I’m turning 69 on Tuesday. I used to throw a birthday concert every year for decades, until I got too caught up in caring for family members five years ago. I decided this morning that it could be fun to throw an impromptu mini-concert at the gazebo, and give myself the gift of friends and neighbors to sing with.If there are enough of us, I’d love to lead a few Traditional American Playparties (simple singing and motion games). No PA, just everyone’s voices together. No seating unless you bring your own. Probably even no cake unless someone else shows up with one. No set up, no expenses, no logistics, no prep except running through some songs with Zeke today. But great sing-along songs, old and brand new. If nobody shows up, Zeke and I will sit around and sing with each other for half an hour or so, so no obligation either. We’ll bring the Celebrated Twangoleum as well as my Columbia guitar. We’ve been invited for dinner at 7:00 so this won’t be a long event. You’re all welcome!
I learned this song from a Holy Model Rounders album. Peter Stampfel got it from an as-yet-un-named 1950s Girl Group (I’m still researching) and then added a bunch more verses. Carole King clearly heard the same song. There’s sometimes a period in a young woman’s life when Bad Boys look awfully exciting, though the irresponsibility can wear out pretty quickly. Which can lead to the next song being “The Bald-Headed End Of A Broom.” Bad Boy is descended from the great blues song Stagger Lee. Alice Stuart taught me the guitar lick, bless her heart! And Zeke delightedly misbehaves in this recording as only he can. My favorite audience for this song is the little old ladies in senior residences, the ones with the reminiscent smiles… Thanks again to filmmakers Tom & Kelly!
Our dear friend Jo Zeimet created this little snippet of nonsense and oh-so-unwisely shared it with us, to our lasting delight. The song spontaneously erupted during our filming session. Everything really IS a song cue in our lives together!
Here’s the first video from our video recording weekend. Deepest thanks to Tom and Kelly for skilled recording!
Live video performance meant we decided not to drive ourselves nuts trying to have perfection as a goal. Instead we went for being as lively as we could figure out how to be. To have fun with each other.
The song gives a peek into one couple’s attempted negotiations around housework. From the number of requests we get for this song in concert, and from the laughter that often greets it in performance, we suspect the song strikes a chord for many other couples as well. The best foreplay many men can engage in is taking out the garbage!
Many thanks to Mary Hodgson for her original insight and inspiration; to Richard Scholtz for increased playfulness; and to Janet Stecher; Lizanne Schader & Jerry McGarity for clear thinking and experienced direction.
The process of preparing this song for performance brought me and Zeke closer as a couple as well. So we offer it with some sense of shyness – “this is really us” – and we hope you like it!