When I first learned of ‘dueling pianos’ I was excited to hear them play. After some time, there were “dueling pianists’’ scheduled to play in the Daytona Beach area. My son, Gary, and his wife, Joy, learned of my interest. When they knew the program would be in town at the new arena, they made plans to take me.
I had no idea what to expect. I have always loved all kinds of music and thought I knew all I needed to know about it. When I was growing up, my Dad had a music store and all the musician in town came there. The family sang and played music all our lives so I was anxious to hear what current muscians, particularly dueling pianists, were doing.
The time came and we joined with hundreds of music lovers for an exciting evening. Notes were passed among the audience in the event they wished to make special requests—and many did.
Onstage were the very talented players at their dueling pianos and a really good drummer. When the show opened, the first song they played and sang was Jailhouse Rock, followed by Great Balls Of Fire. Seven more current popular songs followed. I had to ask my son the titles of them. Then the pianists played and sang Country Roads and Stardust I knew those two.
The pattern continued. I asked for titles to the next five songs and was given their names. I recognized the Folsum Prison and Joy To You And Me titles.
No one was distracted by the lightning and rain outside. In due time, several members of the audience found a great area of floor for dancing.
The list of songs were continually played and sung. None of the performers took a break. It was amazing because the number of songs in the show was close to forty by time we left! I mentioned some that I recognized and knew the titles. There were others… Sweet Caroline, I’m A Believer, and Save The Last Dance For Me. However, I didn’t know all the words to any of them but Country Roads.
It was a shock to me to realize how far back the songs I knew so well had been popular. Actually, they are still very popular among those of us who grew up in the days when folks sat on the porch in the evening and learned the songs word for word—with or without a musical background.
Our family had a piano where we could play piano rolls, music even older than we were! “Those were the days, my friend.”—oh, the memories!
Kitty Maiden is a staff writer for Seniors Today.