Friday, October 1, 2010

Trifling Tunes with Prude

The Prude was asked this week if she ever has writer’s block.
Which leads us right into today’s post.

Since she has nothing original, today she is going to reflect on some trifling tunes from the past. Those of you with young child contact may recognize that The Prude even pilfered the title of today’s post from a certain cucumber who sings silly songs.

We’ll begin our retrospective with a song popular at the turn of the last century-
‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game’

The 2 verses that surround the familiar chorus are about a girl demanding that her boyfriend take her to a ballgame on her date:
Katie Casey was base ball mad.
Had the fever and had it bad;
Just to root for the home town crew,
Ev'ry sou Katie blew.
On a Saturday, her young beau
Called to see if she'd like to go,
To see a show but Miss Kate said,
"No, I'll tell you what you can do."
(here feel free to sing the chorus you should all know. and love)
Katie Casey saw all the games,
Knew the players by their first names;
Told the umpire he was wrong,
All along good and strong.
When the score was just two to two,
Katie Casey knew what to do,
Just to cheer up the boys she knew,
She made the gang sing this song:
(Chorus again- you can do it!)
We know where this song is headed, right? Directly to Women’s Right to Vote.
Her demand for peanuts and Cracker Jack into infinity led to tooth decay and peanut allergies.

Follow the bouncing ball with me to the 1920’s.
Two of the favorite songs were ‘I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream’
and ‘Yes, We Have No Bananas’.
These songs were either written in anticipation of the hard time coming under the Great Depression (what is so great about a depression, The Prude asks?) or they were written under the influence of bathtub gin.

The 1930’s continued its obsession with food as the nation sang the praises of ‘Shortenin’ Bread’. This very sad song begins with 3 children sick in bed, and somehow degenerates into a young man stealing kitchen utensils and kidnapping his girlfriend.
Please read about these pitiful folks, and before you judge too harshly, remember that it was the Depression. The Great One.

Shortenin' Bread

Three little children, lying in bed
Two was sick an' the other 'most dead
Sent for the doctor, the doctor said
Give those children some short'nin' bread

Mama's little baby loves short'nin', short'nin'
Mama's little baby loves short'nin' bread,... (x2)

Put on the skillet, slip on the lid
Mama's gonna make a little short'nin' bread
That ain't all she's gonna do
Mammy's goin' to make a little coffee too

When those children, sick in bed
Heard that talk about short'nin' bread
Popped up well to dance and sing
Skipped around and cut the pigeon wing

Slipped to the kitchen, slipped up the lid
Filled my pocket full of short'nin' bread
Stole the skillet, stole the lid
Stole the gal makin' short'nin' bread

Caught me with the skillet, caught me with the lid
Caught me with the gal makin' short'nin' bread
Paid a dollar for the skillet, a dollar for the lid
Spent a year in jail eatin' short'nin' bread

The Prude will need to end this little musical interlude about mid-century. Please come back next Monday as we ruminate on classics from the late 1900’s.
And for your ruminating pleasure over the weekend, sing the words to this wonderfully moving hit  from the 1940’s:
Mairzy doats and dozy doats
And liddle lamzy divey
A kiddley divey too, wouldn't you?
Yes! Mairzy doats and dozy doats
and liddle lamzy divey
A kiddley divey too, wouldn't you?


stephseef said...

i just hurt myself. hilarious.

The Prude said...

Steph, you just made my day.

Victorious1 said...

Oh just great... now I have the shortenin' bread song in my head, as I go to bed. *sigh* Wonder if I'll wake up with it still in there? :)

The Prude said...

Victorious, how are you this morning? Shortin Bread Free?
9love your name, by the way)

Beth said...

Because the MN Twins had just made it into the playoffs, one of my selections for my volunteer work at a retirement facility where I played the piano for their monthly birthday party, was "Take Me Out..." . In my research (they love trivia) I discovered that the two gents who wrote this song had never even been to a baseball game! They finally did - twenty years later!!

Danielle said...

I find it amazing that nearly a hundred years later, almost everyone (namely, me) still has heard of these songs and know the tunes, if not all of the words! The only one I am unfamiliar with is the banana one. How does that one go?