“Little Baby pa rum pump pum pum/ I am a poor boy too pa rum pump pum pum/ I have no gift to bring pa rum pump pum pum/That’s fit to give our King pa rum pump pump pum, pa rum rum pump pum pum pum pum pum/Shall I play for you pa rum pump pump pum/On my drum.”
My favorite Christmas song, the carol that makes it start to feel like Christmas is Johnny Cash's version of the Little Drummer Boy.
The Little Drummer Boy is the story of a poor boy who couldn’t afford a gift for the newborn Christ Child, so he played his drum at the manger with Mary’s approval. The baby smiled, delighted with the Little Drummer Boy’s skillful playing.
I have a nostalgic attachment to the tune that goes all the way back to my youngest years. The drum rhythm made the tune so special. I could pretend to play the drums and march. It was on a Firestone Compilation LP that my parents had. I used to play it over and over again. I wanted to be that little drummer boy and witness history and the birth of the baby Jesus.
The popular American carol was originally known as the "Carol of the Drum" and was only written in 1941. It was based on a much older traditional Czech carol. There are 220 cover versions of the song, in seven languages in all kinds of genres of music.