Scott Wiseman wrote this song in 1939 and he and his singing partner and wife Lulu Belle released it in 1940 as the flip side of “Did You Ever Go Sailing?”.
Its inspiration was a vintage cup and saucer that was a family memento of his dad’s and mom’s courtship. The sentimental value of this item was so great, that the children were not allowed to touch it. Scott was touched by it, however, and during a bout of homesickness, wrote a song based on the lettering on the cup, which read “Remember Me”.
The song is about a pair of star-crossed lovers who part with the aforementioned words and then drift apart. With each subsequent verse, the phrase becomes more and more bittersweet. The lyrics are not gender or narrator specific, which has allowed it to be covered by solo artists, duos, and groups alike. Paul Buskirk even recorded an instrumental version of it, curiously curtailing the title to “Remember Me”.
It has become something of a bluegrass and country standard. A few artists who have covered it are Roy Acuff, Bill Anderson, Billy Williams & the Pecos River Rogues, Bob Dini, Dottie O’Brien & Jan Garber, Bob Dylan, Bud Hobbs, The Radio Gang, Alton Stitcher, and Tim & Mollie O’Brien.
“Remember Me (When the Candelights are Gleaming)” appears on the following albums: The Essential Willie Nelson; Good Dobro Pickin’ by Paul Buskirk; Great Ballads of Bluegrass; The Jim & Jesse Story: 24 Greatest Hits; The Music of Willie Nelson, Partners, Red Headed Stranger and 16 Biggest Hits by Willie Nelson; Sweethearts of Country Music and The Sweethearts of Country Music – Collectors Item by Lulu Belle & Scotty; A Tribute to Brother Duets by Jesse McReynolds & Charles Whitstein; and, Waltz Across Texas by Ernest Tubb & the Texas Troubadors.
Paul Buskirk recordings
Remember Me (Scott Wiseman)
Stoneway No. 1138-B LH-14867