You know how to whistle…just put your lips together and…blow.

whistle1 You know how to whistle...just put your lips together and...blow.From newer artists like [lastfm]Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros[/lastfm], [lastfm]Andrew Bird[/lastfm] and [lastfm]Peter, Bjorn and John[/lastfm] to classic musicians like Paul Simon, John Lennon…even the theme from the Andy Griffith Show, whistling has played a part in these and countless other songs.

But after hearing Terri Hemmert play Edward Sharpe’s joyful song, “Home” I wondered about the dark side of whistling… does it have to be a HAPPY tune whenever there’s whistling involved? Let’s pucker up and blow out a list that will be a bummer in the summer. Just to prove they’re there.

Pucker up and post your comments below:

  • Meiya

    “Games Without Frontiers” by Peter Gabriel

  • Jim Voltz

    Hi Johnny, You’re right on both counts. When most folks think of whistling they visualize of cheerful light-hearted environments. However, your question about envisioning the dark side of whistling is astute. Whistling has not only been the herald of care-free happy situations, in some cases whistling has been the harbinger of danger, fear, stress and worry. Think of whistles at railroad crossings and whistling buoys – they warn of imminent danger. Whistling the blues has been a hallmark of blues artists. And it’s most frightful, whistling has both foreshadowed, and been a marker of, death. In war, the whistling of arrows, bullets and bombs have all been signs of potential destruction and death. In WWII Europe whistling sounds loudly warned of imminent danger and signaled soldiers and civilians to seek shelter. Likewise, the sound of approaching whistling often immediately preceded the landing of bombs nearby. In fact, one of WW II’s notorious bombers, the Corsair, was commonly called “the whistling death”. In the movies, and in real life, whistling has been identified with crimes and even murder. Drug dealers and violent gangs have used whistling to signal the approach of law enforcement. In the movie “M”, the protagonist whistled before he murdered children. And, over the radio-waves, eerie human whistling became the hallmark theme of “The Shadow”. There are some other ghostly and ghastly stories involving whistling – but thankfully – they are few in number and for the most part they do not enter our consciousness, for the real message of whistling is universal and universally appealing. Now I’ll go back to whistling while I work. – Jim Voltz, Whistling Historian.

  • from 1967

    check out:

    I Was Kaiser Bill’s Batman
    by Whistling Jack Smith

    • Jill Rose Quinn

      Frightening .The stuff nightmares are made of. Or, of which nightmares are made, depending on whether you want to have a dangling preposition.

  • Tremeloes like to whistle
  • more whistling tunes
  • The Tremeloes like to whistle

    they felt ALL tunes should have whistling

  • Dao

    Good to whistle While Ya work :)

  • Dao

    Paul Simon
    “Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard”

  • Ed

    I think Bryan Ferry did the whistling in Jealous Guy justice on the Roxy Music cover. It was a hell of a risk at the time.

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