Sunday, April 09, 2006
Let there be SWING!
I want to start off with the other side of a Will Fyffe 78 I put up a few postings ago. Since now I have a hour-plus each way commute to work, I threw the contents of the shellac shanty holding folder and Lee's MY(P)WHAE & Vintage Lounge sites onto a mp3 CDR so I can haev wonderful randomness to soothe the jangled nerves instead of the crap one hears on commercial radio. Makes one HELL of a difference! Anyways, I was listening to the Will Fyffe sides, and thought, 'What the hey, I should share the other side too', so, here it is... Will Fyffe's "Sailing Up The Clyde", a story about leaving one's home to venture onto the high seas, or at least that was the original intent :) I'll have to do up some Sir Harry Lauder sides so you can compare.
Next, we have a nice waltz from Joseph C Smith's Orchestra (a companion to a side posted earlier), "Three O'clock in the Morning". A classic Victor Bat Wing acoustical side, nicely recorded and the remaster came out nicely, or so I think anyways.
Does it look like I am doing house-cleaning here? Well, maybe, but there's a method to my madness... it's called 'sharing the wealth' :) either that or 'drown them with material!!'
Here's a companion, kind-of, to the bird call story disc, "Children's Songs and Games (part 1)" and "Children's Songs and Games (part 2)", performed quite aptly by Prince's Orchestra on a blue label Columbia acoustic recording. Prince was very good at taking the mundane children's songs and making a nice orchestral suite out of it. Mr. Prince was quite prolific at recording suites of airs and collections of songs, to the point that the practice of combining two or three popular tunes of the day into a medley, and calling it by another name, may have originated with his technique. I know a lot of artists did that during the mid-acoustical era...
One more comedic oddity before we get to the swing stuff... Cal Stewart made a lot of records under the name "Uncle Josh". These were stories from the point of view of a person from 1900-era rural America, a 'country bumpkin' as it were. There are several people that collect Cal Stewart "Uncle Josh" recordings exclusively! Cal recorded for Victor, Columbia, and Edison, and his stories can be found on both disc and cylinder format. This recording, "Uncle Josh Gets A Letter From Home", is on a Columbia disc, and dates from some time in the 1910s. His laugh is pretty infectious, too.
Now, on to the good stuff (if you're a swing fan)... I found these in the same pile as the Hawaiian discs, in pretty good shape, and quite listenable!
If you're into Frank Sinatra, here's an early recording of him while he was with the Tommy Dorsey orchestra, "Snootie Little Cutie". Frankie shares vocal duties with Connie Haines and the Pied Pipers in this song about a girl so taken with romance and moonlight and stuff... All penned by one of my favorite songwriters of the day, Bobby Troup. Yes, he was Dr. Joe Early on the old "Emergency" TV series, the frumpy one who was hooked up with Nurse Dixie (played cool as a cucumber by Julie London). Bobby and Julie were married in real life, and I think that she did some singing for the band he had going in the Los Angeles area. Bobby wrote a BUNCH of good material, and this is one of his gems, I think. The recording is definately post-WW2 (or the release is, anyways... the label actually says "RCA Victor" and not just "Victor"), but I think that the recording engineer had stuffed the mics with his old socks or something... very muffled. But it still swings... I tried to get some of the high end back on the re-master, but to not much avail...
The reverse side (which is actually the 'A' side) is a VERY nice instrumental swing session by Tommy & the band, "Tom Foolery". I don't know who did the hot trumpet solo, but it COOKS. I'm gonna have to get out all my information on sessions, but, in the meantime, if anyone has information or session data, PLEASE leave a comment and I'll share it.
(Addendum: much thanks to Lady Domi who supplied me with this in the comments:
"If you're talking about Victor 20-2116, 'Snooty Little Cutie' was recorded on February 19, 1942 in Hollywood and 'Tom Foolery' on April 8, 1946 in New York. Judging from the line-up, the trumpet player must be Charlie Shavers (he's the hottest guy in the section, at least)..."
Thanks again!!! Brilliant stuff :) )
The other swing 78 I'll share with you is in not as good of shape as the Dorsey side, but it's still a couple of nice numbers...
one of which was written by Bobby Troup! Here we have Johnny Messner and His Orchestra backing Jeanne D'Arby doing the Bobby Troup classic "Daddy". This is an earlier version of the song than the June Christy & Stan Kenton version, and does not show up on the ASCAP database. The release is, I THINK, pre-WW2 Decca (blue-label) and suffers from their inconsistent shellac quality, but I think I got most of the crud out of it.
The B-side is an interesting little instrumentsl semi-stomper, "Mobile Flag Stop", subtitled "Catching the 8:02 Local". A good train-motif song, it chugs along merrily, something harder than the Toonerville Trolley, but not as hard-charging as a good version of "The Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe". Again, suffering from the Decca shellac issue, but listenable, nonetheless.
Well, enough for one night, I'll post some more Hawaiian stuff tomorrow, because I have gobs of it here!
As always, right-click on the link to download & enjoy!
Thanks for posting feedback, please continue, it makes my day :)
Do you want the full line-up?
PS: Can't wait for the day when the 'word verification' will spell a dirty word in French!...
Thanks for the info! I was crawling the net looking for who made "Daddy" popular, forgot it was June Christy... and didn't know Julie London recorded it (actually, now that I think about it, I HAVE that on one of her LPs...), but she would have, since her hubby wrote the thing :)
Yep, this is definitely Charlie Shavers. I love how he tears in on the band on this one. Alvin Stoller is on drums on 'Tom Foolery', and it's a Tommy Todd arrangement.
The drummer on the first side is Buddy Rich, by the way.
Take 2 of 'Down by the old millstream' is slightly better (less worse?) than Take 1, but still...
Guess I'm gonna get me another cup of coffee before wandering off to more hospitable parts of the blogosphere...
Dontcha dare do that again!
I have some other discs that may redeem the home recording genre, just have to get to them and re-encode them...
...and I fixed the comments issue on the AudiOddities site too, thanks for bringing that to my feeble attention.