Friday, April 23, 2010

The Original Hound Dawg Man...Part 2

I would like to thank everyone for their comments & emails concerning the last post. I have heard of the “Houn’ Dawg Song” before, but I did not realize the scope this old tune carried. Concerning the inquires I’ve had over the past few days, I have found a few more articles. I will post these before I move on to something else. For those who have not visited the Max Hunter Database, please take the time and peruse its’ contents at their web address:
This first 1912 article comes from Reno, Nevada, and it discusses how old the song may be. I really like this article because it uses language/verbiage not often used today.

In what perhaps a vain hope of ending controversy about the authorship of the hound dog song, we offer a solution of that growing problem. It is so simple that it will likely be rejected by scholars, theorists, and quidnunes of all sorts, who dote on esoteries. Yes, in essence, it is such aa many of that sort accept in other literary identifications.

Brief are the words, they contain every letter of the name Francis Bacon, says the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. And these letters are not placed in consecutive order, showing the deep laid plan of the author not to reveal himself. This is practically the same plan which, according to the Baconian school, Bacon followed in the writing of Shakespeare’s works. Yet here, as in the plays attributed to Shakespeare, he was plainly inserting a key to unlock the mystery, but not until long after he should be dead. This theory applies even better here than it does to Shakespearean works. On reading Shakespeare, one marvels why a man capable of such work should be ashamed of it. But since, according to Baconians who stick to the cipher, Bacon really was ashamed of writing the hound dog song.

Still, with that far-seeing genius which again according to the Baconians, enabled him to see how posterity would find in plays a more supreme merit than contemporary criticism afforded them, he inserted in the song, as in the plays, a cipher to spell his name luridly across the front whenever the work should come to be acclaimed as a spark of the divine fire. Germany claims to have originated the song a century before Bacon was born, but she shows us no name blown in the bottle as the trademark. We stick to the Baconian cipher, as it has been elucidated by its most able advocates in the case of Shakespeare, in explaining the mystery of the identity of the writer of the hound dog song. Why he wrote it is a greater mystery and one which no mere cipher can ever explain.
End of Article
This next article discusses the use of the song in regards to Missouri soldiers. This information came from the Neosho Daily News, Neosho, Missouri, 1956.
The 2nd Missouri troops again were called out in 1916 by Pres. Woodrow Wilson and sent to the Mexican border .when Poncho Villa was leading his countrymen in raids on Texas communities along the Rio Grande. While they were stationed at Laredo, Tex., the boys from Missouri came in for considerable kidding, which gave birth to the ditty.

Every time I come to town
The boys start kickin' my dog  aroun’."

Later two more lines were added:

Don’t make no difference if he is a hound
You gotta quit kickin’ my dog  aroun’.”

Brig. Gen W. A. Raupp of Pierce City, regimental commander, sent the verse to a musician in New York who gave the words a "catchy" time, with band and orchestra arrangements. The song was adopted as the official regimental air, and the sad-eyed, lanky white and black hound became the official emblem of the Southwest Missouri "Hound Dog" Guard units. The rollicking tune and the Hound Dog emblem are now known around the world, wherever the fighting Southwest Missourians have gone.

The Second Missouri regimental band played the "Hound Dog" song as guardsmen —formed into the 28th, 29th and 30th Machine Gun companies—entrained in Joplin early one autumn morning in 1917 on their departure for World War I. The troops from Southwest Missouri bore the brunt of the intensive action in the Meuse-Argonne sector of France, where they helped stem the tide of the invading German army. The decisive battles of the war were fought in that area. Many Missourians were killed and others returned home wounded.
End of Article

The last article is a fun excerpt from The Oakland Tribune, Oakland, California, 1912.

Comments? Email me!

Works Cited:
“100 Years’ Tradition Behind Battery ‘A’.” Neosho Daily News 51.81 (24 April, 1956) 4. Access Newspaper Archive. Baxter County Library, Mountain Home, AR. 1 Dec. 2009.
“A Cipher in the Hound Dog Song.” Reno Evening Gazette 36.92 (April 16, 1912) 4. Access Newspaper Archive. Baxter County Library, Mountain Home, AR. 1 Dec. 2009.
“Shriners Have Real Missouri “Houn’ Dawg.” Oakland Tribune 77.52 (12 April, 1912) 3. Access Newspaper Archive. Baxter County Library, Mountain Home, AR. 1 Dec. 2009.

1 comment:

Cheri said...

I have an article written about Herbert L. Hoover and his "Little Hoover's Big Band",concerning this song, and its very interesting. I don't know who wrote it, or what it was written for, but it is very old.

"Meantime, Mr. Hoover had done much with his band, which at one time numbered 48 pieces. He had inaugurated concerts in the parks, which often drew as many as 4000 persons on Sunday afternoons; his musicians had helped dedicate the old Convention Hall, and frequently the group was dispatched into the immediate trade territory by Springfield boosters in order to promote the city.
It was on one of these trips that Mr. Hoover helped focus the national spotlight on Springfield, and gave a presidential candidate a campaign song."
"The late Frank D. McDavid, prominent Springfield attorney, was on the train returning the Springfield Boosters home and he started singing a tune to help keep the group awake, Mr. Hoover picked up on the beat on his cornet."
"By the time the delegates reached home the "Houn' Dawg" song was well on the way to popularity."
"Soon after, Springfield held a land congress, and Sidney Meyers, band instrument instructor at then Southwest Teacher's College, and E. O. Roark, both of whom were members of Little Hoover's Big Band, arranged the music for the "Houn' Dawg" song. No effort was made to copyright it, and Mr. Hoover always claimed that a St. Louis musician revised the music slightly, copyrighted it, and collected $10,000 in royalties, while he, McDavid, Roark and Meyers received nothing."
"At any rate, Champ Clark used the "Houn' Dawg" song extensively in his 1912 campaign, and when old Company K, Springfield's unit of the National Guard went to the Mexican border to help keep Pacho Villa on his own side of the Rio Grande, the snarpy, quick-step gained fame as a marching song. Missouri units in the 35th Division marched to the "Houn' Dawg" song during World War I, and today, of course, there is a Houn' Dawg regiment."

Thought this was cool, so I had to share. I am fairly sure this was written for the Springfield News and Leader, because Paul Hoover, H.L. Hoover's son, is the source. He did an article with them after Hoover Music Company was already at their current location on South Jefferson. Some of the article is the same as the one referenced above.