Sunday, 5 July 2009

Old tunes

I love my cuddle and lullaby time with my babies. I often indulge in a half hour or more with my little one's arms wrapped around my neck, softly singing from my catalogue. A few times I have been guilty of going on too long, which makes him fall asleep in my arms, only to be startled awake when I try to move him. But that just means a few more songs...

Tonight, after Caleb's request of "Sunshine" ("You are my Sunshine"), I continued in the same folk sound and pulled out some of my old favourites. "Shenandoah," "Clementine," "Waltzing Matilda," "Blowing in the Wind," "Homeward Bound," just to name a few. I was laughing with James the other day about how my music education is practically zero. I have no idea what is playing on the radio right now, and was never really caught up with what was hot at the time. Even my music history is spotty; there are few songs I can identify with their artists, and even fewer albums that I could name.

But I have always had a spot in my heart for both folk songs, and music from the early 1910 - 1950. The '50's are so fun; I still remember my first exposure to this decade. A car trip out to Quebec to a friend's cottage when I was 10 - her family had a '50's compilation tape that I think we completely wore out. But some of my favourite songs are ones you've probably never heard of. These I know because of my Great Grandma Martin. She was a marvelous piano player, who played anything she heard by ear. At some point two Reader's Digest songbooks showed up at our house, which contained many of these old gems she would play out on our piano. I spent many afternoons as a teen thumbing through the book and finding the songs she had played. I'm terrible at playing by ear, but my sight reading is really good, and so I was able in my own way to recreate those beloved songs for myself.

So I guess, in the end, my boys may not have an appreciation of current music, but I've sung folk and show tunes and religious and songs that span 50 years. Not bad at all, I say.

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