Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Album of the Day: "Frankie Laine's Greatest Hits"

When Jeff and I were little kids we had one of those portable record players that was like a suitcase and it had three speeds: 33, 45 and 78rpm. We use to play these 12" colored-vinyl Disney records and my Mom's 7" 45's by people like Major Lance, Gene McDaniels, Fontella Bass and others. Also there was Brahms' "Hungarian Dance Nos. 5 and 6", Jerry Lewis "I've Got the World on a String" and my all-time favorite "Jezebel / Rose, Rose I Love You" by Frankie Laine.
My Mom still had those 45's until the late '70s when she moved from DC to Atlanta. Unfortunately, she threw them all away in the process of packing so I ended up searching yard sales and thrift stores for replacements to no avail. Every once in awhile I would think about these old records and would come across a battered Frankie Laine LP in a used record bin but it didn't have both the songs I wanted. Then, a few years ago, I was trolling eBay for Andy Williams records when I found a guy had put up 46 "easy listening" records for auction with a starting price of $0.99! The auction had 2 hours left and no other bidders. I won the lot which, to my surprise, contained Frankie Laine's "Greatest Hits" and it had the two songs I wanted most on one LP an, best of all, it was in mint condition!
Now, even as a child, I was something of a record nerd but it wasn't until I had this LP that I realised that Laine also sang the hit song from the movie "High Noon" (a top 50 movie fave) which also included here. I also learned that Country and Western music are actually two different genres and, as much as I love Country music, I love Western more. Too bad there's no more Western music being made anymore and Country, today, is just radio pop with an occasional "twang".

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