Shake the Papaya Down


(Jamaican folk song)

I. (v.1) Mama says no play; This is a work day,
Up with the bright sun, get all the work done.
If you will help me climb up the tall tree,
Shake the papaya down.

(v.2) Sweet sweet papaya, fruit of the island,
When all the work’s done, dance on the white sands,
If you will help me climb up the tall tree
Shake the papaya down.

II. Shake them down, shake them down,
Climb the tall tree, shake them down.
Shake them down, shake them down,
Shake the papaya down!

III. I love papaya, yes I do,
Juicy papaya, yes I do.
If you will help me, I’ll help you,
Shake the papaya down!

Each part (I, II and III) can be sung together as partner songs.

See also

or purchase here (printables only)

  • Song with chords (PDF)
  • MIDI file
  • Listen to the song

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2 thoughts on “Shake the Papaya Down”

  1. I love this song! Do you have any I formation about how it was collected? I can’t only find it in text book sources and I’m looking for something more authentic and primary?

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