I was 24 years away from being born in February, 1953 which is the year in which we find ourselves on our tour through musical history this month. Let’s see what I missed out on…
The songs of February, 1953
A few few nice new tunes entering the US charts this week,
February, 1953 Top 20 Hits
“Anywhere I Wander” – Julius Larosa
“Don’t Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes” – Perry Como
“Even Now” – Eddie Fisher
“Glow Worm” – Mills Brothers
“Have You Heard” – Joni James
“Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me” – Karen Chandler
“Hot Toddy” – Ralph Flanagan
“How Much Is That Doggie In The Window” – Patti Page
“I Believe” – Frankie Laine
“It’s In The Book” – Johnny Standley
“Keep It A Secret” – Jo Stafford
“Mister Tap-Toe” – Doris Day
“My Baby’s Coming Home” – Les Paul And Mary Ford
“No Help Wanted” – Rusty Draper
“Oh Happy Day” – Don Howard
“Oh Happy Day” – Four Knights
“Oh Happy Day” – Lawrence Welk
“Pretend” – Nat King Cole
“Pretend” – Ralph Marterie
“Say It With Your Heart” – Bob Carroll
“Side By Side” – Kay Starr
“Tell Me You’re Mine” – Gaylords
“Till I Waltz Again With You” – Teresa Brewer
“Why Don’t You Believe Me” – Joni James
“Wild Horses” – Perry Como
“Your Cheating Heart” – Joni James
But now that we have the UK charts at our disposal lets add a top 10 from February, 1953 from across the atlantic,
“Don’t Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes” – Perry Como And The Ramblers
“Outside Of Heaven” – Eddie Fisher
“Because You’re Mine” – Mario Lanza
“Comes A-long A-love” – Kay Starr
“She Wears Red Feathers” – Guy Mitchell
“Now” – Al Martino
“Broken Wings” – Art And Dotty Todd
“Here In My Heart” – Al Martino
“You Belong To Me” – Jo Stafford
“Takes Two To Tango” – Louis Armstrong
A few of those we’ve had in previous US charts but the bolded ones aren’t in the charts currently so they’re on this weeks playlist.
You can listen to the full playlist on Youtube via this link or embedded below:
This month in history
Good news for the sweet toothed – a good 7 years after World War II ended sweet rationing ended in the UK on February 4, 1953. Since the war’s end Brits had been limited to 12 oz (340g) per month. Which, to be honest, sounds like a lot to me, but then I’ve never had much of a taste for sweets. We’ll have to see if Sadie does.
The next day Disney’s classic Peter Pan debuted. You can view the trailer below.
And towards the end of the month James Watson and Francis Crick of the University of Cambridge announce their discovery of the structure of the DNA molecule. As we learnt many years later their work was built on the back of other researchers including Rosalind Franklin,
Franklin died of ovarian cancer in 1958, four years before the Nobel prize was awarded to Watson, Crick and Wilkins for their work on DNA structure. She never learned the full extent to which Watson and Crick had relied on her data to make their model
And there’s a nice squiggly lined from there to the mRNA vaccines currently being jabbed in our arms to put this Covid business to bed finally (we hope.). So thanks Rosalind, James, Francis et al.
What’d Sadie think?
Perry Como’s “Don’t Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes” held on to number 1 for one more week into February. Before Teresa Brewer shot to the top with “Till I Waltz Again With You” for the rest of the month.
We’re off to a boisterous start with Julius Larosa‘s “Anywhere I Wander”. Which was from the 1952 musical film, “Hans Christian Andersen”. Which sounds curious enough to watch, “not the story of his life, but a fairy tale about this great spinner of fairy tales.”
I believe for every drop of rain that falls a flower grows“I Believe” – Frankie Laine
I believe that somewhere in the darkest night a candle glows
I believe for everyone who goes astray
Someone will come to show the way
I believe, I believe
Frankie Laine’s “I Believe” is the song of hope we all need for a lockdown free summer in London. And is up to his usual high croning standards.
Rusty Draper was a country cross over artist named for his red hair. Which I always find amusing in an era of primarily black and white photography and Television. “No Help Wanted” was an alright song.
But, and we find ourselves saying this a lot in the last couple of virtual years, it as no Nat King Cole – who has another fine hit with, “Pretend”.
“Say It With Your Heart” by Bob Carroll is quite dismissible, sorry Bob! And Perry Como doesn’t have his finest moment with “Wild Horses”.
But the US charts end on a nice note with Joni James‘ “Your Cheating Heart”.
“Outside Of Heaven” was Eddie Fisher’s first UK number 1 and a great song it is.
Perhaps more odd than it is great, though catchy at that, is Guy Mitchell’s “She Wears Red Feathers” – both Mitchell and the composer are american which doesn’t explain the lyrics,
I work in a London bank, respectable position“She Wears Red Feathers” – Guy Mitchell
From nine to three they serve you tea
But ruin your disposition
Each night of music calls, rather lost I seem
And once a pearl of a native girl came smilin’ right at me
You’ll have to listen to get the full story…
Art And Dotty Todd, a husband and wife duo, haven’t popped up in the charts in the USA where they’re from for us yet but here they are on the UK charts with “Broken Wings”. Which is saccharine sweet but not bad at all for the style.
But song of the week goes to Jo Stafford’s “You Belong To Me” which fans in both the USA and UK agree is a lovely tune. And today its lyrics definitely incite the wanderlust.
Now go listen to the full playlist on Youtube via this link.