Saturday, June 16, 2018

Twelve Top Tunes (Tops L1510)

From the Tops label, twelve fun cover versions of current (1958) hits, and I'm almost sure that's Mary Tyler Moore on the cover, but I'm trying to confirm this on line in case I'm wrong.  She appeared on some other Tops jackets, anyway.  Sure looks like her.  This particular cover photo was reused several times in the 12 Top Hits series, each one bearing the same catalog number (1510) but with different track listings in the handy white rectangle.  These cheapo labels always went the path of least labor.

Well, this isn't listed anywhere as being one of Mary's LP jackets, but I could swear it's her.  The hair, the big teeth.... Then again, her eyebrow mascara isn't thick, as in the other Tops MTM jackets.  'Tis a mystery.

I could swear it's her.

Some flat singing (as in the interval) on Everybody Loves a Lover, and some all-around-the-pitch singing on Fever, plus some awful harmonizing on Just a Dream (though the Jimmy Clanton original had pretty off-key backing vocals).  The rest of the tracks, however, are well done, or at least better.  The copy-cat tracks on Tops were pretty hit or miss, ranging all the way from memorable to ouch!  And, speaking of Fever, somewhere Merv Griffin claimed he was offered the song but passed, and then Peggy Lee got it.  God's honest truth.  But, of course, I can find no confirmation on line.  This is not my night for on line confirmation.  I do know that Merv made a Fever-style number in 1963 called Hey Pretty Baby (Cameo 266).

Best track?  By far, Scott Otis' Hard Headed Woman.  Not sure there was an actual "Scott Otis"--probably not.  This version is familiar, showing up on (among other cheapie collections) the Halo label Tops in Pops series.  Why was Tops trading tracks with the Record Corporation of America?  Or was there a common source for both labels?  Questions like this keep me up at night.

That's got to be Mary on the cover....

Click here to hear: Twelve Top Hits

Everybody Loves a Lover--Connie Miller and the Toppes
Volare--Antonio Paladino
Fever--Connie Miller
Bird Dog--Sandy Beaumont and the Toppers
Just a Dream--Timmy Harrison and the Toppers
Stupid Cupid==Francis Deegan and the Toppers
Little Star--Jerry Case and the Toppers
Rebel 'Rouser--The Toppers
Splish Splash--Bobby Thompson
Poor Little Fool--Johnny Evans and the Toppers
Patricia--The Toppers
Hard Headed Woman--Scott Otis

12 Top Hits (Tops L1510, probably 1958), featuring great Hollywood vocalists and orchestras.


Saturday, June 02, 2018

Francis Scott and His Orchestra--Moods for Candlelight (1952)

I found this during a recent thrift visit--the cover was too cool to pass on.  Disc is in solid shape, so I gave it a spin and decided it merits a post.  This is beautifully arranged and performed mood music/easy listening, perfect for background sounds. The orchestra belongs to Francis Scott (no Key), who was Artists and Repertoire man for Capitol, among other duties.

As I noted, this is elegant, first-rate EZ (think Tommy Dorsey meets Andre Kostelanetz), but don't expect the tracks to remain in memory--none have in mine, anyway, even after three plays.  They are background selections, after all.  They set the mood, then they leave the room.

This is a 12" reissue of the eight tracks from the 10" LP of the same name, with four tracks added from Moods for Twilight, Capitol L-331 (same year-1952).  The label design on my disc identifies it as a 1960-1962 pressing.

Click here to hear:  Moods for Candlelight

(Tracks reissued from 10" LP Moods for Candlelight on Capitol T-304, 1952.  Tracks marked with * from 10" LP Moods for Twilight, Capitol L-331, 1952)

The Touch of Your Lips
I'll Get By (As Long as I Have You)
It's a Blue World
It Had to Be You
How Deep Is the Ocean (How High Is the Sky)
*My Heart Stood Still
*Just a Memory
I Hadn't Anyone Till You
*Dream a Little Dream of Me
More Than You Know
This Love of Mine

Moods for Candlelight--Francis Scott and His Orchestra (Capitol T-304, reissue of 1952 material.)


Sunday, May 13, 2018

A near-legit collection of TV themes from SPC

Diplomat was a Synthetic Plastics Co. label, which makes The Themes from Ben Casey, Dr. Kildare and Other Great TV Shows a fairly extraordinary issue--for SPC, I mean.  First off, despite the typically lousy pressing, the sound quality is mostly very good.  Second, there's amazingly little fakery going on, selection-wise.  That is to say, most of these really are the TV themes in question.  (Helps that several are public-domain pieces.)  Exceptions: Victory at Sea (while a clever arrangement, this is not the VAS theme), The French Review and The Hawaiian Spectacular--the last two, because I can find no record of any such TV shows having ever existed.

Plus, there was no Alfred Hitchcock TV Show.  There were Alfred Hitchcock Presents and the Alfred Hitchcock Hour, however.  And it was The Danny Thomas Show--no "TV." Minor points, but still....

The p.d. selections are Tales from the Vienna Woods (Arthur Murray), Danny Boy (Danny Thomas), and Funeral March of a Marionette (Hitchcock).  No doubt, SPC had recordings of these sitting around in their vast, cheap library.

The Late Show theme is, of course, Leroy Anderson's wonderful The Syncopated Clock.

Anyway, a whopping seven out of ten of these TV themes are the real McCoy, making this a near-legit collection in that regard.  Most astonishingly, the titles on the back jacket are listed in the actual order they appear on the disc.  And the cover is rather nice.  Maybe I dreamed the whole thing.

(Bear with the lethargic Ben Casey rendition--it gets much better.)

Click here to hear: The Themes from...

Theme from Ben Casey
Theme from Cheyenne
Theme from the Late Show
Theme from Arthur Murray's TV Party
Theme from the French Review
Theme from Dr. Kildare
Theme from Victory at Sea
Theme from the Danny Thomas TV Show
Theme from the Alfred Hitchcock TV Show
Theme from the Hawaiian Spectacular

(No artists credited; Diplomat 2269; 1962)

Sorry about the Zippshare shenanigans--just close the fake page that comes up when you first press the donwload button, then try again.  Should work second time.  And, of course, choose "block" for notifications.


Sunday, May 06, 2018

An easy-listening LP of current hits from just BEFORE the Beatles

My reason for buying this LP?  The colorful cover?  No, it had more to do with the track line-up, a very unusual one for an easy-listening LP.  Surfer Girl My Boy Friend's BackThen He Kissed Me?  Not tracks you expect on an LP of this type.

There's a simple reason for that, I think--this LP is pre-Beatles, chart-wise.  Barely (late 1963), but it's pre-Beatles (as in, before the Beatles hit the American shores).  I have a theory that, post-Beatles, it was easier for the big bands, Ray Charles Singers-type groups, and individual pop singers to do LPs of current hits in pretty much the same style from track to track, simply because the Top 40 lost a measure of diversity during the Invasion.  A big measure.  (Nothing against the B. Invasion--I love a lot of it.)  Plus, post-Beatles, labels seem to have developed a sense of keeping the adult stuff separate from the teen stuff.  No More and My Boyfriend's Back on the same collection.  That would be like Satisfaction and People on the same 1965 easy-listening disc.  Not likely.  (Now, watch me find such an LP in my next thrift trip.)  So this LP is an important relic.

This LP is also fascinating in the variety of approaches employed.  And in the attempts to achieve something like the sounds of the originals in the rock numbers My Boyfriend's Back/Then He Kissed me, Candy Girl, and Wait 'Til My Babby Gets Home.  A very pleasant surprise.

And how could I not have bought an easy-listening LP that includes Surfer Girl?  Impossible.

A classic, for its weird line-up and the completely unexpected diversity of approaches to the big hits being covered.  However, while writing this post, I spot-listened to the 1961 "Living Stereo" LP,  Ray Ellis Plays the Top 20, which has a rock and roll sound throughout, plus a line-up of songs that are mostly in the same vein.  Kind of blasts my pre-Beatles/post-Beatles theories out of the water!  So, uh, just disregard my previous speculations.

Oh, well.  Some nights are like that.  Enjoy:

Click here to hear:  Leroy Holmes Singers--14 Big Hits

If I Had a Hammer
Blue Velvet
My Boyfriend's Back
Then He Kissed Me
Hey Girl
Wait 'Til My Bobby Gets Home
Treat My Baby Good
Green, Green
Cry Baby
Danke Schoen
Candy Girl
Blowin' in the Wind ("Originally made famous by Peter, Paul & Mary"--from jacket)
Surfer Girl

Above is the track listing as presented on LP's rear, but at least a couple tracks feature two titles in one cut.  No accounting for the typos "Then He Kissed Me Mother" on the front jacket or "Wait 'Til My Baby Gets Home" on the label.  (It's "Bobby")

14 Big Hits--The Leroy Holmes Singers (United Artists UAL 3306, 1963)


Saturday, April 21, 2018

A record for Christmas in 1948

What do you do when you find a marvelous home-recorded Christmas disc (78 rpm) in a thrift store in late April?  You put it up at your blog pronto, of course.  (No, my blog isn't named "pronto.")

Once upon a time, people used disc-cutting machines to cut their own discs.  Eventually (during the 50s?), people switched to magnetic tape for home recording.  That's the history as I know it--it's probably a bit more complicated than that.  But here's a home-made Christmas disc by a very young man named Billy.  I know this, because on the second side Billy introduces a piano piece (nothing I recognize; sounds like a by-ear number) with the words, "This is Billy, making you a record for Christmas of (in?) 1948."  Thus I know the recording year.  Of course, Billy could have simply been the engineer, but I suspect he's the ivory tinkler, at least on side 2.  He's a decent player for a kid.

I'm designating the piano solo (which features a false start, followed by some Charles Ives harmonies, before it gets going) as side 2 because it contains no label writing; the flip (above) lists White Christmas and Jingle Bells as the pieces, and what looks like "Billy Four" as the artists.  So I'm assigning it side-1 status.  Problem is, there are only two musicians--tenor (?) sax and piano, so maybe "Four" (or "Lour"?) is Billy's last name.  Will we ever know?

Condition isn't very good (Maybe I should have employed some hiss filtering), but I used the curve marked "AFRS Transcriptions #1" in my VinylStudio program, and it brings the music out loud and clear over the disc noise.  AFRS, of course, is Armed Forces Radio Service, which eventually became Armed Forces Radio and Television Service (AFRTS), or "A-farts," as we called it in the Navy.  AFRTS would send my first ship videos to play over the closed-circuit system, and one night I was showing a program for the crew while watching a tape on another machine.  Meaning to fast-forward the other tape, I accidentally fast-forwarded the AFRTS program.  Knock on the door--a crewmember.  "Could you please reshow the last five minutes or so?" he asked.  Oops.

AFRTS programs always included Navy recruiting spots, and you can imagine the responses they received in our TV lounges.  Anyway, of course this disc has nothing to do with AFRS, but the curve sure matches up beautifully.

To Billy and the Billy Four: A Record for Christmas of 1948.


Saturday, April 14, 2018

The Dorsey Touch (Hollywood LPH-136; 1957)

So, why did I buy this Goodwill album?  Well, after going through eight or nine boxes, I'd picked a small group of LPs and 45s.  My brother-in-law was standing next to me.  I thought this jacket was kind of cool (it is--surprisingly so for a cheapo label), so I held it up and said, "Do I want this?"  "Yes, you want this," he replied.  So I bought it.

The label is Hollywood, and here Hollywood is pulling the standard budget-label read-the-smaller-print scam: a big (colorized?) picture of the famous artists being exploited, the artists' name in big letters ("Dorsey"), and no Tommy or Jimmy Dorsey present on the disc.  Surprise!!  Just Maury Laws' Orchestra and Chorus, which does a surprisingly decent job recreating the Tommy Dorsey sound (7 to 8 on a scale of 10).  (I don't think any of these were originally Jimmy Dorsey sides, but correct me if I'm wrong.)  Surprisingly decent, because the budget couldn't have been very sky-high.  In all, a fun LP with a few outstanding performances.  My only complaint: some truncated arrangements, including my two all-time favorite TD tracks: Marie and Sunny Side of the Street.  How could they?  But there's an excellent Opus No. 1, so maybe I can forgive this lapse in $1.98-LP wisdom.  This junk-label album far exceeded my low expectations, so I'll give it an A.  Besides, the cover rocks.

Biggest surprise: the very decent sound.  I combined left and right for fabulous results.  Not usually, but sometimes the poverty-row record companies get it right.  Well, except for putting the jacket's track listings in the correct order, but that's a proud budget label tradition.  These folks have standards to uphold.

Click here to hear: The Dorsey Touch--Maury Laws' Chorus and Orch.

Getting Sentimental Over You
Royal Garden Blues
Boogie Woogie
Song of India
Swanee River
Will You Still Be Mine/Once in a While
Yes Indeed (Sy Oliver)
Sunny Side of the Street
I'll Never Smile Again
Opus No. 1 (Sy Oliver)
This Love of Mine/Embraceable You/There Are Such Things
Quiet Please (Sy Oliver)
Getting Sentimental Over You

Prepared and Directed by Maury Laws (Hollywood LPH-136, 1957)


Thursday, April 12, 2018

Teen-age Favorites (a.k.a. Teenage All-Time Favorites) (Broadway 1038)

The couple (above) looks like it's being tortured.  In the Hall of Bad Poses, this jacket cover probably has its own special room.

Now, when you see an album cover this banged up (I cloned out some of the worst of it, save for the pose itself), you can only assume the disc is toast, but in fact it's a solid average.  So I got good sound out of all nine (yes, nine) of the tracks.  Oh, and in typical zero-budget label fashion, the jacket title listings are out of sync with the actual order, and the label sports a different title than the front (Teenage All-Time Favorites).  Yup, everything checks out.

Despite the 1958-style art, this collection of sound-alike hits dates from 1963!  And what a group of  1963 "Teen-age Favorites" (keeping in mind these are all "fake" versions)--the 1954 Kay Starr hit, Rock and Roll Waltz; the 1957 Jim Reeves hit Four Walls; Sal Mineo's Start Movin' (In My Direction), same year; two Fats Domino numbers (Be My Guest, My Girl Josephine--1959 and 1960); and the then-current Sam Cooke classic, Another Saturday Night.  I guess none of the teens surveyed by the Broadway label were into the Beach Boys, Lesley Gore, Stevie Wonder, or Bobby Vinton.

Anyway, this very strange worth-it-for-the-cover-pose-alone album is actually pretty fun listening.  Find out for yourself.  You'll thank me (or not).

Click here to hear: Teen-age Favorites

TEEN-AGE FAVORITES--Vocals & Orch. by Popular Radio & TV Artists (Broadway 1038)

Another Saturday Night
Rock & Roll Waltz
My Girl Josephine
My Heart Is an Open Book
Stood Up
She Say (Oom Dooby Doom)
Be My Guest
Four Walls
Start Movin' (In My Direction)


Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Compiled According to Radio, Record and Music Surveys

An astonishingly good set of "fake" hits, considering it's from the cheapest of all cheapo record companies of the Fifties: Record Corp. of America, not to be confused with RCA.

Some wear on this disc, but decent sound overall.  Some of the performances border on quite good (Rock Around the Clock, for instance, the best cheap-label copycat version of the classic tune anywhere).  De-clicking this was a chore, but a happy one, because these tracks were worth rescuing from the ravages of needle drops, digs, and general turntable mistracking.  I take this stuff seriously, Lord help me.

Notice the ripped-off portion of the cover, which was likely a track listing.  Whoever did it could have done it a little more gracefully, but it's cool, campy cover anyway.

Best guess on the release year: 1955, because all of these are 1955 hits.  The LP cover says 1954, but do you trust Record Corp. of America?


Click here to hear: An Hour of Tops in Pops (Royale 1389)

Rock Around the Clock
Learnin' the Blues
Hard to Get
Sweet and Gentle
Love Me or Leave Me
Unchained Melody
A Blossom Fell
Something's Gotta Give
Don't Be Angry
Two Hearts, Two Kisses

(No artists credited, Allegro/Royale 1389, prob. 1955)


Friday, March 16, 2018

Rock N' Roll (Promenade High Fidelity 45 r.p.m. extended play; $1.89 value)

Well, the Variety label called it "rock 'n roll," and Promenade (this release, by the famous Synthetic Plastics Co.) called it "rock n' roll."  Of course, it's "rock 'n' roll," but that still leaves a couple questions unanswered--namely, what are April Love and Kisses Sweeter Than Wine doing here?  Besides taking up track space?

I think of myself as anything but a purist, but those two titles are about as rock n'/'n/'n' roll as, oh, Al Di La (the best version of which was waxed by the Ray Charles Singers.  Not that Ray, of course.)

And I *like* Kisses Sweeter Than Wine, ironically.  Even this version.

These are all fakes, of course--sound-alikes, back when you could swipe an arrangement and not get sued.  Some fine tracks--Jo Ann, The Stroll, Don'tKeep a Knockin', and, especially, Great Balls of Fire.  The passable copies include Diana, April Love, and Whole Lotta Shakin'.

Shed a tear for Jail House (sic) Rock, whose fabulous backing would have been infinitely better served by a singer who sounded remotely like Elvis.  And who put a little life into the proceedings.  Given a decent vocal, this would have been an all-time great fake.  Thanks a lot, "Eli Whitney."

And genuine thanks to the declicker filter on my MAGIX program, and to some tool-removed pops (mega-pops too big for the declicker to declick, these terrible pressings sound totally acceptable.

Rock n' roll!!!   


Jo Ann--Promineers
The Stroll--Promineers
Keep a Knockin'--Little Bobby
Jail House Rock--Eli Whitney
Diana--Bob Robbins
April Love--Michael Reed
Don't--Jimmie Aires
Kisses Sweeter Than Wine--Johnny Logan
Great Balls of Fire--Billie Case
Why Don't They Understand--Johnny Logan
Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On--Allan Freed
Only Because--The Wright Bros.

(Rock n' Roll--Promenade RR 23 and RR 24, 45 rpm EPs)

Click here to hear: Rock N' Roll (Promenade RR 23/24)


Sunday, March 04, 2018

The Sutera Twins--The "Happy Day" Express Song

More fake hits coming up, but, in the meantime, here's a perfect Sunday morning track--found it at Goodwill today, and I just knew from that title alone that it had to have a place here.

I guess the label, if there is one, would have to be "The Sutera Twins"--Ralph and Louis Sutera, to be exact.  (Self-produced, ya think?)  And here they are on YouTube, from 2008 (way after this recording, I'm pretty sure), talking about their Saskatoon, Saskatchewan ministry!  Sutera Twins

And here's the track:  The "Happy Day" Express Song (Engine Song)--Ralph & Louis Sutera

If this doesn't put you in Sunday morning mode, nothing will!


Sunday, January 28, 2018

18 Big Rock 'n' Roll Hits (Variety EPV-1801)

This gets complicated.  This 45 rpm three-EP set on the Variety label--18 Big Rock 'n Roll Hits--was also issued (earlier, I'm assuming) as a 12-inch LP on the mega-cheap Hollywood label.  That Hollywood LP was a reissue of an earlier Hollywood LP from 1957 called The Nation's Favorite Rock 'N Roll Hits.  My copy of the Hollywood LP (the reissue) is worn to death, so I'm using this set.

Well, I guess that wasn't too complicated.  Sound quality, predictably, is awful, making the above "Examination Certificate for Full Fidelity Response Recordings with Live Sound" (back cover of box) especially hilarious, since these have about a 9,000 Hz high end.  I doubt they top off at 15000 Hz, as claimed.  I got these to sound acceptable, and, in the process of ripping the final disc, I discovered that my Stanton 680 HiFi cartridge navigates warped vinyl effortlessly, in contrast to my 500 cart, which wants to bounce.

For lowest-quality EPs, these restored pretty well (with a good amount of de-clicking).  The performances are better than we have a right to expect, and some are even genuinely good.  And the version of Rock Around the Clock is my all-time favorite cheap-label version, despite the off-the-beat intro.  It found its way around the cheapo labels and may have originated on Gateway.  (Update: Nope, not the same version as Gateway Top Tune.  It's Gabe Drake on Prom 1118, poss. 1955)  Why it was included, I don't know, because the rest of the tracks are copies of 1956 hits, whereas RATC hit it big in 1955 (as a re-release).  But I don't complain--it's the perfect starter track.

"Reg. $16.00 value."  They wish. 

Click here to hear: 18 Big Rock 'n Roll Hits

1. Rock Around the Clock
2.  Long Tall Sally
3.  Blue Suede Shoes
4.  Ain't That a Shame
5.  Hound Dog
6.  See You Later Alligator
7.  Blueberry Hill
8.  Rip It Up
9.  I Want You, I Need You, I Love You
10.  Let the Good Times Roll
11.  The Fool
12.  Every Day
13.  When My Dreamboat Comes Home
14,  Why Do Fools Fall in Love
15.  Love, Love, Love
16.  Don't Be Cruel
17.  Ready Teddy
18.  I'm in Love Again

Vocal Stars of Radio & Television with Famous Orchestras (Variety EPV-1801, 3-EP, 45 rpm set, 1957?  Discs themselves are EPV-6025/26/27)

Above: label scan.  Suddenly, the set's name is "Rock n Roll," with half of the "n" missing.  Such loving care these guys took.


Friday, January 05, 2018

Merry 12th day of Christmas with tinsel tunes from Tulsa

The twelve days of Christmas end today, and I wish our Christmas weather would end with it, but no such luck.  Below-zero chill factors, a few inches of snow, and 0 degree overnight highs here in the country (must remember to keep small trickle of water running), and nothing fit for humans until our Sunday high of 28.  But there are others getting it a lot worse, so I can't complain.  I will, anyway.

I think I'm justified in calling this single "obscure."  "Nelson Pendergrass" + "Christy the Christmas Tree" gets a single Google match--a discography (minus dates) of Oklahoma record labels, including this one (Pride).  It appears that Pendergrass did one other Pride single--“Cute Little Checker Girl/Tomorrow Is Her Birthday."  Now you know all I know.  About this topic, I mean.

Pleasant sides, sounding very much like small local label efforts (why would that be, I wonder?), and destined not to become internet classics.  But they make for a nice and quiet farewell to Christmas 2017, even if the weather ain't following suit.

Click here to hear: Christy the Christmas Tree

Christy the Christmas Tree--Nelson Pendergrass (Pride 660P-3941; Tulsa, Okla.)
Santa Comes Tonight--Same


Thursday, January 04, 2018

Jolly Old Saint Nicholas--Ray Smith (1949)

The eleventh day of Christmas is here, and we celebrate it with a good ol' 1949 country rendition (by Ray Smith) of Jolly Old Saint Nicholas, here credited to "Horton," though Wikipedia tells us the lyrics of this 19th century classic have been attributed to Benjamin Hanby, and the music to John Piersol McCaskey.  But Jolly Old was public domain by 1949, and all kinds of false credits end up getting stuck on p.d. creations, so we'll pretend "Horton" wrote it.  Which Horton, though?  Vaughan Horton?  Johnny Horton?

I need to know.  I must know.  I DEMAND TO KNOW!!!!

Sorry--too much caffeine this early in the morning.  Oh, wait--Billboard to the rescue.  An Old Christmas Card was written by Vaughan Horton, and maybe someone at Columbia figured he or she may as well credit the flip to Horton, as well.  Or, more likely, Vaughan Horton arranged the flip side.  P.D. stuff is often credited to the person who arranged a particular version of it.

Mystery solved, maybe.  Whew!

Click here to hear: Jolly Old Saint Nicholas

Jolly Old Saint Nicholas--Ray Smith, 1949
An Old Christmas Card--Same


Wednesday, January 03, 2018

The Christmas Story--Music by William Billings

Another flexi disc Christmas selection for our holiday period, The Christmas Story, with music by the great William Billings, arranged by Leonard Van Camp (1934-2003).

Maybe the best selection I've put up for 2017, the quality of music and performance is astonishing, and the Eva-Tone Soundsheet yields uncharacteristically good sound when reduced to mono.  Forgive the moments of double-tracking (or whatever the correct term is)--i.e., a kind of groove bleed-through, which I've read is the sign of a very good, sensitive stylus.  Maybe I should have used my cheaper Stanton stereo needle for this cartridge for less bleed-through.

No date on the disc, but the choral music for this was printed in 1974, so we can figure (i.e., guess) the disc is from the same period.

On line, I see no reference to a regular LP issue of this performance, which seems weird, again in part because of the sheer quality of performance and recording.  Anyway, a gem for our tenth day of Christmas.

Click here to hear: The Christmas Story--SIUE Concert Chorale

The Christmas Story--Music by Wm. Billings--Arr. by Leonard Van Camp The Concert Chorale, Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, Leonard Van Camp, Director.


Tuesday, January 02, 2018

A cherry Xmas: "Christmas Holds No Joy for Me"--Harry Black (1928)

Please don't be misled--I do want you to have a joyful ninth day of Christmas.  I want everyone to.  Harry Black, however, harbors terrible memories of the holiday--memories that sound like something out of a sad 1928 country song.  By no coincidence, this is a sad 1928 country song, concocted by Carson Robison and Frank Luther.  Thanks a lot, Carson and Frank.

The flip side, Jesus the Light of the World, is much cheerier, if that helps.  Far more conventional Christmas fare, too.

Click here to hear: Christmas Holds No Joy for Me--Harry Black (1928)

Christmas Holds No Joy for Me--Harry Black, 1928
Jesus, the Light of the World--Same


Monday, January 01, 2018

The Christmas Choo Choo Train--Art Mooney and Laura Leslie (1950)

Welcome to the eighth day of Christmas (also known as New Year's Day)!  Today, a 1950 single by Art Mooney and His Orch., featuring Laura Leslie on lead vocal.  Charming sides, beautifully done, though I have no idea why the writers of Choo Choo Train inserted the quotation from The Girl I Left Behind Me in the melody.  Weird.

Click here to hear: The Christmas Choo Choo Train

The Christmas Choo Choo Train--Art Mooney and His Orch., v: Laura Leslie, The Skylarks, 1950
The Candy Land Parade--Art Mooney and His Orch., v: Laura Leslie, 1950