Kalpana Kalpana (Editor)

Ice Cream (I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream)

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit

"Ice Cream" or "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream" is a popular song, first published in 1927, with words and music by Howard Johnson, Billy Moll, and Robert King. After initial success as a late 1920s novelty song, the tune became a traditional jazz standard, while the lyrics refrain "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream" has remained a part of popular culture even without the rest of the song.


1920s novelty song

The song was one of a series of comic novelty songs set in "exotic" locations, one of the earliest and most famous being "Oh By Jingo!" The verses of "Ice Cream" talk of a fictional college in "the land of ice and snow, up among the Eskimo", the college cheer being the chorus of the song "I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream".

Notable recordings of the tune in the 1920s include by Waring's Pennsylvanians for Victor, Harry Reser's Syncopators for Columbia, and The Revelers for Edison Records.

Traditional jazz standard

In New Orleans in 1944, William Russell recorded a small jazz combo with George Lewis and Jim Robinson for his American Music label. Robinson cut loose with an unexpectedly virtuosic performance on an instrumental of the tune "Ice Cream". The side was issued as by "Jim Robinson's Band". The tune became a standard for Robinson, imitated by other Dixieland jazz trombonists including Chris Barber, and remains in the traditional jazz repertory.

When Barber's band first recorded the song in 1954, they basically knew the instrumental Lewis version. The record producer asked them to sing it, which was slightly problematic, since they didn't know the full lyrics. So trumpeter Pat Halcox invented his own lyrics, These are nowadays better known than the original 1920's version.

Popular culture

  • The song is featured in the 1931 Krazy Kat cartoon Soda Poppa.
  • The refrain is used in what becomes a prison chant in the 1986 film Down by Law.
  • The song is featured in two episodes of the first season of Barney & Friends.
  • American rapper RZA interpolated "Ice Cream" on his debut album Bobby Digital in Stereo (1998) in the song "My Lovin' is Digi".
  • One episode of Masters of Horror was titled We All Scream for Ice Cream.
  • Songwriter Tyler Joseph of the American duo Twenty One Pilots wrote "I scream, you scream, we all scream 'cause we're terrified," in their 2011 song Forest, as a play on words with this popular song.
  • Bunk'd Hazel sings the main part.
  • Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer Stink sings a similar song
  • The song was recited in the science fiction show Farscape by its protagonist Jon Crichton (Ben Browder)
  • References

    Ice Cream (I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream) Wikipedia

    Similar Topics
    Ganga (1960 film)
    Marco Ruas
    James Dutton (astronaut)