IMMENSELY RESTORATIVE, 1934

hot-water-and-lemon

This may be better than other restoratives, such as a brisk walk before breakfast.

The details?  Dick Powell and the Mills Brothers.  A song by Al Dubin and Harry Warren, from the 1934 film TWENTY MILLION SWEETHEARTS.  And I read that Powell insisted on this being recorded and filmed “live” rather than have the five of them — notice, no studio orchestra (which would have been entirely unnecessary) — lip-syncing, as was the custom.

This performance, just over two minutes, is totally entrancing: clearly rehearsed, because there are a million places where collisions would be possible, it becomes a sweet vocal ballet with very uplifting visual touches.  Historically-minded listeners may hear parallels between this and what Bing had done even before he and the Brothers made a record in 1932 (and a film appearance in THE BIG BROADCAST) and I hear a good deal of what the Spirits of Rhythm were so memorably creating.

But right now, I plan to watch and listen to this clip several more times.  I encourage you to take as needed as well.  Thanks to Steven Potteiger of Facebook for pointing me to Ron Evry’s video — without them, I would have been unrestored.

May your happiness increase!

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4 responses to “IMMENSELY RESTORATIVE, 1934

  1. Thank you,Michael. This is so good!

  2. Hey Michael,

    A delightful writeup of a performance I¹ve loved for years. Seems so effortless, but likely took hours of rehearsal. Speaking of which, we saw Vince¹s band last night and they swung the shit out of a batch of unexpected numbers, like Tiny Parham¹s ³Washboard Wiggles² and a super-mellow version of BGs ³Swingtime in the Rockies.² Sheer heaven.

    May your menorah burn bright, Dave & Barry

  3. Another treat for you.So much crammed into a minute!

  4. Don "Zoot"Conner

    This is a kick!

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