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'You Athol' Songwriter Says 'Sorry, Barre'

The Martha's Vineyard-based composer of viral video hit "The Massachusetts Song (You Athol)" says not only did he mean to mispronounce some towns' names in the lyrics — he's thinking about doing it again with a sequel.

Dana Edelman and his 11-year-old son Jaiden of West Tisbury are viral video stars for their "The Massachusetts Song (You Athol)." (YouTube screen shot)
Dana Edelman and his 11-year-old son Jaiden of West Tisbury are viral video stars for their "The Massachusetts Song (You Athol)." (YouTube screen shot)
Dana Edelman knows how to say "Falmouth." And "Worcester." And "Barre."

But the West Tisbury composer chose to toy with the pronunciations of these and several others among the more than 50 Bay State place names he included in the lyrics to his viral video "The Massachusetts Song (You Athol)," a duet with his 11-year-old son Jaiden.

And that led to a stream of corrections from state residents who commented on the Edelmans' YouTube post and here on Patch. Examples:

  • "'Foul - Mouth'? People always say 'Foul-mouth,' this doesn't help."
  • "Barre is pronounced 'Berry.'"
  • "Worcester is 'Wister' (or 'Wistah' if you really wanna give it some Massachusetts flair)."
  • "It's 'Stow' you Peabodys, not 'Stowe.' Stowe is in Vermont."

"The pronunciations are all intended," said an unrepentant Edelman on the phone with Patch last week. "The typos were mistakes."

But the responses to his song, which has attracted more than 38,000 YouTube views in less than two months, have gotten Edelman thinking about a sequel.

"I think a follow-up would be great, just for fun and to engage in the conversation," Edelman said.

"Sorry, Barre!" he added with a laugh.

It sounds as if Edelman's already got plenty of material for his next Bay State song, including dozens of comments asking him to include towns he left out of the first one.

But if he needs any assistance working them all into the lyrics, Patch reader Steve Arky has displayed a noteworthy talent in that direction with a pair of comments on our original post of Dec. 20, 2013:

  • "Hawley har Harwich! I'm Rowling on my Ashby! Stow-a-way song was waiting to be Bourne. Gotta take my Hatfield off to Dana and his Hansom Ayer Jaiden. Gotta Hanover it to them for Acton on their instincts over the long Hull and Belcher-ing it right outta town. Andover here, looks like I might be puttin the 'ole Ipswitch on ya’s 'n Sharon in your Topsfield! Don’t feel bad though. I was Sherborn an idiot Savoy--and without rhyme or tune, my Whitman is rather Dudley...like reading a page outta the Webster."
After an admiring comment in reply from Patch editor Louisa Hufstader:

  • "Goshen, that was lika Bolton outta the Ayer! To be Franklin, I didn’t Becket it from you. Concerned you had too many Brewsters to the Brimfield--cuz I thought my Dartmouth was a little Blandford. Anyway, I hope no one thinks I gave you any Grafton in your Palmer (lika wada Franklins, Hamiltons and Lincolns)! Not that you Needham."

What Massachusetts place names should be in Dana Edelman's next song? Share your suggested lyrics in the comments section below.
Dana Edelman January 17, 2014 at 09:52 AM
Sorry BARRE, I really do care-e I made a mistake and it really wasn't very fair-e If it's WORTHINGTON to you..... We can SCITUATE a lynchin' in the LONGMEADOW? But let's stop HOLDEN on to it, let's just get EVERETT

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