Showing posts with label songs about knitting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label songs about knitting. Show all posts

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Baby You're a Knitter

Stephen West demonstrates that he's the knitting scene's Weird Al Yankovic with his performance in this video.

Monday, 6 April 2015

"Knitting": A Song

This is a song called "Knitting", recorded by Robyn Landis and produced by John Jennings for the album Waterproof. The video was made by Christine Lavin "and knitters from all over the map".

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

I Lost My Wife at the Spinrite Factory Outlet Store

In a little town called Listowel, Ontario (population 5,000 and located about a 45-minute drive north of Kitchener), there is a factory that manufactures much of the yarn that is sold in Ontario and an accompanying factory outlet store that draws many yarn shoppers from many miles around. The selection of yarn and other crafting materials is quite good, the prices are very reasonable, and the store also has a lot of seconds and clearance yarn available for very little.

As a teenager I lived in Listowel for three years. My parents still live there, and I visit the store a few times a year when I'm back visiting family. As you might expect, I've invested much money and time in the Spinrite store over the years. I think fondly of the time that, for $14, I purchased enough rose-coloured mohair to make a skirt, a sweater and an afghan, and of the time I single-handedly kept three sales associates busy waiting on me for my entire visit (it was Christmas Eve day and I was the only customer there at the time). The yarn store employees know me by sight and tease me about how I should move back from Toronto to work there. I tell them, "Stock options, and then we'll talk," and they say, "Oh honey, we all want stock options!"

The Spinrite Factory Outlet has several big sales a year, and they have big tent sales which are crazily well-attended. Countless minivans pull into the parking lot with full loads of purposeful-looking crafters, and it's not uncommon to see buses arriving with a full load of avid day-trippers. At the entrance to the tent, Spinrite staff hand out enormous plastic bags (think larger than the standard black plastic garbage bag), and many shoppers do actually fill them. I've always enjoyed watching other Spinrite shoppers shop, because they do so with such an intense focus, and one sees many funny little vignettes.

Most of Spinrite's clientele is female. My oldest brother once visited the store on his own, armed with a Christmas shopping list written out for him by his wife, to get a gift certificate for me. He's a farmer and like most farmers he is very skilled at working with his hands, but he doesn't do any sort of needlework. Arriving Spinrite customers are usually greeted in passing and left to browse about by themselves, but when he walked in the front door, he was instantly approached by a store employee who asked if she could help him. My brother said, "This isn't really my kind of place," and the salesperson said, "That's all right sir, we get your kind in here sometimes and we can help you." I so wish my Christmas present had included video of this incident.

Such stray non-knitting men are a less common sight in the store than the husbands or boyfriends in the tow of female customers. Some of these male companions do enter into the shopping with an affectionate indulgence and spirit of fun that's adorable to see, but most look very bored, in either an impatient or a grimly resigned way. One time I saw a woman trawling the store accompanied by a husband who was lugging two enormous upholstery cushions in her wake. She'd pick up a skein of yarn, hold it up to one of the cushions, purse her lips, shake her head decidedly, put the skein back, and then move briskly on to the next set of shelves with her husband trailing along behind, physically compliant but with the most palpable look of frustrated resentment on his face that I ever saw. I hope he at least ended up liking the resulting afghan or throw pillows.

The video above shows how busy the Spinrite tent sales can be and how one such male hanger-on occupied his time while his crafty wife was shopping. A possible veteran of previous such sales, he had come equipped with a folding chair, a guitar, his sense of humour, and a song entitled "I Lost My Wife at the Spinrite Factory Outlet Store". I note that his wife has already purchased a big bag of yarn (visible in the vehicle behind her husband), so it's a safe bet she'll be returning eventually. She won't want to leave her yarn.

Monday, 30 June 2014

More Power to Your Knitting Nell!

New York-trained and based Canadian soprano Melanie Gall hates knitting, but knitting (which totally doesn't hate her) has lured her into its meshes, as knitting tends to do. Gall's sister Deborah is an avid knitter, and in 2009 the two sisters launched a podcast called The Savvy Girls, in which they "take a playful and thoughtful look at knitting, travel, and life". Members of their audience began to write to Melanie and Deborah in order to tell them about knitting songs dating from World Wars I and II. Melanie Gall began to get interested in this subgenre of music and to collect old knitting songs. Once she had over a hundred wartime knitting songs, she decided to use them to write a show. And so the one-woman show, More Power to Your Knitting Nell!, came into being. More Power to Your Knitting Nell! is the story of Sadie Goldstein, an aspiring singer who gets a singing gig playing "Knitting Nell" on a radio show intended to promote knitting for the war effort during World War II. It would be a dream opportunity except for the unfortunate fact that Sadie hates knitting.

More Power to Your Knitting Nell! was performed, among other venues, at Fringe Festivals in a number of locations including Orlando, Edmonton, London, and Winnipeg, in a knitting store in Calgary, and at the National Museum of Military History in Luxembourg where the Battle of the Bulge was fought. If you were weren't able to take in any of these performances, the video above offers a quick preview of Gall playing Sadie Goldstein playing Knitting Nell.

Gall has also uploaded a video of her show performance of "I Wonder Who's Knitting for Me Now".

And here is a video of Gall's performance of "Soldier, Soldier Dear Unknown".

In 2012, Gall also recorded and released an album called Knitting All the Day, which contains the knitting songs she used in the show. You can listen to samples of each song and purchase the CD itself at CDBaby.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Old Men Knitting Sweaters

Check out the song "Old Men Knitting Sweaters", composed by vocalist and accordian player Willow Rutherford, with animation by Mariah Burton. The full 3:17 version of the song is available on Willow Rutherford's MySpace page.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Ashley Hutchings' The Knitting Song

Have a listen to the mellow "The Knitting Song" from the album A Brilliant Light by Ashley Hutchings & Rainbow Chasers.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Knitting Something Nice for You

Here's a song called "Knitting Something Nice for You", from the 2010 album Versicolour by British Columbia experimental folk singer Aidan Knight.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Knitting down at Fraggle Rock

Here, in honour of Jim Henson's birthday, are the Doozers from Fraggle Rock, singing a knitting song. They might enjoy their knitting more if they'd take off their little hardhats so they could see what they're doing.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

"When I feel low, I just knit another row"

"The Knitting Song" is a 1964 Parlophone Records number by Bill Oddie, and it must be the only song in the history of pop to include instructions on how to knit in the lyrics.

Thursday, 22 August 2013

The Knitter's Curse

"The Knitter's Curse" is a catchy and all-too-true little ditty by The Savoy Ballroom. Unfortunately a number of the examples of "knitting" that appear in the video are actually crochet, but perhaps that's just The Savoy Ballroom going the extra mile to portray a knitter's life as realistically as possible.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Sophie Madeleine's "The Knitting Song"

Here's a catchy, wistful and knitting-themed ballad called "The Knitting Song" performed by English ukelele-player and singer Sophie Madeleine that I think you might enjoy.

Saturday, 8 June 2013

He's Just Turning the Elbow of His Sock

Arthur Askey (1900-1982), who was an English comedian and actor, sings a tongue-twisting song entitled "Knitting".

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

She Knits While Billy Tries to Bill and Coo

This is the frontpiece of the sheet music for a song published in 1917 and written by one Harry Von Tilzner. One might think it's a song to encourage knitting for the war effort, but it's actually not quite that. The lyrics, which are below, are about a woman who won't stop knitting for the soldiers, to her beau's dismay. Ah, plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

Verse 1
Pretty little Kitty's got the patriotic craze
Knitting scarfs for soldiers day and night
Silly little Billy now is spending all his days
Watching Kitty knit with all her might
She even knits when out in his canoe.
She knits while Billy tries to bill and coo.

Chorus 1
He'd take a hug
Then he'd hug her some more
While she'd knit knit knit knit knit
He'd steal a kiss
Then he'd take an encore
And she'd knit knit knit knit knit
Under a tree
He would rest with a smile
She'd lay her knitting down for a while
A bird in a nest
Said oh give us a rest
Go on and knit knit knit.

Verse 2
Pretty little Kitty said, now Willie do your bit
Here's some yarn and needles you can start
Come and sit beside me and I'll teach you how to knit
That's the way that you can win my heart
He'd knit a while and then he'd want to woo.
He'd look at her and drop a stitch or two.

Chorus 2
He'd take a hug
Then he'd hug her some more
She'd say knit knit knit knit knit
He'd steal a kiss
Then he'd take an encore
She'd say knit knit knit knit knit
One day a tug
Passed them by in a squall
Looking through glasses was captain and all
They both heard a yelp
Do you need any help?
And she said knit knit knit.

And a word of caution to non-knitters who are trying to get their knitting significant others to knit less... DO NOT take hold of a yarn end and pull as these men seem to be doing to the woman's knitting in this picture. It will make the knitter you love very, very angry. And remember, your sweetheart is holding two pointed pieces of metal.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

A Hurtin', Knittin', Country Song

Did you ever hear that old joke about what happens when you play a country song in reverse? You get your spouse, pick-up truck, and dog back. Here's a country song called "Pardon Me (I Didn't Knit That for You)". If you played it in reverse, you'd have a ball of yarn and an intact relationship, but I think most knitters will like the song exactly as it is as they'd prefer to keep their work unravelled and to ditch the partner for whom the sweater wasn't intended.

Incidentally, the tasteful yarn ball arrangement on the mantlepiece behind the two vocalists is a nice touch.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Never Not Knitting

After the text- and picture-heavy posts of the last two days (good thing I'll only have to review Rowan Knitting and Crochet Magazine twice a year), here's an video post for you. This is a fun little satirical ditty called "Never Not Knitting", which seems to be the theme song for a blog by the same name. I do have to wonder why the "husband" in the lyrics can't do the dishes or do laundry or water the plants. It sounds like the "wife" may have taken up knitting as a means of going on strike because she was expected to do it all.

And I'm afraid to think what a The Knitting Needle and the Damage Done theme song would be like.