Sing Books with Emily, the Blog

Down by the Station, an Illustrated Song

Posted on: January 6, 2010

DOWN BY THE STATION is featured in:

Read, Sing, Play ABC Sing-Along
Words Adapted by Teddy Slater
Illustrated by Liisa Chauncy Guida
I love this book.  Each letter is given a song, written to a familiar tune.  The CD has a vocal track for each letter’s ditty, so you can sing along or get the tune enough in your head to sing it yourself!

We will go through the whole book, one letter at a time, exploring the tune, the original lyrics, sing along tracks, vocal tracks, and a book based on the original song.

Today, let’s talk about the Letter A!

The song for A is set to the tune of “Down by the Station.”

A is for Alice
(Lyrics by Teddy Slater)
A is for Alice,
who met an alligator,
swishing down the alleyway
on Apple Avenue.
“Shoo!” said Alice.
“I’m allergic to all gators:
Ah-choo! Ah-choo!”
Off she flew.


The original opening verses
Down by the Station
Words and music by Lee Ricks and Slim Gaillard, 1948

Down by the station
Early in the morning
See the little pufferbellies
All in a row

See the station master
Turn the little handle
Puff, puff, toot, toot
Off we go!


You can repeat these verses or sing as an “Echo Song.”  The leader sings one line and the children echo that line.


Since this song is in the public domain, a whole slew of take-offs and illustrations have been made for this song.

I like Will Hillenbrand’s Illustration, for which he wrote additional verses, setting the action on a little train that takes visitors around the zoo.


Down by the Station
Words and music by Lee Ricks and Slim Gaillard
Additional words by Will Hillenbrand
Illustrated by Will Hillenbrand

For a more conventional take on the classic nursery song:

Down by the Station
Words and music by Lee Ricks and Slim Gaillard
Illustrated by Pam Paparone


Down by the Station
Words and music by Lee Ricks and Slim Gaillard
Words adapted by Jennifer Riggs Vetter
Illustrations by Frank Remkiewicz


Down by the Station (Classic Book with Holes)
Published by Child’s Play, a Classic Book with Holes
Traditional Words and Music
Illustrated by Jess Stockham


You can find the lyrics and a midi sing-along (so at least you can hear the tune) by clicking this link to the National Institutes of Health, Department of Health & Human Services website for children’s songs:

Tommy Dorsey’s band recorded a hit big band version of this song in 1960.  You can find the song on a compilation album called “Driving Down Memory Lane” on i-tunes:

Related Posts


Child’s Play and their Classic Books with Holes Series = a Treasure Trove of Great Songs and Sing-Along Arrangements

Train Songs in Illustrated Song

A list of Singable Picture Books about Things on Wheels


2 Responses to "Down by the Station, an Illustrated Song"

How do I get a copy of this book to buy?

Hello! Amazon and have copies. You could also try online booksellers like Powells, Strand, and
If you Google, “Read, Sing, Play ABC Sing-Along, teddy slater” reveals sellers, too.
Best Wishes.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Calendar of SBWE Posts

January 2010
« Dec   Feb »


%d bloggers like this: