Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Musical Memories - Songbook of Mama's



My theme is Musical Memories:  The Memories that music brings rushing back.

Mother grew up in the 1920's and 30's.  Living in small town East Texas, there were few entertainments.  They'd have taffy pullings (where they would cook the candy, then butter their hands and pull it between them until it was the right consistency to set.  And they'd have josey parties.  Which were similar to square dances.  I still have Mama's josey party dress in my cedar chest.  I wore it one year on Halloween in high school when I wanted to be a gypsy.  

Or they could go to the movies.  Mama, together with her friends, would remember and record the words to the songs in the films in a blue bound book.  Then, they'd get together and sing them.  She would get out that old book and sing with me.  And many days, when little, she'd rock me to those old songs.  Then I had first one child and then another, and I sang those old songs to them when they were little and then taught them to sing them with me.  

Four of them stick out to me. And I share them here with you in this post.   The first, was a comical, funny song about a fellow that went off to join the fight in WWI, "Long Boy".
 If you go to the link, you can flip through the sheet music and read the whole song.  The chorus, was "Goodbye, ma!  Goodbye, pa!  Goodbye mule with the ol' hee haw!  May not know what the war's about, but I bet by gosh, I'll soon find out.  And oh, my sweetheart don't you fear!  I'll bring you a king for a souvenir.  Get you a Turk and Kaiser, too, and that's about all one fellow can do."  We'd always make the actual hee haw sounds when we sung it, as Daddy had a jenny he plowed his garden with for most of my life.  

Then there was "Red Wing", which, as a little girl I found so poignant. It was sung by the Duke (John Wayne) himself in several westerns.  From one of his earliest, "In Old Oklahoma", to "The Comancheros" and ending with his last film, "The Shootest".  Mother may have gotten this song from elsewhere, as it was written in 1907, and she was grown and married by the time John Wayne ever sang it.  It's very hard to find recorded with the words.  For that I offer you this gentleman's rendition from YouTube.




Another favorite of mine was the song of two little girls who had a fight, called "I Don't Want to Play in Your Yard".  A few years ago, Hannah and I practiced singing it together, made up motions to go along with it and sung it to family  gathered over at my sister's house for Christmas.  You can sample this tune, too. 



The last song I'd like to share with you from that old song book, I don't know the title too.  And searching all the lyrics I could recall, yielded no results.  But it was such an amusing little ditty and I want to share with you anyway, some of what I can recall.  
She was fat and he was skinny,
He had freckles and red hair.
...spooning in the merry month of May.
...I heard him say.
Will you love me when my radiator's ruined?
Will you love me when my taillights fail to shine?
Will you love me when my brakes they need adjusting?
Sweetheart, will you let me call you mine?
Will you love me when my differential's ruined,
...the frame is bending too.
The nuts and bolts are falling, 
the old junk yard's a calling.
Will you love me when my little Ford is through?

If anyone out there, knows this one, and can give me a title or a link, I'd be pleased as punch.

Are there any special songs from you childhood?
Have you ever actually heard any of these before?
Do you have memories of your mother's voice as she sung?



26 comments:

  1. I have special songs from my childhood only because my parents played them so much! My dad's wife loved the carpenters, so I know the words to the entire last album. My mother is a musical fan, so Barbara Streisand's Funny Girl was always playing. I know those words, too. If I ever hear then, they make me smile!

    You can find me here:
    ClarabelleRant

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  2. I am not sure if my if this counts, my mother loves Kenny Rogers and we would sing together while running errands... full on, top of our lungs... cracking voices sing, gotta know when to fold em, know when to hold em... thank you that was fun.

    Jeremy [Retro]
    AtoZ Challenge Co-Host [2015]

    There's no earthly way of knowing.
    Which direction we are going!

    HOLLYWOOD NUTS!
    Come Visit: You know you want to know if me or Hollywood... is Nuts?

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    1. Of course that counts Jeremy! It's a memory centered around music. A memory of your mom singing. Me and my Hannah Bug since Motown or the Judds together in the kitchen.

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  3. My grandfather, then my mother, and now me all sing various songs in place of phrases. Look who's sorry now, You can't always get what you want, Nobody knows the trouble I've seen, etc. My kids all roll their eyes, but I know they'll be singing them, too.

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    1. Ha, ha! I like to do that!! Me and my friend Michelle would hum lines of songs in class to converse with one another, as talking was prohibited, but humming wasn't.

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  4. How wonderful she wrote down the lyrics and then shared them with you.

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    1. Yes, she could have left that book in the cedar chest and never even said a word. But instead, she was able to share them with grandchildren she never even saw!

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  5. those are quite some tunes from back in the day. Growing up - my Dad and Mom loved Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra, all the crooners. Mom did like Elvis. And finally as we kids began the MTV era, she liked Boy George. You are just hitting the memory button - excellent.

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    1. Ha, ha! Mom and Boy George. What a combo! Hey, Frank and Judy were both awesome, timeless artists! So glad you are enjoying the memory sharing!

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  6. Love that they would copy down lyrics at a movie to sing later!
    We went to see lost of musicals and then played all the musical albums over and over, so I know most all the songs from Oklahoma, Music Man, King and I, South Pacific, Flower Drum Song, Carousel, etc. I loved those - along with "If I Knew You Were Coming I'd Have Baked a Cake"!

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    1. Oh, I love so many musicals! All those great old classics!

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  7. Those are old songs! I had never heard of them.

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    1. Yes, turn of the century songs. I am full of old, useless, trivial knowledge. LOL

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  8. My Mama talked about the candy pulling and also Too-Da-La parties. Not sure of the spelling.

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    1. I googled Too-da-la party, because I had never heard of it. Sounds very similar to a josie party except they were traditionally held outdoors, especially in Texas. Sounds like a lot of fun. I love "dancing in the moonlight"! ;)

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  9. I wish I could help you, but I don't recognize the words of the song. Yes, many songs make me nostalgic. I grew up loving 80's rock, but there is this one country song that really takes me back. It is by Conway Twitty. I can't think of the name of it, but it's about the young girl Joni who is in love with Jimmy who is too old for her.
    Something like this:
    Jimmy Jimmy please wait for me
    I'll grow up one day, you'll see
    +++++++
    Joni, Joni please don't cry
    you'll forget me by and by.

    I probably just murdered a beautiful song with my fault memory.

    Take care. Loved this post.

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    1. No! You nailed it, girl! It's called Don't Cry Joni. Conway brings back a whole 'nother set of memories for me.

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  10. Well, I don't know any of those songs, but I loved reading about your childhood. Such wonderful memories!

    Blessings,
    Theresa

    https://pronetoponder.wordpress.com/

    https://serenadedinseconds.wordpress.com/ A-Z Challenge- "Blossoming Verses"

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    1. There you go! It's less about the songs and more about the memories!

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  11. So much heart! Love the songs...and the stories. Creating Life Beautifully - A to Z Challenge

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  12. No, I have not heard of those before. My mother wasn't much of a singer. She just played the stereo really loud (and I'd go and turn it down).

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    1. LOL I've been on both ends of that scenario!

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  13. Great post.
    My mom sang along to rock, maybe some pop. (Beach Boys, Aerosmith, AC/DC, KISS)

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