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the best songs ever
The 1950s were a golden age for singers, if not much else. Here's another one. Johnny Mathis did some very good songs, like Chances Are, and It's Not for Me to Say, but "Misty" (1957) was the best.



"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Leonard Bernstein: West Side Story (musical, 1957, film 1961)
Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Based on Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

"Tonight"




"America"
https://youtu.be/Qy6wo2wpT2k
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Everything's Coming Up Roses! Great song, from Broadway show "Gypsy" (1959) with music by Jule Styne (1946), as only Ethel Merman can sing it.





https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everything...g_up_Roses
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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(08-22-2016, 02:44 AM)Eric the Green Wrote: The macho Dion did "Runaround Sue," circa 1960, but in 1968 sang the most poignant tribute to Abraham, Martin, John and Bobby. A fine classic song that didn't quite make my list.
https://youtu.be/a5hFMy4pTrs

Actually it did make my list. Just not high enough for me to post here for 1968.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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1956 was the breakout year for rock'n'roll. It was known as "a kind of jazz" that brought together previous styles: rhythm and blues, country, beebop and duwop and boogie woogie. There were songs that were precursors of rock'n'roll, but it went mainstream in 1956. It got the young people rockin and some elders shockin. Those who enjoy this music might like the pioneers of this year, like Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Fats Domino, and I like Chuck Berry. But the guy who made rock'n'roll what it is was the (then) controversial Elvis. On TV they refused to show him from the waist down, because his movements were suggestive.

Moralists like (later) Barry Goldwater found these kinds of moves disgusting. I don't like many of these songs well enough to post them in this thread. Maybe somebody can fill in some blanks, if you want to. But for me, two of Prestley's early hits make it onto the lower reaches of my top 400, so I post them here. You can say Buddy Holly took Elvis' vocal style on these 2 records further. As far as I'm concerned, Elvis never made a better record.

"You Ain't a Nothin' But a Hound Dog" was the big hit, and the kids were singing it all over the schoolyard. But ultimately, the B-side was more popular; maybe his most popular later on. And I concur in this opinion. Don't Be Cruel, to a Heart that's True. I don't want no other love, b-baby it's still you I'm thinkin of.





And before his big breakout hit, he took us down Lonely St. to Heartbreak Hotel





On a 1966 survey on our local radio station KFRC, these were the two all-time most-popular Elvis songs.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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My favorite Elvis song is Can't Help Falling in Love With You.
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It's OK, and got some good reviews. The mellow one I like best is Love Me Tender, also an early one from 1956. It's more popular, but still not one of my picks. It was right up there with the other two songs in that 1966 survey.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Me_Tender_(song)

I didn't know that the melody was taken from a civil war song. There were a number of great songs from that era.
https://youtu.be/ZUXJ27Xrj0I
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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As promised, I'm posting from the 1956 Broadway production of "the perfect musical"
Here's Julie!





On the Street Where You Live
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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The Wayward Wind by Gogi Grant, 1956





https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wayward_Wind
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gogi_Grant
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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I jump back to 1959 because I get this oldie ("The Big Hurt") confused with The Wayward Wind. This one was the first hit record with phasing (or flanging) effects, later employed quite overtly and noticeably in the pop psychedelic classic Itchycoo Park (1967, already posted).





A wiki article says Le Paul invented this technique in 1952.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_o...ing_effect
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Really cool hit instrumental by Bill Doggett, Honky Tonk

Part 1:




Part 2 was the most popular:





It follows the standard R&B chord progression as far as I can tell.

honky tonk music
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honky_Tonk_(instrumental)
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Acclaimed 1956 jazz album by pianist and great (greatest-ever?) vocalist, Nat Cole. Released in 1957. Track one:





http://www.npr.org/2011/06/17/4556264/na...rst-choice

When I Fall in Love, 1956-57





https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/When_I_Fall_in_Love

Virtual duet with daughter Natalie, 1996
https://youtu.be/PxS0Trxc59k

The big Capitol Records building in Hollywood is called "the House that Nat built." Very popular recording artist.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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One more from Johnny Cash: I Walk the Line.



"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Alan Hovhannes is a great modern composer, who does not do crappy modernist experimental stuff, but real music. This is one of his finest works, written in 1955, Symphony #2, Mysterious Mountain. He wrote 65 other symphonies after this, writing into the 1990s.





The Boston Globe music critic Richard Buell wrote: "....his output assimilates the music of many cultures. What may be most American about all of it is the way it turns its materials into a kind of exoticism. The atmosphere is hushed, reverential, mystical, nostalgic."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Hovhaness

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_N...Hovhaness)
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Just while I have been in the middle of the 1950s on this thread, PBS has been broadcasting TJ Lubinsky's special "Magic Moments: the Best of '50s Pop." So that gives me a chance to remind myself of some of the songs I liked in the era between big band/ballads and rock'n'roll. This era is often disparaged as a time when inspiration ran dry and the music was superficial and unexciting. That it was, and some of it is pretty dreadful. But I remember listening to the radio when I was sick in late 1957 and I enjoyed listening to this music. The AM pop stations had not entirely switched over to Elvis and rock'n'roll by then, and even after then, the music of this style continued to be part of the pop music mix through the 1960s. I was glad to hear a lot of the groups on the show and not just the solo crooners and Sinatra imitators that I tend to think of as typical. The adjectives for this style are given at the amazon website for part of the show's music (not entirely the same list as the broadcast, apparently):

Quote:Album Moods

Bittersweet Bright Carefree Dramatic Earnest Happy Intimate Laid-Back/Mellow Light Lush Passionate Playful Refined Reflective Smooth Soft/Quiet Soothing Springlike Swaggering Warm Wistful Yearning Amiable/Good-Natured Cheerful Gentle Innocent Poignant Romantic Sentimental Sweet

If I had to choose a favorite of this 50s pop genre, besides a few others I have already mentioned, it might be this one that I heard then:





Sugartime, The MaGuire Sisters (1957-58)
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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This site has the complete listing of the tracks on the CD and DVD sets you could get by pledging to your local PBS station:
http://www.wvpt.net/magicmoments.html#cds

Here are my best-ever picks and honorable mentions from the list, as far as I know:
* best ever pick

From the DVD #1, not on the CD set:
Love Is A Many Splendored Thing - The Four Aces
Istanbul - The Four Lads
Lollipop - Lynn Evans of The Chordettes
26 Miles - The Four Preps
Big Man - The Four Preps

From 6 CD set:
Goodnight Irene -- Gordon Jenkins & The Weavers
Tammy -- Debbie Reynolds
*Sugartime -- The McGuire Sisters (mentioned above)
Music, Music, Music -- Teresa Brewer
*Stranger In Paradise -- The Four Aces Featuring Al Alberts (the original by Borodin, of course, is my real pick)
*It's All In The Game -- Tommy Edwards (mentioned already)
Smoke Gets In Your Eyes -- The Platters
Catch A Falling Star -- Perry Como (heard and liked this one in 1957)
Chances Are -- Johnny Mathis (already honorably mentioned)
*Don't Be Cruel -- Elvis Presley (already mentioned)
You Belong To Me -- Jo Stafford
Love Me Tender -- Elvis Presley (already honorably mentioned)
Theme From “A Summer Place” -- Percy Faith (already honorably mentioned)
The Yellow Rose Of Texas – Mitch Miller
Smile -- Johnny Mathis
Memories Are Made of This -- Dean Martin
*The Wayward Wind -- Gogi Grant (already mentioned)
Too Young -- Nat King Cole
Sixteen Tons -- Tennessee Ernie Ford
Fever -- Peggy Lee (she recently sang this one to Justin Bieber in honor of "Bieber Fever")
Mr. Sandman -- The Chordettes
*Mona Lisa -- Nat King Cole

From show soundtrack:
Try To Remember – The Brothers Four

Twilight Time by The Platters has been mentioned already by a couple of people.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Lawrence Welk was characteristic of these "shallow, sentimental" 1950s styles too, as were bands like Guy Lombardo's. But Welk's biggest hit came later in Dec. 1960/early 1961, and maybe it's the only example of his music that I like (or at least to nominate on this thread).

A one a, and a two a:




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calcutta_(song)
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Having reached 1955, there's one more rock'n'roll song to post, as you might have guessed. This song is the "founding song" of rock-n-roll. Besides "Rock Around the Clock," Bill Haley and the Comets also had hits such as See You Later Alligator, After While Crocodile (popularizing the catchphrase of this time)





https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock_Around_the_Clock (1954-1955)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/See_You_Later,_Alligator (late 1955-1956)

Wikipedia says that " Move it On Over ," Hank Williams Sr's first hit (1947) had a similar melody. The first part of the two melodies are almost the same. His songs are not my picks though. No, not fer me. But as I mentioned before, his " I Saw the Light " (1948) was used for a Columbo episode featuring Johnny Cash as the murderer, and I did like that one (especially Johnny's version (1974) ). It was also the basis for a recent movie about Hank.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Show music!

Some of the best music of the twenties through the sixties, and even today, was written for broadway plays and movies. But alas, a lot of time the instrumentation for these tunes is too ostentatious and "showy" and just nauseatingly shallow. But sometimes the genius of the songwriters and singers shines through. This one I nominate as a best song ever features the first lady of Broadway and the first man of American songwriting. It is the theme song of show business itself.





This version sung by Ethel Merman is from the movie Annie Get Your Gun (1954). The song itself was composed for the play in 1946, but featured a different singer.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There%27s_...w_Business

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethel_Merman

Composer George Gershwin called the composer of this song, Irving Berlin, "the greatest songwriter that has ever lived", and composer Jerome Kern concluded that "Irving Berlin has no place in American music—he is American music."

I don't always like his songs that much myself. As the wiki article notes, Berlin intended his songs to appeal to middle-brow Americans, and he didn't even write down the musical notation himself. So sometimes his songs, of which "God Bless America" is typical, are pedestrian and common, and don't have the deeper passionate or mystical appeal. But that's just what makes them special for many "middle" Americans and others around the world. They are direct, accessible and easy to listen to, and he also made ragtime a big deal early on too. He was so prolific and successful that you can't ignore him, or others like him, and I do think a few of his songs were great-- even in my opinion-- such as this theme for show-business itself. Next to God Bless America, and White Christmas (which I won't be choosing either), it's probably his most famous song. But, just as I won't be choosing The Star Spangled Banner for this list (though others are free to do so!), I won't be choosing Irving's anthem either. But, maybe there's a couple of other American anthems I'll choose.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

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Eric M
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Show themes, eh, OK   here's a classic man. Big Grin 






Uploaded on Dec 1, 2009

The Road Runner Show (1966-68), original opening theme.The theme song was written and sung by Barbara Cameron.
---Value Added Cool
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