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Subject: I'm searching for a Dutch song
(20 december 2011)

What an amazing site! I am looking for a song I learned in school more than 30 years ago. We were studying the Netherlands, and our teacher taught us to sing a song in both Dutch and English. I remember snippets of the song to this day, but I don't remember everything, and I probably have some words wrong after all these years. This is what I remember of the Dutch, spelled as best I can:

Fe, Fe, ....?
Zwemmin in de Zwarte Zee?
Nee, Meneer....
De Zwarte Ze is blauw.
De Zwarte Ze is niet (mer?) zwarte,
the Zwarte Ze is blauw.
Tis jammer, tis jammer......
..... de volgende week.

In English, it was something like this:

Faye, Faye, can you play
Swimming in the Black Sea?
No, Mister, that cannot be.
The Black Sea is blue.
The Black Sea is not black,
the Black Sea is blue.
Too bad, too bad.....
..... the following week.

Thank you for your website!

Kate (the United States).

Answer     (21 december 2011)

Dear Kate,

Thank you for your compliment for my website!

I'm sorry, I don't know the song myself. I can understand that it's hard to find a song when you're not sure about the spelling. First I will give you the Dutch spelling of your lyric (yours was quite good!):

Fee, Fee, ... (ga je mee ??) (or: Faye, Faye)
Zwemmen in de Zwarte Zee?
Nee meneer, ...
De Zwarte Zee is blauw
De Zwarte Zee is niet meer zwart
De Zwarte Zee is blauw
't Is jammer, 't is jammer (or: Het is jammer, het is jammer)
... de volgende week.

I cannot find this song on the internet. I also could not find it in the Liederenbank (the Dutch Song Database). Maybe it is an English song and you teacher did translate it? (but I also couldn't find the English version). Maybe it wasn't that well known.

You could post your question on some websites. For exemple: for older songs (but 30 years is maybe not that old) you can ask you question on seniorplaza ('Find a song'):
Click on the word 'mail' and they will put your question on that page.

Or you can try liedjesland (land of songs):
Click on the second blue line: 'Vragen over liedjesteksten' (questions about lyrics). And then on the button: 'Nieuw onderwerp' (New subject).

I'm sorry I couldn't help you further. I hope you will find your song sometime.

Nice to read you had lessons about The Netherlands! I hope you heard good things ;-)

Met groeten (with greetings),


Dutch children's songs with music and English translation  (

Re:     (2 janurai 2012)

Thank you so much for your help! I have contacted both sites that you recommended. We will see if anyone knows this song. Perhaps my teacher made it up.

I was thrilled to receive your help with the Dutch lyrics, because I am certain that "ga je mee" is correct. I couldn't remember exactly how those words were written or pronounced. What I did remember sounded something like "gal ya mee" - so now I know a little more of the song. Thank you.

Yes, we heard very good things about the Netherlands when we learned about your country. I don't remember if my teacher had actually been there, but she told us, of course, about the dikes and read an English book to us called "The Wheel on the School," about attracting storks to a Dutch village. She also told us that it was proper to say "the Netherlands" instead of "Holland," a habit that has stayed with me all these years.

Thanks again.


Re:     (2 januari 2012)

Thank you for your message! The line "ga je mee" means "do you come (with us)", I suggested it because of the rhyme. But I hope you will be able to find the rest of the song.

Your teacher was right about the name of our country, officially The kingdom of the Netherlands. It was formed of seven provinces, and the two at the seaside, in the west, are called North-Holland and South-Holland. They were very rich in the 17th century and the most well-known (still the capital, Amsterdam, and the gouvernment in The Hague are situated in those provinces). So I think it is historically grown to call the whole country 'Holland'.
Well, I'm pleased to read you know so much of our small country.

I wish you all the best for the new year and of course much pleasure with singing this and other songs!

Met groeten! Rozemarijn.

Dutch children's songs with music and English translation  (

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