72 thoughts on “GOH: The Old Man is Dead”

  1. I would be more excited, but this is my third “first” and I still haven’t seen the promised butt cushion. I’m starting to think that maybe they don’t really exist. 🙁

    1. Here, redhot. I made you a butt cushion. It’s my first attempt, and I’m not very good at sewing. The seams are crooked and there’s some stuffing showing out the side, but it was made with good intentions 🙂 *hug*

      1. You’d just better watch what part of the pew you plunk it down on. Some of us have been sitting in the same spot for years, and a different butt cushion in our favored seat would surely cause consternation the equivalent of trying to choose the color of the new church carpet.

      2. Tiarali, Thank you so much for the thought. I accept your offer of a poorly-made cushion and appreciate the thought behind it, but may I say that a true Proverbs 31 woman would be a bit more skilled with sewing. Perhaps you should contact one of the elder women in the church (whose job is to instruct the younger women) and ask them to help you develop this skill.

  2. There is a steel guitar! I love that sound. A guy in our church used to play one during camp meetings for a few years.
    I like the song as well. Don’t the Blunkalls do this one?

    1. Steel guitar is awesome!

      I can see the Blunkalls doing it — I just don’t know if I’ve heard them sing it (I haven’t heard them sing in about 10 years). It used to get sung a lot at my old church, and the Blunkalls were members there for several years.

    1. Ok. Not only does the music autoplay (ugh), they HIDE the pause button behind pictures so that you have to listen to it.

      If you have a look at the ‘R U Saved’ page, they start off with a photo taken at a funeral, and it has a really badly tiled graphic of flames in the background.

      How many times did Paul try to scare potential converts into salvation by throwing the concept of hell at them? Anybody?

        1. Tacky. Wonder if they got permission from the deceased’s family/friends to post the picture? If it were my family, I wouldn’t want or allow a picture to be used in that context.

      1. We better watch out or we’ll overrun this thread with steel guitar posts. My dad was a steel player, so I grew up hearing about all the greats. Buddy Emmons, Jimmy Day, Leon McAuliffe, Ralph Mooney, etc.

        Incidentally, Buck Owens’ steel player, Tom Brumley, is the son of Al Brumley, composer of such gospel standards as “I’ll Fly Away”, and “Turn Your Radio On”.

  3. Hmm, when I saw the title of the song, I thought of this:

    My grandfather’s clock was too large for the shelf,
    So it stood ninety years on the floor;
    It was taller by half than the old man himself,
    Though it weighed not a pennyweight more.
    It was bought on the morn of the day that he was born,
    And was always his treasure and pride;
    But it stopp’d short — never to go again —
    When the old man died.

    CHORUS:
    Ninety years without slumbering
    (tick, tock, tick, tock),
    His life’s seconds numbering,
    (tick, tock, tick, tock),
    It stopp’d short — never to go again —
    When the old man died.

    In watching its pendulum swing to and fro,
    Many hours had he spent while a boy;
    And in childhood and manhood the clock seemed to know
    And to share both his grief and his joy.
    For it struck twenty-four when he entered at the door,
    With a blooming and beautiful bride;
    But it stopped short — never to go again —
    When the old man died.
    CHORUS

    My grandfather said that of those he could hire,
    Not a servant so faithful he found;
    For it wasted no time, and had but one desire —
    At the close of each week to be wound.
    And it kept in its place — not a frown upon its face,
    And its hands never hung by its side.
    But it stopp’d short — never to go again —
    When the old man died.
    CHORUS

    It rang an alarm in the dead of the night —
    An alarm that for years had been dumb;
    And we knew that his spirit was pluming for flight —
    That his hour of departure had come.
    Still the clock kept the time, with a soft and muffled chime,
    As we silently stood by his side;
    But it stopp’d short — never to go again —
    When the old man died.

    1. As a child, I had a kiddie-sized grandfather clock that played this tune when it was wound up. Later, I learned the words and thought it a pretty depressing song.

    2. Good one, Bassenco!

      I can’t blame my mom for this one. I played the piano, and my mom gave me an old book from the early 1900s I think (maybe as late as the 1930s) with “popular” songs and folk songs, etc.

      This song was in it, and I played it and learned it and sang it all on my own! 😀 😳 (Yes, I had few friends, a tiny church, no relatives nearby, and no TV/computers/video games so I found my entertainment in strange places sometimes.)

      I can still sing you “Comanche” from the Johnny Horton cassette tape I had as well as a song from the above mentioned book called “The Year of Jubilee” that had the chorus: “The master run – haha! The master flee – heehee. This must be now the kingdom coming and the year of Jubilee.”

      I never watched The Brady Bunch but I can see long-forgotten old vaudeville tunes.

  4. A lot of your SFL stuff is pointed, appropriate and funny. I don’t, however, understand your criticism of this song. The message is positive, the musicians are actually pretty good, and there’s not a bit of fundy hate in it. So, while i think of lot of your critics are off base and need to lighten up, I have to say, this post does make you look jaded.

    1. It think your assumption about my motivation in posting this is what is jaded. 🙂

      Not every one of my Grand Old Hymn selections is predicated on the idea that the song itself is horrible. It’s more about remembering music and music styles good, bad, and otherwise from fundamentalism. Sometimes they’re goofy Sometimes they’re divine. Sometimes they’re just twangy with strange title choices.

      I would hope it would be obvious which of these are which.

  5. It would be fun to sit in on a jam session with these folks. He’s not bad on the guitar. I wish the pedal steel was a bit louder. I’m not a great fan of country music, but I thought this wasn’t too bad bad for the genre. I’ll have to listen again, but it seems on a first listen the lyrics are well-crafted. Some nice chord progressions in there. Nope, not too bad. Thanks, Darrell, for finding this. I probably won’t be trying to learn it myself. It’s always hard in songs like this to try to cram in “the old woman is dead.” Besides, it sounds a bit dodgy and kind of homicidal.

    1. I’d probably get more uptight about such wording in a sermon than in a song. But the emphasis of the song is far more on what the preacher did, and what the man himself did (“gave his life to Jesus”) instead of what Christ did. What exactly killed the old man is ambiguous in the song: a decision to serve Jesus, or Jesus himself?

      Again, in a sermon I would be more adamant that the wording be clear. Songs get more leeway. But it’s still not all that good of a song. Just one more song emphasizing what the believer did instead of what Christ did (And now let’s sing three mournful stanzas of “I have decided to follow Jesus” to end the night….)

      1. I really wasn’t thinking about content so much as how the lyrics were crafted. The way the words work, how they “sing.” But your point is well taken.

    2. My own view is that the words are OK, and it would probably be a nice Gospel song if it had more of a tune.

      Also, the fact that the microphone was closer to the people yelling “Amen” than to the musicians is very distracting.

      1. Why oh why does the pastor (my assumption) have to interject comments when the singers are in the “spot light?!” Top ten answers: 1) To add his “blessing” 2) Draw attention to himself 3) Ego 4) Ego 5) Ego 6) He loves to talk — it’s his calling 7) Makes the song holier 8) Warm up vocal cords for sermon 9) Ego 10) Ego

        1. Maybe, but maybe not. Recently, we converted our VHS to dvd. Some of these are nearly 25 years old!
          The worst thing about watching my an old birthday party of a child is listening to my own stupid voice because I was holding the camera. Ahhhhhh! I should have kept my big mouth shut! It would have made the video(s) 1000 times better. 🙁
          I just didn’t possess video camera holder etiquette, I guess.
          So, maybe he’s just an idiot like me.

    3. As far the theme goes, I’d rather get it from the Imperials, 1977, in “Water Grave.” Yup. I was listening to this stuff on the sly while teaching in an IFB school. 🙂 Just found it on YouTube and played it twice. Ah, memories. I don’t know how to put the video up here for all you whippersnappers.

      1. Thanks for the suggestion! I never listened to them. This would have been considered way too rocky for most of my life, and now that I’ve realized I have freedom to listen to music like this, I’ve mostly listened to CCM.

        Man, Kate, it’s been playing while I’m typing, and I really, really, really like it!

        “Gonna take this dead man down to a water grave!”

        1. I LOVED the Imperials from that era! It was “too rocky” for my school, church, etc, but that didn’t stop me listening on my own time. I took my freedom even if I had to wrest it from the fundy powers that be. That was my escape on the drive home after school; my decompression. We had a trio back in the 80’s, I sang and played piano. We had a Imperials songbook that we did several numberts from. We sang them in several churches. People had never heard the songs and I had the book covered in white paper. Sneaky. But they got some good songs that they never would have bothered to listen to. We didn’t do the really rocky ones, though. Look for a few more of their songs on Youtube and enjoy.

        2. I just realized that I was listening to a newer version (the one on Youtube with 90,000 views). This time I clicked on the older version. It’s good too! A more dated sound but still good.

        3. Yes, that’s Russ Taff on lead vocal. He could certainly put the passion in his delivery. I first discovered the Imperials in 1973 when I was working the summer in a Bible book store while in Bible college. At that time they were more Southern Gospel style. Mid-decade they changed a couple of singers and changed up their style. I think they were on the cusp of the rock sound of CCM. They went through a disco period, too, and those were good. I found they had a lot of good content in their songs. They kept me sane.

  6. From the “Our Pastor” bio (which, I note, indicates that he and his wife weren’t saved until years after they got married :shock:):

    “In 2002, a full time position opened for a music director, and God saw fit for Bro. Ovitt to fill that position.”

    This reminds me that I always hated the “saw fit” nomenclature that served as shorthand for “yay, I finally got a pastor job!!!” Anyone know where that origniated?

    1. I have to say, I like the picture on the “our pastor” page with him and his wife looking at one another. They seem genuinely happy to be together.

      omg, maybe I’m a romantic after all … 😯

      1. Yeah, he definitely seems to fall into the “nice old man” category of small time IFB preachers, not the “I’m volunteering to be the asshole in the body of Christ” category.

      2. Looking at all the pictures on the site, the church seems like a happy little bunch of folks.
        Bad theology, yes, but at least they aren’t a full-time hate group, as many Fundy churches seem to be.

      3. I agree. His page is about him, and her, and his family, and lists their anniversary up top. It’s not about him, and him, and him, and some more him. Nice!

  7. Some more observations:

    (1) Their “church history” page focuses SOLELY on money and buildings. That’s it.

    (2) Some of their Christmas parade wimmins and their Fall Festival gals is wearing britches. Brazen hussies!!

    (3) But they list their missionaries by men’s names only. So that may atone for the hussies in pants.

    (4) Nepotism is alive and well: the youth pastor is also an Ovitt. (And his wife is wearin’ britches as well! Shocker!!! Is she not saved!?!?!)

    (5) Tobie (masculine name . . . bet she wears britches) signs the guestbook on Sunday, March 3 at 5:20 pm (why wasn’t she in choir practice???) to let us all know that she is “not thinking or even PLANNING on leaving this church anytime soon” (emphasis in original).

    1. Re: (5): Uh-oh, it looks like some malicious gossip is afoot.

      “… not thinking or even PLANNING” is an odd construction. Doesn’t planning to do something indicate a higher level of attention than just thinking about it? So shouldn’t it be “… not planning on, or even thinking about …”

      Oh, dear, my English nerd self is escaping again. I’d better do some more deprogramming.

      1. Speaking of English nerds, I thought of my SFL friends the other day when I was listening to NPR and Neal Conan delivered the following mixed metaphor (squirmingly horrid, even for him) in regard to the Boston Marathon Bombers:

        “Later on the program we’ll be talking to [guest] about why the bombing suspects’ American dream curdled.”

        Um, dreams aren’t dairy products, Neil. Ergo, they don’t curdle. I think he meant to say “soured” which might have at least sounded better but still would not have been good English. It was funny because he caught himself and there was an awkward pause right after he said it.

        1. I read someone calling it “the Boston massacre” and of course blaming Obama for “the Boston massacre.”

          smh.

    1. Oh my gosh, everyone, guilt ridden finally has expressed distaste for a GOH!!!!! 😯

      You have now moved over to the dark side, my friend. 😉

  8. My old man died in 2007. We never did “paint the town red” together, but sometimes we would go the local pool hall, shot some pool and have a few beers.

    Its sad this guy didn’t enjoy hanging out with his old man 😉

  9. Do you all remember the radio show on Saturday nights called Crossroads For Christ? I listened to it while I was at HAC. I think it became outlawed after I graduated. Dawn Conway and I had such fun listening to it.

  10. Just as long as Johnny got his fiddle
    And Jimmy’s got his drums along
    Then Jeffrey and me and Bobby will be singing along
    Putting out the camp fire songs
    Seeing the old folks and the Pastor faint
    It’s great to be a part of something so bad that’s lasted so long at our IFB school.

  11. I’m just waiting for the first ifb singing group to have drums and a gee-tar. I’m getting burned out on the pie-anna and the fiddle.

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