(sung to “All My Ex’s Live in Texas” by George Strait)
All those boxes are Dave Rox’s,
Chock with years of ‘vintage musicology’—
Like old boomboxes, cracked maracas,
And his turtlenecks of Chuck Mangione.
All Dave Rox’s paradoxes:
He rocks on his trombone – like Tommy Dorsey.
He’s got a vox like Frank Sinatra’s…
But he can’t keep track of our attendance sheet.
Our man-called-Dave joined the facultāy – when he was just ten years old,
His department in lower Prince – with mildew, mice and mold.
His musicians used a precursor to – the Rox Rehearsal Room;
A private place, they shared the space – with dustpan, brush and broom…
All Doc Rox’s orchestraxes—
Saxes, brass, and horns – (one lonely timpani)—
Are all just practice Coy Piranxhas:
He thinks our new-old Lane – is New Orleans.
Who’s obnoxious as Dave Rox is?—
Stocked with fishy tales – of catching sockeye;
And all that talk—pain in our coccyx…
When he thought he caught a whale, he caught a tree.
When Dave’s at work – rehearsing with his bélovèd jazz band,
His ears are on the players, but his eye’s on the music stand;
He urges them – to keep the beat and make that rhythm drive,
But avoid the misplaced cacophonous minor 7 flat five…
When Dave Rox commits faux paxes…
That time that he misplayed – Nearer My Dog to Thee,
Or mangled Plump & Circumstanxes:
That’s when Michael swapped him out – for a CD.
In that office next to Kwok’s is
A prof whose work’s in tune – after age 63,
Just like Johann Sebastian Bach’s is:
Johann and Dave: conducting royalty.
You’ve made music of a workplace;
We’ve grown accustomed to your face;
Now get your waders on and go play that stream.
-PERFORMED BY THE VOCAL BAND AT A CELEBRATION MARKING DAVE’S 30+ YEAR TENURE AT THE COLLEGE, MAY 4, 2019.
VOCAL BAND MEMBERS ARE STEVE, NORM, PAUL, AND SELF. ON THE ELECTRIC IVORIES—GRAEME; ON PERCUSSION—CONVEY; ON VIOLIN—SARITA; ON SLIDE GUITAR—GEORGE STRAIT (NICHOLAS OLIVEIRA).