“Songs To Grow On: Work Songs For Nursery Days” by Woody Guthrie - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1947Album Chart of the Decade: 1940s

TJR says

Thought to have been recorded circa Feb-Mar 1946 at the same sessions which produced “Nursery Days”, the second set of the series is very much cut from the same cloth – Woody, with his guitar and harmonica, is charming, rhythmic, and repetitious with a great turn of phrase. The whole set has an underlying theme – reaping rewards and having fun while working together. “Build My House” (“we'll build a house that'll be so strong the winds'll sing my baby a song”); “Pretty and Shiny-O” (“got to bed, close my eyes and rest my head, sleepy-sleepy-tight, sleepy-tight to make eyes pretty and shiny-o”); “Needle Sing” (knitting for my daddy, needle sing… stitching for my brother, needle sing… the kitten got my button, needle sing… mamma don’t you hear my needle sing); “Pick It Up” (I dropped my apple pick-it-up pick-it-up and wash it clean in the water… I dropped my head pick-it-up pick-it-up put it back on my shoulders); “My Little Seed” (the rain it come and it worst my ground and I thought my little seed was a-going to drown, and I waded and I splashed and carried’d my seed and I planted it again on some higher ground… let’s all dance ‘round and see my little seed grow… the sun got hot my ground got dry and I thought my little seed would burn and die, I carried some water from a watering mill and I said ‘little seed you can drink your fill’… all dance ‘round and see my little seed grow). “All Work Together” (my mammy said and my teacher too there’s all kinds of work that I can do, dry my dishes, sweep my floor, but if we all work together then it won’t take long, so we all work together with a wiggle and a giggle, we all work together with a giggle and a grin). Said Woody: “I really did try hard to slant these songs at all of your citizens from four to six, but I spilled over a little on every side, because all of us sang and danced these songs and all of us got about the same kick out of them”. These songs were considered children’s classics and won him success and recognition as an innovative writer of the genre. On the strength of the positive reaction, Moe Asch set up Cub Records on which there were a string of singles released for the littlest tots over 1948-49.

The Jukebox Rebel

A [02:43] 5.4.png Woody Guthrie - Build My House (Woody Guthrie) Folk
B [01:29] 4.5.png Woody Guthrie - Pretty And Shiny-O (Woody Guthrie) Folk
C [02:16] 4.0.png Woody Guthrie - Needle Sing (Woody Guthrie) Folk
D [01:53] 5.1.png Woody Guthrie - Pick It Up (Woody Guthrie) Folk
E [02:31] 5.3.png Woody Guthrie - My Little Seed (Woody Guthrie) Folk
F [02:39] 4.3.png Woody Guthrie - All Work Together (Woody Guthrie) Folk
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