Thursday, December 22, 2011

Drifters: White Christmas

Well I skipped yesterday as there are very few Christmas records that are true one-hit wonders that I haven’t already featured on this blog, or that I would ever dare to feature. During 20 years of radio broadcasting, there were songs I skipped over during the holiday season and I am not ready to start playing some of them now. I was very particular about the Christmas songs I played and I’m not quite ready for “I’m Getting Nuthin’ for Chirstmas” and others that actually made it to the Top 40. So rather than skipping to another category, I skipped yesterday’s post.

Today’s theme of TV Thursday is pushing it, as Jimmy Durante’s version of “Frosty the Snowman” is not my cup of eggnog either. Gee, I’m beginning to sound like The Grinch – oh yeah, I’ve featured that number by Thurl Ravenscroft last year. By the way, I just like saying Thurl Ravenscroft anyway.

I mean pushing it, as today’s feature song was used in several motion pictures that have made their way to television. Two I can remember are “Home Alone” and “The Santa Clause.” Since they have been featured on TV, I guess it is safe to make The Drifter’s 1954 rendition of “White Christmas” our TV Thursday Christmas song.

The song features lead vocalist Clyde McPhatter and bass singer Bill Pinkney, although his name was misspelled on the labels of the 78 and 45 releases of the tune. “White Christmas” charted on Billboard’s Rhythm and Blues chart at #2 in 1954. It made the Hot 100 in 1955 by charting at 80. It’s a great song and sure much more palatable for someone of my generation than the original by Bing Crosby – even though the 78 on Decca and subsequent reissues on 45 on Decca and MCA made Bing’s version the biggest selling single of all time. Bing sang this Irving Berlin song in two movies, 1942’s “Holiday Inn” and 1944’s “White Christmas.”

No comments:

Post a Comment