Monday, July 20, 2020

Everyone Blogs But Father - A Tribute to a Vaudeville Staple, ca 1905

In "An Evening With Groucho," the aged Mr. Marx performed a few songs from his earliest days in vaudeville.  One was "Everyone Works but Father," by Jean Havez.  He performed a German version as well to prove its popularity.

So among the archives I found four examples based on the tune, which even had a sequel in 1906.  Since mp3s are not something the folks at Blogger allow, they are presented here in the most boring mp4 format I could muster - plainly titled with just the songs.  Here they are!

The Original Hit from 1905
The composer, Jean Havez, later went on to work with Buster Keaton on "Our Hospitality" and "Seven Chances" before dying in 1925 at the age of 52.  His widow married Edward Sedgwick, who later directed Keaton at MGM.

It Inspired Variations on a Theme - a "Humoresque" from 1905

....and a sequel, "Uncle Quit Work Too," in 1906

...and was common enough to use as bumper music and parody...
"They're everyone's jokes but father's"
Edison's "At the Minstrel Show #5" from 1906

Sunday, July 05, 2020

But I Cannot Hum a Fugue of Which I've Heard the Music's Din Afore...

The Croaking Chorus from The Frogs by Aristophanes:

The rage! The cardiac tumult! Psychic disasters!
The fury of the thunder kissing bard when he perceives
His piddling opponent picking his dentures with dactyls!
Regard his orbs:  how they roll; one this way, one the other!
Ah, the logotomy! Verb breasting adverb, the cristate nouns
Plunging ‘gainst pavid pronouns!  Let the bull stylistic
(Husband of cows) rise up and whirl his whiskers!
Ah the lambent raiding of verse, the (my God) tripsis
Of boant anapaests leaping in lucent line
Against the skiaphagous luculent relulant 
Phalanges of the foe! – Yet must we bear in mind
The hepatic ingenium of the adversary, whose
Herpetic tongue knows too well how to rive
The hyaline dynamics of our arch-architect!
The Rest is SILENCE!

– translation by Dudley Fitts, 1955