This first appeared on the TV show Monty Pythons Flying Circus, where it was performed by the psychotic barber. It later appeared in the film And Now For Something Completely Different and was sung by the pet shop owner from the dead parrot sketch.
The song was written by Monty Python members Terry Jones and Michael Palin along with Python associate Fred Tomlinson, who would sometimes appear on their show with "The Fred Tomlinson Singers," providing a chorus for various bits.
This starts off with the famous line, "I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay, I sleep all night and I work all day." We soon learn that there is another side to this woodman, as he reveals that he really likes to dress up in women's clothing.
George Harrison produced this song. He helped out Monty Python a lot, funding and appearing in their movie Life Of Brian, and producing several of their singles.
The band also recorded a German version of this song titled "Der HolzfÄller". This version was used in an episode of their television show broadcast in Germany.
Jeff - Haltom City, TX
At a 1976 Monty Python performance, George Harrison joined in the chorus dressed as a Mountie. Typical of Harrison, he blended in and never announced his appearance. The next night, after Harry Nilsson found out, he showed up for the role. This was a disaster, as Python member John Cleese recalls Nilsson wearing dark glasses and generally making an ass of himself. "Harry Nilsson came up and tried to take the show over, just one huge inflated ego," said Cleese. After the performance, Nilsson tried to shake hands with the crowd and fell into the audience, breaking his arm in the process.
There are several versions of this song. Two are by Michael Palin: the barber shop one from Flying Circus
and the pet store one from And Now For Something Completely Different
. There's also one by Eric Idle as a weather forecaster.
William - Colorado Springs, CO
Eric Idle performed this at the Just For Laughs festival in 2000.
Douglas - Waterloo
Monty Python, joined by Tom Hanks in the chorus, performed this song on November 29, 2002 at the Concert for George tribute, which honored George Harrison at Royal Albert Hall in London. At the end of the performance, the troupe saluted a picture of Harrison.