Saturday, July 23, 2011

Christmas In July 2011-Day 23

In honor of my finding a whole stack of great records today for Christmas in July, and then getting a whole bunch of them ripped, you're getting twenty different tracks tonight from 20 different records.  I can't tell you how many hours of work that represents, because if I sat down and figured it out, it would be too depressing.  So I'm going to pretend that it took me five minutes and now I'm done.  So here, without further ado, are more Christmas songs than on your typical Christmas album.

1. Alaskan Rag by John Arpin from The Other Side Of Ragtime (Scroll LSCR-103, Produced In Cooperation With The Ragtime Society, Mono, 1966).  OK, so a song about Alaska is not very Christmassy, but at least it's cold...

2. Ave Maria-Arcadelt by The St. Elizabeth Choir-L.P. Valentino, Choir Director from The St. Elizabeth Choir Sings At The Vatican Pavilion (St. Elizabeth, South Huntington, NY, No Label 111765, Mono, 1965).  Is this another different version of Ave Maria?  Hard to believe...

3. Blue Christmas by The Hollywood Studio Symphony Orchestra Conducted By Mitchell Powell from the original soundtrack to the Billy Wilder film The Apartment (United Artists UAL 3105, Mono, 1960).  This is a rerun but I couldn't resist when I saw another copy of the record.  Unfortunately, it looks like my original share was a stereo copy and this one is mono.  It'll have to do for now, though.  And this isn't the song you think it is...

4. Dancing Snowflakes by Charles Dorian And His Orchestra from the LP Calendar Sketches (Dot DLP-3046, Mono, 1957).  This was one of the records I found today, and probably the one I was most excited about.  It features an entire suite of songs about the seasons, including three great winter tunes.  The front of the jacket promised four wintertime songs, but the back and the label itself only list three.  But they're all good.

5. Danses Caracteristiques From Nutcracker Suite by Leonard Bernstein With The New York Philharmonic from Leonard Bernstein Conducts For Young People (Columbia Masterworks ML 5841, Mono, 1963).  Six of the dances from The Nutcracker, all rolled up into one long sequence.

6. December by Cicero Pig With Sandpiper Chorus & Orchestra from Bugs Bunny Songfest (Golden LP 71, Mono, 1961).  Interesting little item here, with all the voices performed by Mel Blanc himself.  The second side is a collection of 12 songs about all the months of the year.  I've no idea who Cicero Pig was, so I looked him up.  Apparently, he's Porky's nephew, or maybe Petunia's.  A nice song for anyone who's birthday is in December.  Not true, but nice.

7. June In January from Guy Lombardo And His Royal Canadians from Movieland Melodies (Decca DL 8895, Mono, 1955).  Nice vocal version, but Guy puts me to sleep.

8. Peppermint Pipes by Count Basie And His Orchestra from Back With Basie-More Hit Performances Of The '60's (Roulette R 52113, Mono, 1964).  If I could get away with Clarinet Candy the other day, I think this should count, too.

9. Shan Shan Uma (Jingle Horse) by Takarazuka Dance Theatre from the self-titled LP (Columbia 'Adventures In Sound' WL 163, Mono, 1959).  The liner notes tell me that this track has nothing to do with Christmas, but the sleigh bells say otherwise...

10. Baby, It's Cold Outside as re-imagined by The Stereo Brass Choir from Stereo Dialogue For Brass (Columbia CS 8290, Stereo, 1960).  Someday I need to put all these wild experiments in stereo together into one Christmas collection.

11. Candy Candy Polka by Happy Louie And His Polka Band from Candy Candy Polka (Dyno DLP 5003, Stereo).  Another candy song!

12. Doll Dance by Vincent Lopez And His Orchestra from Nola And Other Piano Instrumentals (Carlton STLP 12/302, Stereo, 1959).  Good stuff, if not at all Christmas.

13. Green Sleeves by Oscar Clinton And His Orchestra from A Salute To The Great Band Leaders (Spin-O-Rame S-27, Stereo).  Probably not worth the effort.

14. Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring on the organ by Fenner Douglass from Fenner Douglass On The Flentrop, Duke University Chapel (Gothis 38114, Stereo, 1984).  I'm running out of things to say.  I guess I could mention that this is the second track from this LP I've shared.

15. The Month Of January by Tommy Makem from Songs Of Tommy Makem (Tradition (Everest) TLP 1044, Stereo, 1961).  You probably know Tommy Makem from his work with The Clancy Brothers.  And if you don't have The Clancy Brothers Christmas album in your collection, go find a copy.

16. Pine Cones And Holly Berries (With It's Beginning To Look Like Christmas) by Laurence Naismith, Janis Paige & Fred Gwynne from the original Broadway soundtrack to Meredith Willson's Here's Love (Columbia Masterworks KOS 2400, Stereo, 1963).  Been looking for this for quite a while and finally found it today.  Good luck finding any other holiday tunes from Fred Gwynne, who you may know as Herman Munster.  (Although now that I think about it, there may have been a couple of soundbytes from that show...)

17. The Sad, Sad Rocking Horse by David Rose And His Orchestra, another track from the album Cimarron And Other Great Songs (MGM SE3953, Stereo, 1961).  I think I've shared this out before from a different LP.  I always jump at the chance to share some David Rose.

18. Wedding Of The Painted Doll-Broadway Melody-Doll Dance, a medley from Lawrence Welk And His Orchestra from The Champagne Music Of Lawrence Welk (Dot DLP 25342, Stereo, 1961).  Turns out all the songs were written or co-written by someone named Freed.

19. Winter Dreams by Carl Stevens And His Orchestra, from another of those great percussion LPs, Skin And Bones (Mercury MG 20365, Mono, 1958).  I was excited to find something on here that I could shoehorn into Christmas In July.

20.  Child Of Winter (Christmas Song), an unexpected treat from The Beach Boys.  I dug this up one of those old Warner Brothers loss-leader double LPs from the seventies, The Works (Warner Bros 2xLP PRO 610, Stereo, 1975).  Seemed like an odd place to find a Christmas song, especially one so little known, but there it was.  I guess this was originally a single from the Beach Boys sometime in the early seventies that went nowhere.  I think it's been added to some of their Christmas collections since then, but it's still not something you hear very often.

And that's it.  Twenty songs, two seconds shy of an hour of music in there for you.  Hope you enjoy it.  Here's the download link, I'll be back tomorrow with more, but probably not quite this much more.


Buster said...

Gracious, you are the busy sharer.

That "Freed" is Arthur Freed, who later produced MGM musicals like Singing in the Rain and The Bandwagon.

Fred Gwynne had just starred in another TV show called Car 54 Where Are You when Here's Love opened on Broadway. A little before your time, but twas when I was in high school.

stubbysfears said...

Interesting that the Vincent Lopez "Doll Dance" is a different arrangement than the one on Day 5. I like this one a lot better.

The Beach Boys track was part of their 2nd Christmas album which WB hated and refused to release. The album was mostly Mike Love, Al Jardine and Brian Wilson, with little or no contribution from the rest of the group. As Doctor Demento's (aka Barry Hansen) liner notes on "The Works" suggest, they recorded their 2nd Christmas album in 74-75. After a prolonged battle with the label, the group released the LP themselves in 1977 but couldn't use the name "Beach Boys" for legal reasons. So it was released as by "The California Legends". Eventually, the years passed, tempers faded, there was money to be made and the tracks from "The California Legends" were brought back into the WB Beach Boys fold. You know, if anybody was interested.

The rest of that "The Works" set is pretty good, too. As were most of the WB loss leader albums. Wish they still made em like that.