Leggo Meh Stick
Mighty Sparrow Lyrics


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J′ouvert morning I was beating pan
When I bounced up a chick that I knew before
Why, meh pan sound so sweet, she want to learn to beat
So she scrambled meh stick with a
Flick she so quick and bold, oh gorm!

Rosita, leggo meh stick
Girl ah have to beat pan, leggo quick
On Carnival Day dis is not de way
If you really want to play come Ash Wednesday!

Listen Rosie, girl in any case
This is not de right time or de proper place
So go an' jump up, and please don′t interrupt
Everybody looking it is embarrassing, leggo, oh gosh

Rosita, leggo meh stick
J'y en a hard to beat pan, leggo quick
On Carnival Day dis is not de way
If you really want to play come Ash Wednesday!

Now de steelband goin' be moving soon
Going down Charlotte Street with a lovely tune
But ah just cyah function with meh two stick in your hand
At de end of de day you will get it when I done play, oh gosh

Rosita, leggo meh stick
Girl ah have to beat pan, leggo quick
On Carnival Day dis is not de way
If you really want to play come Ash Wednesday!

Look meh trouble on this J′ouvert morn′
Though I beg and beseech, she still holding on
Squeezing tighter, like of long time pan beater
Though she did make no row she insist she must get it now, somehow

Rosita, leggo meh stick
Girl ah have to beat pan, leggo quick




On Carnival Day dis is not de way
If you really want to play come Ash Wednesday!

Overall Meaning

The song "Leggo Meh Stick" by Mighty Sparrow chronicles an encounter with a woman named Rosita on J'ouvert morning, a pre-dawn celebration that marks the start of Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago. While playing his steel drum, Sparrow runs into Rosita, an old acquaintance who expresses her interest in learning to beat the instrument. Sparrow rebuffs her advances, telling her that Carnival Day is not the right time or place for her to learn. He pleads with her to let go of his stick so he can play, warning her that everyone is watching and it's becoming embarrassing. However, Rosita persists, squeezing the stick tightly and insisting that she must learn now.


The lyrics of the song are a playful commentary on the social dynamics of Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago, where music and dance are central to the festivities. The song highlights the tension between tradition and innovation, as well as gender roles in a male-dominated musical tradition. Sparrow is protective of his instrument and skeptical of Rosita's ability to play, but also recognizes her enthusiasm and potential for growth. Meanwhile, Rosita represents the desire of women to participate more fully in Carnival culture and the struggle for recognition and respect in a male-dominated space.


Line by Line Meaning

J′ouvert morning I was beating pan
On the morning of Jouvert, I was playing the steelpan drums


When I bounced up a chick that I knew before
I ran into a girl that I already knew


Why, meh pan sound so sweet, she want to learn to beat
She was interested in learning to play steelpan because she liked the sound of my drum


So she scrambled meh stick with a flick she so quick and bold, oh gorm!
She quickly attempted to play my drumsticks and was bold about it


Rosita, leggo meh stick
Rosita, let go of my drumstick


Girl ah have to beat pan, leggo quick
I need to play the steelpan drum, so let go quickly


On Carnival Day dis is not de way
This is not how things should be done on Carnival Day


If you really want to play come Ash Wednesday!
If you really want to play, come on Ash Wednesday instead


Listen Rosie, girl in any case
Listen Rosita, in any case


This is not de right time or de proper place
This is not the right time or place


So go an' jump up, and please don′t interrupt
So go and dance, and please don't interrupt


Everybody looking it is embarrassing, leggo, oh gosh
Everyone is looking and it's embarrassing, let go of my drumstick, oh my goodness


Now de steelband goin' be moving soon
Now the steelband will be moving soon


Going down Charlotte Street with a lovely tune
They will be going down Charlotte Street playing a beautiful tune


But ah just cyah function with meh two stick in your hand
But I can't play correctly while you're holding onto one of my drumsticks


At de end of de day you will get it when I done play, oh gosh
You can have it back at the end of the day when I'm finished playing, oh my goodness


Look meh trouble on this J′ouvert morn′
Look at the trouble I'm having on this Jouvert morning


Though I beg and beseech, she still holding on
Even though I'm asking her to let go, she's still holding onto my drumstick


Squeezing tighter, like of long time pan beater
She's squeezing it tightly like she's been playing for a long time


Though she did make no row she insist she must get it now, somehow
Even though she didn't make a fuss, she still insists on having my drumstick now, somehow




Writer(s): Slinger Francisco

Contributed by Eli V. Suggest a correction in the comments below.
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