Music: March 2005 Archives

Dawn Eden has released another single, a sunny, fluffy tune she wrote and recorded a few years ago with Michael Lynch -- a bit of '60s bubblegum pop called "Dubblbubbldandylionluv."

I feel certain that it is the only bubblegum tune ever with a "Pogo" allusion in the lyrics.

Palm Sunday Choral Evensong


This Sunday afternoon at 5 p.m., Coventry Chorale will be singing an evensong service for Palm Sunday at Trinity Episcopal Church, 5th and Cincinnati in downtown Tulsa. It's a worship service, so of course admission is free. If you've never been part of a sung service of Evening Prayer, you should attend.

The service will include two settings of Isaiah 53:4 -- "Surely he hath borne our griefs" -- one from Handel's Messiah and the other by Karl Heinrich Graun, a contemporary of Bach. According to the sheet music's editor, Graun's Tod Jesu (Death of Jesus) "became so popular that it caused Bach's monumental Passion According to Matthew to be forgotten for an entire century." It is a beautiful piece of music.

The service will also include "Save Us, O Lord," by Thomas Matthews the late choirmaster and organist of Trinity, and settings of the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis by Charles Villiers Stanford. The rest of the standard Prayer Book service -- invitatory ("O Gracious Light"), Psalm, Apostles' Creed, prayers and collects -- will be sung or chanted.

(I'll be reuniting with the Chorale for this service and will be the cantor for the opening collect and responsory. David Rollo says he'll make an Episcopal priest of me yet. I love Anglican liturgy, which is saturated with Scripture and makes beautiful use of the English language. I only wish the whole ECUSA was as faithful to the truth as the old Prayer Book and the 39 Articles.)

A lyric from Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys that cheered me more than once back in college....

I laugh when I think how I cried over you,
Cried over dreams that weren't meant to come true.
I smile 'cause I know that it's better this way,
And I've found someone else to love,
So go on your lonely way.

The only price I had to pay
Was the few tears that I shed,
And I found out that I need you
Like I need a hole in my head.

When I found out you lied,
Something real inside me died,
And I laugh when I think how I cried over you.

Bob Wills clips

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Here is a minute-long clip of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys playing "Ida Red." (That's Bob playing fiddle -- anyone know who the guitarist and vocalist were?)

You can watch the trailer of the documentary film "Faded Love". The clip includes reminiscences by fans who saw him play and remember it as if it were yesterday and by musicians who worked with him.

UPDATE (4/29/2006): That "Ida Red" clip is one of a series that were filmed in 1951 for television filler. Some were issued as "Snader Transcriptions." There's a bunch of these shorts included with the 100th Birthday Special Edition of "Still Swingin'", a DVD documentary about Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys. The band was Joe Holley on fiddle (left-handed!), Cotton Whittington on standard guitar (another lefty!), Bobby Koefer on steel guitar (he still plays the same way 55 years later!), Joe Frank Ferguson on bass, Skeeter Elkin on piano, Paul McGhee on drums, and Joe Andrews doing the vocal. On a couple of the shorts, yodeler Carolina Cotton sings with Bob, and on one (Blue Prelude) Joe Ferguson sings and Joe Andrews plays bass.

Bob Wills blogging

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From the Sundries Shack:

Everyone here who has heard of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys raise your hands.


Now the rest of you go out and find one of Wills� CDs, listen to it, then come back here and tell the class just how cool Western Swing really is and how it�s physically impossible to feel bad when you�re listening to it.

From SFist, in response to Charles Barkley's complaint about country music in the NBA All-Star Game half-time program:

Now, we at SFist have always liked the Round Mound of Rebound, even when he balled all over the Warriors in the 1994 playoffs, but we were a little bummed out by his larger point: most popular country music sucks. It sucks because it's homogeneous. It's produced for an audience with geographic, racial and economic boundaries, and it (i.e. the music, but now that you mention it much of the audience, too) has little to no regard for what else goes on in music, culture, or really anything. And don't get us started on, which seems to abide by the following imperative more than anything else: As soon as you're famous or important, stop making records that are fun, or sound like they were fun to make.

If you agree with Sir Charles, too, if you long for boundary-crossing or brio or fun in country-western music, if you are as annoyed by the whole thing as SFist (we annoy pretty easily, so we're skeptical of that last), git along to San Francisco State University the next three Tuesdays (March first, eighth and fifteenth) to celebrate Bob Wills at 100. The inventor of "Western Swing," Bob Wills combined country music with Nawlins jazz, blues, ragtime and traditional Mexican music. He and his Texas Playboys came up with a style that swung just as hard playing "Basin Street Blues" and "Take the 'A' Train" as it did playing "The Yellow Rose of Texas" and "Hey, Good Lookin'." They came out of the small-groups jazz tradition that gave us Louis Armstrong's greatest work, with the Hot Fives and Sevens, and their bandstand improvisation foreshadowed groups like the JBs and the Meters.

Here's a link to that San Francisco State program on Bob Wills. Anything like that happening here in Tulsa?

The Hypothetical Wren wonders about the lyrics of "Roly Poly":

I was listening to this song on the iPod while I was walking home this morning, and thought, how many songs these days would include the phrase "Daddy's little fatty" in them? As a compliment? Of course, this kid was obviously walking and doing strenuous yard work, so the "bread and jelly 20 times a day" were probably a good idea: the kid was tired. He needed bread, not to mention "corn and taters."

And finally, here's a little something I wrote last November, which includes a little reminiscence from my grandfather. (Grandpa told me once that he didn't dance much at those performances -- he preferred cuddling in a dark corner.)

Happy 100th, Bob


We miss you, Bob, more and more every day.

Dolly duz detergent

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Found, in the midst of a short story, while looking for something else. This brings back memories of Saturday afternoons -- the show was one in a series of half-hour syndicated country music shows on KOTV every Saturday afternoon, a lineup that concluded with Hee Haw at 6 p.m.

Houston's favorite TV program was a country and western music review called The Porter Wagoner Show, on Saturday evening. At the appointed hour Mark and I were expected to plop ourselves in front of the TV, lips buttoned. Houston didn't like any noise during Porter Wagoner.

Porter, a Grand Old Opry star, sported a blonde pompadour and custom-designed white suits adorned with giant sequined wagon wheels, horseshoes, and cacti. His singing partner and sidekick, Dolly Parton, was then just a Tennessee mountain girl with a beautiful voice. I thought they looked good together during their duets because they both had bouffant hairdos. (Some time later I found out they actually made a point of dying their hair the same shade of white-blonde.)

Dolly did the Duz detergent commercials, the laundry soap with the free wash cloth in every box. She'd open a package, unfurl a towel, and exclaim, "Looky here, Porter!" This always sent Mark and me into fits of giggles, but Mom shot us dirty looks, so we covered our mouths with our hands.

Each week Dolly performed a spotlight solo, such as her song about being a poor country girl reduced to wearing a coat of many colors, a cloak of rags that her mother had stitched together from scraps. These selections made Houston sentimental. He'd sit there with Rand on his lap, wiping at his wet eyes.

There's some dispute over whether the towels were in boxes of Duz or in boxes of Breeze.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Music category from March 2005.

Music: January 2005 is the previous archive.

Music: May 2005 is the next archive.

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