Friday, December 15, 2006

25 Days Of Christmas-Day 15

Hello, and welcome to day 15. In case you haven't been paying attention, I'm giving you a track a day (in addition to my normal shares) that is intended to be a nice little Christmas CD. Each one comes from some random slice of vinyl in my collection, and none of them really have anything in common. The collection is called 25 Days Of Christmas, and with a little luck, I'll have some artwork for you by day 25, Christmas. Depends on how much I can get done between now and then, really. It's a busy time of year, as I'm sure you're aware. Anyhow, tonight's artist needs no introduction to most of you, so here's The Harmonicats-Winter Wonderland from An All-Star Christmas "We Wish You The Merriest" (Columbia CS 8499, 1961). As far as I know, this was the only true Christmas recording from the real Harmonicats. There was a later album of Christmas music from The Don Les' Harmonicats, but it's wasn't really the same band. There were some sorta-Christmas tracks from these guys during Christmas in July, if you need some more of that great harmonica sound. The photo below is from the back of the LP shown above.
Previous tracks:
Steve Allen and Ricky Vera-Can I Wait Up For Santa Claus?
Ricardo Montalban & Randy Newman-La Campanilla
Ralph Carmichael-The New Hallelujah
Lawrence Welk With The Lennon Sisters-Santa From Santa Fe
Billy May-March Of The Toys
The Davis Sisters-The Christmas Boogie
Anna Russell-Please Santa Claus
Kathy Dunn-Santaville
The Williams Brothers-The Holiday Season
The Ed Sullivan Orchestra-I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
The Banjo Barons-Jolly Old St. Nick & Jingle Bells
Johnny Brandon-Santa Claus, Jr.
Johnny Mathis-Have Reindeer, Will Travel
The Crew-Cuts-Twinkle Toes


PDMan said...

The Don Les Harmonicats were kinda sorta the same band. The original members of the Harmonicats were Jerry Murad, Al Fiore and Don Les - Murad was the leader and Don Les was the "bassist.". As members changed throughout the years, there was a Murad version and and Don Les version. Although different bands, each was led by an original member.

Ernie said...

Thanks for the info, PDMan. Even though Don Les was an original member, the stuff on the Christmas LP, which I'm thinking of sharing out, is not as good as this track. It certainly wouldn't have gotten the Harmonicats much of a reputation if this had been one of their early releases.

Now, any idea where this track came from? Is it exclusive to the record? I believe the Les Paul track on there is exclusive, but I don't know about any of the others...

PDMan said...

The Les Paul track was released exclusively on this LP. (It has since been reissued on the Collectables "The Complete Columbia Singles" CD). As near as I can tell, there was never a Murad-led Christmas LP...only the one by Don Les.

Brad said...

This was among the first bunch of LP's that I digitized (because it was one of my wife's favorite records as a kid).

Ernie said...

King-I need to get one of the tracks from you. Mine skips... But I can't remember which song.

Anonymous said...

Oh, would begging for a re-post be appropriate? I would LOVE to hear this one !! I only have two of their albums, and this would really be amazing to hear!

Annalisa said...

Paul rich is my great grandpa his real last name is zimmerman

Unknown said...

Al Fiore told me that the head of Columbia records requested that the Harmonicats come up with a Christmas song for this album and the fact that they were under contract with Columbia they were happy to do it.

Ernie said...

Turns out the Harmonicats were involved with at least one earlier Christmas-themed effort from Richard Hayes.

I hope to share a version sometime this season, and a rather unique New Year's track from them as well. Great stuff!