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wonders never cease

Twenty Songs for Turkey Day

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Because we have a lot to be thankful for this year, we’re falling back on an old trite and true, er, tried and true theme for this Thanksgiving play list. We’re thankful every day for our loyal customers who encourage us to try to bring nice things to their worlds. We’re thankful for our terrific staff and for all they do to keep the cogs turning at the shop. This year, we’re thankful that the long and painful construction projects that turned our stretch of Connecticut Avenue into a hazardous hellscape for much of the last four months have finally concluded. We’re especially grateful to those of you who looked past the juvenile goofiness of our World Toilet Day post and found it in your hearts to make a donation to Water.org. We’ve raised a nice sum and are almost halfway to our goal. Many thanks from the bottom of our hearts. If you read last week’s post, you probably expect a joke about something from the heart of our bottoms at this point, but alas, World Toilet Day comes but once a year.


Here are eighteen Thanksgiving songs to get you good and ready for dinner tomorrow. We’ve got songs about Pilgrims and songs about Indians. We chose songs about being grateful and songs about things to be grateful for. And, of course, we have songs about that Thanksgiving bird. If you dig into the extended Spotify list you may notice a song about a bird by a band with Grateful in their very name.  Kind of ties it all together there, don’t you think?

Happy Thanksgiving, one and all, and remember to compliment the chef!

1. Be Thankful For What You Got – William DeVaughn
“I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite - only a sense of existence. My breath is sweet to me. O how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment.”
- Henry David Thoreau

2. Kind & Generous – Natalie Merchant
“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

3. Young Pilgrims – The Shins
“I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.”
- Jon Stewart

4. Let’s Turkey Trot – Little Eva
“There is one day that is ours. There is one day when all we Americans who are not self-made go back to the old home to eat saleratus biscuits and marvel how much nearer to the porch the old pump looks than it used to. Bless the day. President Roosevelt gives it to us. We hear some talk of the Puritans, but don't just remember who they were. Bet we can lick 'em, anyhow, if they try to land again…The big city east of the cranberry bogs has made Thanksgiving Day an institution. The last Thursday in November is the only day in the year on which it recognizes the part of America lying across the ferries. It is the one day that is purely American. Yes, a day of celebration, exclusively American.”
- O. Henry

5. Thank You – John Mellencamp
“Let us remember that, as much has been given us, much will be expected from us, and that true homage comes from the heart as well as from the lips, and shows itself in deeds.”
- Theodore Roosevelt

6. Thank You Too! – My Morning Jacket
“O Lord that lends me life, lend me a heart replete with thankfulness.”
- William Shakespeare

7. Thanksgiving Theme – Vince Guaraldi Trio
“Thanksgiving Day, a function which originated in New England two or three centuries ago when those people recognized that they really had something to be thankful for — annually, not oftener — if they had succeeded in exterminating their neighbors, the Indians, during the previous twelve months instead of getting exterminated by their neighbors, the Indians. Thanksgiving Day became a habit, for the reason that in the course of time, as the years drifted on, it was perceived that the exterminating had ceased to be mutual and was all on the white man's side, consequently on the Lord's side; hence it was proper to thank the Lord for it and extend the usual annual compliments.”
- Mark Twain

8. Bird Song – Florence + The Machine
“Pride slays thanksgiving, but a humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grow. A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.”
- Henry Ward Beecher

9. Thank You – Led Zeppelin
“A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all the other virtues.”
- Cicero

10. Be Thankful – Natalie Cole
“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
- Oscar Wilde

11. Plymouth Rock – John Vanderslice
“Before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth, we were here. Before the pen of Jefferson etched across the pages of history the majestic words of the Declaration of Independence, we were here. If the inexpressible cruelties of slavery could not stop us, the opposition we now face will surely fail.”
- Martin Luther King Jr.

12. Long Gone Like A Turkey Through The Corn – Lightnin’ Hopkins 
“Thanksgiving is the holiday that encompasses all others. All of them, from Martin Luther King Day to Arbor Day to Christmas to Valentine's Day, are in one way or another about being thankful.”
- Jonathan Safran Foer

13. Thank You – Dido
“If you look at the beginning of this country, when the pilgrims came to this country, the first year they had a communistic experiment. They said, 'OK, we're going to take the land, we're going to work the land together and share in the fruits of our labor.' They almost starved to death. Almost half of them died that first year.”
- Rafael Cruz

14. Pocahontas – Neil Young & Crazy Horse 
“My ancestors didn't come over on the Mayflower, but they were there to meet the boat.”
- Will Rogers

15. Thanksgiving – Poi Dog Pondering
“The pilgrims on the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock. To my knowledge, they didn't wait around for a return trip to Europe. You settle some place with a purpose. If you don't want to do that, stay home. You avoid an awful lot of risks by not venturing outward.”
- Buzz Aldrin

16. Let’s Talk Turkey – Ima Robot
“Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they only see once a year. And then discover once a year is way too often.”
- Johnny Carson

17. Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) – Sly & The Family Stone
“I am glad my ancestors arrived on the Mayflower, but I am gladder that there are nine generations between us.”
- William Lyon Phelps

18. No More Kings – Pavement
“We didn’t land on Plymouth Rock. Plymouth Rock landed on us.”
- Malcolm X

19. Give Thanks – Popcaan
“next to of course god america i
love you land of the pilgrims and so forth oh”

- e. e. cummings

20. What A Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong
“Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart.”
- Seneca

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