KKK — SHEET MUSIC TO DRY FOR*

So far in this feminine song series, we haven’t embraced a single Gershwin tune. Let us korrect that egregious omission right now with the title song from the 1926 Broadway musical OH, KAY! OK, it’s true that the hit song to come out of that show wasn’t Oh, Kay!, but SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME….unfortunately, George and Ira didn’t title that hit song Someone To Watch Over Kay, so this selection is what it is — Oh, Kay?

Next, we have a 78 rpm record that I’ve had for many years;  I’ve long gotten such a Kick out of it that my Kazatski is Kaputski. Oy vey! That hotski music is too much for me:

From the ridiculous to the sublime, our third (and final) K song is so beautifully sad that you’d swear it’s an Irish ballad….but it was actually written by an American of German ancestry in 1875, when, I might note, sheet music was the only way of taking songs home (even player piano rolls hadn’t been invented yet). Anyway, if you cry easily* — faith and begorrah, there be nothing wrong with that — keep the Kleenex Klose by.

*You may now dry your eyes (I will discretely pretend not to notice).

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YOU CAN NEVER BE IRISH EEN-OUGH

If you’re lucky enough to be Irish….you’re lucky enough! —Irish proverb

On St. Patrick’s Day, every man is an Irishman — if you disagree, get out of me sight and don’t come back until tomorrow! Besides, today me mind is not on Irish men, but on Irish lasses — coleens (or colleens), a word of Gaelic origin — specifically, coleens whose first name ends in een, as does me wife’s (Maureen).

One of the most famous Maureens is Irish-born Maureen O’Hara, the lovely red-headed actress who co-starred in my favorite John Wayne movie, THE QUIET MAN. This Academy Award-winning film, directed by Irish-born John Ford, is set in the fictional Irish village of Innisfree (the ending word in my last post SANCTUARY, from Wm. Butler Yeats’ poem LAKE ISLE OF INNISFREE).

To me, the most Irish-sounding girl’s first name ending in een is Pegeen, a name I first heard of in Irish playwright John Millington Synge’s great THE PLAYBOY OF THE WESTERN WORLD, a wickedly funny play (later filmed in 1962) which, at its first performance in Dublin in 1907, caused a riot. Synge’s contemporary, W.B. Yeats, later wrote of the play, “It is never played before any Irish audience for the first time without something or other being flung at the players.” Pegeen is the name of the village barmaid, the heroine with “the divil’s own temper,” who is courted — and lost — by Christy Mahon, the “Playboy of the Western World.”

Another Irish een name I am fond of is Kathleen, heard in several Irish ballads, including KATHLEEN MAVOURNEEN and the beautifully poignant I’LL TAKE YOU HOME AGAIN, KATHLEEN:

Happy March seventeen!