Sunday, December 23, 2018

Oh Crap -- Simels is Starting to Post Christmas Songs: The Golden Age of Television Edition

From CBS TV -- originally broadcast live in 1956, but here recorded in the studio -- please enjoy Basil Rathbone (what a singer!) and "Mankind Should Be My Business," one of the big numbers from The Stingiest Man in Town.

Which I believe is the first ever musical adaption of Dickens' A Christmas Carol.

I should add that the show was remade as a Rankin/Bass animated special in 1978, which is interesting if you're an insane Walter Matthau completist (he sings the part of Scrooge at least as well as Rathbone, for what it's worth).

I was nine years old when the live version first aired, and I remember it made a humongous impression on me. The ghosts were particularly scary, albeit not as much as Rathbone's atonal groaning in the songs. I also had the soundtrack LP, because an uncle of mine worked for Columbia Records at the time, and for some reason I played it obsessively for years.

I believe Amazon has a CD version of the soundtrack LP of the original; the complete live version and the cartoon are similarly available on YouTube last time I looked.


Unknown said...

a glimpse into the Simels' childhood - it explains so much!

steve simels said...

Indeed it does. :-)