Some Americana tonight – actually North Americana approximating South Americana by a popular composer of the 1930s and 1940s, John Alden Carpenter who premiered his Dance Suite in 1943. Carpenter was considered one of the more accessible of the Modern composers. His works had an adventuresome spirit, while maintaining an aura of the familiar and he was very popular among the group of Modern American Composers during that time.
This performance, the first broadcast of the 2nd movement, is from July 6, 1944 and features the NBC Studio Orchestra conducted by Henri Nosco, as part of the radio series Music Of The New World. As far as I can tell, there isn’t a commercial recording available of this Suite and certainly no commercial recording of this performance.
So something perhaps unfamiliar and rare, all at the same time.
Largely forgotten today, the music of Marcel Delannoy was wildly popular during the 1930s. So popular, that Maurice Ravel once said he was the “finest composer in France today”. But his reputation was to be had in film – a prolific film composer from the 1930s to 1960. It was largely thought that his work in film prevented him from composing in other forms, which may have damaged his reputation over the decades.
But whatever the case, Marcel Delannoy, largely self-taught, but did study for a time with Arthur Honegger, was fully dedicated to music and its composition.
This weekend’s performance of a suite from the ballet La Pantoufle de vair is from a radio broadcast, featuring the French Radio Symphony conducted by Jean Giardino from around 1955.
At present there is only one recording of Delannoy’s works currently available. A compilation of music conducted by Charles Munch. It’s doubtful this particular performance has ever been issued in any form.
With the news earlier this month of the abrupt cancellation of Motorhead‘s Summer tour, owing to complications from heart surgery on the group’s founder and guiding light Lemmy Kilmister. And since it was advised on Lemmy’s site to keep the spirit going by getting periodic doses of Motorhead until Lemmy is back on his feet, I’m taking him up on it and offering some vintage Motorhead tonight.
At last report, Lemmy is taking it easy and recovering nicely, which loosely translated probably means he’s bored out of his skull.
That said, I think the world would be better off with Lemmy being seen, rather than viewed. So if boredom means having a back-to-normal ticker, rather than dropping dead on stage (romantic as that notion may sound), we’ll vote for boredom – because that ain’t forever. The dirt nap is.
So by way of the venerable BBC and their In Concert series, first broadcast on May 16, 1979, here is a taste of Motorhead live at The BBC’s Paris Theater.
Get well Lemmy.
And on a side note: I’m sure you all know by now that Past Daily is in the midst of their Summer Fundraiser. We have to keep this site going and keep the on-going digitization process happening. Which means equipment needs fixing, tapes need baking and the collection needs to expand the warehouse. Anything you feel okay about giving is greatly and gratefully appreciated. Click on the link here for The Fundrazr Site where you can donate. Thanks to all of you who have dug in your pockets so far. YOU ROCK!
It wouldn’t be Christmas without at least one appearance from the legendary Jack Benny. Most people know Benny via his TV series that ran from the 1950’s well into the 1960’s. But Jack Benny was also a fixture in just about every American household on Radio going back to the 1930’s.
While the transition from Radio to TV was beginning in the early 1950’s, Jack Benny managed to do two versions of his show – one on TV and the other on Radio. They were never duplicated. And because Radio relied a lot on the imagination, Benny’s humor was considered wildly funnier than his material on TV.
Here is one of his annual Christmas shows, which first aired on December 20, 1953 over the CBS Radio Network.
It’s complete and intact, with nothing edited out, exactly as it was first heard that Christmas season in 1953.
Don Knotts and Andy Griffith – it didn’t get too much more Americana than this.
Not necessarily a tribute as much as a reminder of just how much of an institution Andy Griffith was in the America of the early 1960’s. At a time when the looming horrors of Cold War, and pessimistic reports of our place on the planet had us growing ever more uneasy over the future, the simple charm and humor of Andy Griffith and Don Knotts, the resurgence of Folk Music and an examination of the less complicated life proved to be an ointment on the frequent and painful outbreaks of uncertainty.
And so it would only be natural to have Andy Griffith and Don Knotts promote Sanka Coffee; probably the best known and marketed of the decaffeinated coffee brands. Here are two radio commercials they did in 1960, when Sanka was sponsoring the Andy Griffith Show and when America needed a dose of calm.