September Rain Celebrated In Song

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As I’m sitting here early in the week writing this week’s article, I’m watching a downpour of rain pounding Green Valley Lake and the wind whipping through the willow trees at the lake’s shoreline. It sure doesn’t look like there is any end in sight to this year’s monsoon.

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But we all know that Mother Nature, more often than not, is very predictable and we in the Rim Country will soon be waking up to single-digit humidity, sunny skies, crisp evenings and the chance of rain each day at less than 10 percent. Back to beautiful Arizona weather.

After checking the Weather Channel’s 10-day forecast, it looks like this year’s edition of the monsoon will dry up by the time Friday’s edition of the Roundup hits the stands. So, even though this week is predicted to be a soggy one, by week’s end we will be saying goodbye to “September in the Rain.”

This week’s question

The song, “September in the Rain,” composed by songwriters Harry Warren and Al Dubin, is considered one of America’s all-time favorite classics. The tune was made popular by Guy Lombardo and his brother, Carmen, reaching No. 1 for four weeks in the spring of 1937. That same year, artists James Melton and the Rhythm Wreckers each scored top 20 hits with their versions.

In the late 1940s, the Sam Donahue Orchestra and the George Shearing Quintet each revived the classic and earned top 20 status with their own versions of “September in the Rain.”

The 1960s saw a resurgence of the song’s popularity, with Dinah Washington’s version reaching No. 27 on the charts. Doo-wop versions were released by The Platters (1960) and The Duprees (1962), while rock renditions were introduced by the Beatles (1962) and Chad & Jeremy (1964). Singer-songwriter, Marty Robins, even jumped onto the bandwagon in 1966 with his country version of the song.

This week’s trivia question is: What was the official name of Guy Lombardo’s dance band that enjoyed the most commercial success with the classic hit “September in the Rain”?

Was it A) Guy Lombardo & His Swing Band; B) Guy Lombardo & His Royal Canadians; C) Guy Lombardo & His Dance Orchestra; or D) Guy Lombardo and His Ontario Big Band?

Last week, we tried an experiment, asking readers to call in their trivia answers after 9 a.m. on Saturday, to allow readers who receive their newspapers later in the day or evening on Friday a fairer chance to win. Well, the experiment didn’t work out as hoped — not a single call came in from anyone last weekend. So, this week, if you’re the fourth caller (anytime) and have the right answer, you’ll win a CD of your favorite artist or genre of music.

Last week’s question

Last week’s music trivia question asked if you could name the rock singer-songwriter who recorded the 1983 hit song “The Big Crash.”

A former New York City policeman, this rock artist arrived in the late 1970s at the height of album rock’s popularity. While he didn’t have a remarkable voice, he had a knack for catchy, blue-collar rock ’n’ roll, which he delivered with a surprising amount of polished, radio-friendly finesse. His top 10 hits were “Baby Hold On,” “Take Me Home Tonight” and “Walk on Water.”

The choices for this “currency-named” artist were: A) Nickelback; B) Johnny Cash; C) Quarterflash; and D) Eddie Money.

The correct answer was Eddie Money (born Edward Mahoney).

Nickelback (“How You Remind Me”) is a current Top 40 rock group, Quarterflash (“Harden My Heart”) was an early-1980s pop-rock band and Johnny Cash (“Ring of Fire”) was one of country music’s all-time greatest artists.

A few final notes

Pictures that I’ve just added to my Web site are from last weekend’s wedding between Andy Malinski and Casie Tuttle. Friends and

family gathered at the scenic Apache Lake Resort and Marina to help the couple celebrate their marital commitment. After their honeymoon in Rocky Point, Mexico, the couple will return to their home in Tonto Basin. They are both graduates of Payson High School and Andy is the son of Sue Malinski, owner of Western Village on the south Beeline Highway.

For those on Facebook, you may also visit my Facebook account to see pictures of Payson resident Kayla Woolwine’s 20th birthday party, held last Saturday night at The Spur in Star Valley. Although called a birthday party, the event was more of a celebration of Kayla’s life, following her life-threatening health issues this past year and a very lengthy recovery.

And finally, the Payson High School Musical Theatre Club is looking for singers, dancers, actors, magicians, puppeteers, gymnasts, etc. for its annual showcase performance at 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 3 in the high school auditorium.

Auditions will be held from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 17 and from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 19. Performers need only to attend one night, but they are welcome to attend both if they wish. Auditions are open to all ages. Applications will be available in the lobby. For more information, please call Payson High School drama teacher Kathy Siler at (928) 221-2268.

The showcase is a fund-raiser for the PHS Musical Theatre Club to purchase head microphones for its spring musical “Footloose.”

Have a great Rim Country week!

DJ Craig, (928) 468-1482 Web site: www.djcraiginpayson.com

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