I noticed when my baby sisters are listening to a certain melody, I start singing Itsy Bitsy Spider or Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. This makes me wonder if they are the same melody with different lyrics.

Are they the same song?

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    I'd be interested to hear the piece of music that you're describing, because I cannot correlate the two melodies in my head. Among other differences, Itsy Bitsy Spider is a swing rhythm, wheras Twinkle Twinkle Little Star is straight. I cannot understand how they can be confused. Please link to the melody that made you think of both songs, if possible. Nov 7, 2018 at 11:46
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    Are you thinking of Twinkle and the Alphabet song? Because those are the same, and IIRC are actually a melody by Mozart.
    – Duston
    Jun 7, 2021 at 13:09
  • @Duston Mozart wrote a set of variations on that tune, but he did not write the tune. He knew the tune as Ah, vous dirais-je, maman, a French nursery song. There is a link in the comments below, which I will repeat here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ah!_vous_dirai-je,_maman
    – phoog
    Jun 9, 2021 at 1:13

1 Answer 1


No. They are both simple melodies, but they're different.

This is Twinkle - Twinkle Little Star:

enter image description here

This is The Itsy Bitsy Spider:

enter image description here

  • This question reminded me of something, so I went on a hunt... the movie Heartburn, 1986 - Coming Around Again / Itsy Bitsy Spider - Carly Simon I'd forgotten just how good a song that was.
    – Tetsujin
    Nov 7, 2018 at 8:46
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    On a related note, "Twinkle twinkle, little star" is basically the same melody as "Baa baa, black sheep", both of which are based on an 18th century French song: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ah!_vous_dirai-je,_maman
    – Guy G
    Nov 7, 2018 at 10:43
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    @GuyG as well as the alphabet / "ABC" song, at least the version I've always heard here in the US.
    – sǝɯɐſ
    Nov 7, 2018 at 12:59
  • The melody is also often falsely attributed to Mozart. He did 12 variations on the French folk song Ah! Vouz dirai je maman (m.youtube.com/watch?v=Ezvj-De6bxY) That said, it’s quite cool to listen to. Sep 27, 2019 at 15:28
  • Not quite the same as the "ABC" song, the way I learned it. 'S' and 'X' would both be half notes, rather than two quarter notes. Admittedly, that's an extremely minor change.
    – Donald.McLean
    Sep 27, 2019 at 18:28

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