Saturday, October 25, 2008

Happy Hallowe'en!!

I've been rather busy lately, and haven't posted in Ye Olde Zorche Bloggue in a while. Sorry 'bout that...

I'm working on a big post which should be up around November 1.

In the meantime, here are a few quick Hallowe'en singles to keep your ears happy.

Two recorded versions Zombie Jamboree sold fairly well in the mid-1950s, one by Harry Belafonte for RCA Victor and this one, by Calypso Carnival (featuring King Flash), for Columbia.
JZSP 39904 Zombie Jamboree (Back To Back) Calypso Carnival, featuring King Flash Columbia 4-40866
1956: Calypso Carnival with King Flash, combo.

I like this version a lot more than the other one...the LP it came from (Calypso Carnival) is a lot of fun as well.

The original title of this song, by the way, was Jumble Jamboree. More info can be found here:

There is also a picture sleeve to this 45, but I don't have it. And, for what it's worth, the flip side of this record, Mama Looka Boo Boo, also inspired a Belafonte cover.

Here's a weird side from 1959 by the Salmas Brothers:

58481 Zombie The Salmas Brothers Keen 3-2017
1959: The Salmas Brothers (Danny, Guy and George), vocal; Bumps Blackwell Orchestra; IFC (Insipid Female Chorus)

You might remember bandleader Bumps Blackwell from those Specialty sides by Little Richard. And the arranger on this side is a cat who made a big splash in the pop market a few years later, Herb Alpert.

The IFC designation is borrowed from the Greater Cambridge Record Collectors' Guild (you know who you are), who also use IMC (Insipid Male Chorus) and IXC (Insipid Mixed Chorus) to indicate the presence of this kind of vocal group, who oooh and aaaah and almost spoil hundreds of otherwise fine R & B and Rock 'n' Roll 45s from around 1956 to the Brtish Invasion.

If two zombie songs aren't eerie enough, maybe you'd like to open with a pair of Mummies? (I have a Full House of Vampires, myself)

Another fair seller (it hit #39 on the charts) is this version of The Mummy by veteran cartoon voiceman Bob McFadden. The beatnik at the end of the record is Dor, a not-too-subtle alias for composer (and future "deep" poet) Rod McKuen.
107,649 The Mummy Bob McFadden and Dor Brunswick 9-55140
1959: Bob McFadden, mummy; Dor (Rod McKuen), beatnik; Jack Hansen Orch.

(The flip side, The Beat Generation, is rather amusing too, but it's not very spooky... should you feel the need to hear it)

Strangely enough, there was another version of this piece (I almost called it a "song" but nobody sings) that was issued shortly afterward, by the completely unknown duo, Bubi and Bob.
1002 The Mummy Bubi & Bob Sphinx 1201
I know nothing about this version...who the performers are and who pressed this record will probably always remain a mystery. I've never seen another record on this Sphinx label.

This record is somewhat better than the hundreds of cheap knockoff versions of pop songs, which were nothing new (the Tops, Prom, and Hit labels specialized in them)...there is a pleasant instrumental on the flip side (Biscayne Beat, if you want to hear it) that appears to be an original. The composer of that ditty is one L. Norman...perhaps he was Bubi or Bob.

And there you have it, friends...four little examples of candy corn (and a couple of parenthetical marshmallows).

I hope this'll holdja until I get the November post up. I think it'll be worth the wait.


metal-muncher said...

You nailed it... that Calypso Carnival single was quite "fun".

Jim Carling said...

Guess you don't bother updating your blogs...I sent you updated information about your "K-E-N-N-E-D-Y 20th Fox record (who the singers were, etc.)but don't see an update. Oh well, C'est la vie. If you want a recap: