chair fitness

Cruising Down the River

Cruising Down the River

Cruising Down the River, was written in 1945 by two women, Emily Beadell and Nell Tollerton. They entered their composition into a public songwriting contest in the UK and…

Marshmallow World

This is a wonderful song for the holidays. Though it makes no mention of Christmas, it is definitely a favourite this time of year. Written by lyricist Carl Sigman and composer Peter DeRose in 1949 this upbeat tune celebrates...

You Make Me Feel So Young

One of my favourite go to songs for my senior/older adult chair fitness classes is this wonderful 1946 tune “You Make Me Feel So Young” composed by Joseph Myrow and lyricist Mack Gordon. It was originally written, as many songs were in the forties, for a film. It was first heard in Three Little Girls in Blue. Later in 1951 it was chosen to be the title song for the movie As Young As You Feel in which Marilyn Monroe...

Lollipop

This week I have chosen a rather silly song but the origin of how the tune came about makes for an interesting story. 

In 1958, co-writers Julius Dixson and Beverly Ross were scheduled to have a songwriting session. Dixson was late explaining that the reason for the delay was that his daughter got a lollipop stuck in her hair. Ross, inspired by his tale apparently sat down at the piano and created a version of “Lollipop” right then and there. Beverly Ross ended up making a recording of the tune with Dixson’s neighbour, a 13 year old boy Ronald Gum. Their recording act’s name was Ronald and Ruby, an alias apparently chosen to hide the fact that............

Besame Mucho

Winter gets pretty long in Toronto so I have escaped to warm weather on Isla Mujeres which literally translated means the Island of Women. History states that when a Spanish slave trader from Cuba  named Francisco Hernandez Cordova came to the island in 1517 looking for silver, gold and slaves he found temples, ruins, a few gold artifacts and statues of women; the Mayan goddess Ixchel and her daughter's and daughter in laws Ixchebeliax, Ixhunie and Ixhunieta. The island was supposedly a sanctuary for Ixchel who was goddess of the moon, fertility, medicine and happiness. At the ruins of what was believed to be her temple is where the sun casts its first light on Mexico as it rises each day. 

In 1940, there was a young Mexican female songwriter named Consuelo Velasquez who wrote one of the most popular recorded love songs of all times......

Won't You Come Home Bill Bailey?

Aside from teaching my Swingin’ Fitness program for older adults, I perform in a duo called “Fit as a Fiddle” mostly in and around Toronto. Our performances cater to the 55 plus crowds so we generally entertain at seniors residences, community centres, etc. Our shows vary depending upon the occasion but one thing we do is end almost every show with an old favourite written in 1902 by American composer and lyricist Hughie Cannon called “Won’t You Come Home, Bill Bailey?”. It’s a fabulous upbeat tune that.........

Everything Old is New Again

About two years ago I was searching for a tune that could accompany the theme of a conference I was presenting at; Everything Old is New Again was what they chose so I began my search. Turned out it was easier than I thought as I almost immediately came across a song co-written by the late great Australian composer/performer/piano player Peter Allen entitled “Everything Old is New Again”.

Peter Allen came to the United Stated in a rather interesting way. Judy’ Garland’s husband saw him perform in Hong Kong and invited him to play with Judy in London and back in the U.S. No doubt through his association with Judy Garland, Peter Allen met Liza Minelli and went on to become......

Hello Dolly

Broadway musicals are a wonderful source of music possibilities for your older adult fitness classes. There are really no age limitations when it comes to this category as the evolution of what’s continually happening over the decades on the broadway stage clearly demonstrates. There are new works such as you can’t get a seat for this play until well into next year, “Hamilton”, revivals of old works like “West Side Story” and “Fiddler on the Roof” and long runs of currently still running classic favourites such as “Phantom of the Opera”, “Chicago” and “Cats”.

One of my favourite films based on a broadway play is......