It's such a good feeling to know you're alive.
February 2, 2008 8:45 PM   Subscribe

Fred Rogers wrote two hundred songs during his career. Here are fourteen of them, accompanied by the amazing Johnny Costa.
posted by not_on_display (20 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Let's think of something to do while we're waiting
While we're waiting for something new to do.
Let's try to think up a song while we're waiting
That's liberating and will be true to you.

What an amazing and wonderful person. I know it's been said a lot, but it just can't be emphasized enough.
posted by louche mustachio at 8:55 PM on February 2, 2008

Hah... never occurred to me to post that site to MeFi.

"Won't You Be My Neighbor?," "It's Such a Good Feeling," "It's You I Like," and "What Do You Do?" have the sheet music posted in PDF format.
posted by zennie at 9:26 PM on February 2, 2008

I hear him in my head every time I write f-r-i-e-n-d.
posted by moxiedoll at 9:31 PM on February 2, 2008

I like how by requiring the use of Real player, they force me into the technically more manageable option of physically signing to my child.

But seriously, having the lyrics is actually great; I know most of these off the top of my head, but not all the words by heart. Not just all the great sing along songs but all the fantastic incidental jazz pieces in Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood are one of the subtle geniuses of a show that impresses me ten times as much now that I'm watching it as an adult with a very young child.
posted by nanojath at 9:34 PM on February 2, 2008

Proper link: 15 Reasons Mister Rodgers Was The Best Neighbor Ever.
posted by ericb at 10:01 PM on February 2, 2008

Hey, cool post, n_o_d. Thanks!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 10:12 PM on February 2, 2008

From the Costa Wiki link:

"Given the title "The White Tatum" by jazz legend Art Tatum himself"...

posted by flapjax at midnite at 10:13 PM on February 2, 2008

I would love to find examples of his interstitials -- like when we'd follow Mr. Rogers from room to room, or the music that accompanied the trolley.

I was struck once, when much younger, that he was a great songwriter, awesome melodies, and great accompaniment--but my brain buried those memories until tonight, out of nowhere, I wanted to hear this music so badly. So I thought I'd share via FPP.

The story going around Carnegie Mellon the one year that I attended was that Mr. Rogers lived in the area behind our set of dorms, perhaps in an apartment building nearby. A friend of a friend one night, after a bout of drinking, falls asleep on a bench in Scheneley Park. In the morning, he's awakened by someone asking if he's all right. The FOAF nods, and goes back to sleep, but wakes up moments later, realizing that the kind man was Mister Rogers himself.

I've always liked that story, and I don't care if it's true or not.
posted by not_on_display at 10:26 PM on February 2, 2008 [2 favorites]

In addition to the great John Costa, another frequent guest on his show was "handyman" Joe Negri - a superb guitarist. That was one hip show.
posted by QuietDesperation at 12:48 AM on February 3, 2008

Wonderful post, I love Fred Rogers.Won't You Be My Neighbor? is one of my favorite songs and it's nice to have the music and lyrics together for that and his other gems, like It's Such a Good Feeling. Johnny Costa's piano adds such excellent depth.

I wish there were many more happy, friendly, innocently joyous songs like these for adults. John Denver's Sunshine on My Shoulders is one of the few and it's so corny.

Some happy songs I like: Zippity Do Dah l Say hey Good Lookin' l I Got Spurs That Jingle, Jangle, Jingle
posted by nickyskye at 2:15 AM on February 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

A couple weeks ago my husband was watching the movie Being There in the other room. The part came on when the main character is watching an episode of Mr. Rogers. I sang along with "Won't You Be My Neighbor." Then I heard him begin, "you are my friend. You are special..."

and I burst into tears.
posted by lampoil at 6:10 AM on February 3, 2008 [5 favorites]

For those who haven't seen it, this comment by Pastabagel is one of the best things I've ever read on MetaFilter.
posted by danb at 6:39 AM on February 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

I... I gotta call my mom.
posted by boo_radley at 7:58 AM on February 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

Where is "You Can Never Go Down The Drain" my personal favorite? Have to admit I thought he was icky when my kids were small, and nobody past age 4 wanted to watch him, but it was a great show to calm down toddlers. I preffered Oscar the Grouch and Cookie Monster on Sesame street.

Hexatron's Wife
posted by hexatron at 8:47 AM on February 3, 2008

My 5 month old son just heard these for the first time. Thanks!
posted by dontoine at 9:21 AM on February 3, 2008

danb, thanks for the pointer to Pastabagel's great comment about Mr. Roger's and the whole worship of cool thing.

Mr. Roger's is good for kids and for one's inner child. Not merely for nostalgia but as an example of patience, unadorned goodness without any grandstanding or fingerwagging.

In contrast to Mr. Rogers, the excellent Frontline documentary, Merchants of Cool (now online), details intelligently how kids are manipulated by the money grubbers in advertising and wedged from connecting with that goodness in themselves and others, exploited by and becoming narcissists.

The fear of being uncool seems to be at the core of the obsessiveness of the culture of cool. It makes me value Mr. Rogers' feel-good-about-life songs all the more, there's a plain courage there in loving others and oneself innocently, which I admire and enjoy.
posted by nickyskye at 12:30 PM on February 3, 2008 [2 favorites]

The day Mr. Rogers died, I cried like I have never cried for anyone, so often and with such ferocity that I ended up having to leave work early. What a lovely man.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 5:46 PM on February 3, 2008

My favorite:

Propel, propel, propel your craft
gently down liquid solution
ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically
existance is but an illusion

posted by Laen at 5:31 PM on February 4, 2008 [1 favorite]

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