Poet's Ramble

Poetry can be as simple as a four-line revelation hastily scrawled on the back of your phone bill. Poets ask for trouble if they have anything important to say, and the best ones slog through plenty of it. Poems are the instant coffee in your spoon that you chew on without adding water. I am a poet, and this is my story.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

In Celebration of Carillons - Cameron Dowe ll

I wrote this poem because I wanted a parody that would describe a star "who could ring him a bell just like a playin' guitar." The only folks who can do that are bell choir participants and carilloneurs, and since I dig carillons, the choice was easy. From the start, I wanted to use a West Side name, and since Cameron is the name of the son of a former friend, it was a natural choice.
. . . . . I had to decide whether to title it Cameron Do Well since it's obviously a parody of Johnny B. Goode OR title it Cameron Dowe II and just use the obvious variation in the chorus. I chose the latter, and I hope you like it. Better yet, I hope you invite me to your party and ask me to play and sing it for you. . . . . . . . . . One two three FOUR

Cameron Dowe II
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . by Job Conger

In Central Illinois in rocking Springfield town
He plays his tasteful music 'fore the sun go down
The kid is total kewl and surely will go far
And he can ring a bell just like a playin' guitar.
At Washington Park's carillon we hear him play,
Singing go Cameron go today -- hey, hey, hey

GO, go Cameron go, GO, go Cameron go,
GO, go Cameron go, GO. go Cameron go,
GO -- Cameron, do well!

He grew up walking distance from the White Oaks Mall
The boy was barely 10 when he first heard the call
Of tintinnabulation and the many fans
Of Thomas Rees Memorial's Karel Keldermans.
The bronze and granite edifice will bring him fame.
If you don't dig the music, that's a crying shame, so

GO, go Cameron go, GO, go Cameron go,
GO, go Cameron go, GO, go Cameron go,
GO -- Cameron, do well!

With lofty aspirations and a heart that's pure,
The kid is destined to be a great carilloneur.
He pounds the Posdro, Barnes, DeTurk and anthems sweet,
His crazy boppin' Byrnes with a funky beat.
Folks outside, they can hear him thirty blocks away,
Singing go Cameron go today.

GO, go Cameron go, GO, go Cameron go,
GO, go Cameron go, GO, go Cameron go,
GO -- Cameron, do well!

. . . . . . . I sent the words and a short note to the Springfield Park District who kindly forwarded my note and lyrics to Karel (pronounced Carl). I had asked in the note to call me if he could add anything to improve the technical accuracy. I was especially concerned with composers' names since I had originally used 17th & 18th Century composers I knew, but could not say for certain, had composed for the carillon. Karel kindly set me right with the names I used in the revised version.
. . . . . Though I had some fun with the parody, I'm a big fan of the head carilloneur and the magnificent instrument he plays.


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