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Little Egypt

4.2 / 5

Words & Music: Jerry Leiber Mike Stoller

I went and bought myself a ticket and I sat down in the very first row
They pulled the curtain but then when they turned the spotlight way down low
Little Egypt came out a-struttin' wearin' nothin' but a button and a bow
Singing, ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying

She had a ruby on her tummy and a diamond big as Texas on her toe
She let her hair down and she did the hoochie-coochie real slow
When she did her special number on the zebra skin I thought she'd stop the show
Singing, ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying

She did her triple somersault and when she hit the ground
She winked at the audience and then she turned around
She had a picture of a cowboy tatooed on her spine
Said, Phoenix, Arizona 1949

Yeh, let me tell you people Little Egypt doesn't dance there anymore
She's too busy mopping and a-takin' care of shopping at the store
'Cos we've got seven kids and all day long they crawl around the floor
Singing ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying, ying-ying

Recordingdate: 1964/03/02, first released on: Roustabout (album)


Musicians who contributed to the first recording of Little Egypt:



Find available albums with Little Egypt.

bastiaanvinke wrote on February 04, 2010
I'm not really sure what to think about this one. Let's leave it at that.
Deano1 wrote on March 05, 2010
I am not as big of a fan of this one as most people seem to be (over four stars when this review was written), but it is good. I give it three stars, but it is really just a novelty song. On par with most of the "Roustabout" soundtrack material. A solid soundtrack LP that hit #1 and is a very easy listen (except for "Carny Town").
TCB1974 wrote on November 11, 2011
She walks, she talks, she crawls on her belly like... Little Egypt was a Syrian lady dancing in the late 19th century and you can actually find some original footage of her on YouTube, it is absolutely fascinating and very exotic. She popularized the 'hoochee-coochee' in the United States and Leiber and Stoller used this dance actually in the song Saved as some kind of a sin! Very entertaining song and other great performances exist thereof, such as from the Coasters. Four stars from me.
derekd wrote on November 11, 2011
Cool song recorded in 1964. I remember buying the Roustabout Lp and wondered which track would be used as a single.In the end Rca decided not to release any of the track. But i often wonder how Little Egypt would have done chart wise. Elvis must have liked it using it again in the '68 Tv special.
Steve V wrote on November 11, 2011
Good , cool song, & solid performance, best on the LP in my opinion.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on November 11, 2011
I was never crazy about this one. I liked the songs "Big Love, Big Heartache" and "Wheels on my heels" much more so. What a shame the harder edged "I'm a Roustabout" which first appeared on the album "Second to None" didn't make it, onto the "Roustabout Soundtrack album and movie".
bajo wrote on November 11, 2011
What a smash this would have been as a single c/w I'm A Roustabout. If only.......!
GEORGE (GK) wrote on July 15, 2012
"I'm a Roustabout" (discovered a few years back) would have been a true highlight of the soundtrack and the movie, if it had been used. The song has "attitude" in a fun way. "Little Egypt" is a fun song, but, not a favorite of mine.
Bill (BW) wrote on July 15, 2012
I like it. My preference is for the alternate version. I agree that it would have been a smash single backed with "I'm A Roustabout."
dgirl wrote on July 15, 2012
Good song, but one of this great writing team's lesser efforts. A smash single? Very doubtful. The music world was changing rapidly in late '64 and this song sounds a bit dated for the times. Heck, it wasn'teven a smash for The Coasters when originally released. Maybe a novelty top 20 hit at best.
Monster wrote on July 15, 2012
Like this one a lot. There are quite a few lesser known Elvis songs which I've caught my better half really enjoying and this is one of them (others are pretty much anything from the Memphis sessions and some of the better songs from Stax). I always like it when a non Elvis fan digs a relatively hidden treasure so I'm adding an extra star to this for that reason. Five stars.
Cruiser621 wrote on July 15, 2012
I give this song 3 stars. It was a novelty song which The Coasters were known for recording and to be honest, were really good at much in the same vein as "Charlie Brown". Elvis' version is acceptable but as a single? No way. It worked within the soundtrack.
Pedro Nuno wrote on July 15, 2012
Great rendition in the 68 Comeback. Nice film number. Don't apeal to me in the Album.
Gorse wrote on November 14, 2012
Very enjoyable fun novelty song that comes across well as a performance in the film. Should have been issued as a single with Big Love Big Heartache on the flip, which I think would have done pretty well in the World's charts.
ElvisSacramento wrote on January 22, 2013
This is such a fantastic, catchy, unique and fun song and I love Elvis' 1964 and 1968 renditions of it. It's one of 24 songs that Elvis recorded that was written by the brilliant and iconic songwriting duo Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller.
sugartummy wrote on March 31, 2013
Love the funny lyrics and the tune too. Elvis did it in 1968 with his gold jacket on, which was great too. But why does the volume change at 1:37? On alternate takes this doesn't happen.
TheMemphisFan wrote on May 30, 2015
I've always considered this song mediocre at best. It's a catchy tune, but nothing special to me. In an earlier post ElvisSacramento writes that it's one of 24 songs that Elvis recorded by Leiber & Stoller. I thought the total was 23. Am I missing one?... Hound Dog; Love Me; Loving You; Hot Dog; I Want To Be Free; Jailhouse Rock; Treat Me Nice; Baby I Don´t Care; Santa Claus Is Back In Town; Don´t; Trouble; King Creole; Steadfast, Loyal And True; Dirty, Dirty Feeling; Just Tell Her Jim Said Hello; Girls! Girls! Girls!; Bossa Nova Baby; You're The Boss (duet with Ann-Margret); Little Egypt; Fools Fall In Love; Saved; If You Don't Come Back; Three Corn Patches.
Cruiser621 wrote on May 18, 2017
2017 and I still give it 3 stars. Why, in fact, as another comment stated, does the volume increase? And further, are there really alternate takes out there we don't know about?
DerekH wrote on September 20, 2022
Okay, it's a movie song, but then again, it was good enough for the 68 Tv comeback show, and we all know how that was reveived. 5 star for both recordings.
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