He was 'Ol' Fibber' before he was 'Moscow Mitch'

By BERRY CRAIG

AFT Local 1360

"In the current national nightmare, we need to laugh," says Roy Zimmerman and Melanie Harby's website. "And we need to hope."

The California couple barnstorms the country battling bigots, union-busters and disciples of the gospel of greed with satirical songs, which they compose together.

They've got a bunch of new ones. But “Ol’ Man Fibber,” their 2017 spoof of Sen. Mitch McConnell, is still my favorite.

I hadn't thought about the song in a while. My friend Holly Erwin just emailed me a link to it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLvw4Wo_QZM&feature=youtu.be

It's as funny and factual as ever.

“Ol Man Fibber” is based on “Ol’ Man River,” composer Jerome Kern and lyricist Oscar Hammerstein’s storied song from the 1927 musical, “Show Boat.” Modesty forbids Zimmerman and Harby from likening themselves to the legendary music duo.

He also confesses he’s no Paul Robeson, the immortal civil rights activist, actor and bassist who famously belted out “Ol’ Man River” in the 1936 movie, “Show Boat.”

The Zimmerman-Harby variant starts:

There’s an old man name of Mitch McConnell

He’s the old lion of the GOP

What does he care if our health ain’t covered?

Long as he gets his tax-exctomy

Zimmerman, a member of the Los Angeles SAG-AFTRA local, and Harby call their traveling show “ReZist.” They've played Louisville, Lexington and Henderson.

So don your "Moscow Mitch" tee shirt and fur hat, clink your "Moscow Mitch" mugs and croon along.