Another Parade Records Hits A' Poppin' ten-incher, credited to Bobby Powers and his "hits a 'poppin' orchestra," plus all six tracks from the six-track 78 rpm EP Top Hits V-20. You have been warned!
As ever, the Parade LP is made up of Prom label singles, and finding the original artist credits was complicated by two epic Prom misattributions--"Bob Hanley" for the female trio performing It May Sound Silly, and a vocal credit for Cherry Pink... in the absence of any vocal. I thought there was an outside chance that, in this case, maybe Parade had used the 18 top Hits version of Silly, as credited to a "Larsen Sisters," but a side-by-side comparison torpedoed that theory. Two very different fakes.
Prom/Waldorf crossover would have been cool, of course, and I have in fact discovered some early instances of such crossover--namely, from 1954, when Enoch Light departed SPC (Enoch must have carted some of his sides with him during the transition). But there's no SPC/Waldorf crossover happening here. What a great side story that would have made.
The true credit for each Parade track is listed below, and, as for the Top Hits titles, these were also released on Big Buy 4 Hit Tunes (a Gateway label), and the epic-train-wreck version of On Night also showed on the 1959 Crown 12 Top Hits (CLP 5038). On Gateway, the number is credited (discredited?) to one Al Christi, who sounds exactly like the equally bad vocalist of With the Wind and the Rain..., though Gateway blames that one on a "Paul Boonton." But, between these two epic misfires, One Night is the more "memorable." Basically, we have not only a vocalist who can't handle Elvis' part to save his life, we're presented with backing musicians who relentlessly plunk the wrong chords (I and IV instead of I and V). This understandably throws the singer even further off key. Thus, what would have been merely a lousy budget cover becomes a for-the-ages-awful counterfeit.
The other Top Hits tracks aren't that great, either, but they're reasonably competent, even if the Louis Prima and Keely Smith surrogates seem to lose the tricky rhythms near the end of That Old Black Magic. But it could have been a great deal worse. We might call it not-quite-magic. But a noble try, with a good band. Somehow, I had gone my entire 66 years without (to my memory) hearing the Prima/Keely hit.
As for the "Bobby Powers" Parade sides, I did a major audio-save on those, isolating the right channel (the left was beyond hope) and patching over the needle-dig repeat in Ebb Tide. I bridged the repeat pretty smoothly, though you'll nevertheless hear a gap. Don't worry--it's not your player. These Prom reissues are all competently done, as we'd expect, though the trio on It May Sound Silly had at least one consistently too-sharp singer (as in +-#). But, next to One Night, anything and everything can be forgiven in the way of pitch imprecision.
Pledging My Love is the single blog repeat--I posted the Prom single on Feb. 15, 2019.
I added the Peter Pan (SPC) label seven-inch 78 issue of Where Will the Dimple Be? which credits Lee Adams and the Crickets. The engineer mixed it with noticeably less bass than the LP cut. As for the "James Etta and P. Otis" credit on Dance With Me Henry, that's how it appeared on both the Etta James and Georgia Gibbs singles (Wallflower and Dance With...). And, of course, James Etta and P. Otis are Etta James and Johnny Otis. For once, we're not looking at a rack-jobber-label error.
I added a composer tag this time, using Mp3tag. And, in fact, as I type this I'll have to re-tag the Parade numbers, since I had to revise the credits after discovering that It May Sound Silly is, in fact, not the Top 18 Hits version. And if this essay sounds silly, you're not alone--it reads silly to me, too. Such is the risk taken when describing fake-hit track offerings. It's often impossible to chronicle these things in a manner remotely real-world in nature. They seem to exist in their own zone.
DOWNLOAD: Hits A' Poppin' and Top Hits (Parade 5012 and Top Hits V-20)
Hits A' Poppin' 5012
Unchained Melody--Bob Haley With the Prom Orchestra
Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White--Bob Daily (false credit) With the Prom Orch.
It My Sound Silly--Bob Hanley (false credit; unknown female trio) With the Prom Orch.
Ebb Tide--Loren Becker With Enoch Light and His Orchestra (1953)
Dance With Me Henry--Patty Kay With the Prom Orchestra
Pledging My Love--Mona Grey With the Prom Orchestra
Top Hits V-20
That Old Black Magic
With the Wind and the Rain in Your Hair
The All American Boy