Saturday, February 4, 2012

New Oldies - Blue Souvenirs by Danny Harrison

Bob Dixon, Terry Lathangue, Freddy Munro, Danny Harrison

Last December, I posted a great Teener called The Story Of Bonnie by The Count Victors Featuring Danny Harrison. Now someone has requested another song done by the lead singer of this crowd-pleasing group from Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.


Here's Blue Souvenirs by Danny Harrison on Coral 62411 from 1964:



On the flip side of this single we find an uptempo remake of a classic song from the 1940's. You'll Never Know was based on a poem written by a young bride in Oklahoma named Dorothy Fern Norris to send to her husband who was away fighting World War II. The lyrics were derived from that poem by Mac Gordon, and set to music by Harry Warren, to be sung by actress Alice Faye in the 1943 movie, Hello Frisco Hello. She also sang the song in the 1944 movie, Four Jills In A Jeep. Even though her version of the song was extremely popular, winning the Academy Award for Best Original Song of 1943, her contract with 20th Century Fox prevented her from recording any songs from the movie. If she'd been able to put the song on record, it would have surely been a huge hit.


Since Alice couldn't publish a version of the song, You'll Never Know was recorded in 1943 by Frank Sinatra during his first solo session at Columbia Records. His version peaked at #2 on the charts in July and August of 1943. In that same year, You'll Never Know also became a #1 R&B hit for Dick Haymes. Both of these recordings were made during a strike of the American Federation of Musicians that lasted from 1942 to 1944. For that reason, both recordings were made without any backing band! Instead, the singers were backed only by vocal groups. The version by Dick Haymes was backed up by The Song Spinners who were at the top of the charts at the time with their big hit, Comin' In On A Wing And A Prayer.

The song won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1943. It was covered many times over the years, including a 1952 version by Rosemary Clooney with The Harry James Orchestra. It was the first song ever recorded by Barbra Streisand in 1955. In 1974, Alice Faye's version of the song was used in the opening of the Martin Scorsese movie Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore.


Here's You'll Never Know by Danny Harrison on the flip side of Coral 62411 from 1964:



And here's the very first rendition of the song by Alice Faye as heard in the movie Hello Frisco Hello in 1943:



I know which version I like better. Sorry, Danny. Thanks, Alice. How about you? MusicMaster Oldies has more oldies than you could hear in a year. Got any requests?

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