Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Father Goose Music

I've been lucky this year, in being able to fill a couple holes in my collection of books by L. Frank Baum. I posted about The Navy Alphabet back in February, and now I've acquired another book published by the George M. Hill Company, The Songs of Father Goose.

I've had a later Bobbs-Merrill version of this book for quite a while (on the left), but I was happy to run across a nice copy of the first edition. It's a book that frankly holds little interest for me, as it's basically a rehash of Father Goose, His Book with the addition of music. W. W. Denslow created a new cover design, and his illustrations are reprinted within the book, in black and white - the lack of color is unfortunate. Still, it's nice to have a good example, and interesting to see how much better the printing was on the first edition, as opposed to my later copy, from approximately 1920.

The songs must have been popular in their day - the publishers issued the music in sheet music folios (which are now very scarce) as well as the book format. In fact, the cover seen on the later Bobbs-Merrill version shown above was first used on the song folios. There were also newspaper supplements, two of which are shown below. And a certain immortality was added to the music when, in the 1944 movie Meet Me in St Louis, Judy Garland asks Margaret O'Brien if she would like to sing "Did You Ever See a Rabbit Climb a Tree?" - the first song in The Songs of Father Goose!

1 comment:

James C. Wallace II said...

Once again, I see where Denslow shows his penchant for the color orange!