My wife and I recently took a vacation with her parents. We drove to Door County, Wisconsin, and stayed in a little cottage close to the water. The drive from Chicago takes a good chunk of the day so we packed some CDs to listen to on the way.
My in-laws are in their mid-80s, so we brought along some CDS we hoped they’d enjoy. One of them was a CD of songs by the Andrews Sisters. Trying to guess what kind of music someone else will like is always a bit of a gamble, but I figured the Andrews Sisters were a sure thing for someone of my in-laws’ generation. I was right. They loved the CD and my father-in-law knew all the words to all the songs. He and my mother-in-law were teenagers during World War II, which was when the Andrews Sisters were huge.
The songs were fun to listen to: “The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree,” etc. To quote a phrase, the songs were a part of the soundtrack of my in-laws’ youth, but for me, they have a slightly campy quality to them. This made me wonder — what groups from my youth will MY children think are campy and mildly goofy? The Beatles? The Doors? The Beach Boys? Maybe I don’t want to know!
Anyway, there’s one thing about those old songs–some of them have a great hook and keep echoing in your head. Here’s the one from the Andrews Sisters’ CD that stuck with me for days. It’s a guest performance by a well-known male singer of his time–to put it mildly. (I once heard the renowned operatic bass, Samuel Ramey, peform this song as an encore and he brought down the house.):