Saturday, June 11, 2011



It's Saturday night & for me that means 'Big Band' music.  Years ago radio station AM 740 out of Toronto had a program called Big Band Saturday Night.  (it is now on Sunday night's) We lived in the old farm house at that time & I remember warm summer Saturday nights with the sounds of Glen Miller, Benny Goodman, & the Mills Brothers rolling out of the radio & filling the old 1920's farm house we lived in with a feeling good music that I had grown up with as a small boy in the late 40's.  A young Frank Sinatra singing, 'Blue Skies along with Tommy Dorsey's 'Blue Moon' remain with me today.  I still find myself frequently humming & singing those tunes all these years later.  It was the age of music that made you feel good.  It was another age so very long ago that many people will never know.  And, how truly sad that is.

Over the years I have gathered together 76 pieces of music from the Big Band era & have them here on our computer.  It is the music that takes me back to a different world & a different time.  It takes me to a little boy's world of wonderment, of laughter & playing.  To a world that no longer exists except for in the music & the mind of this little boy.  It is a world I momentarily retreat to from time to time in search of a lost age, a lost boy, a simpler time, playing catch with my Mother outside on warm summer nights.  My Uncle Fred taking me for rides in the parcel carrier of his bicycle.  Memories of the big puffing steam locomotives stopping at the train station picking up & dropping off passengers & freight only a few hundred yards from our house.  Memories of Saturday night ice cream cones at our small town's only restaurant, Joe's Place.  My favorite was Butterscotch & my Mother's was Maple Walnut.  I remember the tall tales my Grandfather would spin & I remember the night my Grandmother died.  I sometimes remember the turmoil in our house but it is the pleasant memories I search out, & I cast away the others.   

Tonight as I sit here at the computer it is the long ago tunes of Vaughn Monroe's 'It's Only A Paper Moon,' Vera Lynn's 'We'll Meet Again,' the Mills Brothers singing 'Stardust' & Bunny Berigan's 'Marie,' that once again, if only for a few moments, take away the difficulties & saddened times of the past few months, the lost years & the people who are no longer here.  As I type this, Billie Holliday & Louis Armstrong are singing, 'Summertime.'  Next, Tony Bennett will sing, 'Willow Weep For Me,' followed by Tommy Dorsey's, 'Moonlight In Vermont.'   And the song that brings back my warmest memories of that bygone era?   Vic Damone singing, 'Flamingo.'

Aw yes, it is another Saturday night, long long ago & far far away, as this little boy quietly sheds a tear & remembers those times with family members who have so long ago gone before him.................................


GROANER'S CORNER:((  It's frustrating when you know all the answers, but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.


The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right
now...... AL.


  1. I love the old music also. When rock & roll came along I could never quite discard the wonderful old music and artists. I love Julie London's "Cry me a River" and sometimes can't get it out of my mind for days.

  2. Al... loved the post tonight. Full of emotion... lyrical... poetic almost... a real departure from the daily "what I did" list. Thanks for the enjoyable read.

  3. I could feel it, I was there...

  4. Al, what a beautiful blog post. I'm just a few years, well maybe 10 years, younger but I can remember those songs also.
    With your descriptions you put me right there with you and your family. It's good to shed the tear, it was a better time for all of us.
    Thanks for sharing your memories with us.

  5. Wonderful post...thanks for sharing your heart with us. I too love the music from that era, even though I was just a tiny baby in the late forties!! It's good that you cherish the happy memories and reject the ones that might cause you pain. No need to ruminate on what might have been better, just remember the best.

  6. I remember Saturday nights filled with Hockey Night in Canada on CBC..and then the Jackie Gleason show...with the Honeymooners..oh and the June Taylor dancers!..yes, the memories of our younger days and how simple life was..even if it seemed complicated back then! is never perfect..we just learn and grow from the mistakes we made and the people we meet..even those that are no longer with us..there memories still touch our lives!..
    I also remember having to eat my Dad's burnt pancakes on a Sunday morning!..delicious!!!

  7. What a wonderful entry tonight. You've outdone yourself. I can remember listening to the Grand Ol Opry with my folks when I was just a pup. We might have a treat of popcorn and a coke while we listened. What great memories! I too, really enjoy the Big Band era. What fine bands they had back then. I often wonder what the kids of today will listen too when they are our age.
    Take care and thanks again.

    Don in Okla.
    PS. Please send some rain. We are drying up and blowing away down here!

  8. You are truly a gifted writer, can’t tell you how much I enjoy your post!
    Music has a way of transporting us back to those special times in our lives. I was born in 1965 but I was raised by my grandparents and they listened to the “Big Band’ music too. I can still remember where I was and who I was with when I heard a song/music for the first time. Thank you for sharing your Saturday Night Memories.

    Mark W.

  9. Ah Big bands sounds, and then after I got out of the Navy on weekends you could dial up Wolfman's Original oldies show, What a guy. be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  10. Al, if I had only looked at your photo tonight, I would have been completely happy with my visit. By the way, everything about it is picture is superb; I like what you did with the framing and the color way in the back where my eyes are drawn to. I really want to look at the horse, but my eyes keep heading up the hill.

    Your writing is just the BEST! I felt like I was right there with you listening to that wonderful music and thinking about those warm and familiar recollections. I like the thoughtfulness of your words and that you seem to so easily share them.


  11. I LOVE the Big Band style of music also... GREAT!!!
    Have fun

  12. We gave Den's Aunt and Uncle a CD player..Then we bought come Big Band music and Zoot Suitin' boogie by the Cherry Poppin'Daddies...The LOVE it...Also through in some Mexican Mariachi music..They use to go to Mexico all the time...Those old tunes never die...

  13. Sweet. Well said. I'm a child of the 60's, but I've always loved the Big Band music. Nice post.

  14. I was born at the end of the 40's but my mother had all the records and I grew up loving the music of the 30's and 40's. Never really cared for rock-n-roll. My daughter who is 28 loves Sinatra and wants his music played at her wedding reception. Ah...all those memories, glad I still have them.
    Nice post Al...