The Soundtrack For The Baby Boomer Generation

Step back to a time when singers were as bright as the stars in the heavens
and the music they sang was really swingin'. Stacks of wax to fit every occasion!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Warm Brandy

Artist: Dolores Gray
Song: My Mama Likes You (b-side) (a-side is I'm Innocent)
Label: Capitol F3774 (White Label Promotional Record - Not For Sale)
Number: 45-16839
Songwriters: Bill Olofson - Chris Miller
Time: 2:14
Released: August 16th, 1957

Dolores Gray was a Tony Award winning actress during the 1940's and 1950's, appearing in such productions as Annie Get Your Gun, Two On The Aisle, Carnival In Flanders, Destry Rides Again, Sherry! and 42nd Street. She even signed with MGM and acted on the big screen alongside other stars such as Howard Keel, Ann Blyth, Sebastian Cabot, June Allyson, Joan Collins Ann Miller, Ann Sheridan, Gregory Peck and Lauren Bacall, in such films as Kismet, The Opposite Sex and Designing Women. And, if that weren't enough, she had a successful music career as well! She signed with Capitol Records and recorded the album Warm Brandy, which was what her voice was compared to when she sang. Add in several television appearances, including her final role on the program Dr. Who, and it all added up to a mighty fine achievement for one person. Sadly, she died of a heart attack at age 78, in 2002.
The spotlight song for today. My Mama Likes You, features a Calypso beat, which was so popular in the late 1950's. That Dolores could handle it so easily is a great testament to her immense talents. There's just something catchy about this particular song that I think you're going to like. So, download My Mama Likes You, by Dolores Gray, and see if you don't agree. The shot of warm brandy to enjoy while you listen to this fine singer is optional.

The Blonde Bombshell

Artist: Mamie Van Doren
Song: Oo Ba La Baby (a-side, track 2) (b-side includes Go Go Calypso! and Rollin' Stone)
Label: Prep M1-1
Number: F1-1
Songwriters: Les Baxter - Lennie Adelson - Eddie Cochran
Time: 2:20
Released: 1957

This track and the three others on this mini-album 45 are all taken from the Warner Brothers movie Untamed Youth. The film starred the voluptuous Mamie Van Doren as one of two sisters who, while hitchhiking to Los Angeles, stop in a small rural town to go skinny-dipping. They get caught and sentenced to work on a cotton farm until they can pay off their debt. (I'm not making this up.) The producers of this film wasted little opportunity to show Ms. Van Doren in her underwear or while wearing tight-fitting sweaters. If this sounds like the makings of a teen-exploitation flick from the Fifties, you would be right. It was also one of the first motion pictures ever banned by the Catholic Church.
None of this, however, should detract you from the glories of the song Oo Ba La Baby, or Mamie Van Doren's singing. Both of them are catchy and forcefully delivered. If the name of one of the songwriters seems familiar, It should. It belongs to one of early Rock and Roll's lost pioneers - Eddie Cochran. Cochran was killed in 1960, involved in a limo accident while on tour in England. But, on this song, which he also plays guitar, it's quite evident he had something to say for the youth of America. I've never seen the film, but have read where Cochran had a small role in it. But, enough of him. If you saw the film in it's initial release, it was probably because of Mamie.
Mamie Van Doren is still around, and if possible, better looking than ever! If you don't believe me, go check out her website here. But, not until you've downloaded Oo Ba La Baby by Mamie Van Doren and given it a listen to!