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Friday, February 20, 2009

Tomorrow on the Children's Corner LP

Since Tony at Way Out Junk was kind enough to host an album on his blog, let me send you back his way for another. Many thanks to Tony and everyone else involved in the sharing of this album.

Tomorrow on the Children's Corner comes from the days prior to Mister Rogers' Neighborhood when Fred Rogers was a puppeteer for a program hosted by Josie Carey called the Children's Corner. Many of the characters from the Neighborhood of Make-Believe originated on the set of this program. This album is nothing short of a classic and a must-have for any fan of Mister Rogers. As far as I know, Tony's link to download mp3 files of the tracks from this album are still available on Way Out Junk. If anyone can verify a year for this album, I'd be curious to know exactly what year we're dealing with here. Many of the songs on this album also appear a few years later on Mister Rogers' album titled King Friday XIII Celebrates.

The back of the album explains the premise of the story found on this recording:
King Friday the Thirteenth is in a dilemma. He has just discovered that TOMORROW is missing! With only a few hours to search, the King appoints Daniel S. Tiger and Josie as special secret court detectives to discover the whereabouts of the lost day. Daniel tries out his French as he questions Grandpere, the French tiger who lives in his own Eiffel Tower. Josie does her best to keep the secret while she visits with X, the owl, and Henrietta, the pussycat. Without knowing it, they send her to Lady Elaine Fairchilde's carbarn where important developments take place! King Friday makes a royal decree and the inhabitants of THE CHILDREN'S CORNER look forward to a very special TOMORROW.

It's Morning
Those of you familiar with Mister Rogers' Neighborhood will recognize the tune of this song. While the lyrics are very different, the tune is identical to that of Tomorrow which ended Mister Rogers' Neighborhood for many years and also appeared on LP releases such as King Friday XIII Celebrates. Following this song, Daniel Tiger offers Josie hamburger for breakfast but when she declines, he lets her know that "I like you as you are."

I Like You As You Are
Daniel Tiger and Josie sing this song together -- earlier version than that which appears on King Friday XIII Celebrates. After this song, Josie and Daniel agree on a breakfast and Josie goes into the next song as Daniel prepares the meal.

What Would You Like To Do Today
Josie Carey's brief song about the many opportunities that each person is faced with each and every day. Daniel then receives a telephone call from King Friday who requests a visit from Josie and Daniel. Daniel reminds Josie to remember her smile as they visit the King.

Smile In Your Pocket
Josie sings this song as she and Daniel prepare for their visit with King Friday. The idea behind this song suggests that a smile "in your pocket" does no good because a smile belongs on your face. King Friday presents himself and...

I'm Busy Being Busy
...sings about how busy he is. King Friday makes Josie and Daniel royal detectives as he reveals that Tomorrow has been lost.

Where Did You Go Tomorrow?
King Friday, Daniel, and Josie sing a song about the lost Tomorrow pleading for its return. King Friday says that he has "talked with Today and he says he can't possibly be Today again tomorrow. He's used up all his material." Daniel and Josie are sent off to find Tomorrow.

Looking For a Friend
Josie is perfectly fit to look for Tomorrow as she tells Daniel that she has looked for many things before: "Of course, the thing I like to look for best is a good friend." This song, performed by Josie and Daniel, also appears on

King Friday XIII Celebrates sung by Cornflake S. Pecially. Following this song Daniel and Josie visit Grandpere to ask if he has seen Tomorrow.

It Makes Handsome
Grandpere expresses his thoughts on the day by singing that "it makes handsome today." Daniel stays to talk more with Grandpere with Josie leaves to talk with X and "the Hen."

Find a Star
This song also appears on Mister Rogers' album King Friday XIII Celebrates where it is performed by John Reardon.


A very fast-paced and entertaining conversation between Josie and X the Owl. X explains what he knows about the days of the week: "Tomorrow is the day after today. Today will be yesterday tomorrow and tomorrow will be today tomorrow. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday is the weekend and Monday and Tuesday is the stong end."

A Fine Feathered Friend
X the Owl and Josie sing this song after talking about X's friends from the OCS -- the Owl Correspondance School. After the song, Henrietta Pussycat comes out and X mentions how pretty and stylish Henrietta is. Josie says that she thinks that "a smile's the style."

A Smile's the Style
This song, performed by Josie Carey, was sung occasionally on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.

Yes, Mr. Rogers Has a Telephone
Henrietta Pussycat mentions that she talks with Mister Rogers on the telephone and sings this very short song. There's really not much to this song -- especially considering that on this album, a majority of Henrietta's vocabulary consists of "meows" (moreso than usual). Also, I found the title of this track to be interesting. Very rarely do you see Mister Rogers' name with the abbreviated "Mr."

You're Special
Josie tries to subtly ask Henrietta and X if they know anything about Tomorrow but she feels let down when they don't seem to be of any help. X lifts Josie's spirits by singing this song to her to let her know that she is special. X follows up the song by reciting his poem about letter Y -- "Y by X." X then refers Josie to his "left wing neighbor," Lady Elaine Fairhchilde, who lives in a carbarn instead of the more familiar Museum-Go-Round. According to X, "the Trolley stays there when it's not running and Lady Elaine Fairchilde has her rapid walking, beauty counseling, and professional bridesmaid school there."

Where Did You Go Tomorrow?
Josie sings this song as she continues searching for Tomorrow and heads to visit Lady Elaine Fairchilde. Instead of the slightly-arrogant Lady Elaine we are used to from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, this track introduces us to a much more eccentric Lady Elaine.

I'm Special / The Tame Tiger March
Lady Elaine sings this song in response to Josie's assertion that she looks a little strange. Following this song, Josie learns that Tomorrow is locked up in Lady Elaine's office. According to Lady Elaine, "You see, I needed a little extra time so I thought the logical place to find it was at the new days home. So I just stole over there and stole a day."

La Nuit / The Tame Tiger March
This duet is performed in French by Daniel Tiger and Grandpere. After the song, Josie and Daniel meet up and go together to return Tomorrow to the castle. Upon Tomorrow's return, King Friday issues a proclamation stating that Daniel and Josie will be allowed to help him rule for one day for their help in finding Tomorrow. Also on this track, we learn that all of this is not taking place in the familar Neighborhood of Make-Believe. In the early days of these characters, their home was CalendarLand.

This album wraps up with this song sung by Daniel and Josie to the same tune as the first track, It's Morning. This song went on to be used as the closing theme for many years on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.

For more on this LP, visit the Neighborhood Archive.


Eric Scales said...

Listening to some of the old albums here and at WOJ, I'm surprised how old some of the songs on the current Neighborhood shows really are. The week of "Celebrate the Arts" (I think the Shows final week of programs), has a song that comes up a few times "What would you like to do Today?". In all my years of watching the Neighborhood, I don't remember ever hearing this song, so I assumed that it was newer. Listening to this LP, it turns out it even predates Mister Rogers Neighborhood!

TL said...

A small example of Fred Rogers' career coming full circle.

Eric Scales said...

Usually it seems that an album like this would be used to reinforce, or repeat characters songs, and situations a child would be familiar with from the show. But from the sound of this one, it almost seems as if this record introduces Lady Elaine for the very first time (otherwise wouldn't Josie Carey already be familiar with her?). Could it be too, that the song "Tomorrow" was written for this album? While still fairly generic, it's lyrics definately have added meaning in this storyline.

Kip W said...

Thanks also to my cousin's former girlfriend back in the 80s who had this album and let me tape it so that it could eventually end up on Tony's blog. They split up before much longer, but the album has given me decades of entertainment.

Anonymous said...

Another great album from Freds early career. It was recorded for the Signature record album. Publisher : New York, N.Y. : Vernon Music Corporation, c1960.

Anonymous said...

I would so love to have the lyrics to "I Like You as You Are". I think that it is even better than the later "I'ts You I Like", although both are good. Bless Fred Rogers. How I miss him.

TL said...

I like you as you are
Exactly and precisely
I think you turned out nicely
And I like you as you are

I like you as you are
Without a doubt or question
Or even a suggestion
Cause I like you as you are

I like your disposition
Your facial composition
And with your kind permission
I'll shout it to a star

I like you as you are
I wouldn't want to change you
Or even rearrange you
Not by far
I like you

I like you, yes I do
I like you, Y-O-U
I like you, like you as you are