Back in December, Milwaukee-area polka king Mike Schneider released a video for his delightful “Christmas Kielbasa.” The song ended up getting stuck in our heads for approximately three weeks. Go figure.
Schneider’s song got us thinking: How many Milwaukee-themed polka songs exist in the world (or exist on YouTube, anyway), and how do they rank by the number of times they say “Milwaukee”? Fresh off of fact-checking Happy Schnapps Combo’s “The Bears Still Suck Polka,” we ran the numbers and came up with this DEFINITIVE POLKA RANKING.
5. Stanley Pulaski’s Orchestra – “Milwaukee Polka”
What is it about? Nothing. It’s an instrumental.
Sample lyric: None. It’s an instrumental.
Number of times they say “Milwaukee”: Zero. It’s an instrumental.
4. Frankie Yankovic And His Yanks – “Milwaukee Polka”
What is it about? This version of the classic Frankie “No Relation to Al” Yankovic tune extols the virtues of Milwaukee beer, drinking Milwaukee beer, and drinking Milwaukee beer while in Milwaukee. Milwaukee!
Sample lyric: “Beer from Milwaukee / The best you ever found / Just don’t be so talky / Buy a round, buy a round, buy a round”
Number of times they say “Milwaukee”: 4
3. Johnny And The Leisure Suits – “Hey Der Milwaukee Polka”
What is it about? Jonathan Brandmeier serves up a devastating polka parody sung from the viewpoint of folks from Illinois. These folks love to A.) drive across the border to enjoy all the fine things Wisconsin has to offer, and B.) call everyone in Wisconsin a pathetic pile of garbage and talk smack about our sports teams. The song is therefore an accurate representation of folks from Illinois.
Sample lyric: “We drive across your border / Pick up women big and heavy / And see those men with big foreheads like bumpers on a Chevy”
Number of times they say “Milwaukee”: 9
2. Art Walunas And His Orchestra – “Old Milwaukee Polka”
What is it about? There’s nothing better than polka songs that are kind of about themselves (see sample lyric below). Also, this song is about Milwaukee.
Sample lyric: “Now here’s a little tune they play in old Milwaukee / It’s just a happy little polka melody / And everybody knows this song in old Milwaukee / The words are easy so just sing along with me”
Number of times they say “Milwaukee”: 12
1. Patti Page – “Milwaukee Polka”
What is it about? The legendary Patti Page sings the praises of her Milwaukee sweetheart, and thanks the State of Wisconsin for its most populous city. Is dancing to this song a lot like “rooting for the Braves every inning”? Apparently so. Is this Milwaukee-themed polka song the hands-down champ of Milwaukee-themed polka songs that say “Milwaukee” 8,000 times? You betcha.
Sample lyric: “Milwaukee, Milwaukee / My baby’s from Milwaukee / Milwaukee, Milwaukee / A native through and through / Milwaukee, Milwaukee / [you get the idea]”
Number of times they say “Milwaukee”: 41 (!!!)
Exclusive articles, podcasts, and more. Support Milwaukee Record on Patreon.