Saturday, March 28, 2009
Song Poem or Not?
This week's posting is a bit delayed, due to having been out of town and missing the usual Wednesday/Thursday posting. I plan to be back on schedule next week.
And the more I listen to and research today's song, the more I doubt it's a song poem. I bought it because it was advertised as such, and because it was listed on ASPMA, which showed the "Clinton" label, with its two known singles, to have been part of the giant Globe family of labels.
However, ever since hearing this record, I've wondered about its pedigree. The songs are very good, and the A-side is nothing short of excellent, in my opinion. That could also be said about many of my favorite song-poems, but with a few exceptions, even the greatest song-poems seem to have something "off" about them. And while the vocalizing on the b-side of this single might not be to everyone's taste, it's not all that unusual in comparison with many of the 45's released in the early '60's.
On the other hand, there is precious little information on this platter's label, a song-poem hallmark (if you'll pardon the pun). And it is listed on ASPMA, and there's no way for me to know what sort of other information that organization might have had in determining that the Clinton label belonged there.
But then, among that minimal information, there is this: "Don Ralke Orchestra". I learn from Wikipedia that Ralke was a well known Hollywood music insider, who was involved in everything from well received films to the musical endevours of William Shatner and Murry Wilson. That could point to this being a novelty record or a legit release, but seems to make it less likely that its a song poem.
But what do I know? I do know this - the A-Side is a hell of a tune, and an equally great performance by both the band and the singer. And the B-Side, while perhaps not as great a song or performance, has an instrumental track that I really enjoy.
See what you think, and by all means, offer up a thought or two!
Bob Newkirk with "Rhythm Or Blues":
Bob Newkirk with "Dance of Love":
Oh, and Happy Birthday to Stu