Cruising Down the River
(On A Sunday Afternoon)Words & Music by Eily Beadell & Nell Tollerton*
Recorded by Russ Morgan, 1949 (#1)**
D G D E Cruising down the river on a Sunday afternoon, A D Fdim A With one you love, the sun above waiting for the moon. D G D E Fdim E Fdim E The old accordian playing a sen - ti - men - tal tune, D G D E7 A7 D Cruising down the river on a Sunday afternoon. Bridge: D9 D7/9 D9 D7/9 D9 D7/9 G The birds above all sing of love, a gentle sweet refrain; E7 E7/9 E7 E7/9 E7 E7/9 A7 The winds around all make a sound like softly fall - ing rain. D Fdim G Fdim Gdim D E Fdim E Fdim E Just two of us to - geth - er, we'll plan a hon - ey - moon D Gdim B7 E7 A7 G E7 A7 D Cruising down the river on a Sun - day af - ter - noon.
*One source I have seen suggests that the authors were two middle-aged women who wrote the song to win a British songwriting contest in 1945. In June of 2005, I received confirmation of this from the neice of Lou Preager, the gentleman who actually conducted the contest and awarded the 1000-pound prize to two such women.
**Blue Baron also had a #1 hit with his version of this song the same year.
Recent visitor Howard B. was able to fill in the preceeding story with the following data:
"I can confirm that it was in fact written by two women, the winner of the competition "Write a tune for £1000". The two women worked at Kennards department store in Wimbledon, a place frequented by my mother in days gone by. I'm not so sure they were middle aged, as some suggest, they might have been younger, I'm not sure. But I well remember the event!"
Another recent visitor also wrote, saying, "I can confirm that the song was written for a nationally advertised song competition. The competition was indeed "Write a tune for £1000". I know this is true as my grandfather Howard Docker also entered this competition and was a runner up prize winner."
This visitor is also interested in locating who might have the songs submitted -- because he'd like to have a copy of his grandfather's entry. If anyone can help, let me know!
Yet another recent visitor, Rogger Nuttal, submitted the following:
"I can add a bit of first-hand knowledge to this entry.
"The song was written by two members of Tolly and her trio, who played in the genteel café at Elys, Wimbledon (not Kennard's, I think.) Think Hinge and Bracket - they wore long black gowns, and played an undemanding repertoire of light classics and popular songs on violins, cello and piano. I was at school nearby, and we used to drop in sometimes for a quiet giggle. They certainly seemed middle-aged to us, though that's unreliable - everybody looks middle-aged when you're fourteen.
"In the style of the time, each number was "announced" by placing a card on a little easel, like a proto-flipboard. After their success, about every fifteen minutes they put a card saying "Request" on the easel and played that damn song again."