Category Archives: Popular & Crooners

ROD McKUEN – Other Kinds of Songs – (RCA) – 1966

We probably need a Rod McKuen now more than we ever did. In what seems to be an increasingly polarised world (at least in the middle class secular west) we need him to show that all men aren’t pricks and … Continue reading

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TRINI LOPEZ – Live at the Basin St. East – (Reprise) – 1964

Trini was on a roll … His albums were doing well, he had songs in the charts, and his shows were well attended. The albums that broke him, especially his earlier live albums from 1963 “Trini Lopez at PJ's’ and … Continue reading

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HELEN MERRILL – American Country Songs – (Atco) – 1959

Helen Merrill is a great vocalist. She could sing anything. And she has proved it time and again …  over 60+ years of professional recording. She does country tunes here but she has done smooth jazz, swing, pop, trad pop, … Continue reading

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SAMMY DAVIS Jr – Now – (MGM) – 1972

Sammy Davis Jr is part of my musical memory. He was always there. “Samuel George Davis Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990) was an American singer, dancer, actor and comedian. He was noted for his impressions of actors, … Continue reading

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LEON REDBONE – On the Track – (Warner Brothers) – 1975

Leon Redbone is a mystery, perhaps not as much as The Residents or writer B. Traven but he is indulging in the same quest for anonymity. But, he isn’t obscure and he doesn’t avoid exposure. He tends, rather, to hide … Continue reading

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CONNIE FRANCIS – Connie Francis Sings “Never on Sunday” – (MGM) – 1961

The full title of this album (as on the cover) is “Connie Francis sings "Never on Sunday" and Other Title Songs from Motion Pictures”. Now, this is a treat for me because, as you may know, I love my film … Continue reading

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PAT BOONE – Days of Wine and Roses – (Dot) – 1963

Whenever I comment on a Pat Boone album I inevitable start off by defending him. Pat Boone isn’t very popular with hard core music fans. Apparently he stole songs from black artists and denied them the charts. Him personally. But … Continue reading

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JOHNNY MATHIS – Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head – (CBS) – 1970

Johnny Mathis hasn't reached the iconic status of other singers from the 20th century. And this is a guy who has sold 350 million records worldwide, making him, arguably, the third biggest selling artist of the 20th century. Perhaps it … Continue reading

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ROD McKUEN – McKuen Country – (Warner Brothers) – 1976

McKuen goes country! And why not, when this album was released in 1976 country music was all over the pop charts. Country singers were regularly cracking the pop charts, country rock acts were in abundance, original rock n rollers were … Continue reading

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RUSTY DRAPER – Rusty Meets Hoagy – (Mercury) – 1957

I'll speak of Rusty first only because he comes first when referring to the album. Wikipedia says, Rusty Draper "born Farrell H. Draper; January 25, 1923 – March 28, 2003) was an American country and pop singer who achieved his … Continue reading

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