"Grow Garden Grow"

© 1972 Lee Ruth

MP3

Photo: Sam Griffin

Paul & Win Grace

with

Leela & Ellie Grace

Paul Grace - Vocal & Guitar
Win Grace -Vocal & Autoharp
Leela Grace
- Harmony Vocal
Ellie Grace
- Harmony Vocal
  MP3 Sample of Lee's Original

 

Song Lyrics:
Lee's Lyrics:
Grow garden grow let your lady know that you love her
Shine sun shine down on someone fine from above her

She alone can reap the things she sows
She alone can harvest what she grows

Fall water fall, keep her garden all green and growing
Sing children sing, let your voices ring in her garden

She alone can know what she do know
She alone can go where she do go

Love lady love fits you like a glove and surrounds you
Joy lady joy love your ramblin' boy like he loves you

Moon and planets prophesy,
The good earth loves you so do I

Grow garden grow let your lady know that you love her
Shine sun shine down on someone fine from above her

Grow, garden, grow

Let your lady know that you love her

Shine, sun, shine

Down on someone fine from above her

----------

Who but she can grow what she do grow

Who but she can reap what she do sow

---------

Fall, water, fall

Keep her garden all green and growing

Sing, children, sing

Let your voices ring in her garden

--------

Who but she can know what she do know

Who but she can go where she do go

---------

Love, lady, love

Fits you like a glove and surrounds you

Joy, lady, joy

Love your ramblin' boy like he loves you

--------

Moon and planets prophesy

The good earth loves you, so do I

---------

Grow, garden, grow
Let your lady know that you love her
Let your lady know that you love her
Let your lady know that you love her

Artists on the Song:
Lee on the Song:
We learned "Grow Garden Grow," also known as "Song for a Lady in Her Garden," early in our marriage when we were "homesteaders." We had a HUGE garden, a milk cow, and honey bees, we played a lot of music and lived on almost no money. I remember weeding the garden while Paul sang the song to me. A few years ago, when our daughter Ellie was 20, she was going through our notebook of songs and came across this song. "Lee Ruth wrote THIS song? Wow! And LOOK, here are the words written out in his own handwriting! Cool!" In the spring of 1972 a woman friend told me she wished that I would bring my guitar over to her house and sing to her garden to try and compensate for her lack of a green thumb. (I still think she was selling her gardening skills short.) So, one evening when I was out on the street with my guitar, I walked the several blocks to her house--nobody home--and stood mute in front of her garden feeling rather foolish: "What in the #%*&? am I going to sing to a garden?" The phrase "grow, garden, grow" crossed my mind and I repeated the phrase softly while strumming my guitar. Later that night when I finally found my way home, I started with that phrase and wrote the rest of the song. Originally I gave it a longer title, but "Grow Garden Grow" is what everybody called it, so I finally went along with it. This is probably the song of mine, which, over the years, has been sung the most by other people.
Artists on Lee Ruth:
Lee on the Artists:
When I started to play music in 1974 and Paul and I first began to perform, Lee was already a seasoned performer and his picking skills, songwriting, and detailed knowledge of music were legendary in mid-Missouri. In spite of being light-years ahead of us, he always welcomed and encouraged our music and we played with him whenever we could--we owe much of our early inspiration to Lee.

In l980, at Lee's gentle urging, we traveled to Crested Butte, CO, with our toddler daughters (Leela and Ellie) to escape the deadly heat wave. We arrived after dark in an exhausted state, but found Lee somehow. We drove up into the mountains, snuggled into our sleeping bags in a mountain meadow, and watched a brilliant meteor shower while Lee, lying on his sleeping bag with guitar in hand, played every star song he could think of.

Win Grace

I met Win first, probably late in the year 1974, and through her soon met Paul. They were in the beginning times of their relationship and quite eagerly and voraciously playing music together and with anyone else they could find to play with. "Right up my alley," I thought, and we found many times and places to cross instruments and voices, then and over the years. As time has passed and their musical career as a duo, and later with their daughters as a family band, has taken them out on a wider and longer and busier road, those occasions have become less frequent, but it's a possibility that I'm always aware of and do enjoy when it comes to pass.

I would also like to mention, since Leela and Ellie sang with them on "Grow Garden Grow," what a pleasure it has been to watch them grow up in the context of the Grace Family Band, and to see them, grown to young women, strike out on their own as a "sister act" with ever-increasing skill and passion and spirit.

Producer's Notes:
Recording Credits:
This family has spent more time singing in the garden and everywhere else than most I know. I've known them since the girls (now young women) were very small. I've seen this family grow up and now divide into two separate performing groups. Leela and Ellie have just released (November 2003) their first recording of their own material. I'm sure Mom and Dad are very proud of their talented daughters, I know I am! I used to tease Paul about most households with three women needing a extra bathroom, but with the limited space in the motor home they traveled in a good part of the year to gigs, I thought the best thing was to invest in an extra tuner. I'm not sure if Win and Paul remember, but they played impromptu cowboy songs on the back deck of my wedding reception and I will always remember it. Thanks.

Recorded at Pete Szkolka's Studio

Record Date: 2/27/03

Mixed: 12/2/03

Mixed by Pete Szkolka and Steve Donofrio

 

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