Appalachia Through My Eyes - The Next Generation Of Contra Dancers
Kenneth Roper's Oatmeal Cake

Oh I Want To See Him



Isn't it funny how music seems to play in the background of our lives? I can hear a song from the 80's and feel like an eager excited teenager with the world in front of me again.

I've often wished my memory would wrap itself around important things in life, the way it seems to wrap around songs. I've always been a huge fan of many different styles of music, but it still amazes me when I hear a song I haven't even thought about in years and remember every word.

There was a sweet little old lady I knew who began losing her memory as she got older. Eventually it was no longer safe for her to stay home alone and her family moved her into a nursing home. After that her mind continued to slip until she no longer recognized her own children.

The nursing home has a piano in the community room for entertaining the patients or for visiting choirs to use. Every time the lady heard an old gospel song being played on the piano-she would sing every word. What those words of faith must have meant to her for them to sustain her in the last days of her life when she no longer knew her family.


Today's Pickin & Grinnin In The Kitchen Spot is Oh I Want To See Him a song written by R.H. Cornelius. It's one of those songs-I know every word of, but have no memory of learning-just the background music of my childhood.


I hope you enjoyed Pap's singing and Paul's flat top picking.

What song plays in the background of your life? Maybe a lullaby from childhood, a song learned in school or a song from those intense teenage years?


This post was originally published here on the Blind Pig in May of 2008.

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A day late seeing this post but it was well worth the wait. As usual, Pap and Paul are magical!

The song that always comes to my mind is Tura Lura Lura, which our Dad sang (badly I might add) to us often when we were young. For some reason, the only song I remember our Mother singing was Happy Birthday when the occasion warranted, although I do remember she was a much better singer than Dad was.

God bless.


Oh how I love these songs. They are like an old patchwork quilt that we can wrap around us giving us comfort, love and warmth. Sometimes I wake up with one on my mind that I haven't thought of in years and just what I needed! "He giveth me songs in the night." Thanks, Tipper.

Loved this post and the music

"Whispering Hope", is one of my favorite songs from the past. My aunt always wanting me to sing it for her.
"Summertime" from Porgy and Bess is a alltime favorite. My Grandchildren loved for me to sing it to them...On the far end of the spectrum..."Down in the Valley"...I don't know why but sometimes "Shortin' Bread" jumps up in my mind! Go figure! Maybe it does because I'm beginning to get hungry...Ha ha he he...
I am always thinking of songs from high school days as well. Hymns I love too..."In the Garden" is also one of my favorites...There are so many, hard to choose just a few!
"Wildwood Flower" is always playing in the background of my mind....especially this time of year when the Joree birds are singing in the woodland!
Thanks Tipper, and Pap

Such a wonderful presentation! Thanks for sharing this with us!

You are so blessed to be right in the
middle of a Family Singing Group. And
it must be a nice feeling to have your
girls following family tradition. Hope
they had a big crowd at the Martin's
Creek Singing, I know they did well.

It might Snow tonite! ...Ken

My father's favorites were In The Garden, The Old Rugged Cross and The
Little Brown Church in the Dale.
He insisted I learn the three songs on the piano and to this day I can sit down and play them.
He drove my piano teacher crazy by telling her what to teach me. In between his requests she taught me scales and the appropriate songs
for my learning level.
My Mother played a pump organ in church so hymns were also the music of my youth.
Quite a difference from Elvis who was my teen idol.

I enjoyed the song very much. There are certain songs that I associate with times in my life as well. One in particular is The Old Gospel Ship.
My younger sister and I would often sit on the back porch steps and sing form the hymnal while mom was in the kitchen. She said many times that those were such sweet memories for her. The Old Gospel Ship was one of our favorites and we would sing it loud. Sweet memories indeed!

My mother's mother was like the woman at the nursing home you mentioned. We didn't get to see her very often since we lived at the tip of Texas and she was in Kansas but until she lived in a nursing home, I never saw her playing the piano or singing. My mother and her sister would play and sing but not Grandma. The last two times we saw her she didn't know any of her family but she was sitting at the piano playing and singing - some of her contemporary music from her youth, some classical, but mostly hymns from the old Cokesbury hymnal. The staff said she did that all day long - that it was difficult to get her to eat - she'd just sit, back straight and play and sing until she got sleepy.

In recent years, there was a lady at the nearby nursing home who always sang harmony to the hymns during hymn worship Sunday mornings. Other residents also sang/sing the old hymns heartily but none with the gorgeous harmony and gusto of Lil.

On other occasions my husband plays guitar and I sing camp songs and songs from the 40's, 50's, and early 60's with the nursing home residents. One gentleman who never smiled or looked anyone in the eye broke into a huge grin and began clapping when we sang "She'll be Comin' 'Round the Mountain".

My older two granddaughters would always go to sleep (nap time or night time) when I sang Petula Clark's "My Love is Warmer than the Warmest Sunshine." The older one was quite collicky but this song settled her down every time.

Music "soothes the savage beast", warms the heart, and soothes the soul. It is truly wonderful.

Thanks. So many memories.

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