When I came to you, you said to me:
"So, you wanna become a singer, gee?
Shut up, baby, and listen to me!"
"Singing ain't nothing but producing vowels,
Creating them in your heart, and bring 'em up,
You gotta know, vowels pronounce like towels,
Are you capable, baby, of catching up?"
"Listen, honey, concentrate on what's inside,
Throw away that nasty boastfulness or pride.
Hear the music in yourself, and let it flow.
Straight out of your mind, no curve, no bow."
I listened to everything you said,
Tried to do whatever you desired,
You gave examples that I admired.
And at the end of every lesson, I paid.
But when going away from my mistress,
I felt deeply in your debt, in distress,
I wanted to become as good as you
But thought: "Oh God, it's much too big, that shoe!"
Time went by, I learned and practiced hard,
Knew vowels and how to keep apart
Superfluous thoughts of wanting to sing,
Be it opera, blues, bebop or swing.
Now, as you've brought me on my way,
I'm so grateful to you but will stay.
I hope you will continue teaching me,
And will never repeat saying to me:
"So, you wanna become a singer, gee?"
YOU TELL ME: "OPEN YOUR MOUTH WIDE AND SING!
CLOSE YOUR EYES, LISTEN INSIDE, LET IT SWING!"