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Radio show host discussed WWI songs during Cobblestone annual meeting

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 November 2015 at 12:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers

GAINES – Michael Lasser signs a copy of a book for Georgia Thomas, a member of the Cobblestone Society Museum board of trustees.

The Cobblestone Society had its annual meeting on Thursday at Tillman’s Village Inn. The museum just completed its 55th season.

Michael Lasser is host of the nationally syndicated Fascinatin’ Rhythm radio show on National Public Radio. He discussed World War I music, and provided background on some of the popular songs of the war, including “We Take Our Hats Off To You, Mr. Wilson,” “I Didn’t Raise My Boy To Be A Soldier,” “When The Lusitania Went Down,” “Over There,” “Till We Meet Again,” and “Oh, How I Hate To Get Up In The Morning.”

Lasser discussed how the songs of World War I revealed the attitudes, values and beliefs of the era. Many Americans didn’t want to get involved in the war.

The Cobblestone Museum has commemorated the 100th anniversary of the start of the war with exhibits this year.

Lasser is co-author of America’s Songs: The Stories Behind the Songs of Broadway, Hollywood, and Tin Pan Alley (2006) and the writer of America’s Songs II: From the 1890s to the Post-War Years (2013). He is working on a third book, City Songs: The American Popular Song, 1900-1950.