FROM CD #2:
My Lady's Bower
Music by "Hope Temple" (Alice M. Davis);
words by Frederick E. Weatherly
"Hope Temple" (1859-1938) seems to have had a strong line in faux-18th century songs; another effort is entitled "The Old Garden"; different lyricist, same concept ("...it was call'd my Lady's garden...") — although the proprietor remains resolutely dead and the narrator bereaved rather than embraced. While it is in Molly's repertoire (she considers it too long for an encore, and is probably right), "My Lady's Bower" is also the musical incarnation of Halcyon Days, the lithographic calendar art Gerty MacDowell hung on her outhouse wall: "You could see there was a story behind it" (Ulysses 355:18-33).
This picture's style — familiar to anyone who has spent much time rooting through popular culture, 1885 to 1910 — is a fuzzily romantic mixture of fashions worn during the last half of the 18th century and the first third of the 19th: pannier dresses and regency gowns; tricornes and tophats. Although a small subset of such illustrations were intended for men — usually showing drinking scenes — most aimed their sentimental, ahistorical scenes of courtship straight at women, such as the serving girls who did the marketing at Mr. Tunney's grocery.
[CD liner notes by Kevin McDermott]
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