Sunday, 25 December 2011

Where Elvis learnt to sing

I make no apology for featuring once again the Valentines' A Christmas Prayer. I love the soulful, ragged feel. And no Richard Barret, no Frankie Lymon. It really is that simple. I like the detail that Barrett lived above the shop where the young Lymon worked. Also Barrett's overprotectiveness towards (I think) the Chantels, which I suspect may have been related to his inability to protect Lymon. On the half hour documentary Promise to Remember, filmed around the time the surviving Teenagers were regrouping - the final shot of the PBS shows that Frankie's replacement for a gig at Stitt Junior High (which Barrett used for rehearsals) is ... a woman. No chance of the voice breaking, and time will bring in changes more slowly. But the line which stays with me from the doc is Barrett saying that Lymon's early demise will haunt him for the rest of his days.

Anyway, that's not very Christmassy. So here is A Christmas Prayer. This is doo wop singing as I like and understand it, and I commend it to you:

Oh, and if you're wondering about the strapline, that's because I was going to embed the Orioles' superb version of Oh Holy Night but the PC in the hotel where I type this can only access some aspects of youtube. Still, there's a pool and the food is delish. Merry Christmas one and all. And try to listen to Oh Holy Night yourself. Go here. It's listed as an alternate take but it sounds like the version I know from CD. Anyway, the point is that towards the end ("Oh ni-i-ight, oh hooo - leee ....") Sonny Till bends the notes in a way that suggests Presley must have been a keen student.

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