Today’s early morning cycling expedition took me past a magnificent pear orchard in the hills west of town. Here is the orchard…
…and here are pears taking on color and that lovely pear shape.
Apples are the principal cash crop in this area of Eastern Washington State, but in a good year pears do nicely for their growers.
Mulling over what music about pears to use with this post, I quickly ran out of options. You’d be surprised how few songs there are with “pear” in the title. So, I made the obvious choice. Erik Satie (pictured left) wrote Trois morceaux en forme de poire (“Three Pieces in the Form of a Pear”) in 1903. The legend is that it came in reaction to ClaudeDebussy’s suggestion that Satie should pay more attention to form in his music. The accuracy of the legend has been challenged, but it makes a good story. And Satie made good music. This is one of his best-known compositions. We hear and see it by the duo piano team of Giovanni Carmassi and Giuseppe Fricelli.
Still on the question of pears—I wrote liner notes for a 1974 Phil Woods quartet album, Musique Dubois. The notes ended,
The control room clique is congratulating Woods on an unusually successful record date. He thanks them, smiling a bit wryly, as if he knows something they don’t. Then his horn is into its case and he’s into his mackinaw and headed for the door, leaving an announcement:
“I’m gonna go get me a pear.”
Years later, Phil told me that wasn’t what he said. It was, “I’m gonna go get me a beer.” He liked my mishearing of the word so much that when he saw the rough draft of the notes, he didn’t ask me to correct it. In every reissue it has remained, “I’m gonna go get me a pear.”