Marsha Morgan’s ‘Thank You Song’ for Whidbey Life Magazine

Posted in More Stories, Music

Whidbey Life Magazine contributor
April 30, 2014

We’ve received several requests that we publish the “Thank You” lyrics that Marsha Morgan sang as Master of Ceremonies at the Whidbey Life Magazine “Launch” Party on Friday, April 25. Since we’ve also received several questions, we asked Marsha for some answers.

Marsha Morgan sings a "Thank You" at WLM Launch Party. (Sketch courtesy of Sue Van Etten)

Marsha Morgan sings a “Thank You” at WLM Launch Party. (Sketch courtesy of Sue Van Etten)

Where did the lyrics come from and how did they come about?

When Sue [Taves, WLM publisher] asked me to host the event, she mentioned there were a “few” thank-yous that she needed to include. Then she gave me the list of names.

I knew I couldn’t just stand up there and read off all those names, and thought adding a little music might make it more bearable for the crowd. The list struck me as a “patter,” which made me think of the “Major General” song. I kept bugging Sue to get info about all the folks and, gradually, the song came together for me.”

What is the source of the original music?

I searched online for the song and found a recorded version. It’s “I Am the Perfect Model of a Modern Major General” from Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic opera of 1879, “Pirates of Penzance.” (Editor’s note: if you’re curious and have a few minutes, go to to hear it performed. And yes, the pirate in the scene is a very young Kevin Kline.)

How long did it take to come up with all that?

I was fortunate to have a couple months’ notice from Sue to prepare for this and, of course, that’s exactly how long it took.

Who was that great accompanist?

Eileen Soskin, a tremendously accomplished musician, was willing to “dumb down” her piano playing abilities (which she demonstrated when she later accompanied Gloria). She also has a great sense of comedic timing. We had a grand time together.

Marsha Morgan, MC, sings her thanks for everyone who made WLM and the magazine a possibility. (photo by Vicky Brown)

Marsha Morgan, MC, sings her thanks for everyone who made WLM and the magazine a possibility. (photo by David Welton)

Who knew you could sing, Marsha!?!?

I don’t think of myself as a “singer” but I have sung all my life. As a teenager in southern California, I was in a “band” and we did songs like “White Rabbit” and Beach Boy medleys. I’m sure we were horrible but we had fun. Mostly I’ve sung in choruses. And recently I’ve been taking lessons from local musician and teacher, Nancy Nolan, and am enjoying it immensely.

I’ve had more experience as a Master of Ceremonies during my years in Santa Cruz. I also wrote the scripts and lyrics for those events. Most recently, I enjoyed doing the narration for WLM’s “Indiegogo” video last fall.

See more photos from the WLM Launch party here. 

You can check out the video produced by Robbie Cribbs’ for the Indiegogo campaign here.


Thank You—from Whidbey Life Magazine

We’d like to thank you here and now for services you gave and how,
The staff, the writers, bloggers too, and all our sponsors. Thanks to you.

Our Russell Clepper wrote, no jest, about the fun of DjangoFest.
He plays guitar and teaches too so can I get some tips from you?

And, all the photos that you see our David Welton takes for free.
He’s traded stethoscope for lens and now he’s got more Facebook friends.

Suzanne, Siri, Vicky, Julie,
Deb, TWO Eriks, Joanie, Judith
Share whatever’s on their minds
’cause that’s what bloggers do-oo-oo

Dianna MacLeod, Hedgebrook alum, writes for us and thinks it’s fun.
She came to town to write a book and now I’d say we’ve got her hooked.

Susan Wenzel, writes of food; she teaches all she knows and how.
Can you grow some food for storage? Yes, and you can also fora-a-a-g-ge…

Who can tap dance, screenwrite too? It must be our great blogger, Su…
…zanne Kelman’s great all through and through. And she’s got an accent too.

Betty, Carolyn and Penny—
Wow, your stories lift our hearts, of
painters, weavers, farmers, music,
authors and dramatic art.

Our chief milkmaid, Vicky Brown of goats and cheese, she’s quite renowned
Her Laughing Bellies Toffee snack—really should be nicknamed “crack”

Patricia Duff, we love your stuff; your writings always so sublime
We know you go the extra mile,’cause what you write is AP STYLE…

Where there’s Pandamonium, can Anne Belov be very far?
She paints, she draws, she writes; it’s true, and she will even Kickstart you.

Jan’s the Webmaster supree-eeme,
On most days it makes her scree-eam.
In her sleep she hears your song:
There’s something wrong! I can’t log on!

Kim Tinuviel plays bass and takes great photos, makes great art
If we hadn’t grabbed her star we never would have come this far.

Editing, no job for whimps, to cut your words, that really hurts
But Claire Moore never makes you wrong.
— It’s just your story’s — way — too – lo-o-o-n-n-ng…………

There’s one hundred fifty-two, the Indi-Go-Go gifts from you-ou,
But to name you all won’t do!  JEEZ, you must be kidding, Sue!

And who keeps this ship of ours
Afloat when times are feeling rough?
It’s Sue! the very model of
A Modern Major PUB-LISH-ER!

—with apologies to Gilbert and Sullivan…

(featured photo: Marsha welcoming the crowd at the party (photo by Vicky Brown)

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