Saturday, June 14, 2014

Here it is, the middle of June already.   We were supposed to have a big yard sale today to dispose of a lot of sheet music and old books we no longer were using but the weather forecast was for 'pop-up showers' so we cancelled - and wouldn't you know, it was pretty nice all day and didn't even drizzle in this part of the state.   And that's they way life is, sometimes we make the right decisions and sometimes we don't.   "Tomorrow", as Scarlett famously said, "is another day."

I came across a piece of sheet music in very good condition which was written 100 years ago, yes in 1914, called   A HUNDRED YEARS FROM .   I wish I had the capability of copying the cover page for you to see as it is a drawing of some of the "miracles" of that age: a zeppelin, some single engine prop planes, and a little bearded elfin character in the corner holding a spyglass peering skyward.   You can, if you care to,  put the title in your search engine and find pictures of it.

The song was written by Caddigan, Brennan and Story.  Inside it says, " All rights for Mechanical Instruments reserved.  International Copyright secured.  Entered according to Act of Parliament of Canada in the year MCMX1V by O. E. Story at the Dept. Of Agriculture.  It was also copyrighted in Boston Mass by Mr. Story.   

Back to the cover, in a circular inset there is a picture of a pixieish looking chap with a crown on his head, and it says "Featured by Tom Linden and Jungle Girls".  I was unable to find any information about Mr. Linden or Jungle Girls, but he may have been the cover artist.

JACK CADDIGAN was one of seven children born to Irish parents who were both Irish and immigrated from Canada to Boston's heavily populated South End.  Originally he was an apprentice plumber, and then joined Boston Edison Co., successfully rising to the esteemed position of Assistant Vice-President in charge of advertising.   He married Mary Manning and they raised seven children.  

His song writing career was mostly between 1914 and 1918 and quite naturally, were about the war.
"The Rose of No Man's Land",  "We're All GOing Calling on the Kaiser" and  "Salvation Lassie of Mine"   to name a few.   He wrote rhyming, rhythmic, songs.  SOme were sentimental, some novelties.  Some waltzes, some ballads.   He collaborated with Chick Story and James A. Brennan who wrote much of his music, and some with Jimmy McHugh.  In his later live he directed minstrel shows and revues for civic groups.

JAMES A. BRENNAN a Boston Mass native who attended Mass Normal Arts School and became a camouflage artist fort the U. S. Shipping Board during WWI.   He was a songwriter for lyricists, notable Jack Caddigan.   One of his more popular songs was "Little Red School House" which he wrote with Al Wilsonin 1922, originally sung by the American Quartet, and eventually sung by Brenda Lee (at age 10 with Red Foley) and Perry Como (at age 16).  

OLIVER "Chick" STORY was also a Massachusetts native.  His father owned a grocery store and apparently it was a prosperous business.  He was an only child, never married and lived with his father Chelsea. After his father's death he moved back to East Boston where they had previously lived.  He was a Harvard graduate and remained an active alumnus, became involved in politics, and became as Mason.

While at Harvard Story wrote several pieces of music, and collaborated with Peter (Happy) O'Neil for dozens of songs.  They formed a publishing company together. O'Neil died at age 28 and Story opened his own company issuing more than 50 titles including many of his own.   In1913 he began collaborating with Jack Caddigan .  He was an accomplished piano player and vocalist, and formed a couple of different groups:  The Chick Story Trio and Chick Story Serenaders.  After closing his publishing firm he joined the offices of Feist Music.   Even after his publishing days ended, he continued to list himself in directories as a musician and performed in amateur theatricals, clubs and restaurants performing "songs of yesteryear." 


A HUNDRED YEARS FROM NOW  (written and published in 1914)

Everyone today is going crazy
Everyone today is going mad.
Each one is trying to do something decidedly new
Just to get the rest in bad.
Every day they change the style of dancing,
Every day they change the style of dress,
Oh, Boys, what is it come to
That's a problem we will have to guess.

I wonder what kind of a life  they'll lead
A hundred years from now?
I wonder what's going to be the speed
A hundred years from now.
The girlies are setting a pace today
That's turning the locks of gold to grey.
We're living a life of constant alteration
I wonder if they'll have a tango dance
A hundred years from now.
I wonder if they'll wear short pants
A hundred years from now.
There's no solution 
It's all evolution,
I sonder and wonder and wonder how much
The girls are going to wear
A hundred years from now.

Picture this town that once was just a pasture
Picture the girls who roamed it years ago-
They were the wonderful kind you know, 
The kind I've in mind, 
The sort of girl the world calls slow.
Think of a girl today out in a meadow
Raking the hay a la de da collette
No chance not in a thousand years
The girls today are all for Cabaret.

I wonder …………….A hundred years from now.

I wonder what he would think if he came back for just one day, to his Boston haunts.

I wonder "A HUNDRED YEARS FROM NOW"  in 2114.

For your entertainment and enlightenment, with thanks to Wikipedia and the wonderful composers and lyricists of long ago, and with thanks to the person who took care to preserve this old music.

No comments:

Post a Comment