Other Matters: Hoses (Early Autumn, Part 2)

It was a fine day for the ritual of draining, coiling, labeling and storing the hoses. The canal has beenHoses 1 dry and the irrigation water off Hoses 2since Tuesday. That news is of no importance whatever and has nothing to do with the usual topics of this blog. Hoping to find a connection (hah), I searched for music inspired by hoses and found nothing but a semi-bawdy saloon song that ended up being about a garden hose only after implying that it was about something else. Therefore, we offer a song theHoses 3 first syllable of whose title is the word in question. The song, from Harry Belafonte’s best selling 1956 Calypso album, expresses the elation we felt around here after all those hoses had been stored for the winter.




Stumbling across that track from the Belafonte album was a reminder of what a refreshing presence he was in popular music after he decided to pursue folk music rather than jazz; in an appearance in the late forties he was once backed by the Charlie Parker quintet. The album and its big hit, “The Banana Boat Song” (“Day-oh”) launched Belafonte into a major career that included film acting as well as singing.

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  1. Bill Ramsay says

    I forgot that Yakima has canal water for watering one’s yard! Those were the good old days!

  2. dick vartanian says

    I well remember an album of his that RCA released about 1955. It contained a wonderful rendition of “One for my Baby” . I had a copy of it on tape but lost it in a fire. Don’t know if it’s still available, It would be worth having.

      • Doug Ramsey says

        The album exists in a CD reissue on the Fresh Sound label. On the track above, Belafonte is accompanied by Dennis Farnon (leader, arranger & conductor), Don Fagerquist (tp), Milt Bernhart (tb), Plas Johnson (ts), Jimmy Rowles (p), Howard Roberts (g), Red Callender (b), Jack Sperling (d). Recorded in Hollywood, California, on June 5, 1958.

      • dick vartanian says

        You betcha, Frank. I really appreciate your effort in coming up with this one and I will certainly enjoy hearing it again!! Thanks for the info., Doug. I had forgotten about the “adequate” backup. I wonder what the A team would have been? This is certainly creme de la creme all the way!!

  3. says

    I knew Harry in the days when I was sharing a basement apartment on West 10th Street in NYC with Dave Lambert. Harry was still a semi-jazz singer, doing occasional club dates with his trio, and filling in his spare time working at a hamburger joint in the Village. He and Dave were writing songs, and I was surprised that when Harry got his recording career going that he never recorded any of them. One was a precursor of his island repertoire called “Mango,” which I will sing for you some day. Harry thought the Village could use a good Harlem style rib joint, and threw a big rent party to bankroll the project. Next thing I knew he was in Hollywood. He still owes me a rack of ribs!

  4. Mike Davis says

    It’s unsurprising that you had trouble finding a song relating to hoses. There aren’t very many at all, but two I’ve managed to remember are those old dyslexic favourites: “Hose Sorry Now?” and, “Hose Kissing You Now?”