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  • mistermuse 12:00 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bernice Petkere, Bing Crosby, , , , , , , , On the Sunny Side of the Street, Starlight,   

    TWO TO GO 

    As 2019 goes into the history books, we close out the year and our series of 1920s-30s female songwriters with two of the best: BERNICE PETKERE and DOROTHY FIELDS.

    PETKERE, the longest lived (1901-2000) but perhaps least remembered of the women in this series, had her greatest success as a composer in the 1930s. This hit (with lyrics by Joe Young) was recorded in early 1932 by a rising star by the name of Bing Crosby:

    Petkere, primarily a composer, also wrote the lyrics to a few of her songs, including….

    Saving the class of the field for last, we turn to the most prolific lady lyricist of the era (and the first woman to be elected to the Songwriters Hall of Fame), DOROTHY FIELDS, “the only female songwriter of the golden age whose name has not sunk into oblivion with time.” –Deborah Grace Winer, author of ON THE SUNNY SIDE OF THE STREET, subtitled THE LIFE AND TIMES OF DOROTHY FIELDS

    Named after Dorothy of Wizard of Oz fame, she teamed with composer Jimmy McHugh in 1927 to write many hits over the next eight years, including this all-time standard in 1930:

    Fields went on to write many songs with other composers until her death in 1974….but as much as I’d like to post links to more of Fields work, I’m going to resist temptation (you know what they say about too much of a good thing), Take It Easy*, and call it a Fields day

    ….except to say, Happy New Year!

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    *the title, it so happens, of a Fields song I resisted linking to (recorded by Fats Waller)

     

     
    • calmkate 3:22 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      wow I actually know most of Dorothy’s songs … that’s a huge achievement! I had often wondered who had written some of them … but not enough to look her up 🙂

      great way to welcome in the new decade, doubt I’ll see the next 😎

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 8:30 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, Kate. What better way to ring out the old and “welcome in the new decade” than with songs that stand the test of time, and know that if we are still around “in the next decade,” these great songs will still be around too.

        Liked by 3 people

        • calmkate 7:28 pm on December 31, 2019 Permalink

          these songs will be around for all time, they are so memorable … not sure I am that memorable!

          Like

        • mistermuse 1:30 am on January 1, 2020 Permalink

          Neither am I, Kate, but if it’s any consolation, it’s far better not to be remembered, than to be remembered like the likes of Donald Trump will be.

          Liked by 1 person

    • scifihammy 8:09 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve enjoyed your entertaining posts and movie/song clips this year, and look forward to more next year. 😀
      Happy New Year to you and all the best for 2020. 🙂

      Like

    • mistermuse 8:23 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate that, scifi — best New Year’s wishes to you as well.

      Like

    • GP Cox 9:53 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ashley 10:02 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Great post this! And thanks for the introduction to Pamela Rose! Born in the 50’s I’m not sure where I’ve heard so many of these songs before! Also thanks for the introduction to Diana Krall, great voice, just my sort of music and that piano! Couldn’t make out the make but the old well worn sound was wonderful.
      Have a happy healthy and peaceful New Year!

      Like

      • mistermuse 11:17 am on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Ashley, have I ever told you that you have great taste in music?
        But seriously, I’m seriously pleased that you dig this post. As for Diana Krall, I couldn’t agree more — I think she’s the finest jazz vocalist since Mel TormĂŠ, and yet virtually unknown outside of jazz circles. Such a pity that great jazz singers have almost no place in recent popular music culture.

        Like

    • smbabbitt 3:57 pm on December 31, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Great selection of songs!

      Like

    • America On Coffee 1:49 am on January 23, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Classics live on! A great selection! 💕☕️☕️

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 6:41 pm on September 11, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bing Crosby, , German, good news, , Italian, , , Pig Latin, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, The Andrews Sisters, Turkish   

    NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS 

    No news is good news, except in a newspaper. –Evan Esar

    Sept. 11 is NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS DAY. This blog is not a newspaper, so today I will go with all the NO NEWS I know because I know NO NEWS is GOOD NEWS so far as NO NEWS being GOOD NEWS goes. Assuming you are with me so far, let’s see where in the world NO NEWS takes us:

    1. No noticias

    2. Icksnay ewsnay

    3. Nao noticias

    4. Nessuna notizia

    5. Keine nachrichten

    6. Pas de nouvelles

    7. Brak wiadomosci

    8. Habersiz kalmak

    9. Nihil nuntium

    How many of those “No news” languages do you think you recognized? Take a fun-guess. Remember, this is not a test, so….

    Just to prove I’m not going to hog all the answers, here’s a clue to #2:

    So much No News for now; let us revel in the Good News.

    Modo vincis, modo vinceris.

     
    • David Scott Moyer 7:28 pm on September 11, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I’m sure of 5

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 8:07 pm on September 11, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Great, Scott! As the post’s last line says in Latin, “You win some, you lose some” — and you won a majority.

      Liked by 2 people

    • calmkate 12:40 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Only 5 for sure … is 7 Polish?
      This post intro sounds a bit like Abbott and Costello’s “Who’s on first base”!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 1:11 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        You nailed the “Pole” position, Kate — 7 is indeed Polish. I already gave away Pig Latin as 2. Here’s how the rest line up:
        1. Spanish 3. Portuguese 4. Italian 5. German 6. French 8. Turkish 9. Latin

        Liked by 2 people

        • calmkate 1:12 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink

          well done you, the Deutsche was easy to pick … I’m better with the sound or accent of a language than the written word 🙂

          Liked by 2 people

        • Lindi Roze 6:48 pm on September 16, 2019 Permalink

          Well, I got the Latin languages, including pig latin! Easy peasy- the others were “Greek to me” 😉

          Liked by 1 person

      • Lindi Roze 6:46 pm on September 16, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Clam kate, That’s one of my favorite routines. Our local radio station would always play it on opening day when I was a kid.

        Liked by 2 people

        • calmkate 8:28 pm on September 16, 2019 Permalink

          I worked with a well know radio presenter who was called “Groover” cos it was his theme song … they forgot his given name 🙂

          Liked by 2 people

    • MG WELLS 1:33 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Glad to see you make an infamous day a bit lighter. Thanks for sharing and wishing you a blessed day.

      Liked by 1 person

    • masercot 8:27 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I DO love me some Andrews Sisters!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:31 am on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        That clip is from ROAD TO RIO (1947), one of the better films in the famous Bing Crosby-Bob Hope “Road” series.

        Like

    • Elizabeth 4:59 pm on September 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Best song ever is from The Wiz sung by the wicked witch. “Don’t you bring me no bad news.” I think it is Trump’s theme song.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Eliza 1:49 pm on September 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      No news is good news. Or may be good news. After all, no one plans a murder out loud.
      Love, light and glitter

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 2:50 pm on September 13, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Funny you should mention “murder out loud,” as it reminded me of a film called MURDER, HE SAYS (starring Fred MacMurray, who was the subject of my Aug. 30 post titled MAC). Here’s a funny scene from that film:

        Liked by 1 person

        • Eliza 2:05 pm on September 15, 2019 Permalink

          Can you copy the link out as for some reason I can’t open it even if I copy and paste

          Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:33 pm on September 15, 2019 Permalink | Reply

    • Silver Screenings 6:38 pm on September 15, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      The Singing Sophomores is another new group you’ve introduced me to. I did an online search and was pleased to see they were quite famous back in the day, and rightly so.

      Liked by 1 person

    • moorezart 2:43 pm on September 16, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on From 1 Blogger 2 Another.

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:00 am on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bing Crosby, Dave Fleischer animation, , Dinah Washington, , , , , , , , What A Difference A Day Makes,   

    THE NAME OF THIS SONG IS DINAH! 

    A favorite of jazz musicians ever since it first appeared in 1925, DINAH has been recorded hundreds of times, and yet, practically nobody remembers who wrote it. As they sing on some of the old records,”The name of this song is Dinah,” and it was written by HARRY AKST.Warren VachĂŠ, author, THE UNSUNG SONGWRITERS

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    If you Akst me: of all the girl’s name songs beginning with D, is there any one finer than DINAH? I’d sigh, “DAH! Not in the state of Carolina!” Composed by Harry Akst (lyrics by Sam Lewis and Joe Young), the song “is so relaxed and without pretense, it’s almost as if it simply happened rather than was written” — so writes Alec Wilder in his book AMERICAN POPULAR SONG. I agree, to the tune of two hearings, starting with this animated effort by

    If you think #1 was animated, #2 is even more so:

    Let’s wrap it up with a favorite by a real Dinah — the great Dinah Washington, singing a song which takes me back to my 1960 basic training days at Fort Knox, KY, where I first heard her original 1959 recording on a ‘blue’ evening at the PX. Can you place the MC*?

    *The MC (emcee) in this 1960 clip was future U.S. President Ronald Reagan. PX, for the benefit of life-long residents of the DMZ (demilitarized zone), stands for Post Exchange.

     
    • scifihammy 6:28 am on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Nice to see the different versions – and a young Ronald Reagan! 🙂
      My favourite is Bing. I just love his voice!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 8:20 am on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      That’s the young Bing on that clip. Several years later (late 1930s, as I recall), he had an operation (throat or vocal chords) which noticeably changed his voice. I like his young voice best.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 11:05 am on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Of all the singers whose recorded voice I’ve heard Dinah Washington sounds the most like a live voice. Like I’m in the audience or she’s just in the room next door.

      Muse, don’t forget Billie Holiday’s real name or the name on her birth certificate was Eleanora.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 2:59 pm on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for the reminder, Don — I had forgotten what Billie’s given name was. I was thinking of ‘starring’ Ella Fitzgerald in my next post — now I’ll have to think about co-starring Billie. Woe is me, having to include probably the two greatest female pop/jazz vocalists of all time in one post!

        Like

    • Richard Cahill 11:48 am on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I once had four employees who went by Deanna, Dinah, Debbie and Denise. Hope the other three don’t feel slighted.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 4:44 pm on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Ricardo, the first name on your list brings to mind a gal who, pre-Wizard of Oz, was as popular as Judy Garland in their early teens in the 1930s. Here she is singing a Mexican favorite to remind you of your happy hours south of the border:

        Like

    • tref 11:58 pm on October 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Dinah has always been one of my favorite songs. (Eddie Cantor’s film, Roman Scandals had a great reference to the song, too.)

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 9:32 am on October 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the comment. It’s been so long since I saw Roman Scandals that I’d forgotten the reference you referred to.
      P.S. Your mention of Eddie Cantor reminds me that one of his signature songs was MAKIN’IN WHOOPIE — a term I seem to recall mentioning in a comment to one of your recent posts. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • markscheel1 8:28 pm on October 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      mistermuse,

      Well, into an immersion of music of late. Great renditions. And last night I chauffeured my new friend Don Follmer to a recital of his musical creations to accompany war poetry written and recited by Arlin Buyert. The compositions were played by a cellist and a pianist. Don is the fellow I profiled in an earlier blog about the Wendy’s breakfast group “reloading.” From that group we lost Bob recently, the model for the character Clarence D.; he was 94. Don is 88.
      Thanks, BTW, for your input on my latest blog post. Appreciated.
      Mark

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 1:01 am on November 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bing Crosby, , Harry Woods, , , , , piano roll, , , ,   

    ECHOES FROM THE (V)ALLEY 

    tin_pan_alley_plaque

    In my last post (NOTES FROM THE ALLEY), I touched on TIN PAN ALLEY’s origins and location, but failed to mention where the name came from. For that, I quote from another book, FROM SAGINAW VALLEY TO TIN PAN ALLEY by R. Grant Smith:

    On a summer day in New York City, just before 1900, songwriter and journalist Monroe Rosenfeld walked down West 28th Street, on the way to his publisher, to demonstrate a new song he had written. As he passed the rows of music publishing houses, clustered together and piled on top of each other, he heard the sounds of hundreds of pianos, playing hundreds of pieces of music, pouring out of the open windows. The tumultuous noise reminded him of tin pans clanging together.
    Later that day, when Rosenfeld returned to his typewriter at the New York Herald, he wrote an article about what he had just experienced, referring to the area he had visited as “Tin Pan Alley.” This name would remain synonymous with the popular music publishing industry in America for the next sixty years.

    Think of THE GOLDEN AGE OF POPULAR MUSIC (which includes the storied Roaring Twenties) as TIN PAN ALLEY writ large, a coast-to-coast cacophony of sounds impossible to paint a complete picture of in these few sketches — but my hope is to convey at least a feel for the era….principally with clips of songs written and performed by composers and artists like those featured in the previous post. Picking up where we left off in 1921, I’ll resist the urge to test your forbearance with a 1922 triumph of treacle titled GRANNY, YOU’RE MY MAMMY’S MAMMY (I kid you not), and go instead with 1922 and 1923 hits about guys named Harry and Barney:

    Skipping past such 1924/25 doozies as DOODLE DOO DOO and DOO WACKA DOO, we come to 1926, a banner year for songs that became all-time standards, including one that a very young Bing Crosby and the Mills Brothers blew out of the water — “The name of this song is DINAH”:

    Now we’re on a roll — here’s another 1926 standard, played by it’s Hart-less composer:

    But what’s a Richard Rodgers composition minus Lorenz Hart lyrics? It’s like romance expressed without a word, as proposed in another of their 1926 songs (1:40 into this clip):

    Hart died (tragically young) in the month of November, but many great Golden Age songwriters were born in this month, including Harry Woods, who began writing hits (like “I’m Looking Over A Four-Leaf Clover”) in the early 1920s….however, I’m going to jump ahead here with one of his lesser known songs from the 1930s — repeat, the 1930s:

    (TO BE CONTINUED at least ONE MORE TIME)

     
    • arekhill1 7:41 pm on November 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I’m a punk rock fan myself, Sr. Muse. But history needs to be tended by historians like yourself.

      Like

    • mistermuse 10:51 pm on November 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Perhaps six music clips in one post was too much of a good thing, even for those who are open to the oldies, Ricardo….so how about some history-making political news: Rabbit Hash, Kentucky, has just elected a new mayor — a two-year old pit bull named Brynn — to succeed Lucy Lou, the border collie whose bid for President went up in smoke months ago. It’s been a bad year for females running for the White House.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Carmen 5:19 am on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      You mean we were watching Alfalfa in the 60’s and he was already over 30 years old?? 😉 That was certainly a blast from the past. ..

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 8:03 am on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Carmen, I remember watching the Keystone Kops on TV in the 60’s when they were already 50 years old, so if Alfalfa was a blast from the past, the madcap Kops were an indignity from antiquity! 🙂

        Like

    • Don Frankel 9:24 am on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great stuff Muse. Roger’s first song or one of his first. And of course Alfalfa. I remember that scene from when I was a kid.

      Like

    • mistermuse 11:48 am on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks, Don. I own a biography of Rodgers (titled SOMEWHERE FOR ME) which shows that his first published songs go back as far as 1919, however BLUE ROOM was certainly one of his first HIT songs (after MANHATTAN, written in 1925).

      Like

    • Cynthia Jobin 8:54 pm on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Can’t beat Bing, in my book….

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:01 pm on November 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        I much prefer the voice of the young Bing to the 1940s-and-later Bing. His early recordings are classics, and I own most, if not all, of them.

        Like

    • D. Wallace Peach 10:46 pm on November 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Lots of music! Most from before my time but I remember them! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 11:12 pm on November 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you, Diana. In a certain sense, if you remember them, they’re not before your time. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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