The 1930 “Tacoma Girl” Song Lyrics That Were Nearly Lost

The 1930 “Tacoma Girl” Song Lyrics That Were Nearly Lost

December 15, 2017 0 By Sara Kay

Want to take home a Tacoma girl, a Tacoma pearl? At first glance it seems Phil Baxter did, although his lyrics to a 1930’s song about our lovely Tacoma ladies were nearly lost for good.

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Baxter, an American songwriter, singer and band leader who lived from 1896 to 1972, played “Tacoma Girl” at a number of ballroom events while in town, but not long after no one seemed to know more than a line or two from the tune.

 

 

Decades later, when the “Piccolo Pete” and “I’m a Ding Dong Daddy from Dumas” writer passed away, his longtime friend Cliff Halliburton penned a “tenderly written” tribute. Cliff then sent these lyrics to The Tacoma News Tribune in 1973:

“Tacoma Girl”

I wanna take home a Tacoma girl,

I wanna take home a Tacoma pearl.

I wanna girl when I ask her for kisses

She’ll say, ‘Just wait until I’m the Missus.’

I’m through with my roamin’ —

I’m settling’ down.

I’m makin’ my home in Tacoma town.

I wanna take home a pair of eyes,

I wanna take home a paradise…

I wanna take home a Tacoma girl!

Cliff also shared that Baxter wasn’t writing from personal experience seeking out a Tacoma girl. Rather, the song was dedicated to Cliff’s wife, who had grown up in Tacoma. The song was penned while Baxter and his band were touring our area.

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Know anything more about “Tacoma Girl” or Phil Baxter’s time here? We’re all ears. Please share in a comment below.

Photos thanks to Tacoma Public Library’s Northwest Room.