Sunday, January 13, 2019

Various singles--Marais, Miranda, Miller; Don Cornell, Eddie Kirk, Carl Story, Harry James

The slow 1957 rock and roll ballad, A Face in the Crowd, refers to (or is literally from?) the famous  Elia Kazan movie of the same name starring Andy Griffith.  The lyrics are by Budd Schulberg, the film's screenwriter, though they're the usual love ballad with no relationship to the picture (far as I can tell).  I didn't see the entire picture, so I can't be sure it isn't in there, but I doubt it.  The music is by Tom Glazer.

The flip, Mama Guitar, is in the picture, at least briefly.  It's also by Schulberg and Glazer.

Next, the you-haven't-lived-until-you-heard-it selection of the playlist, the Mitch Miller-produced version of Josef Marais' The Zulu Warrior.  This is followed by the Waldorf fake-hit version of At the Hop, which I made longer with editing, since it was so short.  All Nite Long is an alternate title for the Jimmy Forrest classic, Night Train--this 1959 45 by Billy Vaughn rocks to a surprising degree, and it's in stereo, which couldn't have been typical of 1959 45s.  Eddie Kirk's Freight Train Breakdown, which showed up for me in a box of thrift store LPs many years ago, is one of my favorite singles ever--jazzy country, and it's a pre-Chuck Berry version of Ida Red.  Skipping ahead a little, we have "T" Texas Tyler's 1948 version of Red, using the actual title, and Tyler's version is also very country-jazzy.  Meanwhile, Ray Anthony's Brother Fats of 1951 is close enough to rock and roll to be rock and roll, imo.

Richard Hayes' version of Come On-a My House will not remind you of Rosemary Clooney's hit, and not just because it's a gender-switch version, but because it has a long verse and a considerably more elaborate arrangement.  The two versions are night and day.  Then, a gorgeous version of Richard Rodger's March of Siamese Children from The King and I, followed by a cheap but effective Tops label fake version of The Little White Cloud That Cried.  And... an incredible prepared piano version of Caravan by Ferrante and Teicher from 1952; the Ray Conniff composition (and arrangement of?) Easy, superbly performed by Harry James and his Orch. (and ripped from my 78 copy); Tony Bennett's rocking Close Your Eyes, from 1955, and the charming Music Box Tango, courtesy of Morton Gould conducting the Rochester "Pops" Orch., 1953.  From a Columbia Entre 45.

The Canadian band Illustration gives us Upon the Earth, from 1969, and it's interesting to hear something this Christian-fundamentalist coming from a progressive rock band--shows how times have changed.  Things end (no pun intended) with Percy Faith performing his very own Goin' Home Train.

CLICK HERE TO HEAR: Various Singles 1


A Face in the Crowd (Schulberg-Glazer)--Don Cornell, Orch. Dick Jacobs, 1957
Mama Guitar--Same
The Zulu Warrior--Marais, Miranda, Miller, 1952
Shot Gun Boggie (E. Ford)--Rosemary Clooney w. Orch. Dir. by Mitch Miller, 1951
At the Hop--Hal Willis and the Woodchuckers, 1957 (18 Top Hits; Waldorf)
All Nite Long--Billy Vaughn and his Orch., 1959
Freight Train Breakdown--Eddie Kirk, 1951
Brother Fats--Ray Anthony and his Orch., v: Gloria Craig and the Skyliners, 1951
Come On-a My House--Richard Hayes w, vocal group, Orch. c. George Bassman, 1951
The March of Siamese Children (Rodgers)--Norman Leyden Child's World Orch., 1959
The Little White Cloud That Cried--Nancy Brookes and the Toppers (Tops 312, 1952)
Caravan--Ferrante and Teicher, Two-pianos, 1952
Easy (Conniff-James)--Harry James and His Orch., 1946
Close Your Eyes--Tony Bennett, 1955
Music Box Tango--Morton Gould, c. the Rochester "Pops," 1953
Ida Red--"T" Texas Tyler and his Oklahoma Melody Boys, 1948
Tamboo (Cavez)--American Symphonic Band of the Air, 1955
Mocking Banjo--Carl Story and His Rambling Mountaineers, 1957
Upon the Earth--Illustration (1969)
Goin' Home Train (Faith)--Percy Faith and His Orch., 1959



Ernie said...

I've been wanting to hear this Zulu Warrior by the three M's since you mentioned it before. This should be good!

Buster said...

Thanks! Quite a diverse selection, all of interest. I am particularly pleased to meet up with Zulu Warrior. I see it's credited to Marais, Miranda and Miller! The only item here I have heard is the Tony Bennett version of Close Your Eyes.

David Federman said...

May I suggest that the "theme" for "A Face In the Crowd" is sung from the standpoint of the messiah-scouting female protagonist that Patricia Neal plays in this film. Of course, she falls in love with the villain. This is a cult-joiner's blues. Lee, I beg you to finally watch the movie all the way through because it has gained prophetic momentousness in terms of "predicting" our current president--62 years after its release. It's an incredible portrait of a celebrity psychopath. Glad I took time to download your latest batch of stuff and discontinue watching the hearings for our next Attorney General.