Sunday, 28 October 2012

Here comes the Boogie (Woogie) Man

Well the clocks have gone back one hour to good old Greenwich Mean Time and thoughts have turned to the fast approaching night of 31st October - All Hallow's Eve!  Inspired by a recent post by Mim over at Crinoline Robot, I thought I'd do for Hallowe'en what I did for my last two bloggy Christmases so I've cobbled together a selection of spooky songs from the 1930s and '40s by some of my favourite artists of the day.



Mysterious Mose was an early Betty Boop cartoon from the Fleischer Studios (who would later have further successes with their famous Popeye and Superman cartoons).  It in turn was inspired by this song, written by Walter Doyle and also released in [April] 1930, originally by Rube Bloom and His Bayou Boys but swiftly recorded by a number of bands including Harry Reser, Cliff Perrine and and Ted Weems (with their respective Orchestras).



The great Cab Calloway features here twice - first in the seldom-heard 17th June 1931 recording of The Nightmare and then the later (28th February 1939) recording of The Ghost of Smokey Joe.



Me And The Ghost Upstairs often appears on Fred Astaire CD anthologies but was actually cut from the film in which it featured, 1940's Second Chorus. Luckily the raw footage still exists, albeit in pre-production quality and not subject to the final Astaire polish (not that you'd notice!) so we can see Fred jitterbuggin' and lindy-hopping with a ghost (actually his long-time friend and choreography partner Hermes Pan shrouded in sheets and wearing high heels!).



One from our English bandleader Henry Hall, who was well-known for doing child-friendly songs such as The Sun Has Got His Hat On and The Teddy-Bears' Picnic and who here performs a splendid rendition of Hush, Hush, Hush, Here Comes The Boogeyman, with singer Val Rosing, from 1932.



Tommy Dorsey and His Orchestra are on fine form in this sweet version of a Larry Clinton composition from 1937, Satan Takes a Holiday.



We finish with the wonderfully-titled Celery Stalks At Midnight, originally recorded in 1940 by Will Bradley and His Orchestra but in this version from a year later (6th February 1941) masterfully sung by Doris Day, with Les Brown and The Band of Renown.



















As well as playing these cracking and creepy tunes I have also lined up a Boris Karloff-fest for Wednesday night with a programme featuring Frankenstein, The Bride of Frankenstein and The Mummy (plus Ghostbusters, of course - if I can fit it in!).  Have a spooktacular time, everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Oooh, thank you for sharing those. (I actually have that Mummy poster up in my dining room!) I was tempted to include Teddy Bears' Picnic in my Halloween songs roundup because I think it's a bit creepy.

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