excerpt from 'About Myself, 1863–1930' pp. 29–30 (362 words)

excerpt from 'About Myself, 1863–1930' pp. 29–30 (362 words)

part of

About Myself, 1863–1930

original language


in pages



text excerpt

encoded value

Another of [Charles] Swain’s we used to sing at home as a kind of glee was one beginning:


“Oh, what a world it might be,”


winding up with:


“Oh, what a world of beauty
A loving heart might plan,
If man but did his duty
By helping brother man.”


I suppose this may be looked upon as too sentimental by the young folks to-day—too sloppy, too common—but I am old-fashioned, and still like common-sense sentimentality—something that isn’t too deep to understand, something not too high to be above me, and yet something that touches the chords of love and life as many of these old songs did. I haven’t yet got the education to understand the best, but I know what I like and I like Swain and many others, and after having tried a dose of the great masters, these bring me down to earth. Some of the songs now given us on the music-hall stage are not to be compared with the old-timers of Harry Russell, Charles Mackay, Harry Liston and others of the underpaid music-hall artists of those days. Perhaps the music was drawlish and the tunes somewhat insipid, but, good Lord! the hop and jump kind of music served out by the artists from America and imitated here isn’t half as soothing. It’s too rackety, or else I am too old-fashioned. I like a grand singer at a music-hall, and he or she, if good, usually gets bigger, more lasting applause, and does one more good than the “fliff, faffing” stuff ladled out with bowing and scraping, twisting and twining, like many of them try on, and just compensate for their appearance by a really clever bit of dancing. The old sentimental songs were good, if common-place. They touched the spot, they pointed a moral, they didn’t have double-sided meanings or grating references to your own or somebody else’s wife. They were fit for women and children to hear, and nothing ever written or sung that isn’t fit for them to hear, isn’t fit for a man to hear either. I am as old-fashioned as that.

appears in search results as

excerpt from 'About Myself, 1863–1930' pp. 29–30 (362 words)


reported in source


documented in
Page data computed in 310 ms with 1,626,360 bytes allocated and 35 SPARQL queries executed.