When I was growing up way back in the 1970s there was one particular tradition in our home that was rarely missed: watching “The Lawrence Welk Show”. The show began back in the 1950s and was a network staple for decades.
Every week, no matter what, we all sat down to enjoy an hour of great music, exquisite costumes and sets, familiar faces with beautiful voices and a rather eclectic collection of genres.
My mother, in particular, was adamant about the weekly visit. She worked nights and often caught a late evening nap around the time the show was on. Saturdays, however, came with the explicit reminder that we make sure she was awake to watch and listen from her recliner in the living room. We did. (She often fell into a nap, but Mom being Mom she was also listening closely.)
Now, I get that some folks find the entire idea silly and feel like the music was hokey and way out of date. Accordions? Polkas? Orchestra music? Dancing?
I look back and recognize that for a time, I too, wasn’t aware of the treasure the show was. I have a decidedly eclectic taste in music that I can trace back to those shows.
Thanks to Oklahoma Public Television, the shows are once again available in my area. I may not catch it every week, but I do go out of my way at times to be sure to sit back and enjoy the show. Don’t forget to explore Amazon. I just told Alexa to play “Lawrence Welk Music” and the results are amazing, beautiful, wonderful. Mom would be pleased.
If you are curious about the show itself, here are some things to explore:
One thing I’ve always admired about Mr. Welk was his ability to listen to his audience and give them the music they wanted to hear. His shows were well crafted and beautifully choreographed, too. They were Appointment Television before there was such a thing.
Every week we were thanked for joining the party and reminded of something that Mr. Welk always said:
“Keep a song in your heart.”Lawrence Welk
I don’t know about you, but I think this is an excellent idea.