Duane Keilstrup Broadcast Archives
September, 2017

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This Week's Classics & Curios Show:

"Echoes of Songs and Laughter"

Episode 268

SHOWCASING THE VAUGHN MONROE CAMEL CARAVAN "ON BROADWAY," FEATURING JUNE HIETT BRATONE, THE MOONMAIDS, & KITTY KALLEN

It's the second Vaughn Monroe Showcase featuring the Moonmaids and vocalists June Hiett Bratone and Kitty Kallen. Our previous Vaughn Moonroe Showcase focused on Vaughn and his Moonmaids, with a 2006 interview with June Hiett Bratone. On this show June starts us off on a radio transcription from station WFAA in Dallas in the year 1946 when as a teenager she sang with a group called "The Blue Notes." We'll hear an edited sampling of their song "Patience and Fortitude."

This Showcase also offers edited portions of Vaughn's popular radio show "Camel Caravan," highlighting songs from broadway musicals covering the period from 1920 to 1949-50. Vaughn opens the show with a song from the 1922 musical "Orange Blossom," "Just a Kiss in the Dark." Other broadway songs include "Embraceable You" from 1930's "Girl Crazy" and "So in Love" from "Kiss Me Kate" which opened in 1948. In 1949, four years after VE Day, Mary Martin sang a new song hit from the hugely popular "South Pacific" with the title "I'm in Love with a Wonderful Guy." June sings her marvelous version with Vaughn's orchestra and is also featured on "Someone to Watch Over Me" written for "Oh, Kay!" in 1926.

Vaughn and the Moonmaids take the stage for "There's No Business Like Show Business" which was sung in the 1946 musical "Annie Get Your Gun."

The Moonmen join the Moonmaids to add choral effect in Vaughn's rendition of "Look for the Silver Lining" from the musical "Sally" in 1920. The Moonmen were added to the Monroe ensemble in 1948 after the success of the Moonmaids with their tight harmony. Their names are Johnny West, Walter Olsen, Bill Mustard, and Nace Bernert, who complimented the "Maids" to produce rich choral background for Vaughn's recordings, especially on western tunes like "Ghost Riders in the Sky" which often seemed to call for fuller voicing, coloring, and range than the usual popular ballad arrangements.

There are 3 Classics & Curios Extras in this episode with the Monroe orchestra. June sings 1950's "The Old Master Painter" and 1942's "I Had the Craziest Dream," and Kitty Kallen performs "I Can Dream, Can't I?" which was a big hit in 1938 and once again in 1949.

After Vaughn's band broke up in 1953 Vaughn continued to perform solo in concerts with local bands and on radio as well as in commercials, while the Moonmaids regrouped later under the name "The Moonmaids, Plus One." The "One" was Herrold Grogan, former vocalist with Sonny Dunham's "Sonny Siders" and Sonny's orchestra in 1946, and we'll hear the "Plus One" group do a swinging version of "Route 66" with the band "Second Generation," composed of talented offspring of the families of the Moonmaids.

The announcer on the Camel Caravan is Lee Vines, and Vaughn takes us to fade-out with an abbreviated "Racing with the Moon." I'll take you now to the show fade-in with a reminder from Moonmaid Mary Jo Grogan that although there may be some scratches that are like badges of honor on vintage records, "there are no wrinkles on talent." Thanks to the joyful blessing of recordings and the remastering magic of folks like Jerry Haendiges, the musical talent such as we hear on this show will remain "young" for "keenager" codgers like me and, hopefully, for each new generation.

So sit back and enjoy the therapeutic blessing of music, for, as German poet Goethe observed, "A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul." .

Philco Radio Click to hear the Program of 9-10-17

This Week's Classics & Curios Show:

"Echoes of Songs and Laughter"

Episode 269

Here is Vaughn Monroe Showcase # 3 folowing back to back episodes of Showcase # 1 and Showcase # 2)

Popularsong.org has one of the best write-ups on Vaughn and his orchestra: "[Monroe] happened to be blessed with one of the most memorable singing voices in the history of recorded music … [At the same time] he didn't possess the range of a Crosby or a Como, and certainly not the timing or styling of a Sinatra. Yet when that baritone hit the stage, it was magic. Imagine a pop vocalist who looked and sounded like a movie star. Imagine a tour full of musicians and a bevy of teenage Texas beauties singing back up. Imagine hit records rocketing to the top of the charts … and you have the rather uneventful, wholesome touring group known as Vaughn Monroe and his orchestra. The young ladies were … vocalists known as The Moonmaids, who doubled as babysitters for the band members' offspring. They sang about "racing with the moon," but were about as square ["straight"] as a group of musicians could be. And they happened to be just about the hottest big band of the late 1940s and early 1950s.

From 1940 to 1954, Monroe had close to 70 chart records, including many #1 hits: "There I Go;" "Racing with the Moon;" "When the Lights Go On Again All Over the World;" "Let it Snow;" "Ballerina;" "There, I've Said It Again;" "Red Roses for a Blue Lady;" "Someday (You'll Want Me to Want You);" and "Ghost Riders In the Sky." Three of those songs, "Let It Snow," "Ghost Riders," and "Ballerina" rank among the all-time top #1 songs, each dominating the Billboard charts for 10 weeks or more."

This Camel Caravan was recorded at New Jersey's Fort Monmouth Signal Corps Center on June 23, 1951, and illustrates Vaughn's "magic" and his impressive baritone in songs like "Too Young," "Sound Off," and "Over the Rainbow." Guest vocalist Eileen Barton performs "How High the Moon" and "Pretty-Eyed Baby." Included, of course, are Vaughn's theme song "Racing with the Moon" and his unique lead-in musical introductions to top rated songs from around the country: "Hello, nice people, from Maine to California, the Camel Caravan is here … with thirty minutes of music for your pleasure …" So sings Vaughn Monroe to introduce the Camel Caravan featuring top rated songs as reported in "Variety." Enjoy!

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Philco Radio Click to hear the Program of 9-17-17



This Week's Classics & Curios Show:

"Echoes of Songs and Laughter"

Episode 270

EDDIE HUBBARD SPECIAL: SWEET SONGS ENCORE

Thomas Edison said, “Life’s most soothing things are a child’s goodnight and sweet music.” Memories of my kids’, grandkids’, and great grandkids’ goodnights confirm the first part of that quote, and today’s show on CLASSICS & CURIOS helps confirm the second. The first rebroadcast of this show helped “celebrate” my birthday in 2016.

It’s Eddie Hubbard’s soothing Special devoted to delightful sweet music. The show is dated November 15, 1989, and I am pleased to rebroadcast it almost 30 years later.

Bing Crosby’s joyful “Sweet Georgia Brown” alone is worth listening to this show. But there is much more. Besides Bing’s great recording, Eddie plays such great sweet tunes as “Sweethearts on Parade,” “Sugar Time,” “Candy Kisses,” “A Taste of Honey,” “Kisses Sweeter Than Wine,” “When My Sugar Walks Down the Street,” “Sugar Blues,” “Candy,” “Sweet Eloise,” “Sweet Lorraine,” and “Roses and Lollipops.

Featured artists, to name a few, include Nat King Cole, Johnny Mercer and the Pied Pipers, Tony Bennett, the McGuire Sisters, Guy Lombardo and Kenny Gardner, Glenn Miller and Ray Eberle, Clyde McCoy, Jimmie Rodgers, and Jack Jones.

Under the influence of jazz greats like Bessie Smith and Ethel Waters, but especially Louis Armstrong, young Bing Crosby sang with the rhythm of swing, cool energy, precise articulation, improvised phrasing and fun scat-singing in a “vibrant, virile baritone.” [Gary Giddins, online] No wonder that Bing’s jazz-influenced “Sweet Georgia Brown” is my favorite recording of this tune, although other artists have had great versions, such as Django Reinhardt in the 1930’s and Ethel Waters in the 1920’s. Also worth listening to still today are stylized versions by Cab Calloway, the California Ramblers, Ella Fitzgerald, the Nat King Cole Trio, Ray Charles, Count Basie, and even Harry James. And the almost endless list goes on, even including the Beattles when the group backed singer Tony Sheridan in Hamburg, Germany. A classic version continues as a warm-up song by the Globetrotters, a whistling instrumental from 1949 by Brother Bones and His Shadows.

Thanks, Eddie, for some positive sweet music to brighten our day. Truly, in songs and every day speech, “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” — Proverbs 16:24

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[Quotation and paraphrasing above about Bing are from “Music: Bing Crosby, the Unsung King of Song” by Gary Giddins, online.] Many thanks to Jerry Haendiges Productions for remastering the original studio tape for this rebroadcast.

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Philco Radio Click to hear the Program of 9-24-17

This Week's Classics & Curios Show:

"Echoes of Songs and Laughter"

Episode 271

EDDIE HUBBARD SPECIAL: DREAMS

Eddie Hubbard's theme for this show from 1989 is dreams, and what a classic selection of dream songs fill the airways on this show of almost sixty minutes..

Here's a Play List of most of Eddie's dream selections:

"On a Dreamer's Holiday" by Buddy Clark
"Dream" by Johnny Mercer and the Pied Pipers
"Dream Along with Me" by Perry Como
"A Kiss to Build a Dream On" by Louis Armstrong'
"Dreams of the Everyday Housewife" by Glenn Campbell
"My Dream" by the Platters
"My Dreams Are Getting Better All the Time" by Doris Day and Les Brown'
"Dream a Little Dream of Me" by Mama Cass Elliot
"Star Dreams" by Charlie Spivak"
"I'll Buy That Dream" by Helen Forrest and Dick Haymes
"I Dream of You" by Tommy Dorsey
"I Had the Craziest Dream" by Johnny Mathis
"I'll See You in My Dreams" by Eddie Howard"

Eddie's Extras to fill out the show include Peggy Lee's "Golden Earrings," "For Once in My Life" by Tony Bennett, and "Meet Mr. Callaghan" by Les Paul.

On occasion we enjoy the fusion of lyrics and music and singer in a song so much that the lyrics slip by a bit too fast to appreciate fully. Songs like "You're the Top" by Cole Porter" and "On a Dreamer's Holiday" from 1949, with lyrics by Kim Gannon and music by Mabel Wayne — and sung on this show by the great Buddy Clark. (For more on this topic see my book, The Christian Professor in the Secular University: Singing and Soaring on Paths of Joy, Chapter 7 and the Resources appendix.)

So let's take time to enjoy the clever and creative lyrics of Buddy's song without the music and without Buddy:

Climb aboard a butterfly,
An' take off on the breeze,
Let your worries flutter by,
An' do the things you please,
In a land where dollar bills,
Are fallin' off the trees,
On a dreamer's holiday!

Every day for breakfast,
There's a dish of scrambled stars,
An' for lunchin' you'll be munchin'
Rainbow candy bars,
You'll be livin' a la mode,
On Jupiter and Mars,
On a dreamer's holiday!

Make it a long vacation,
Time, there is plenty of,
You need no reservation,
Just bring along the one you love!

Help yourself to happiness,
An' sprinkle it with mirth,
Close your eyes an' concentrate,
An' dream for all you're worth,
You will feel terrific,
When you get back down to earth,
From a dreamer's holiday!

So dream along with Eddie, Perry, Buddy, and other great artists on today's show.

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