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Abiyoyo is the main antagonist of a story-song by Pete Seeger, adapted from a South African folktale.



Stories say that Abiyoyo is a menacing giant as tall as a house who preys on humans. Nobody believes the tales of this monster, but they tell it anyway. The old people used to tell bedtime stories about a giant. The giant (named Abiyoyo) was as tall as a tree and a house and could eat people up. Before the father and his son (who were banished from the village for causing trouble and now are seen living in a new house) tell bedtime stories. And as the house is dark, they tell a bedtime story about the giant Abiyoyo before going to bed.

One day, as the sun rises over a small village, Abiyoyo makes his appearance. People run for their lives, taking their children with them as they warn the townsfolk to run for their lives since Abiyoyo is coming after them. The giant gets into the town's animals. He goes to the sheep pasture and eats one of the sheep. And he goes to the cow pasture and eats one of the cows. Men yelled, "GRAB YOUR MOST PRIZED POSSESSIONS AND RUN! RUN!".

The main characters (the boy and his father) who have been exiled from their village for causing trouble, wake up to the sound of Abiyoyo's footsteps. The boy notices the giant and his father, who is a magician, decides to trick Abiyoyo into kneeling down and make him disappear. He says, "If only I could get him to kneel down, I could make him disappear!".

The boy takes his father by the hand and they run into the fields, straight into Abiyoyo's path. People yell warnings to the boy and his father not to go near the giant. Abiyoyo prepares to devour our heroes until the boy whips out his ukulele and begins to sing. The monster has never heard a song about himself (to which the narrator says, "Well you know, the giant had never heard a song about himself before!"). And as a foolish grin spreads across his face, Abiyoyo begins to dance. That is, until he goes out of breath and tumbles to the ground. That's when the father pulls out his magic wand. When he sees the giant is (at last) kneeling down, he touches Abiyoyo with the wand. And the evil giant disappear (never to be seen nor heard from again) and the town is saved. People cheered, "Why he is gone! Abiyoyo has disappeared!".

Abiyoyo Returns

In this book, the boy (from the previous book Abiyoyo), temporarily, helped his father make the monster Abiyoyo disappear and he became a father too. Abiyoyo (who changes his "villain attitude") returns to try to help the people get back their water, as there is no rain in their country. He ends up saving the people by moving a boulder.


  • Abiyoyo appearing via sunrise and attacking the town could've inspired Attack on Titan, where Bertolt Hoover, as the Colossal Titan, appeared and breached Wall Maria, allowing the Titans to invade and resulting Eren Yeager's mother being killed by one of them.
  • Abiyoyo's story appeared in two PBS shows; Reading Rainbow and Between the Lions. The segment used in Between the Lions was in two episodes; Zoop Zoop and also titled the same name in the episode "Here Come the Aliens/Abiyoyo". In Zoop Zoop, it is read by Lionel whilst in the other episode, it is read by Theo. In both episodes, during the scene where Abiyoyo is about to eat on the sheep and cow, both characters say "He comes to the pasture. He grabs a whole sheep. Yeeoh!! He grabs a whole cow! Yunk!" rather than saying "He comes to the sheep pasture" and "He comes to the cow pasture".
  • Abiyoyo makes an appearance in the book, Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky.