This Week in Elder News - 18 April 2009
Celebrating Old Old Age

ELDER MUSIC: Cat Songs

category_bug_eldermusic A few weeks ago, we wrote about dog songs, so it is only fair to cover cats too. Moreso than dog songs, cat songs are often not about cats at all – the word cat being used in so many ways besides defining felines. I tried to stick with feline cat songs, but there are other good ones I couldn't resist. (This is an Ollie the Cat-approved blog post.)

Elton John's Honky Cat is one of them. I found it turning up on a lot of my personal play lists over the years and it's a nice way to get blood pumping on a Sunday morning – lively but not too much so. [4:58 minutes]


The Siamese Cat Song from the Disney movie Lady and the Tramp is a classic sung and co-written by Peggy Lee. I found this vintage promotional film, narrated by Walt Disney, about how the song was written. [6:48 minutes]


Here is another of what are supposed to be children's songs. But we know better, right? This is The Cat Came Back from The Muppet Show. [2:44 minutes]


This is the late Freddie Mercury of the British rock band Queen singing about his beloved cat, Delilah. No video - just lyrics. [3:32 minutes]


In all the years I lived in New York City, my mother visited only once while she and a friend spent a summer traveling the U.S. by rail. Mom was never shy with her opinions: she didn't like New York and she didn't like the musical, Cats. She asked why there was so much trash on the stage. Oh, Mom, gimme me a break - what's not to like. This is Jellicle Songs for Jellicle Cats from the famous musical. [7:11 minutes]


Harry Chapin wasn't singing about a cat with this tune, but it was one of his top hits. Cat's in the Cradle [3:43 minutes]


What's New Pussycat, written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David was the theme song of a 1965 comedy film of the same title starring Peter Sellers. It made Tom Jones a star. [2:19 minutes]


We end with my favorite cat song, Stray Cat Strut from the band, Stray Cats. [4:31 minutes]

Comments

The song, Cat's In The Cradle, has always been a favorite of mine.

Fortunately you did not mention the "cat song" which I really, really can't stand. That being "The Siamese Cat Song" sung by Peggy Lee and featured in the movie, Lady & The Tramp. In fact, I could never own a Siamese Cat because of that song! :)

I love these Elder Music posts! This one especially, cat lover that I am and having just posted about one of my cats!

It amazes me to learn that your mother only visited you that one time in New York. hmmmm.

Until moments ago I didn't know that Peggy Lee was also a lyricist. I only remember her in later years and can hardly recognize her in the video here.

Oooops! I missed seeing that song in your post Ronni until Lydia mentioned it. SORRY!

Just goes to show you that I was telling the truth - I have that song completely "blocked" from my mind! :)

I love all of these, Ronni! Thanks for the videos.

Ronni,

I haven't heard Freddy Mercury sing Delilah in so many years;it was a treat to hear that wonderful line again;

"You pee all over my Chippendale Suite"

That just don't make wonderful lyrics like that anymore....

Loved being reminded of these songs. I used to sing "What's New Pussycat?" on my way to work in my first $400 car. 1965, recently graduated college, working at last (it was another poor economic period. The song was all the better for being in a Peter Sellers movie. Good memories.

Don't forget the Rolling Stones' "Stray Cat Blues," one of the most deliberately provocative rock songs ever.

I didn't forget it, Citizen K. I just didn't like the poor audio quality on the video I found.

Befitting the weirdness of the '60s, there were a lot of weird songs, and another that comes to mind is Norma Tanega's "Walkin' My Cat Named Dog". It's on YouTube also.

I'll just bet that Ollie is strutting his stuff all over your home, Ronni. He must be so proud of all the cat songs.

OH! Honkey Cat is one of my all time favorites!!

My dad gave me the nickname "pussycat" and used to sing to me when he got home from work "What's new pussycat?" (I was five in 1965) Also LOVE the Stray Cat Strut. I guess it's not too hard to figure out why I became one of those crazy cat ladies...

I guess the Carl Perkins song "Put Your Cat Clothes On" isn't quite what you're looking for, but I like it.

Good post nice idea I like it..

Peter...

I never heard of "Put Your Cat Clothes On." Now I'll have to go track it down to see what you mean about "not quite what I'm looking for."

Fun post Ronni

One song that is hilarious and very much about cats themselves is the 11 Cats of Christmas by Trout Fishing in America. My family and I did a little skit of that for our holiday "family talent show", and our big black cat is nicknamed Chicken Joe after one of the felines in the song.

I don't know how well known it is, but I guarantee any cat lover will find it highly amusing and it is a very catchy tune.

Thank you Ronni from Yin and Yang, my two Siamese.....they thoroughly enjoyed the clip and it gave them new ideas.

Oh, CATS has always been my favourite musical - having read The Wasteland and Lovesong of J Alfred Prufrock, I have always found it astonishing that the same person wrote something as exuberant as Skimbleshanks (which is, incidentally, my favourite song from CATS - I can just imagine hime meeting the station master with elation!). Great post!

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)