Wednesday, December 14, 2016

It's A Gas!

Don't ask what made me think of this one today, but I did, so here it is again.  Great little single-sided 45 from the Boston area, it evidently started out life as an advertising jingle, but became so popular they created a longer version and released the record.  I think you'll be humming this all afternoon once you download and listen to Al Sears And His Countrymen-The Montreal Express (Blue Flame Records 1-Sided 7" 45 RPM, Stereo).  This one was first shared out around these parts in 2011, and I advise you to go back and read some of the comments for more of the story behind this record.



humanebean said...

Ernie, I have been a sporadic visitor to your blog over the last several years and have been remiss in express my respect and gratitude for your efforts. This particular post presents the perfect opportunity to remedy this. I live in the frosty Northeast, where ubiquitous jingle was part of the soundtrack of my youth. At one point in my adolescence, my best friend Eddie dug up a copy of the 45 somewhere and gave it to me, much to my joy & excitement. Lord knows where it got to, but it is no longer in my possession. My brother Jim, who shared my love of Xmas music & pop culture oddities, particularly ones from Ye Olde Days, delighted in recalling this tune, and was well aware that I could recall the artist & many of the lyrics.

One day a few years ago, while he was convalescing in a cardiac rehab facility following surgery, my brother called me excitedly on his room phone: "Hey, Chris! How did that old jingle about the Montreal Express go?" I launched into my best warbly baritone and sang as much as I could recall. My brother half-covered the phone and spoke to someone else in the room, "Whaddya think of THAT?!" I heard a deep, reedy voice say, "Holy Cow! I didn't think ANYBODY remembered that song." My brother returned to the line and asked me to guess the identity of the fellow he was sharing a room with. I couldn't even imagine, but by now you may have guessed the reply: "Who sang that song?" "Why, Al Sears!" "YOU GUESSED IT!!!" I was floored, but not apparently as floored as Al. I met him on my next visit. He was a very nice man, struggling with his own health issues, but cheered to think he was not entirely forgotten, even if the jingle lived on in some memories.

This Christmas is a difficult one for me, as my brother Jim passed away just over a month ago. I miss him terribly, and have struggled to find my Xmas Spirit, even at times in the extensive Holiday music collection that we shared through the years; he began making mix tapes, primarily from cassettes in the late 80's and early 90's. We made them together for many years, and I took over the DJ role in the last decade or so as his health waned. This year, I know he is listening in from beyond the veil, but ... well, you know.

Please forgive my lack of brevity, but I wanted to thank you for all the music you have shared, and continue to. It has meant a great deal to discover new treasures on your blog over time, and several of this year's shares are already among my newest favorites. Thank you as well for sharing this particular record, allowing me to share my recollections and provide the opportunity to wish you and yours the Merriest of Christmases. May you find Joy & Peace in your own celebrations, and enjoy a special satisfaction in the knowledge that your efforts have given others so much happiness.

All the best,


Ernie said...

Thanks for sharing that, Chris. That makes this all worthwhile.