Post to the Host

Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.

Send GK Your Question »

September 26, 2007 | 1 Comment

Post to the Host:
My youngest daughter and I have been faithful APHC fans for years... Me for just over 2 decades too!

Maureen, now 23, will be getting married this spring (2008) and she wants to play the APHC opening theme at her entrance to the wedding party after church. I love the idea!

Is there a CD available with a long version of the APHC opening number ? If not I guess I'll have to cull through the recordings I''ve made over the years and cobble something together for her.

Many Thanks and... Happy 65th!

Robert W. L.
Brooklyn, NY

"Tishomingo Blues" by Spencer Williams has been a big hit ever since it came out in 1917, a standard among jazz players, but I've never heard of it being used for a wedding processional. A great idea, I think. You'll find Rich Dworsky's elegant piano arrangement in the Mel Bay songbook, "A Prairie Home Companion," and you can find the original in any good collection of jazz composition. (Williams composed the piece, it's not an improvisation.) We've used it as a theme since 1990 and I wrote new words to replace the original lyric, which went—

Way down in Mississippi, Among the cypress trees, They get you dippy, With their strange melodies, To resist temptation, I just can't refuse, In Tishomingo I wish to linger, Where they play the weary blues.

Any good pianist or organist can give Maureen a stately (or lively, depending on taste) version of "Tishomingo Blues," and she will be well-launched on the new life. I wish her a long and happy life.

1 Comment

My Beloved Wife and I were fans of APHC in the days before our wedding, so it only made sense to us to have our wedding reception band (a small jazz combo) learn to play "Tishamingo Blues" for our first dance together as a married couple.

That was 13 years ago, and I still have the urge to dance with her whenever I hear the tune.

I also wish Maureen and Mr. Maureen a very happy future together.

Previous Post:

Next Post:

Post to the Host Archive

Complete Post to the Host Archive

American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy