Sunday, October 07, 2012
Sunday morning gospel--Elton Britt: Beyond the Sunset (1960)
Sunday Morning Gospel is back! I'd hoped to have a mid-week post, but we've been busier than busy. That's putting it mildly.
This 1960 LP by Elton Britt is highly entertaining, and there seems to be a lot of them around. (Well, on eBay, at least.) That could mean that 1) it sold a lot of copies or 2) it sold very few, and a lot of them sat around in warehouses for decades. Either way, any number survive. This, of course, is a thrifted copy.
This playlist is interesting, as it contains sentimental pop songs (and a hymn) of the type that, print-wise, end up in collections of "familiar," "homespun," "old," "family circle," "great old," and "good old" songs. That is to say, this is a 19th-/early-20th-century kind of playlist, with dying-lover, dying-child, and tell-mother-I'm-gone songs. Songs often made fun of as sappy or maudlin (or both), but which describe olden days quite accurately. In fact, some are pretty current--I'm thinking Will the Angels Let Me Play.
In the past, death was much more a part of life, with the juvenile mortality rate especially high. And things nowadays fixed with a clinic visit or two were, not too long ago, often debilitating or fatal. We shouldn't forget the extent to which "sentimental" songs were inspired by stark reality.
Most of these are vintage, with a few of uncertain origin (like When the Work's All Done This Fall). The year of composition for Angels appears to be 1905, and Tying the Leaves, 1907. Beyond the Sunset, however, is relatively recently (1936) and Lost Highway (1948) is a mere 64 years old.
Click here to hear: Beyond the Sunset--Elton Britt
BEYOND THE SUNSET
I'M TYING THE LEAVES
BORN TO LOSE
WILL THE ANGELS LET ME PLAY
THE CONVICT AND THE ROSE
WHEN THE WORK'S ALL DONE THIS FALL
THE PRECIOUS JEWEL
DON'T MAKE ME GO TO BED AND I'LL BE GOOD
LEFT MY GAL IN THE MOUNTAINS
(Elton Britt--Beyond the Sunset; ABC-Paramount 322; 1960)