-o

She died of a fever, nine lives couldn’t save her
the cats we did mourn for sweet Molly Malone
now her ghost wheels her barrow
feeding cats fat and narrow
sharing cockles and mussels
Alive alive-o
Track Name: Kitty at the Door
Kitty awoke on a crisp winter morn;
And looked through the door at the hill.
And he mewed to mistress to show his distress
As he made his way to the sill.
But the wind was sharp and cold that day;
And the rustling grass caused him fears,
So kitty sat with the door open
Not moving except for his ears, singing…

“I’ll go outside a while;
But then, I might just stay in.
Yes, I’ll sit and think a bit
And I’ll neither go out nor stay in.”

It was a cold morning, went straight to his bones
Oh, he wished that he had him a mouse.
Just one loud squeak, and he’d eat for a week;
But he’d have to go out of the house.
Oh his mouth watered with the thought of mice
But it was too cold to decide,
And not even threats could make him step through
The door, and saunter outside. He sang…

Kitty sat there half the day
And into the house wind did moan;
And he thought about each dire consequence
Of the things he might do all alone.
Oh, he might wet his paws, or break hunting laws,
Or catch a fat mouse for his prey.
He might meet his end, or he might meet a friend.
But still he just sat and he’d say…

His mistress came to the end of her rope
And she gave a terrible shout.
With the knob in her hand and an evil grin
‘Twas her toe, that shoved kitty out!
Kitty fluffed out his fur as he sat on the stoop
And he gave her a baleful green glare,
It was cold on his toes, and his little wet nose.
“You can’t make me go out of my lair!” He said…

When the door slid open, a cold wind blew in
And there sat the cat in a crouch.
With a bird in his jaws and fresh mud on his paws,
The bad kitty jumped up on the couch!
“Here’s a gift for you!” and away the bird flew
As he tracked the mud on the chair.
“You should know better, when I’m deep in thought!
You can’t make me get off of my rear!” He sang…
Track Name: Danny Boy... For Cat Lovers
Oh Danny Boy, the alarm is not yet ringing.
But I awake with you licking me on my cheek.
The morning’s come too soon, and you won’t stop meowing.
Why won’t you let me get one good night’s sleep.

At 3am, I awoke. You were at the window.
You pawed the blinds and meowed loudly to the air.
I threw a pillow and, said, “Would you be quiet!”
You thought a game, and came to chew my hair.

When I come home tonight to find you sleeping.
You look so sweet in the chair that you sheared.
I’ll wonder why I have this great desire
To watch you run as I yell into your ear.

For my revenge is only just beginning.
Not a moment’s rest, this evening you will see!
‘Til 11pm, when I lay down and am dreaming
Then I will sleep in peace… until… the… morn-ing!
Track Name: Big Strong Cat (My Puddy Tat, Sylvester)
I tawt I taw a puddy tat?
He lives out on my door mat.
Did you hear about the puddy tat last night
He tried to swallow me with one bite.
You can take all of the alley cats away. (oh please!)
I’ve a cat trying to get in my cage
He used to be a lonely, abandoned stray
Now he’s hunting me every day.
That is my puddy tat Sylvester (What a tat!)

He’s piled furniture upon a chest (big chest!)
He’s built him a ladder to my nest; he never rests there.
Think of a bird, Tweety bird, don’t rush, just climb,
And hope that Granny comes and finds
me. He’s got a paw to grab my head (Tweety’s head)
And a mouth that will soon swallow it (gulp!)
It takes all the Grannies and old ladies to fight off that cat Sylvester.

Well, he broke into my cage in Italy.
He thought that Granny didn’t see.
She threw him off the harbor in New York,
Where he was chased by a great big shark.
He saw Granny leave in distress. (What’d he do?)
He put on Granny’s old dress (Cross dress)
He walked in the room with a key
But Granny came back suddenly.

That is my puddy tat Sylvester (What a tat!)
He’s piled furniture upon a chest (big chest!)
He’s built him a ladder to my nest; he never rests there.
Think of a bird, Tweety bird, don’t rush, just climb,
And hope that Granny comes and finds
me. He’s got a paw to grab my head (Tweety’s head)
And a mouth that will soon swallow it (gulp!)
It takes all the Grannies and old ladies to fight off that cat Sylvester.

I tawt I taw a puddy tat in Japan
So I pulled out a big frying pan.
I dropped it on Sylvester, left a knot
I heard Sylvester scream, “You sthnot!”
I was swinging in my cage and whistling (what’d he do?)
Sylvester grabbed me by my feet (big feet)
Granny walked in and yelled, “Stop!”.
Then he bit off my head and said, “Farewell, there’s no reason to stay for Sthylvester.”

I am the puddy tat Sthylvester (What a cat!)
I piled furniture upon a chest (big chest!)
I built me a ladder to his nest; I never rest there.
Think of a bird, Tweety bird, don’t rush, just climb,
And hope that Granny doesn’t find
me. I’ve got a paw to grab his head (Tweety’s head)
And a mouth that will soon swallow it (gulp!)
Not even all the Grannies and old ladies can defend their birds from Sthylvester.
(sthuferin sthukatash, that Tweety was tasty)
Track Name: Cuddles McGish
I knew an old tomcat named Cuddles McGish,
As we were catnapping down by the food dish,
And dreaming of catnip and fine tuna-fish,
We lay sunning ourselves in the morning.
When there came a Rottweiler called Sergeant McGrowl
With a mangy old mixture of shitzu and chow,
And a little Chihuahua called Yippy O’Howell,
With their muddy loud paws in the morning.

Says he, “My fine fellows, if you’ll join our pack,
We’ll go tromp through the puddles and leave a big track,
We’ll tip over the trash-can and rip up the sack,
And chase the postman in the morning.
For a doggie, he always has a thick bristly coat,
And a colorful collar for to hang ’round your throat,
And if you should wander, of your tags they’ll take note,
To bring you safe home in the morning.”

But says Cuddles, “I wouldn’t be proud of your furs,
For you smell like old garbage and you look like old curs,
And your tails are encrusted with sharp sticker-burrs,
That poke at your skin in the morning.
And your collars are nothing of which to be proud,
For our people correct you when you are too loud,
While they only pet us when we have meowed,
And they feed us first thing in the morning.”

But the sargeant he barked, “If I hear one more sound,
We’ll bare our big teeth and we’ll stomp on the ground,
And chase you all over, both upstairs and down,
So now you young kitties, take warning!”
But Cuddles and me, we whipped out our claws,
And we paid our respect to their noses and jaws,
So all those dumb pooches, they took to their paws,
And ran from us cats in the morning.

And the little Chihuahua, with his high piercing bark,
We jumped on his back and we there left our mark,
And clawed him so fierce, you’d think he met a shark,
As he ran yipping home in the morning.
Well, Cuddles, he might have continued the chase,
But the encounter had put all our fur out of place,
So instead we sat down then, to groom face to face,
And get back to our naps in the morning.
Track Name: When the Dairy Farm Caught Fire
Some friends and I in a milkman’s truck
Were eating catnip one night
When into the truck a tomcat jumped
His scraggly face gone white.
“What’s up”, says Tom, “Have you seen a dog,
Or has our milkman retired?”
“Milkman retired? Fft hiss!”, says he,
“The dairy farms’ on fire!”

And there were toms stretched up and down
Lappin’ up the milk on the floor.
“My Cream, Cream!” the farmer cried
As he came knockin’ on the door (clap clap)
Oh don’t let him in till it’s all lapped up
Then somebody shouted Mreow! MREOW!
And we all drank milk till the cows came home
When the dairy farm caught fire.

“Mew,” says Tom, “What a bit of luck!
Everybody follow me
And it’s out to the barn
If the fire’s there
Then we’ll have milk for free.”
We chased Tom down nipping his heels
Then into the milk pond flipped
And we hadn’t been there ten minutes or more
Till we were all quite ‘nipped.

Percy sauntered over to a water pail
And pawed at it as he gagged (cough cough)
Started takin’ off his flea collar
Likewise his rabies tags.
“Hold on, ” says Tom, “that ain’t allowed
Ya can’t do that thing here.
Why go washing your tags in the wat’ring trough
When milk’s coming out our ears?”

Then there came from the old barn door
A collie from across the street
And when he saw three hundred cats
He took a ringside seat
He nipped at tails in good clean fun
Splashed milk on a cat or three
And just to show there was no harm done,
He licked their whiskers clean.

And then there came a mighty splash
Fur flew to and fro
Leaping from the rafters’ flames
Into the pails below.
“Well, we’re safe here,” a Persian mewed
Paddling in the foam,
“This here’s a bath I’d get used to
They won’t believe back home!”

When the sun came up, the fire was out
We rolled across the floor
The barn was burned. The milk was drunk.
There wasn’t any more.
Tom stretched his legs, said, “Good job, lads!”
Raised his tail up higher,
“There’s dairies all along this road.
Let’s set them all on fire!”
Track Name: The Old Woman and Her Cat (Dundee Cat)
In an attic flat in Dundee town,
A poor old woman spread the tale around
That she lived all her life in her old top flat
With no company but her old tom cat

Fifty years in a wee top flat
The poor old woman and her old tom cat

Now one night they sat by the fire quite glum
When who do you think came down the lum (chimney)
I’m your fairy Godmother, so have no fear
To grant three wishes they sent me here

The old woman looked down at her empty purse
I could always use some cash of course
The fairy godmother waved her wand around
And lying on the floor was ten thousand pounds

Now a lovely figure and a face divine
For just one night I wish were mine
Says the fairy godmother, “I’ll have a go!”
And she made her look like Marilyn Monroe.

This lovely girl by the fire she sat
She turned her attention to the old tom cat
He’s my only love so here’s my plan
Tonight please make him a handsome man

This handsome man at last drew near,
And he whispered softly in her ear.
The night is young but you’ll regret
The day you took me to the vet…!!!
Track Name: Kitty Martin
There were three cat brothers in merry Scotland;
In merry Scotland there were three.
And they did cast lots which of them should go, Should go, should go
And turn mouser all on the salt sea.

The lot it fell first upon Kitty Martin,
The fiercest of all of the three.
That he should turn mouser all on the salt sea, Salt sea, salt sea
To maintain a fine vessel rat-free.

He had not been sailing but a long winter’s night
And part of a short winter’s day,
Before he espied a large fat grey rat, Fat grey rat, fat grey rat
Come creeping down at him straight way.

“Meow! Meow!” Cried Kitty Martin;
“What makes you slink so nigh?”
“I’m a poor rodent bound for that sack of grain, Sack of grain, sack of grain.
Will you please for to let me pass by?”

“Meow! Meow!” Cried Kitty Martin;
“That thing it never could be!
For I am turned mouser all on the salt sea, Salt sea, salt sea
To maintain a fine vessel rat-free.

“Come, lower your pink tail and write up your will,
And bring yourself over to me;
For I will chase you and your cousins all, Cousins all, cousins all,
Your dead bodies I’ll eat with my tea.”

“Oh no! I won’t lower my slender pink tail,
Nor bring myself over to thee!
And you shan’t take from me my dear rodent life, Rodent life, rodent life
Nor force me to jump in the sea.”

With tooth, claw, and squealing, hard at it they went,
For fully two hours or three,
Till Kitty Martin gave to him the death bite, The death bite, the death bite,
And straight down the gullet went he.

Bad news, bad news to rat cousins came;
Bad news to rats soon came ’round.
“There’s been a poor rodent and he’s passed away,
Passed away, passed away!
And now the cat runs us aground.”
Track Name: Harry Potter and The Rising of the Moon
“O come tell me Tom O’Feral, tell me why you hurry so.”
He coughed a hairball, hissed, fur glistened, and his whiskers wiggled low.
I bear rumor from Godric’s Hollow that You-Know-Who is through
He killed James and Lily Potter, by the rising of the moon.

By the rising of the moon, by the rising of the moon.
He killed James and Lily Potter, by the rising of the moon.

Then come tell me Tom O’Feral, where the gathering is to be
Old Hagrid says on Privet Drive, muggles live there says he.
But McGonagall and Dumbledore should meet Hagrid there soon
On the doorstep of the Dursley’s by the rising of the moon.

By the rising of the moon, by the rising of the moon.
On the doorstep of the Dursley’s by the rising of the moon.

Out from drain pipes, roofs and windows, golden eyes peered through the night
Nay a paw was heard to shuffle, neath that amber street lamp light
Rumors ran along the alleys, like the barn owls lowly croon
And a hundred cats were gathered by the rising of the moon.

By the rising of the moon, by the rising of the moon.
And a hundred cats were gathered by the rising of the moon.

On the corner of 4 Privet Drive, a tabby cat did stand,
Then the lamp lights disappeared inside old Dumbledores right hand.
A baby slept in Hagrid’s arm when his motorcycle touched doon
What will become of Harry Potter by the rising of the moon.

By the rising of the moon, by the rising of the moon.
What will become of Harry Potter by the rising of the moon.

By the rising of the moon, by the rising of the moon.
And hurrah, at last, for freedom, by the rising of the moon.
Track Name: Orange Kitten's Mew
One sunny June morning as I played in the grass,
I heard a loud meowing beneath my neighbor’s house.
When I peered into the darkness, my heart it pounced anew.
I found the friend I’d wished for in the orange kitten’s mew.

I set him in a basket and showed him to my mom,
his wee head under his tail and small body so calm.
I said if I can keep him, there’s nothing I won’t do,
for my soul was enchanted by the orange kitten’s mew.

Dad said we could only keep him ’till he found a new home.
Then the months scurried by; soon the kitten was full grown.
Each evening he and dad cuddled in the living room.
Dad had fallen under the spell of the orange kitten’s mew.

Almost five years later, Tiger still brings us much joy,
crying for belly rubs and batting ‘round his toy.
The family is blessed to know a cat so loving and true.
Our lives were changed forever by the orange kitten’s mew.
Track Name: Whiskers in the Jar
As I was throwin’ pennies like wishes in a fountain
I heard two women talking ’bout their babies and recountin’
How one had lost a tooth already, giggling and merry
They joked about inflation for the stork and the Tooth Fairy

Mush a ring dum a doo dum a da
Whack for my daddy’o
Whack for my mommy’o, there’s
Whiskers in the jar

I chuckled when I saw a pillow lifted, and a penny
Being hurled across the bedroom, and replaced it with a twenty
I sighed with relief that my cats would never bleed me —
But admitted there were times I rather wished I had a baby

Well later on that night, I drove home to my apartment
Was greeted by my kitties, and refilled their food and water
And there beside the feeding bowl was a whisker on the carpet
“Kind of like a baby tooth” I thought, and so I saved it

‘Twas early the next morning, I placed upon the mantel
Another that I spotted watching “Sleepless in Seattle”
Before too long, the few had grown into a small collection
And I’ll admit it’s odd, but I regard them with affection

Some parents push their daughters in the carriages out strolling
And others take their sons to soccer, baseball or out bowling
But I shop for catnip, making sure that it’s organic
And brag on my cats’ cleverness with pride that is gigantic

When friends of mine come over and they see my jar of whiskers
I assured them it’s not voodoo, and eventually they snicker
And when my cats are gone, and I’m beside myself all lonesome
That jar will come in handy for the day I want to clone them