[Dixielandjazz] Re: A little more about Crosby

G. William Oakley gwilliamoakley at earthlink.net
Sat Mar 1 09:40:29 PST 2003

On the subject of Bing Crosby:
Some years ago I bought a tape from a firm called "Radio Yesteryear". It was
outtakes from a Crosby recording session and it was marvelous.  His facility
when lyrics were forgotten was amazing.  You could hear the flub but then he
would just continue on and create a whole new lyric, often filled with
profanities but always humorous.
If anyone has an interest I might dig it out and dub it off for you.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Russ Guarino" <russg at redshift.com>
To: "John Petters" <jpettjazz at btinternet.com>
Cc: "Ron L'Herault" <lherault at bu.edu>; <Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Saturday, March 01, 2003 9:03 AM
Subject: [Dixielandjazz] Re: A little more about Crosby

> I heard, once again from a source I cannot name or remember, that Crosby
> not read music as could not the Andrew Sisters.  If this is true, the fact
> they were both so productive is remarkable.
> Russ Guarino
> John Petters wrote:
> > Ron said
> > > It is also a matter of dynamics.   Early vocalists, often stage
> > > performers would have sung without amplification.  They sang loudly
> > > enunciated clearly.  Bing may not have had sufficient power and/or
> > > clarity to be effective as an acoustical recording artist.
> >
> > I would be very surprised if Bing did not have the power in his voice to
> > sing acouistically. The early (pre 1935) voice had a very powerful
> > to it and the impression I get is one of a considerable dynamic range. I
> > also read somewhere that when recording, Bing preferred to be among the
> > rather than in a booth. He was after all a band singer and Whiteman's
> > Orchestra must have been pretty loud.
> > On a slightly different tack, my latest touring project is a Crosby
> > Centenary show - 'Bing - The Road to Rhythm & Romance'. When I was
> > discussing the material for the show with my MD Martin Litton, we came
> > the conclusion that we could do a whole show just with stuff Bing
> > in the 31 - 33 period. There were so many great songs. In the end of
> > we started with the Rhythm Boys (From Monday On) up to the late '50s.
> > Listening to Bing in detail together with reading Gary Giddings
> > biography, once again brought it home to me just how much jazz there was
> > Crosby. Sure he recorded a whole load of slop at the insistance of
> > Jack Kapp, but jazz is never far below the surface. When he had free
> > such as Sweet Georgia Brown, My Honey's Lovin' Arms, Shine or Dinah (the
> > latter 3 with the Mills Bros)  Crosby the jazz singer really comes to
> > fore. Also, of course, there is the wonderful recording of Mississippi
> > with Bix and Tram. Wonderful stuff.
> > Comparing Bing to the likes of Seger Ellis or Irving Kaufman, who Bix
> > saddled with, is like comparing chalk with cheese. Bing just leaps out
> > something fresh and new.
> > Any DJML members not familiar with Bing's early stuff could do no better
> > than obtain some of the Jonzo Chronolgical Crosby's with sound restored
> > John R T Davies and Ted Kendall.
> >
> > John Petters
> > www.traditional-jazz.com
> > Amateur Radio Station G3YPZ
> >
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