Harry Callaghan meetmrcallaghan at gmail.com
Fri Jun 11 04:20:15 PDT 2010

After discovering that I indeed had a copy of Sidney Bechet's "Sheik of
Araby" from 1941, I gave a listen to it yesterday afternoon.

Aside from the technical aspect of overdubbing, establishing that it could
be done, I thought the end result musically was really hardly worth the

Bechet's clarinet, soprano & tenor sax playing could be heard but such was
not the case with him playing piano, bass & drums or if so, it was so faint
in the background that I could not detect it.

Although it wasn't until some years later, I'm sure that everyone will agree
that Les Paul still deserves being considered the "pioneer" in this endeavor
and was the most successful when doing so with his guitar playing and wife
Mary Ford's vocalizing.

Several years after that when I was working at Cadence Records, Archie
Bleyer played a demo for a guy named Charlie Craig and I from a recently
completed recording session.  He explained to us that he had employed a
similar process to what we already knew had been done successfully by Les

We both acknowledged that it sounded most encouraging and wished him good
luck upon its release.  After he walked away, however, Charlie snickered a
bit, I guess kind of ridiculing it, quite possibly because the number had
already been up and down the charts as an instrumental.

Charlie was usually an ace at picking hits but this time he faltered

The record to be released was Andy Williams' "Canadian Sunset"

And in the words of the late Paul Harvey, that is the rest of the story.


Alcohol is necessary for a man so that now and then he can have a good
of himself, undisturbed by the facts

            - Finley Peter Dunne (1867-1936)

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