Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Prune Song

When the Wurlitzer piano came into our lives in the summer of 1948, Mother unearthed old music that she had been saving from the time in the late 1920s when she had been single, teaching school, and able to purchase music. She had lots of classics, William Tell Overture, Taunnhauser, Schubert's music, etc., but she also had some very unusual music that reflected the 1920's, including "Show Me the Way to Go Home", and "The Prune Song", with words by Frank Crumit and music by Harry DeCosta. The song declaims that no matter how young a prune may be it's always full of wrinkles, and goes on for six verses. We always had a lot of fun singing it, and it was one of the ditties that Mother would sing on occasion.
To my knowledge, Mother never talked about how she acquired her skill as a piano player. She was often the one who played for family reunions at Grandma and Grandpa Wasden's house when everyone would sing together songs like "The Bulldog on the Bank and the Bullfrog in the Pool". In the evenings, even though she must have been tired from her day's labors, she often sat down to play, and we would either watch, sometimes try to sing along, or just listen and appreciate the music.


Judy said...

It was the spring of '48 when Mom and Dad went to General Conference in Salt Lake City with Uncle Norman and Aunt Cindy. Upon their return, Dad asked for a family vote: a piano or an indoor bathroom. The vote was unanimous for the piano. After all, we already had useable facilities.

It was a good thing that we voted that way because they had already purchased the piano while in SLC.

"The Prune Song" would probably not be a hit today, but we sure had fun with it. It was one of the finer pieces of music of my early childhood.

Ann said...

I do remember they used the old trailer that we used to take pigs and cows to market in. And I am thankful the vote was for the piano. Where would I have slept?

Another fun memory, or two, about the piano. When Judy, Steve and I were the only ones home, there would be times when Mother would sit and play and we would sing at the top of our lungs. Dad would join in and we would laugh and laugh - life was just about perfect. This probably happened in the earlier "piano" years, I just don't remember that.

One day I was working(?)outside the livingroom window and I heard someone playing the piano. Knowing where Mother and Judy were, my curiosity got the best of me. What a fun surprise to see Dad sitting at the piano, quite enjoying himself. I have often thought he had more talent than he ever let us know.

I think this Salt Lake trip was the same trip when they brought home the Cinderella comic book, which is safely tucked away. I checked the value on EBay - it isn't worth much in the money world, but means alot in the happy memory world.