Category Archives: Music history

Sweet soul music

Earlier this month at my band rehearsal, we sightread through a new piece of sheet music: “It’s All in the Game.” Then we had our usual follow-up discussion after trying new pieces: Did we like it? Enough to work it … Continue reading

Posted in Music and emotion, Music history | Tagged | 2 Comments

A dear old land of leprechauns and wondrous wishing wells

It was bound to happen sooner or later. I recently met a new resident of a senior facility who was, until a few months ago, a volunteer pianist like me. We chatted a bit and soon discovered we’ve played at … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Audiences, Music and emotion, Music history, Volunteering | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Evil ways

How controversial could a musical interval possibly be? Very, as it turns out. Not many of us have perfect or absolute pitch, the ability the sing or name a particular pitch without hearing it in relation to another. People with … Continue reading

Posted in Music and emotion, Music history, Music theory | Tagged | 4 Comments

Hey! Big spender

I rarely watch television during the day. And I rarely watch a tv program I haven’t prerecorded. Which means I rarely watch a tv commercial, other than in fast-forward mode. But one recent afternoon I did all those things. To … Continue reading

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From the archives

For most people, the upcoming Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer. For me, fall begins today, the day I turn my calendar to September. September makes me think of white blouses. When I was growing up, I could … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Music and emotion, Music history, Volunteering | 2 Comments

A-B-C-D, can I bring my friend to tea?

Most of us learned our ABCs by singing a tune that dates to the 1800s, the same tune used for “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep” and “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” It’s based on a melody by Mozart, who borrowed it from … Continue reading

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A kiddle-y divey too, wouldn’t you?

I like learning new words. Here’s one: mondegreen. A mondegreen is a misheard phrase or song lyric. Like thinking “varicose veins” are “very close veins.” Or that “Olive, the other reindeer” used to laugh and call poor Rudolph names. The … Continue reading

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It’s the truth, it’s actual

Actress Alice Faye sang “You’ll Never Know” to her love—over the telephone—in the 1943 musical Hello, Frisco, Hello: You’ll never know just how much I miss you, You’ll never know just how much I care… This sweet ballad, so fitting … Continue reading

Posted in Audiences, Music history, Volunteering | Tagged | 3 Comments

Bottle of wine, fruit of the vine

The residents were abuzz with talk of the social hour to take place in their assisted-living complex later that day. “I heard there’s going to be alcohol,” Frieda announced, confident that a glass of wine would improve her Friday afternoon … Continue reading

Posted in Music history, Volunteering | Tagged | 6 Comments

It’s Christmas time in the city

Titles make a difference. The musical Oklahoma! was called Away We Go! when it opened at the Shubert Theatre in Connecticut in 1943. Film producer Mike Todd famously remarked at the end of Act 1, “No legs, no jokes, no … Continue reading

Posted in Music history, Songwriters | Tagged | 3 Comments