Joy To The World

Album: Naturally (1970)
Charted: 24 1
  • Jeremiah was a bullfrog
    Was a good friend of mine
    I never understood a single word he said
    But I helped him a-drink his wine
    And he always had some mighty fine wine

    Singin' joy to the world
    All the boys and girls now
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    And if I were the king of the world
    Tell you what I'd do
    I'd throw away the cars and the bars and the war
    Make sweet love to you

    Sing it now, joy to the world
    All the boys and girls
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    You know I love the ladies
    Love to have my fun
    I'm a high life flyer and a rainbow rider
    A straight shootin' son-of-a-gun
    I said a straight shootin' son-of-a-gun

    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls
    Joy to the world
    Joy to you and me

    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    Joy to the world
    Joy to you and me
    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls now
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls
    Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
    Joy to you and me

    Joy to the world
    All the boys and girls Writer/s: Hoyt Wayne Axton
    Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 38

  • Chris from BronxI first heard this song in the 6th grade. It caused me to buy Naturally (the first I ever bought with my own money). It was what started me on a long career as a serious music fan. Through the rest of 6th grade Three Dog Night was my fav band. (I also liked Paul Revere and the Raiders). That summer I got my real introduction to the Beatles and the rest is history.
  • Ol from Ann Arbor, MichiganTDN's Joy to the World is one song that gets tears of happiness to my eyes. Last few years, I have followed TDN across the USA, and no recording is as good as TDN doing it live. Enjoy seeing Michael Allsup do his guitar solo during this song. JOY!
  • Jose Nunes from Rj - BrazilIt's a nice music! I didn't really know this song, but what caught my attention was the fact that some American coworkers sang this song for a friend named Jeremiah. At that moment I laughed, but then I decided to research it. The melody is beautiful and has a nice beat, however the lyrics are a little strange, it reminds me of a certain rebellion, but it is rock. Then, reading about the song, it was better to understand what the author's message was. After all, a good song is not to be discussed, but it must be enjoyed. Cool!!!
  • Joe Cantello from GeorgiaI recall buying this 45 as a kid (one of my first) and the record got warped in the heat (no air back then). I had to put a penny on the tone arm to keep it from skipping. Ahh, what great memories.
  • Bogie from South CarolinaI always loved this song. However, after reading the Book of Jeremiah, I now realize it's a rebellious taunt toward God. Why couldn't it just be about a bullfrog named Jeremiah? :(
  • Cindy from KansasI was in the third grade when Joy to the world was released. That December we tricked our teacher into letting us play it in class. One of the students brought the 45 to class and asked the teacher "can we play, Joy to the World" The teacher said "oh I love that song" Of course she was thinking of the Christmas song, but we all knew what record our classmate had. You can imagine how pissed the teacher was when Cathy put on the record and Three Dog Night starts playing!!
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyPer:
    Jimmy Greenspoon, keyboardist with Three Dog Night, lost his battle to brain cancer Wednesday (March 11th, 2015) at his home in Montgomery County, Maryland. He was 67. Born in Los Angeles and raised in Beverly Hills, Jimmy attended the Los Angeles Conservatory of Music and played in several groups on Sunset Strip before hooking up with Danny Hutton and helping to form the 7-member group. He played on eleven top ten records, including the #1 hits "Mama Told Me (Not To Come)" in 1970, "Joy To The World" (1971) and "Black & White" (1972) before the group disbanded in 1976. They re-formed in 1981 but Jimmy was forced into drug rehab four years later. His autobiography chronicling his downfall, "One Is The Loneliest Number," was published in 1991. He was given a star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars in 2000...
    May he R.I.P.
  • Esskayess from Dallas, TxWho'da thought that a bullfrog could be a prophet?
  • Megan from Stevenson, AlTHIS SONG IS AMAZING!!!!! Sounds really good on the trumpet you guys!!! lol
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyMember Danny Hutton released a solo record in 1965; it was tited "ROSES AND RAINBOWS", it peaked at #73...
  • Rick from Belfast, MeI remember my cousin playing this 45 record again and again and again until the grooves on the recore were smoother than a worn out tire on a NASCAR racing car....LOL....great song....but I personally like Mama Told Me Not To Come better...
  • Ray from Lodi, NjI always thought that Jeramiah the bullfrog was supposed to be a hallucination the guy had when he got wasted! lol guess not.
  • Richard from Pittsburgh, Pato mike in buffalo(sorry to hear that)ccr version good but prefer 3dn this coming from big ccr fan
  • Ken from Louisville, KyThis was Billboard's #1 song of 1971, and one of thye biggest selling songs of the 1970's.
  • Rachel from Minneapolis, MnI love this song!!!!
  • Darren from Lake Geneva, WiI need to correct Pokey's song fact about their name. Three dog night is actually an Australian term. Yes it is about the temp. outside, but it refers to the colder it is, more dogs huddle together for warmth. Colder than a three dog night. This is what the band took their name from.
  • Mark from Byrdstown, TnThe bullfrog in old blues songs generally is a symbol for bad times or hard luck,that type of thing.Is that what it means here? Who knows? I think we tend to over analyze songs sometimes, especially those written sort of off the cuff by someone who is drunk or otherwise not straight at the time.'Joy To The World' is a great song and one of the best sing-a-long songs ever.So what if this is someones favorite TDN song? Good for them.
  • N.i. from Baltimore, MdI've long wondered about the line, "I'd throw away the cars and the bars and the war," since if you listen closely it almost sounds like he's saying "...the bars and the whores." I know this came out in the Vietnam Era, but I suspect there was an intended double meaning here, since this entire verse makes more sense if you substitute "whores." (Not that the song makes much sense overall, but you get my gist.)
  • Quin from Alpine, UtNot really one of my favorite songs-kind of cheesy for my taste but still a great song
  • David from Youngstown, OhThe band hated this song when they first heard it, and wondered WTF Jeremiah was a bullfrog had to do with anything, according to the autobiography of Jimmy Greenspoon, TDN's keyboardist. The band buried the song in the middle of the second side and only released it after its management urged them to do so, according to Greenspoon's book. I love TDN and can live with this (overplayed and overrated) song. What's too bad is this was a great band and when you ask people to name their favorite TDN song, they typically say, "Jeremiah was a bullfrog," like they know what they're talking about.
  • Millerman from Dacusville, ScThree Dog Night had a habit of remixing songs as they were released as singles. "Joy To The World" without the guitar solo was from the album, "Naturally" (1971) and the version with the solo was the single. Fortunately, (and to answer John's question) in 1993 MCA Records released a 2 disc compilation called "The Three Dog Night Story 1965-1975" It has the single versions of all their greatest hits, FYI "Joy To The World" was far from the only TDN song that saw an alternate and/or remixed version as a single. To Dennis in Anchorage, I'm sorry you had to plunk down a lot of money for a "pricey" box set.
  • Dennis from Anchorage, AkI loved this song as a kid, but when the "Big Chill" used it, they used a different recording which, for some reason, mixed out the guitar solo in the instrumental break. That version became the one that was available on Greatest Hits collections and such and I was always a little sad about it. A couple of years ago I bought a CD collection of 70's songs called "Have a Nice Decade" and it included the original hit version with the guitar solo in it. Very happy surprise for me. It's a pricey box set, but I'm glad to report that that version is still available. By the way, Hoyt Axton appears in the movie "Gremlins."
  • Bob from Shadow Hills, CaThough I see the quote from Hyot Axton that the "Jeremiah" line was a throw away line, I had heard on an interview that a "Bullfrog" is a New Orleans term for a drunk.
  • Dirk from Nashville, TnThere was a magical time that occurred between 1969 and 1971. There were some mind-bendingly good bands that emerged. And there were also some whimpy bands. And sometimes you just couldn't tell. Three Dog Night seemed to be really, really good. But it was hard to decide. They had guys who were a little too pretty out front singing. But the band really played like dynamite.... So you could never be totally sure--are these guys fluffy teenie-boppers? Or are they serious rockers? Mostly, their early songs leaned toward the serious rocking. Eli's Coming. One Man Band. Liar... There were several excellent records.... And then they put out this stupid little song, Joy to the World. The sound of them dropping out of "serious rocker" status and into "fluffy teenie-bopper" status sounded like a bomb falling. After this song came out, there was no more argument. Sadly, no matter how good their stuff was that came after, they were always just "that band that sang Joy to the World." ...Let that be a lesson to the rest of you aspiring rockers out there. Avoid the stupid songs.
  • Allan from Vanderhoof, CanadaHad a chance to interview Hoyt Axton at a country music festival some years ago. He said the first line, Jeremiah was a bullfrong, was never really intended to be in the song. He just came up with it to fill the line and get to the rest of the song. He never had a chance to rewrite it before the song became a hit.
  • Deo from Annandale, VaThis song always makes me feel soo happy...
  • David from Atlanta, GaAxton was a heavyweight boxing champ for the Navy.
  • Leon from Waterbury, CtGreat song to sing-a-long to with your friends.
  • Ken from Louisville, KyI believe the "single" version on the song used studio musicians, while the "album" version used 3DN's touring band. The group decided to use their touring band instead of studio musicians for their "Harmony" album, but the single had already been recorded.

  • Ken from Louisville, KyHoyt Axton said that when he first heard the song, he wasn't happy with the arraingment TDN used - it was completely different that one one he had on his demo version. But he said that when the songwriting royalty checks started to arrive, he LOVED the arraingment!
  • Jude from Thomasville, GaI also have happy memories of singing this song with my dad and brothers. There may even be an old cassette with the four of us belting this out. Not something I would WANT anyone else to hear, mind you, but I think if it turns up, I will give it to my nephew.
  • Ash from Charleston, WvThere's a scene in the 80's movie "Amazon Women On the Moon" in which Don "No-Soul" Simmons (played by David Alan Grier) sings the opening line of this song. If you're a fan of that movie, you're probably like me and you think of that scene every time you hear this song. Very funny stuff.
  • Mike from Buffalo, NyI've heard many people refer to this song by Creedence Clearwater Revival....did they ever cover this song?
  • Clarke from Pittsburgh, PaIn the 1990's, former Three Dog Night lead singer Chuck Negron released a version of the Christmas classic "Joy to the World" which included a few lines from this song - even "Jeremiah was a bullfrog"!
  • Scott from St. Louis, MoUsed in "The Big Chill". It plays over the end credits.
  • John from San Francisco, CaAnyone want to tell me why the air play version of this song was replaced with a less interesting version on the album? I know it's different because i used to have the 45. My next question is, has the original ever been released on a compilation release since the 70's?
  • Dave from Cardiff, WalesNo relation to the popular Christmas song, "Joy To The World" was a US No.1, but failed to repeat the success of "Mama Told Me Not To Come" in the UK.
  • Mandy from N/a, MaI really love this song, my father used to sing it to me when I was little. It was sung by Scully, in "Detour" (The X-Files), to help Mulder stay awake.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Danny Clinch: The Art of Rock PhotographySong Writing

One of rock's top photographers talks about artistry in photography, raising funds for a documentary, and enjoying a County Fair with Tom Waits.

Dave MasonSongwriter Interviews

Dave reveals the inspiration for "Feelin' Alright" and explains how the first song he ever wrote became the biggest hit for his band Traffic.

Songs Discussed in MoviesSong Writing

Bridesmaids, Reservoir Dogs, Willy Wonka - just a few of the flicks where characters discuss specific songs, sometimes as a prelude to murder.

Psychedelic LyricsMusic Quiz

Whoa man! Do you know which band came up with these cosmic lyrics?

Mike CampbellSongwriter Interviews

Mike is lead guitarist with Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and co-writer of classic songs like "Boys Of Summer," "Refugee" and "The Heart Of The Matter."

Steve Morse of Deep PurpleSongwriter Interviews

Deep Purple's guitarist since 1994, Steve talks about writing songs with the band and how he puts his own spin on "Smoke On The Water."