Animals In Appalachia Music

Turkeys and Monkeys in Appalachia

With Turkey season just around the corner I was reminded of a story one of Paul’s friends told him.

It was back in the days when I had big hair and Paul and his friends were like way cool.

Paul’s buddy was always telling crazy stories that were obviously mostly lies, but he was a likable guy and a lot of fun to be around.

The boy lived in the lower section of our county and he said he’d been seeing a monkey in the trees around his house. He described the monkey in great detail and said it was constantly swinging through the trees chattering away as it went.

As Paul told us about the monkey tale we all wondered if the boy really thought people believed his stories or if he just got a kick out trying to pull one over on somebody.

A few months later I was hanging around with some older guys from down where Paul’s friend lived. We were standing around in town trying to look cool like teenagers did back then.

I had totally forgotten about the monkey story until I heard my friends laughing about a man in their area offering a reward for his lost monkey.

If I had had a cell phone in those days I’d have called Paul right up and told him there really was a monkey, but I had to wait till I got home to share the funny ending to the story.

Knowing there really was a monkey on the loose made us wonder if some of the boy’s other stories were true. After studying on it for a few minutes we decided probably not since the recent story was about killing a turkey out of season and inadvertently eating a beeper that was attached to it which brought the game warden to his front door.

Back before Paul was a school administrator he was a language arts teacher for many years.

Each year he would give his students the assignment of making a parody or spoof of a song, movie, play, or story. Somewhere along the way Paul took Elvis’s “Heartbreak Hotel” and turned it into a monkey song.

I hope you enjoyed the song! Our video capabilities have come a long way since we filmed the spoof back in 2008. At least Paul’s recording was easy on the ears.


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  • Reply
    SusieQ and Donnie Ray
    March 18, 2021 at 10:32 pm

    Haha that is halarious …. and plumb cool ….and the back up dancers awesome loved listening .

  • Reply
    Sherry Dockery
    March 18, 2021 at 1:22 am

    Too cute, love the lyrics. My cousin’s son is an accomplished Elvis tribute artist, Stephen Freeman. Look him up.

    • Reply
      March 18, 2021 at 7:56 am

      Sherry-I did, he’s really good!

  • Reply
    Betty Brantley
    March 17, 2021 at 7:09 pm

    Great story and the monkey song made me laugh! Now having said that, Paul has a great voice!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 12:47 pm

    That tickled me. Paul did a fantastic job! I am an Elvis fan. My husband took me to see him sing in Chicago many years ago and my brother saw him in Las Vegas. He was one of a kind but I think with his humor, he would have got a kick out of the spoof too. Actually, his birthplace, Tupelo, MS., is about 16 miles from where I am at for now. That was a funny tale about the guy eating the tracker on the turkey.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 11:16 am

    I didn’t comment on Paul or his monkey song in my first comment but it is not only funny but shows how much talent Paul and your family have. My autistic grandson will be with us this weekend and I know he will love it.

    While commenting on Paul and the rest of the BP&P gang, if the song Until Then was a record I would have ran a needle through it by now. This is one of my favorite hymns and I have never heard it sung better than y’all sing it. I constantly play it over and over.

  • Reply
    Sheila Bergeron
    March 17, 2021 at 11:11 am

    That was very entertaining…he sounded just like Elvis.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    March 17, 2021 at 11:02 am

    I like to tell tall tales sometimes. I am pretty good at getting people to believe me. My stories usually end in a way that reveals their fallacy. I always tell the listener at the end that I made it all up. Remember the cat story?

  • Reply
    Gene Smith
    March 17, 2021 at 10:53 am

    There is a troop of monkeys living in the wildgGe in Florida. They are descended from some that were used in a Tarzan movie filmed at Silver Springs, near Ocala. Now they’re a tourist attraction along Silver Springs Run.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    March 17, 2021 at 10:00 am

    Oh, my goodness! What clever lyrics! Paul, you made me laugh
    several times! And it was interesting to see the girls so young
    and hip!

  • Reply
    Eldonna Ashley
    March 17, 2021 at 9:40 am

    That brought a smile to my face.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 9:38 am

    If that song wasn’t fun! Paul sure sounded like Elvis. My step father-in-law had a pet monkey when he was a boy. He said it could fit in his shirt pocket.

  • Reply
    Margie G
    March 17, 2021 at 9:15 am

    Pretty cute song and the back up dancers were adorable too! Lol. Now I myself think the turkey tale is a really big whopper, but it’s good. Imagine eating a beeper to alert the game warden… I bet game wardens wish… anyway the world needs embellishes of the truth. I got a guy I went to school with ( we graduated in ‘84 and ‘85) and I nicknamed him BT for big talker. He told me his hippy friend lived in Cathy Bates garage apartment. He told me his mom and he were abducted by aliens. Another guy told me he dated Pia Zadora. It is second nature to some and easy as breathing. My lies never quite panned out so I try not to lie. With that said, some embellishment of truth is actually good for our imagination to take to the sky. Lol

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 8:17 am

    I don’t know know anything about a monkey except in a zoo, but when we were teenagers we had a friend that had the nickname of Monkey. I saw him recently and called him Monkey, both of us laughed and he said it had been a long time since he had been called that. We were wrong, at that time of our lives a monkey had more sense than Mike did! In SC when turkeys were first beginning to make a comeback, a lot of them did have some type of tracking device, a story was told at work about a fellow worker killing a turkey out of season and a game warden pulling in right behind him as he got home. He asked the warden how he knew about the turkey and the warden told him they knew something was wrong when the tracker showed the turkey doing 60 mph going up the highway.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    March 17, 2021 at 8:07 am

    That’s very clever! Wonderful lyrics and accompaniment! Tipper you are all very talented people, every one of you!

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    March 17, 2021 at 8:01 am

    That was so much fun! What a hoot. Paul did a great job allround. If anyone could listen to that without at least a smile I’m sorry for them. Even us fun-impaired folks get tickled.

    This post reminds me of Wilson Rawls’ book “Summer of Monkeys”. It is less known than his “Where the Red Fern Grows”. The story is much like yours except it wasn’t just one monkey but several escaped from the circus. They hung out down in the river bottom all summer.

    Got any more fun ones like that ? These troubled times need all the good clean fun we can find.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    March 17, 2021 at 7:41 am

    Love the video. I saw Elvis several times in person and no one can ever take his place. What an entertainer he was.

    Thanks for the memories.

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 7:23 am

    love this!!!! certainly made me smile this morning!!!

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