A Little History
The Music Store
News, Reviews, & Links
Lookout Mountain (the song)
Wheaton (the song)

Like Lookout Mountain, Wheaton is a place I got to know well enough to write a few verses about it, with more to come. Also like the Lookout Mountain song, don't look for good writing here, just good memories. Two songs are on this page. The first is a tongue-in-cheek adaptation of Marc Cohn's Walkin' In Memphis. The second one is an adaptation of my own song, Lookout Mountain. Now for a little Wheaton history and culture:

Walkin' in Wheaton

Put on my gospel shoes and I
Boarded the train
Got off at College Avenue
In the middle of the pouring rain
Jonathan C. Blanchard
Won't you look down over me
Yeah I used to be a student here
Now I'm back as a boy can be

Walkin' in Wheaton
Walkin' with my feet ten feet off the ground
Walkin' in Wheaton
How I love to hear that holy sound
(It's got to be my favorite college town)

Saw the bust of Edman
In the chapel lobby there
Rubbed his nose and made three wishes
As the students stopped and stared
Now security they did not see me
And I'll be leaving the campus soon
But there's a pretty little thing
Always practicing
In a conservatory room


They've got thunder in the stadium
They've got gospel in the air
Billy Graham be glad to see you
When you haven't got a prayer
But boy you've got a prayer in Wheaton

Kent Hughes holds a service
Every Sunday at the College Church
And they brought me down to see him
And asked me to go first
And preach a little sermon
And I prayed with all my might
He said, "Are you an evangelical?"
And I said, "Man, I am tonight!"


Put on my gospel shoes and I
Boarded the train
Got off at College Avenue
In the middle of the pouring rain

Got off at College Avenue
In the middle of the pouring rain

adaptation of Marc Cohn's Walkin in Memphis
words (c)2004 Randy York / Dancing Lawn Music


v.34 ©2005 Randy York / Dancing Lawn Music


If you’ve never lived in Wheaton

You’ve never really lived

It’s a place that feeds your body, mind, and soul

A small town known to millions

A gift that always gives

Wheaton is a perfect place to go


From Jonathan C. Blanchard

To folks all over town

The cause of freedom burned in every heart

Links along a railroad

Hidden underground

That ran before the Union broke apart


I spent my first Sunday there

With Coach Coray and his wife

I was new, and I was young, and I was nervous

But they put me at my ease

With the way they lived their life

And took me down to College Church for the service


Merrill Tenney kept his office door

Open to us all

He loved to talk, and time was not an object

You could pick the topic

You could make the call

But you’d better be a master of the subject


Bob Webber’s love of worship

Made me glad I got to go (with him)

On his first trip to the Holy Land

From Armenian to Orthodox

He was always in the know

And acted like a kid at Disneyland


There was a southern gentleman

From northeast Tennessee

Clyde Kilby was the keeper of the treasures

And if it had to do with Narnia

He directed it to me

Answering those letters was my greatest pleasure


Went out with Noel Stookey

To the Stone Cottage Pub

We were ankle deep in peanut shells

From the origins of music

To the fountainhead of love

What speaks is more important than what sells


Ken Taylor was a friend

With a lot of books to sell

And graced our wedding day with his presence

He paraphrased the Word

And lost his voice as well

But he always kept the writing true to the essence


I knew Tim Botts from Tyndale

Art was his domain

He helped me to produce an album cover

He poured his passion into it

But refused to sign his name

To what an evangelical would never show his mother


The Johnsons were like family

When they had me in their home

I’m grateful I could count them as my friends

And for the memories made in Jerusalem

In Athens and in Rome

The one I miss the very most is Lynn


Bob Dixon was indelible

On the memories of us all

Strapping red nose whistles on his head

Bob Dixon was incredible

To go to Texas after all

And leave us in the Big Onion instead

(Oh Susannah, don’t you cry for me)


When 1976 came by

I still looked like a Yippie

From the days of rage in 1968

So the Reagan camp recruited me

To be their token hippie

In the window out on Front Street on display

The DuPage GOP gets

The wacky welcome mat award

Don’t know if that’s a blessing or a curse

When Congressman John Erlenborn

Welcomed Jerry Ford

To the garden spot of the universe


The first time I saw Alabama

Was the DuPage County Fair

They wowed the crowed and climbed right up the charts

The last time that I fell in love

Thanksgiving was in the air

And a Wheaton girl had captured my heart


If you’re looking for exotic

In that landscape you will lose

The DuPage River ain’t the River Ganges

But if you’re looking for some pizza

There’s plenty you can choose

Jolly Six Pence, Yorkshire Pub, and Don & Angies


Go see Mrs. Belushi

Down at G&G

Picking up some Vicks and nasal spray

Or pastor Ivan York

At Wheaton EV Free

Picking up some prayers along the way


Skate in the winter, swim in the summer

Head over to Northside Park

And maybe catch some crayfish in the creek

When you’re having fun, it’s really a bummer

When it starts getting dark

And you’ve gotta get home before your mother starts to shriek


There’s a nightmare down on Elm Street

And a hardware store on Main

Where you could go and see Chico the monkey

Or down at Wheaton College

You could be entertained

By Perry Mastodon looking pretty funky


It was at Wheaton College

That I saw my first streaker

Assault the staid and strike a blow for youth

It was at Wheaton College

I first saw Rich and Beaker

Assault the jaded soul with simple truth


These days I have my bank account

At J.P. Morgan Chase

Keeping track of who they are is half the fun

Since my first deposit

Names have changed and been replaced

Gary Wheaton, First Chicago, and Bank One


Fine dining in the ‘70s

Included Round the Clock

Cock Robin, Seven Dwarfs, and Golden Bear

The Saga of the college

Was legendary schlock

Sending many off in search of better fare


The Wheaton Restaurant

Has since become Muldoon’s

Sav-O-Rama now is Wilton Manor

I have not seen the college dorms

Since I vacated those rooms

But even then I’m sure they beat the slammer


Kay found work at Golden Bear

Slavic Gospel and at Map

She did it all, and nothing could defeat her

By the time that I came courting

Grading papers was a snap

And Wheaton Christian had an English teacher


Stu Hackett taught Philosophy

And was a fan of Johnny Cash

A lifesize poster of the man adorned his door

Stu Hackett’s band, The Nashville West

Was a DuPage County smash

That always left us hollering for more


Whether music was your hobby

Or music was your work

Or music was your door to the hereafter

All the real musicians

Knew Jack and Edna Burke

And their little music store packed to the rafters


Music also came from

P.F. Flyer and the Sneaks

Eastman, Katterjohn, and Phil Madeira

I would play for fun

Steve Camp would play for keeps

In the A&W Rootbeer Stand Band era


Aslyn played a concert

For their hometown fans

So Leigh Winchell and I rented Wheaton North

Security was so well done

A Wheaton PD man

Tried to get us both to join the force


The A in Aslyn always stood

For "Always in demand"

Chris Christiansen, Brad Nelson, and Dan Goff

Roy Boy, Reif, and Barry

And Del made up the band

Sound by Dean who lived upstairs at Hannerhoff


Aslyn rocked the kids at Taylor

Serenaded Kimball Street

Paid the Piper and then went on down the line

The road went ever on and on

But they never missed a beat

When their music echoed once upon a time


(A rock & roll band from way back when

You'd remember them well if you lived back then)


Wheaton is a peaceful town

There almost is no crime

Just some speeders here and there to stop

But Bernie Williams loved to

Talk to people all the time

So he finally became a Wheaton cop 

Gene Frost coached the soccer team

And knew them all by name

Todd Beamer answered when he called the roll

So who knew that America

Would never be the same

When Todd’s words echoed through this land: “Let’s roll”


These days Peter Roskam

Is running circles ‘round us all

Conservatism is his path to progress

Today he turned the high beams on

Answering the call

And tossed his hat into the ring for Congress


From Leanne Payne to Lyle Dorsett

To Carla Waterman

Mario, Nancy, Phil, and Mark & Val

There’s not a friendship I regret

No, there’s not a one

I loved them then, and I still love them now


The sun’s the same in Wheaton

As it is in Tennessee

The moon and stars at night are shining down

The sunset in the west

Makes it sometimes hard to see

But the sunrise makes it hard to wear a frown


Lanes to Naperville

Have grown from two to four

Town Square Wheaton was once an open field

Little Calvary Chapel

Was once the Open Door

And many things now open once were sealed


Tyndale House and Crossway

Billy Graham and Wheaton College

A hundred churches and a million hymns

You can go to heaven

Certain in the knowledge

Wheaton is the new Jerusalem