When I was age 11 my mother decided I should learn how to dance. She had met a middle-aged widow who had a goodly collection of records, and who talked frequently about how much she and her late husband used to enjoy ballroom dancing. Also, leaving me with this lady meant she had a couple of extra hours to herself. (Being a divorced, working mom was not the easiest job in the world.)
Well, at age 11 I had begun to notice girls and couldn't get too enthusiastic about dancing with an "old lady." However, it turned out to be not all that bad. The woman was very kind and patient, and getting some dance lessons then, I reasoned, would make it easier to ask a girl to dance as I got older.
She said we would start with the waltz (yes, people still danced the waltz in those days) and put her favorite record on the phonograph. It was "The Waltz You Saved for Me" played by the Wayne King orchestra. Well, it quickly became my favorite recording, too, as I found myself humming and whistling the tune long after the lesson had ended. I even found myself daydreaming about some pretty girl saving that waltz for me one day.
Shortly after the lessons had begun, mom and I moved to another neighborhood and I never saw my impromptu dance teacher again. Nor do I ever remember hearing that song again - for many, many years.
As I entered my teen years in Hollywood, it became abundantly clear that modern young people were not supposed to like music played by orchestras such as those of Wayne King or Carmen Lombardo or - heaven forbid - Lawrence Welk! Yet the melody of The Waltz You Saved for Me never quite left my subconscious.
Well, a few years ago - when I first discovered that music could be found and downloaded from some web sites, this old waltz was one of the first songs I went looking for. A couple of the MIDI versions I found are posted here.
Eventually, much to my surprise and delight, I found the original Wayne King version that I'd not heard since I was 11 years old. It can be found on one of my other music pages:
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