Sunday, April 28, 2019

Hit Parade of Ten Top Tunes--Jerry Rudolph and his Radio & TV Orchestra

What's a fake-hits LP without a pinup cover girl?  Take cover photo, tilt 90 degrees to the right, remove tint, and--instant pinup cover girl!

This ten-inch extremely budget LP on Today's Records (about whom neither I nor Discogs know a thing) features Jerry Rudolph and his Radio and TV Orchestra, and you just know that credit was for real, because it sounds so real.  I haven't had time to do track comparisons on these, but I strongly suspect they showed up on other labels, also--Prom, Gateway, Royale... who knows?  Or maybe Today's Records did its own stuff in its own studio.  Probability is very low, but if Today's Records could afford its own pinup cover girl, maybe it could afford its own counterfeit Frankie Laines, Sammy Davis, Jr.'s, Julius La Rosas, and Boyd Bennetts.

And I think Frankie Laine is who the unnamed singer on Hummingbird is trying to imitate.  He misses by many miles, but the guy mimicking Sammy Davis, Jr. down to the last scat-chorus syllable on Love Me or Leave Me is a far more successful copycat.  House of Blue Lights (I'm almost sure this is the version that appeared on Gateway Top Tune) is an excellent copy, and it's hard to miss with The Yellow Rose of Texas.  Get some snare drums, a chorus singing in two parts (strike that--sounds like three parts), add echo--instant Yellow Rose of Texas.  In the earliest versions of this song, the "sweetest little rosebud" was African-American, of course--"yellow" meaning light-skinned.  As for Ain't That a Shame, it's the Caucasian (Pat Boone) version being copied, unfortunately.  Meanwhile, the creepy Man in the Raincoat cover could have used a better whistler.  Besides straying off key, he almost comes in early (listen closely at the very start).

That song always leaves me feeling that, after absconding with the singer's dough, the man could have at least left her the raincoat.

And I just resurrected the twelve-inch Flying Saucer of Latest Top Tunes file at this post, another Today's Records gem by Jerry Rudolph.

To get today's Today's Records offering, click on link below.  Since the songs on this LP are 1955 hits, I'm guessing the LP is from that year.

DOWNLOAD:  Hit Parade of Ten Top Tunes--Jerry Rudolph and his Radio & TV Orch.

Sweet and Gentle
Yellow Rose of Texas
Love Me or Leave Me
Ain't That a Shame
The Bible Tells Me So
The Man in the Raincoat
House of Blue Lights

Hit Parade of Ten Top Tunes--Jerry Rudoph and his Radio & TV Orch. (Today's Records 1905)



Buster said...

I never knew that about the Yellow Rose of Texas. Your erudition is a source of amazement.

Bob in Vancouver said...

Lee, a question I have asked for years: What popular record had the first fade-out rather than an orchestrated ending? Can you help?

Bob in Vancouver

Lee Hartsfeld said...


Thanks. And check out Leadbelly's "Yellow Gal." Also, either Leadbelly or Howlin' Wolf (maybe both) sing a song with the line (I'm paraphrasing) "I don't want no black woman layin' her hands on me." Pretty sure it's Wolf. It was a class indicator. Prejudice within a put-upon group--not surprising. Human nature is human nature.


Yikes! Well, I'm almost sure the 1950 novelty "Molasses, Molasses (It's Icky Sticky Goo)" by Lenny Carson and the Whiz Kids has a fade-out ending. This distinguished tune came out in several versions, including one by Spike Jones. It's the first postwar pop side that comes to mind, though there's a fade-out ending all the way back in 1919 on the side "Barkin' Dog" by Gorman's Novelty Syncopators--Gorman being clarnietist Ross Gorman of Paul Whiteman (and Rhapsody in Blue) fame. Gorman imitates the yelping of a canine on his instrument, stepping away from the horn--a mechanical fade-out. Unless, of course, acoustical engineers had other means of clipping the volume. On the Peerless Quartet's 1918 "I Don't Know Where I'm Going But I'm on My Way," there's a fade-out effect with the group as a fog horn sounds and the orchestra lowers it volume. I just checked Wikipedia and it notes an 1894 78 called "The Spirit of '76" and mentions "Barkin' Dog"--crediting it to Ted Lewis by mistake--and the 1918 Billy Sunday Chorus of "America," which I now recall does have a fade-out.

Anyway, that's all from memory and a quick Wikipedia check. Here's the Wiki piece:

Ernie said...

I'm sure if they'd paid the money to hire a model and schedule a shoot, they'd have taken more than one picture. But maybe it figures into their one-take and done ethic... :)

Buster said...

It was probably a stock shot. If they used more than one, they would have had to pay for it.

Michael said...

What a great site you have here. I was wondering if you had the record in this series from 1957 (I think) which also featured Jerry Rudolph. The Songs on that disc are Heart, Honey Babe, A Blossom Fell, Don`t Drive me away, Hey Mr. Banjo Learnin The Blues, Hard To Get, Rock Around The Clock, and somethings Gotta Give. There might be some tunes i missed. I have this disc but it is in very horrible condition. BTW Keep up the great work.

Lee Hartsfeld said...

Michael, thanks! And I have those tracks on one or two Rudolph EPs, which means they're in shortened (edited) form, but that would make a good next project. I'm trying to remember which of the five or six "fake" versions of RATC was credited to Rudolph--I have trouble keeping all the different RATC versions in mind. Just around the time of "Clock," the cheapies started combining their resources, with only one or two masters making the rounds of all the different label groups--meaning much, much duplication. Bell and Waldorf continued doing their own takes, but otherwise the days of five or six budget cover versions was over.

I think I know which piles the Rudolph EPs are in! I hope, anyway....

Lee Hartsfeld said...

Which pile, that is....