From Nashville To L.A. – Lost Columbia Singles 1963-1969 (CD) by Patti Page

January 15, 2014

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Earlier this year Real Gone Music released The Complete Columbia Singles by Patti Page. It contained all the A and B sides of her single releases for the label. While most of her well-known hits were recorded for the Mercury label, there was a lot of good music issued during her seven years with Columbia.

While assembling that album, a number of previously unreleased tracks were discovered. Those 24 tracks have been released as From Nashville To L.A. – Lost Columbia Masters 1963-1969. The end product is a somewhat disjointed album as the tracks were recorded over a number of years and for different albums. On the other hand, the songs are finished tracks and should please any fan of Page.

The music moves in a number of directions. She gives a simple rendition of the Eddy Arnold hit “I Really Don’t Want To Know.” “Raining In My Heart” was written by Felice and Boudleaux Bryant and originally recorded by Buddy Holly & The Crickets. She slows the tempo a bit and moves the song in a light pop direction. I remember Herb Alpert’s version of the Bacharach/David tune “To Wait For Love” and Page’s is much better as she gives a pitch perfect vocal performance.

Her 1966 sessions for the album America’s Favorite Hymns, provide four tracks. “Just As I Am,” “Jesus Loves Me,” “I’ll Live Up There,” and “In The Sweet Bye and Bye” represent a side of Page that is rarely explored.

The album is a treasure trove for her fan base. Dinah Washington had an R&B hit with “Teach Me Tonight” but Page’s version moves it back to its pop roots. She swings with the Ray Charles classic  ”Hallelujah I Love You So.” Add in her Spanish language releases of “Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte” and “Scarlet Ribbons (For Her Hair)” and you have an album of note.

The best way to describe From Nashville To L.A. – Lost Columbia Masters 1963-1969 is interesting as it helps to fill in her legacy. It may not be cohesive but there are a number of excellent stand-alone tracks. It forms a nice introduction to an often neglected period of her career.

 


Christmas With Patti Page (CD) by Patti Page

December 30, 2013

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The year was 1955; Ike was President, The Dodgers finally beat the Yankees in the World Series, and Patti Page was the most popular singer in the United States. Late in the year she released one of the better selling Christmas albums of the decade. Christmas With Patti Page has now been re-released with bonus tracks by Real Gone Music.

Patti Page charted 110 singles on the Billboard Magazine Pop Charts and sold well over 100 million records during her career. She first charted in 1948 and had her last hit in 1980. She continued to perform and record well into the 2000’s and passed away January 1, 2013, at the age of 85.

Her Christmas album was recorded at the height of her career. It is a traditional release that remains rooted in the 1950s. Many of the she songs that comprise the album have since been recorded hundreds of times. On the very positive side, Page has a wonderful voice and her interpretations of light popish Christmas songs such as “Jingle Bells,” “Where Did My Snowman Go,” “The Mama Doll Sound,” and “I Wanna Go Skating With Willie,” find her at her best.

“Silent Night,” “The First Noel,” “White Christmas,” and “The Christmas Song” travel in a different direction as she employed a mixed choral ensemble to back her lead vocals. I prefer her simpler approach with the focus squarely on her voice without a lot of instrumentation.

The bonus tracks complete her Christmas recordings for the Mercury label. “Boogie Woogie Santa Claus” is a swingin’ song and was recorded in 1950. It was released as a single and quickly disappeared as its B side, “Tennessee Waltz,” went on to become Page’s signature song, topping the Pop Chart for nine weeks. “Little Donkey” was recorded in 1959 and its simple message and passion make it the best track on the album.  Three Christmas performances from The Patti Page Show and the Christmas Greetings From Patti radio spot complete the album.

As with all the Real Gone releases the sound is as clean as the original tapes will allow. The accompanying booklet presents a nice biography of her life and of her Christmas recording sessions.

Christmas With Patti Page is a trip back in time to when she was the queen of American music. It may not be a modern Christmas album but it is music worth visiting.


The Complete Columbia Singles 1962-1970 by Patti Page

November 9, 2013

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Patti Page, 1927-2013, sold more records during the 1950’s than any other female artist. During her time with the Mercury label, 1947-1962, she placed close to 75 titles on the national charts. Her version of “Tennessee Waltz” was one of the signature songs of the pre-rock and roll era. She was a traditional pop singer who branched out into country and jazz.

Her career did not end with her leaving Mercury. While her huge chart success may have waned; she continued to release quality material through the 1960’s. Real Gone Music has now gathered all of her Columbia label singles onto a new two-CD release appropriately titled The Complete Columbia Singles 1962-1970.

Her releases for Columbia were some of the most varied of her career. “Just A Simple Melody” is about as rocking as she ever gets. “That’s What I Tell Them,” “I Knew I Would See Him Again,” and “I’d Rather Be Sorry” are traditional ballads made for her vocal range. She moves in a rhythm and blues direction with “Nobody” and “Maybe He’s Come Back To Me.” Then there is the somewhat odd interpretation of the Jacque Brel composition “Geraldine.”

Her most famous release for the label was “Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte,” which was featured in the film starring Bette Davis and Olivia de Havilland. The Oscar nominated song became her last top ten pop hit.

It was her country songs that enabled her to find a new musical home. “I Wish I Had A Mommy Like You” was her first significant country hit.

As with many artists of the day, many times her albums contained a number of cover songs and filler tracks. The singles, however, were usually the best of what was recorded. That is what makes this release rise above the average.

As with most Real Gone releases, the sound has been enhanced as much as modern technology will allow, plus there is a nice booklet that gives a good overview of her time with the label.

She would ultimately return to Mercury and become a country music star during the 1970s and the first half of the 1980s. Her material for Columbia may not be as well-known as that with Mercury but when the 50 songs that comprised her singles are gathered together, it forms a significant achievement.

The Complete Columbia Singles 1962-1970 represent Patti Page well as one of the 20th Centuries pop masters.


(How Much Is That) Doggie In The Window by Patti Page

June 28, 2012

Patti Page, at age 84, is still out on the road performing about 50 concerts a year.

She was one of the queens of music during the 1950s and placed 110 singles on the BILLBOARD MAGAZINE Pop Singles Chart during his career.

“(How Much Is That) Doggie In The Window” was one of her four number one hits. It was also one of the biggest hits of 1953 as it topped all three BILLBOARD Pop Charts.

Best Sellers In Stores Chart – 3/21/53 – 8 weeks at #1.
Most Played By Disc Jockeys Chart – 3/28/53 – 7 weeks at #1.
Most Played In Jukeboxes Chart – 4/11/53 – 6 weeks at #1.

It was a novelty type song that that were so popular during the 1950s. It may sound somewhat dated today but almost 60 years ago it ruled the music world in the United States.


I Went To Your Wedding by Patti Page

June 4, 2012

Patti Page was a superstar of the late 1940s and 1950s, whose consistently charted singles throughout the 1960s.

“Tennessee Waltz” was the number one song of 1951. She returned to the top of the charts when “I Went To Your Wedding” reached the top during the fall of 1952.

Best Sellers In Stores Chart – 10/18/52 – 5 weeks at number one.
Most Played By Disc Jockeys Chart – 11/15/52 – 1 weeks at number one.
Most Played In Jukeboxes Chart – 9/27/52 – 10 weeks at number one.

At the age of 84, she still performs about 50 concerts a year.


Tennessee Waltz by Patti Page

April 11, 2012

And so the final number one song of 1950 became the biggest hit of 1951.

Cowboy Copas had recorded “Tennessee Waltz” as a traditional country song during 1947. Along came Patti Page, (born 1927), a little over three years later. Her pop version became one of the signature ballads of the decade and has since been covered by hundreds of artists.

It first reached number one during late December of 1950 but it would be 1951 when it would gain its greatest fame.

BILLBOARD Best Sellers In Store Chart – 9 weeks at number one.
BILLBOARD Most Played By Disc Jockeys Chart – 8 weeks at number one.
BILLBOARD Most Played In Jukeboxes Chart – 13 weeks at number one.

The song did not stop on the pop charts but also crossed back over to the BILLBOARD Country Chart where it peaked at number two.

A number of years later it was voted the state song of Tennessee. Not bad for a song that was suppossed to have been a single release B side.


All My Love (Bolero) 45 by Patti Page

April 6, 2012

One of the most popular female artists of the 1950s had her first number one hit during October of 1950 when “All My Love (Bolero)” by Patti Page reached the top of the charts on the 28th. It spent five weeks at number one on the BILLBOARD MAGAZINE Most Played By Disc Jockey Chart.

Page would sell over 100 million records during the course of her career and have 14 million selling singles, 1950-1965. All told she would place 110 different singles on various BILLBOARD charts.

Today, at age 84, Patti Page still performs about 50 concerts per year.