This year I have spent much of my spare time putting together a new CD entitled "Lost Christmas Treasures". The title reflects the fact that the tracks on this collection are hard to find, or not found AT ALL elsewhere. Those of you who have visited me on this blog or on my store at www.VintageMusicRoom.com know that I have been collecting old Christmas music for several years now, specializing in music earlier than 1970, the older the better. In 2010 I organized the ones I had collected into CDs for my store. I have added more CDs to my store since then, but have also received tracks that were not appropriate for those newer CDs. I finally got enough of them to put together a new CD this year.
Now these tracks all have some great stories to go with them. First, and foremost, I received an email about 1 1/2 years ago from the manager of Miss Carmen Quinn who is included in my "Memories of Childhood Christmases" CD. Her two tracks are "Santa's Coming" and "Story of the Magi". In the email Michael Lannon graciously thanked me for including the songs on this CD and also asked if I would like some copies of very old records that he has found. Of course I very excitedly accepted the offer. He sent me several songs, three of which I have included in Lost Christmas Treasures. The rarest is by Henry Burr, "Dear Old Santa" and was recorded in 1928. Henry Burr was a very popular artist in the Early Recording Days and you can hear some of his other Christmas songs here and also here. Being such an old record, it was very noisy. I worked very hard on remastering it so that it would be of good enough sound quality to put on my CD. It is still not better than Good sound quality but it is so entertaining that I know you will love it.
The second of the songs from Michael Lannon is by a group that is also on my CD "Presents on the Christmas Tree" with the song "Jingle Bells". The Hoosier Hot Shots were a comedy music group that used many kinds of jugband-type of instruments to make their songs very lively. As you can imagine, "Jingle Bells" is not your usual rendition. If you liked that one, you will love "The Man with the Whiskers".
Although not really so rare, I have included "An Old Christmas Card" by Mervin Shiner with Nelson King doing the voice recitation, just because it so beautiful. Also sent from Michael Lannon. Thanks again, Michael. Your free copy of the CD is waiting for you.
On to other tracks. There is one song on this CD that I really don't know the title for or the artist. I found it on my hard drive but unlike most of the other music I have collected, I did not include any info as to where I even found it. Since the primary lyrics are the only thing I can go by, I named it "On the Santa Claus Express". This is not the same song by this name that I have on "Hooray for St. Nick" by Dan Donovan and the Henry Hall Orchestra. But what else could I call it? It was also very noisy and took a lot of work, but I love it and wanted to include it so you can enjoy it too.
Gracie Fields was (is?) a British performer from the 1940-50s who has a very lovely high voice and also a sense of humor. Many of her songs are sure to elicit a chuckle. She is on several Vintage Music Room CDs. Just search for Gracie Fields in the search bar at the top of the Vintage Music Room home page (on the red bar) and you will find songs by her on 4 other CDs. "Winter Draws On" is a song that I like more every time I listen to it. You can hear a clip of it here.
"Jingle Bells" as done by Glenn Miller in 1941 shows why Glenn Miller was so popular. We get to hear about how Christmas was different in Mexico in this track. The only copy I could find of this original version was again very noisy, so was a challenge to clean up. Sounds pretty good though, and after all, who would not want to hear Glenn Miller?
How long has it been since you heard "Santa Meets the Purple People Eater" by Sheb Wooley? No problem. You can hear it now.
I have included 3 tracks by Elvis Presley that I haven't heard too often. Seemed like a good match for this CD. These were all on his 1971 album "Wonderful World of Christmas".
"Dear Little Stranger" was a song I remember singing at church as a child. I found it by George Beverly Shea. Really a great Christmas song that should be more popular than it is, I think.
"The Toymaker's Dream" is a great example of Vaughn De Leath's work. She was known as "The Original Radio Girl" and "First Lady of Radio" when she was recording in the 1920's. You can also hear her on "Hooray for St. Nick".
There are 29 tracks on my Lost Christmas Treasures CD so I don't want to make this page of my blog so long you can't stand to read it. I will leave the rest of the tracks to you to listen to and make your own assessments.
You may also want to check our my other new CDs of choral Christmas music, "A Choral Celebration of Christmas", "A Choral Jubilee of Christmas", and "The Angels Sang -Choral Christmas Music". "The Angels Sang" CD includes the entire very-much-requested album from University of Redlands Choir's "Choral Christmas" from 1958 with the track "Song of Mary". You will find them also my store website. Happy Christmas!