Saturday, August 12, 2017

Christmas In July 2017 Day 43

And it's time for the Saturday Night edition of Christmas in July.  Certainly not the only Saturday night edition, but the one that comes today.  And I know that doesn't make any sense, but it's late and I want to go to bed.  But I've made it this far, I have to keep going.  Maybe about a week left.  I don't want to keep stretching it out, but I keep discovering so much good stuff, I want to get it all out there.  I'm well past any other year at this point, I think I'm going to wind up past any other two years added together!  That's a lot of music.  I'm going to need a new needle for the record player, and maybe a new tonearm, too, I've been putting a lot of up and down on it in the past month and a half.  But you don't care about my problems, you care about the music, so let's get after it!

1. White Christmas, a very short, medley-extracted version by Guy Lombardo And His Royal Canadians from the very big album The Lombardo Years-Guy Lombardo And His Royal Canadians Play The Best-Loved Lombardo Medleys (Capitol 4xLP STDL-2181, Stereo, 1964).  There are 160 tracks included in the medleys spread across these 8 sides.  I've brought you two of them.

2. Toyland by Fred Waring And His Pennsylvanians from the boxset Fred Waring And His Pennsylvanians Sing America's Favorite Songs (Reader's Digest 8xLP RDA-238, Stereo, 1981).  Fred and his bands recorded a lot of Christmas music over the years.  I can name about eight albums right off the top of my head for three different labels.  That's a lot of music, but a small fraction of his total discography.

3. Three Kings by Oratorio Chorus Of The Guelph Light Opera Company-Charles M. Wilson, Mus. Doc., Director, from Songs For All Seasons (Guelph Light Opera Company GLOC 1968, Stereo).  I was pleasantly surprised by the songs I pulled from this one.  Sometimes you cringe at the noise coming out of the hi-fi, but not this time.

4. Sound Of Music Medley (a) The Sound Of Music (b) My Favorite Things (c) Do Re Mi (d) Climb Every Mountain, some slightly exotic versions of some familiar tracks, this time by Arthur Lyman from The Shadow Of Your Smile (Hifi Records Life Series SL 1033, Stereo, 1966).  You may not think it's Christmas music, but it sure is a change from the normal interpretations.

5. Snow Fall by Enoch Light And The Light Brigade-Piano: Dick Hyman, from Sounds Of The Big Bands (EMI-Columbia (UK) TWO 351 (A Recording Of Project 3 Records, New York, U.S.A.), Stereo, 1970).  Once again I wound up with a foreign copy of a fairly common American record.  And there's Dick Hyman again, though it's no surprise to see him on something with Enoch Light's name on it.

6. Let There Be Peace On Earth, tonight's obligatory track from Monnajean McIlwain and her album Ten Thousand Angels-Christmas And Gospel Favorites (Mus-I-Col 103727/103728, Stereo).  This isn't really a Christmas song, but it's become associated with the season over the years.  And if you ever get asked by a genie for a wish, don't forget about world peace.  And not a piece of world music.  You gotta be real specific with genies.

7. The Last Day Of Fall by Hal McKusick Septet from the LP Cross Section-Saxes (Decca DL 79209, Stereo, 1958).  This should probably be a fall track, but since the last day of fall comes just a few days before Christmas, I thought I'd be OK throwing it in here.

8. I Remember Yule, another great poem by Ogden Nash from the album Ogden Nash Reads Ogden Nash (Caedmon TC 1015, Stereo, 1953).  I don't for one second believe this album came out in 1953, but that was the date I found associated with this LP in a couple different places.  I'm guessing mid to late 60's, but I'm not sure why.

9. Holiday For Strings by The Mighty Accordion Band from They Said It Couldn't Be Done! (Capitol ST 1212, Stereo, 1959).  Sometimes I pick up an album and really, really want to find something on it I can share.  This one was like that, and I figured I could throw in another version of this David Rose track without too much fuss.  The cover of this LP features a gorilla playing the accordion, by the way.  You can see why I'd be attracted to such a thing.

10. Heart Of Winter by The George Shearing Trio from Jazz Moments (Capitol ST 1827, Stereo, 1962).  I wish George Shearing had done a full-on Christmas LP back in the day.  That could have been something.

11.  Fum, Fum, Fum by Alan Mills from the LP Holiday Songs (Bowmar B 2055 168, Stereo, 1966).  I think I'm about done with all the kiddie music.  Not sure if that's a good thing or not, there's some good music in there.

12. Doll Dance by Lou Busch, His Piano And Orchestra, from Lazy Rhapsody (Capitol ST1072, Stereo, 1958).  Did you know he was married to Margaret Whiting for a while?  I thought it was Peggy Lee he married, glad I looked that up before I posted.

13. The Crooked Christmas Star, '73 by Dory Previn from her self-titled LP (Warner Bros BS 2811, Stereo, 1974).  This was a bit of a surprise.  Not sure how I even noticed it.  This LP looks more like an inner sleeve than an album cover.  I almost passed right by it, but my Christmas sense started tingling, and there it was!  Oh, it occurs to me you might not know that Dory Previn was once married to Andre Previn.  She left him when he got Mia Farrow pregnant.  And that leads me into all sort of  Frank Sinatra and Woody Allen stories, but I have to get to bed some day...

14. Go Tell It On The Mountain (Hymn Of Christmas) by Dorothy Maynor, Soprano, With Unaccompanied Male Choir, from Dorothy Maynor Sings Spiritual And Sacred Songs (RCA Camden CAL-344, Mono, 1957).  I believe this is a reissue of a track originally released on shellac in the early forties.  Good stuff.  Again, I touched the LP and my Christmas sense made me look.  Of course, it makes me look at hundreds of records that have nothing to do with the holidays, too.  It's not perfect.

15. Morning In Winter, read by the author Harry Behn from the LP Poetry Parade-Poets Read Their Poetry For Children (Weston Woods Studios 2xLP ww703 & ww704, Mono).  Another short bit of good comp filler.

16. The Night Before Christmas by Rev R. B. Thieme, Jr. from the LP Great Chapters Of The Bible (Publications And Tape Department Berachah Church, Houston, TX, 12" 16-2/3 RPM HEC 017, Mono).  Couple things to note here.  This is not the poem by Clement Moore, it is a sermon along the lines of the true meaning of Christmas.  This is probably the longest track I have ever shared with you.  And it's recorded at 16-2/3 RPM, which I guess was fairly common for long spoken word recordings for a short while.  I had to record it while it still sounded like chipmunks preaching at you, then slow it back down in post production.  Even after I slowed it down, I thought he was still talking too fast, but I'm pretty sure I did it right.  You'll listen to it for a couple minutes then put it in the trash, but I can't resist such things.

And there you have it, a pretty good night.  Some cool stuff, I think.  Now let me see if it will all fit in one download.  That sermon is a big file...  Nope, all fits into one handy download.



JustaJeepGuy said...

I thought Leroy Anderson wrote "Holiday For Strings". Am I mistaken? I thought I read it on a Reader's Digest album. Whoever wrote it, I kinda thought the whole idea of "Holiday For Strings" was---to be played on strings. It's not "Holiday For Accordions", after all...

barba said...

the young twin blondes from down the hall knocked on my door earlier wanting to borrow some ice. you see, they had this bottle of grey goose and, hey, wouldn’t i like to come down the hall and share it with them if i wasn’t doing anything else special on a saturday night. but i told them no; that, while they could have the ice, i myself was busy listening to the reverend r.b. thieme, monnajean mcilwain, and the oratorio chorus of the guelph light opera company. some other time, perhaps.

the showpiece accordian selection reminds me of my introduction to the instrument back in the 50s, watching ted mack’s original amateur hour. they’d always have some frightened fat kid on, staring straight into the camera with big sweat marks under each arm, invariably playing flight of the bumble bee or khachaturian’s sabre dance. the kid always lost, usually to some singing fireman from new jersey. had any of them chosen ‘holiday for strings’, perhaps they would have won. after all, if it’s good enough for a gorilla, it should be good enough for ted mack.

Buster said...

I was asking for Holiday for Accordions just a few days ago, and here it is, played by a gorilla! What wonders you possess.

jeep guy - "Holiday for Strings" was David Rose. "Bugler's Holiday" was Leroy Anderson. I get them confused myself.

Rick R. said...

Here's to the greatest Christmas In July ever! The gems you come with are just amazing. I'll call this Christmas In July Day 42b, since there was already Day 42 on Friday.

Ernie said...

Whoops, better go fix that, sorry...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the stuff. Ogden Nash read his poems for this recording in New York on February 25, 1953.

Kwork said...

Love your comments that go along with the offerings. Thanks for another stellar Christmas day!