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Category Archives: 1950s

“Mr. Blue ( Bobby Vinton Lyrics)”

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Stanley Robert “Bobby” Vinton, Jr. (born April 16, 1935) is an American pop music singer of Polish and Lithuanian ethnic background. In pop music circles, he became known as “The Polish Prince of Poch”, as his music pays tribute to his Polish heritage. Known for his angelic vocals in love songs, his most popular song, “Blue Velvet” (a cover of Tony Bennett’s 1951 song), peaked at No. 1 on the now renamed Billboard Pop Singles Chart. It also served as inspiration for the film of the same name.

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Blue on Blue is Bobby Vinton’s sixth studio album, released in 1963. Cover versions include the jazz songs “St. Louis Blues” and “Blueberry Hill”, “Am I Blue”, “Blue, Blue Day”, the Fleetwoods’ hit “Mr. Blue“, “My Blue Heaven”, three show tunes (“Blue Skies”, “Blue Hawaii” and “Blue Moon”), and The Clovers Rhythm and blues hit, “Blue Velvet”.

The song “Blue on Blue” was mentioned in Kim Mitchell’s hit song “Patio Lanterns”.

Composition and Background

Completely devoted to songs that refer to the color blue, this album contained two singles: “Blue on Blue”, which reached #3 on the U.S. Pop charts and “Blue Velvet”, which went on to #1 for three weeks on the same chart.[1] Both songs served as title tracks during their popularity.[1] The album was released after the success of the song “Blue on Blue”, but when “Blue Velvet” became a hit, the album’s title was changed with it being the title track.[1] It was only after the title change that the album managed to enter the Billboard 200 list of popular albums; it reached #10.[1]

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“Vintage Old 1950’s Yuban Coffee Commercial”

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The history of coffee goes at least as far back as the 10th century, with a number of reports and legends surrounding its first use. The native (undomesticated) origin of coffee is thought to have been Ethiopia. The earliest substantiated evidence of either coffee drinking or knowledge of the coffee tree is from the 15th century, in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen.[1] By the 16th century, it had reached the rest of the Middle East, Persia, Turkey, Horn of Africa, and northern Africa. Coffee then spread to the Balkans, Italy and to the rest of Europe, to Indonesia and then to America.[2]

Etymology

The word “coffee” entered the English language in 1582 via the Dutch koffie,[3] borrowed from the Turkish kahve, in turn borrowed from the Arabic qahwah ( قهوة).[4]

The word qahwah originally referred to a type of wine, whose etymology is given by Arab lexicographers as deriving from the verb qahā (قها, “to lack hunger”) in reference to the drink’s reputation as an appetite suppressant.[4][5] The word qahwah is sometimes alternatively traced to the Arabic quwwa (“power, energy”), or to Kaffa, a medieval kingdom in Ethiopia whence the plant was exported to Arabia.[4] These etymologies for qahwah have all been disputed, however. The name qahwah is not used for the berry or plant (the products of the region), which are known in Arabic as bunn and in Oromo as būn. Semitic had a root qhh “dark color”, which became a natural designation for the beverage. According to this analysis, the feminine form qahwah (also meaning “dark in color, dull(ing), dry, sour”) was likely chosen to parallel the feminine khamr (خمر, “wine”), and originally meant “the dark one”.[6]

First use 

The Ethiopian ancestors of today’s Oromo ethnic group were the first to have recognized the energizing effect of the native coffee plant.[1] Studies of genetic diversity have been performed on Coffea arabica varieties, which were found to be of low diversity but with retention of some residual heterozygosity from ancestral materials, and closely related diploid species Coffea canephora and C. liberica;[7] however, no direct evidence has ever been found indicating where in Africa coffee grew or who among the natives might have used it as a stimulant or known about it there earlier than the seventeenth century.[1] The original domesticated coffee plant is said to have been from Harar, and the native population is thought to be derived from Ethiopia with distinct nearby populations in Sudan and Kenya.[8][9]

Coffee was primarily consumed in the Islamic world where it originated and was directly related to religious practices.[10]

There are several legendary accounts of the origin of the drink itself. One account involves the Yemenite Sufi mystic Ghothul Akbar Nooruddin Abu al-Hasan al-Shadhili.[11] When traveling in Ethiopia, the legend goes, he observed birds of unusual vitality, and, upon trying the berries that the birds had been eating, experienced the same vitality.

Other accounts attribute the discovery of coffee to Sheik Abou’l Hasan Schadheli’s disciple, Omar. According to the ancient chronicle (preserved in the Abd-Al-Kadir manuscript), Omar, who was known for his ability to cure the sick through prayer, was once exiled from Mocha to a desert cave near Ousab. Starving, Omar chewed berries from nearby shrubbery, but found them to be bitter. He tried roasting the beans to improve the flavor, but they became hard. He then tried boiling them to soften the bean, which resulted in a fragrant brown liquid. Upon drinking the liquid Omar was revitalized and sustained for days. As stories of this “miracle drug” reached Mocha, Omar was asked to return and was made a saint.[12]

Another probably fanciful [1] account involves a 9th-century Ethiopian goat-herder, Kaldi, who, noticing the energizing effects when his flock nibbled on the bright red berries of a certain bush, chewed on the fruit himself. His exhilaration prompted him to bring the berries to a monk in a nearby monastery. But the monk disapproved of their use and threw them into the fire, from which an enticing aroma billowed, causing other monks to come and investigate. The roasted beans were quickly raked from the embers, ground up, and dissolved in hot water, yielding the world’s first cup of coffee. Since this story is not known to have appeared in writing before 1671, 800 years after it was supposed to have taken place, it is highly likely tobe apocryphal.[1]

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“Roy Orbison – Only The Lonely”

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Roy Kelton Orbison

(April 23, 1936 – December 6, 1988), nicknamed the Big O, was an American singer-songwriter and musician, known for his distinctive, powerful voice, complex compositions, and dark emotional ballads. Between 1960 and 1964, 22 of his songs placed on the Billboard Top 40, including: “Only the Lonely”, “Crying”, and “Oh, Pretty Woman”.

The combination of Orbison’s powerful, impassioned voice and complex musical arrangements led many critics to refer to his music as operatic, giving him the sobriquet “the Caruso of Rock”.[1][note 1] His voice ranged from baritone to tenor, and music scholars have suggested that he had a three- or four-octave range.[2] While most male performers in rock and roll in the 1950s and 1960s projected a defiant masculinity, many of Orbison’s songs instead conveyed a quiet, desperate vulnerability. He was known for performing while standing still and solitary and for wearing black clothes and dark sunglasses, which lent an air of mystery.

Orbison grew up in Texas and began singing in a rockabilly and country and western band in high school. He was signed by Sun Records in 1956, but his greatest success came with Monument Records in the early 1960s. His career stagnated in the 1970s, but was revived by several cover versions of his songs and the use of “In Dreams” in David Lynch’s film Blue Velvet (1986). In 1988, he was a member of the Traveling Wilburys supergroup, along with George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne. He also recorded his final solo album, Mystery Girl. He died of a heart attack shortly thereafter, at the peak of his renewed popularity.

Orbison was initiated into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in the same year, and the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1989. Rolling Stone placed him at number 37 on their list of the “Greatest Artists of All Time” and number 13 on their list of the “100 Greatest Singers of All Time’.[3] In 2002, Billboard magazine listed Orbison at number 74 in the Top 600 recording artists.[4] In 2014, Orbison was elected to America’s Pop Music Hall of Fame.

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Posted by on June 12, 2017 in 1950s, nostalgic

 

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“The Chantels – Look In My Eyes”

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The Chantels were the second African-American girl group to enjoy nationwide success in the United States, preceded by The Bobbettes. The group was established in the early 1950s by students attending St. Anthony of Padua School in The Bronx. The original five members consisted of Arlene Smith (lead), Sonia Goring, Rene Minus, Jackie Landry Jackson and Lois Harris. They derived their name from that of a rival school, St. Frances de Chantal.

Career

In 1957 the Chantels, then in high school, had been singing as a group for several years. Unlike some black groups whose influences were based in gospel, the quintet was influenced by classical music and Latin hymns.[1] Lead singer Arlene Smith had received classical training and performed at Carnegie Hall at age 12.[1] She provided both lyrics and music.[1] The girls were discovered by Richard Barrett, lead singer of The Valentines, and by the summer of 1957 they were signed to End Records, owned by George Goldner.[1] Their first single was “He’s Gone” (Pop #71) in August 1957, written by Arlene Smith.[1] Released in December 1957, their second single, “Maybe,” was a hit (#15 Billboard Hot 100; #2 R & B chart) in January 1958. It sold over a million copies and was awarded a gold disc.[2] The following releases were less successful but End did release an album originally titled We Are the Chantels. The original cover had a photo of the group. That album was soon withdrawn and repackaged with a picture of two white teenagers picking out a song; the title was shortened to The Chantels.[3]

The group was dropped by End in 1959, and Arlene Smith embarked upon a solo career. Harris left to pursue a college education. That year Chantels singles led by Richard Barrett were released on the End subsidiary label, Gone. In 1960 Annette Smith (no relation to Arlene) replaced Arlene Smith. As a quartet the group moved to Carlton Records, where they had their second huge hit with “Look in My Eyes” (#14 pop, #6 R&B). Other releases on Carlton didn’t do as well. One song was “Well I Told You,” a response to the Ray Charles song “Hit the Road, Jack.[1] A Carlton album was released in 1962 titled The Chantels on Tour but featured no live recordings and only seven tracks were recorded by the actual group. The other three tracks were by Gus Backus, Chris Montez and Little Anthony & The Imperials.[4][5] To cash in on “Look in My Eyes”, End threw together an album titled There’s Our Song Again, a compilation of previously recorded material.[3]

The Chantels switched record labels a few more times. Although personnel changed throughout the 1960s, the constants in the group were Jackie Landry, Sonia Goring and Renee Minus. This line-up, plus Arlene Smith, recorded a one-off single for RCA in 1970. Smith fronted a new group called Chantels in the 1970s which featured up-and-coming disco diva Carol Douglas and former Gems vocalist Louise Bethune (who would also become a 1970s performing member of The Crystals). Smith continued to perform solo. In 1995 the remaining original Chantels reformed as well and hired Noemi (Ami) Ortiz as their lead singer. On the PBS special Doo Wop 50, Smith reunited with the surviving original members of The Chantels and dedicated “Maybe” to Jackie Landry, who died in 1997.

The Chantels were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2002. In 2001 they made the final ballot for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,[6] but without enough votes for induction. Despite continued appearances since then on Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ballots by 1950s doo-wop groups, The Chantels did not get enough votes to reach any subsequent ballot until September 2009, when it was revealed that they were one of 12 nominees to be inducted to the Hall in 2010.

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Blondie And Dagwood

WHO WAS THIS COUPLE THAT AMERICAN FAMILIES ADMIRED AND WOKE UP TO READ IN THE SUNDAY PAPER? 

Dagwood and Blondie were fun, comical, loving and all about the going-ons of the American family life.

Dagwood Bumstead is a main character in comic artist Chic Young’s long-running comic strip Blondie. He first appeared sometime prior to 17 February 1933.

He was originally heir to the Bumstead Locomotive fortune but was disowned when he married a flapper (originally known as Blondie Boopadoop) whom his family saw as below his class. He has since worked hard at J.C. Dithers & Company (currently as the construction company’s office manager) to support his family. The Bumsteads’ first baby, Alexander, was originally named Baby Dumpling.

 The name of his younger sister, Cookie, was chosen by readers in a national contest. The family circle is rounded out by Daisy the dog.[1] The origin of both Dagwood’s last name and Daisy’s name came from Chic Young’s long-time friend Arthur Bumstead and his dog, Daisy.

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Posted by on June 5, 2017 in 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, humor, nostalgic

 

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“The best of Mae West”

“The best of Mae West”

Born on August 17, 1893, in Brooklyn, New York, Mae West hit her Hollywood stride in her late 30s, when she might have been considered in her “advanced years” for playing sexy harlots, but her persona and physical beauty overcame any doubt. The blunt sexuality of her films aroused the wrath and moral indignation of several groups, but this sexuality is what she is remembered for today.

Born Mary Jane West on August 17, 1893, in Brooklyn, New York, to Matilda and John West. Family members called her Mae (spelled May at the time) from an early age. Matilda, also known as “Tillie,” was a German immigrant and aspiring actress. But her parents’ disapproval in career choices brought her dreams down to a more realistic profession as a garment worker. However, she clandestinely abandoned her seamstress work for the less respectable, though somewhat more glamorous work, as a fashion model and never totally gave up the prospect of having some career in show business.

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Posted by on June 5, 2017 in 1940s, 1950s, classic film star

 

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“Knott’s Berry Farm: The Good Old Days (1950s)”

“Knott’s Berry Farm: The Good Old Days (1950s)”

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The Knott’s Berry

Farm amusement park in Orange County, California originated from a berry farm owned by Walter Knott (1889-1981). In the 1920s, Knott and his wife, Cordelia, sold berries, berry preserves and pies from a roadside stand beside State Route 39, near the small town of Buena Park.[1][2]

In 1932, on a visit to Rudolph Boysen’s farm in nearby Anaheim, Walter Knott was introduced to a new hybrid berry of blackberry, red raspberry and loganberry cross-bred by Boysen, who gave Walter his last six wilted berry-hybrid plants. Walter planted and cultivated them, then the family sold the berries at their roadside stand.[2] When people asked what kind they were, he called them “Boysenberrys”.[3]

In 1934, to make ends meet, Knott’s wife Cordelia (1890–1974) reluctantly began serving fried chicken dinners on their wedding china. For dessert, Knott’s signature Boysenberry Pie was also served to guests dining in the small tea room. As Southern California developed, Highway 39 became the major north-south connection between Los Angeles County and the beaches of Orange County, and the restaurant’s location was a popular stopping point for drivers making the two-hour trip in those days before freeways. Until Interstate 605 and State Route 57 were built in the late 1960s, Highway 39 (now known in Orange County as Beach Boulevard) continued to carry the bulk of the traffic between eastern Los Angeles and Orange County. Great location and good value were the restaurant’s conditions of success which attracted long lines of diners.

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Posted by on June 5, 2017 in 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, historic

 

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