I remember when my brother Aaron and his class sang Down By the Old Mill Stream when he was in elementary school. They really went all out with it. They sang it straight first, and then they added some counter point … Down by the old (not the new but the old) mill stream (not the river but the stream), where I first (not second but first) met you (not me but you).
Down by the Old Mill Stream would have been a great tune to record multi-track, but since I am doing a new tune every day this year, this is what you get. Enjoy!
And, I just learned something new. The melody I played is just the chorus (a long chorus at that.) It has a verse as well. Here’ s a recording of the whole song.
Down by the Old Mill Stream according to Wikipedia
“Down by the Old Mill Stream” is a song written by Tell Taylor. It was one of the most popular songs of the early 20th century.
It was written in 1908 while Taylor was sitting on the banks of the Blanchard River in Northwest Ohio. Reportedly, Taylor’s friends convinced him not to publish the song believing it was not of commercial value. Two years later, Taylor did publish it in 1910 and introduced the song to the public with performances by the vaudeville quartet The Orpheus Comedy Four. While the group sang the song at a Woolworth store in Kansas City, the song became so popular with customers, they sold out all 1,000 copies of its sheet music Taylor had with him. Since then over 4 million copies of the song’s sheet music has been sold and it has been a staple for barbershop quartets.
Tom Lehrer, in the song, “We will all go together when we Go”, parodied this song in the middle section, with a stride piano, with the following words: “Down by the old Maelstrom/ They’ll be a storm before the Calm”/.
Down by the Old Mill Stream Lyrics
My darling I am dreaming of the days gone by,
When you and I were sweethearts beneath the summer sky;
Your hair has turned to silver the gold has faded too;
But still I will remember, where I first met you.
The old mill wheel is silent and has fallen down,
The old oak tree has withered and lies there on the ground;
While you and I are sweethearts the same as days of yore;
Although we’ve been together, forty years and more.
Down by the old mill stream where I first met you,
With your eyes of blue, dressed in gingham too,
It was there I knew that you loved me true,
You were sixteen, my village queen, by the old mill stream.
Michael Friedman says
Lovely musical performance !
Vi Wickam says
Francis Meador says
Very, very nice. I like the point, counter point words your brother sang. Very cool.
Vi Wickam says
It's not too often that he and I get to play music together any more since he lives in Alabama, but it's always good when we do. – with Aaron Wickham