1950s EASY-POP Songs and Singers...on the verge of Rock 'n Roll
Ten Surprising Songs and Singers from Musical Theater
All the Time Tony Randall 1958 Character actor and Broadway star Tony Randall introduced this seldom-heard, everlasting-love song in the musical ‘Oh, Captain.’ The recording by Johnny Mathis was the eighth top-twenty hit for him. Everybody’s Got a Home but Me Judy Tyler 1955 Judy Tyler introduced this touching song in ‘Pipe Dream.’ Eddie Fisher’s version was one of his best singles but it was not a big hit for him.
I Enjoy Being a Girl Pat Suzuki 1958 ‘Miss Pony Tail,’ American-born Pat Suzuki, describes herself in this engaging performance from ‘Flower Drum Song.’
If’n Gordon Polk & Virginia Gibson 1956 Ethel Merman was the star of ‘Happy Hunting’ but youngsters Virginia Gibson and Gordon Polk have an infectious great time imagining If’n (I were to love you).
Just in Time Judy Holiday & Sydney Chaplin 1956 This light and breezy up-beat duet was introduced by comedienne Judy Holiday and Broadway leading man Sydney Chaplin in ‘Bells Are Ringing.’
Love in a Home Edith ‘Edie’ Adams 1956 As Daisy Mae in ‘Li’l Abner’ Edie Adams sings this warm, touching, forgotten gem. Her duet with Peter Palmer, Namely You, was another outstanding number.
Luck Be A Lady Robert Alda 1951 Robert Alda, father of actor Alan Alda, sings this propulsive song from the musical fable ‘Guys and Dolls,’ based on the story by Damon Runyon.
Steam Heat Carol Haney 1954 Carol Haney was unknown to Broadway audiences when she co-starred in ‘The Pajama Game’ introducing the radiator clicking and hissing song Steam Heat. Patti Page had a top-ten hit with her version.
Take Me Along Jackie Gleason & Walter Pidgeon 1959 Moving onto the Broadway stage from his acclaimed TV variety series, Jackie Gleason performs the roguish title song from ‘Take Me Along.’
Too Close for Comfort Sammy Davis, Jr. 1956 The Broadway show ‘Mr. Wonderful’ showcased the talents of this popular nightclub entertainer as he tapped and sang Too Close for Comfort. Sammy Davis, Jr. didn’t have a top-forty hit with the song, but Eydie Gorme did.
Original Broadway Cast Albums
In addition to classical music and ‘concept’ albums, the 33 1/3 LPs invited recordings of entire scores from Broadway shows featuring the cast recreating their original live performances. One of the first original cast albums, from ‘Oklahoma,’ released in 1949, was so successful for Decca Records that dozens of original cast albums followed. Columbia Records had an even bigger hit later that year with the original cast album from ‘South Pacific’ that starred Mary Martin and Ezio Pinza.
The original Broadway cast album from ‘Guys and Dolls’ was another best-selling album for Decca Records in 1950, the album from ‘The King and I’ was a huge success in 1951, and Columbia Records released the best selling original cast album of the decade, ‘My Fair Lady’ starring Julie Andrews and Rex Harrison, in 1957. Some fantastic, hard-to-find EASY-POP songs, hide in these ‘Original Cast’ albums.