Sep 16, 2017

Exclusive Miss Michaels & Xavier, Plus Snoopy Restored And A Little Lying Secret Song!

No, these are not the latest contestants from "RuPaul's Drag Race" (but I betcha they'd cut a bitch for those jewels).
On the left, of course, is our dearly departed, but never forgotten, Miss Debbie Reynolds. On the right (and looking a bit wiggy, if you ask me) is the notably joyous starlet and big-throated singer, Miss Marilyn Michaels.

Who, you may ask? Give her a listen, because her voice is one-of-a-kind, so much so that she was signed to a record label while still in high school, then hit Hollywood and New York City in the late 1950s where she appeared on countless TV variety hours, like "The Ed Sullivan Show," while also gigging nightly at The Copacabana. She also played "Fanny Brice" in the national touring company of "Funny Girl."

Because of course she did. Because her voice is as big (and as technically adroit) as Streisand's. In fact, during the 70s and 80s, she also became known as a dead-accurate singing celebrity impressionist, nailing their sound to hilarious effect. Her first LP - a Magnificent Marilyn Cheerful Exclusive! - is called "The Fantastic and Exciting Debut of Marilyn Michaels." For once the adjectives do not exaggerate.

Rejoice, Peanuts fans (of which I am one). Newly restored Vince Guaraldi music has arrived!

Actually, it's more than just restored, it's being heard for the first time. Let me explain. In 1969, Columbia Records released the soundtrack to "A Boy Named Charlie Brown," though it was more of a "story record" for kids, meaning that voice actors performed and narrated the storyline - with Guaraldi's cues playing in the background. It was cute 'n' all, but not if you just wanted to hear the music.

Now there's a fantastic new soundtrack with just Guaraldi's music - lushly orchestrated for the big screen - like the track "Linus & Lucy, I've Got To Get My Blanket Back," which is a wonderfully dark, even menacing, take on the trademark tune.

Fair warning, there's also several absolutely awful songs perpetrated written by Rod McKuen, including the title tune (I've unchecked these on my iTunes cue, because I just can't with McKuen). But otherwise, this is a major event for Guaraldi fans, and I know you're out there!

Xavier Cugat. The very name conjures up salsa, samba, sangria for everyone!

For no particular reason, behold a picture of Xavier with Carmen Miranda below - along with none other than Xavier's beloved pooch. But then Xavier knew everyone in Hollywood during his heyday, and not only because of his band and his many appearances in Hollywood movies. He also welcomed them at his popular Los Angeles eatery "Casa Cugat" (right near Alan Hale's "Lobster Barrel!"). When Charo stopped by, claimed Xavier, she always ordered the "fillet of sole fundador." I have no idea what "sole fundador" is (I tried looking it up), but it sounds perfect for Charo.

His 1963 LP "Cugi's Cocktails" - an Ay Carumba Cheerful Exclusive! - is perfect for an especially rousing dinner gathering (whether you serve "sole fundador" or not). Or, of course, for an equally rousing cocktail party like we had last time, since its themed tracks include "Cuba Libre," "Singapore Sling," and other such tasty libations.

The Secret Song File is well aware that we're living in what's called a "Golden Age Of TV" - which really means too much goddamn TV on to many goddamn different platforms, but we digress - and this year, she was spellbound by two limited series entries, both of which earned Emmy nominations for their lead actresses. But who should win? Jessica Lange? Or Nicole Kidman?

If you lean towards Ms. Kidman, you're in luck. The Secret Song File just happens to have the new soundtrack for the series, which includes mesmerizing songs from Martha Wainright, Alabama Shakes and many more. Besides, if you're looking to push this man down a concrete flight of stairs, it's definitely the album for you.

Which celebrity will be on a coke bender at the awards tomorrow?

Leave your guesses in the comments, if you like. I call dibs for all those "Stranger Things" kids!


Rick said...

That's Debbie Reynolds with Marilyn Michaels.

The Cheerful Earfull! said...

D'oh! You're right!

Michael Thompson said...

I'd love to give Marilyn Michaels a spin but as I don't speak, read or write any Eastern European languages I struggled with the download link. Any clues which buttons to push? The last think I need is to unknowingly download something to my rickety ol' computer that may endanger our National Security. Thanks in advance!

The Cheerful Earfull! said...

Hey, Michael, I've uploaded Marilyn to a different site, so all should be well.

Michael Thompson said...

Thanks. You're the best!

David Federman said...

A Thank You gift for all you do. Here, for a week only, unless you download them and post them on your own, are Susan Barrett's two Capitol albums--"Mixed Emotions" from 1959 and "A Little Travelin' Music" from 1960 in glorious Apple high-res (m4a) available here:

Both have arrangements by film music kingpin of the time, Kenyon Hopkins. Both albums are glorious.

The Cheerful Earfull! said...

Wow! What a delightful treat!
Thank you so much, David!!

ANun said...

Marilyn Michaels was a guest a while back on Gilbert Gottfried's Amazing Colossal Podcast. Thanks, as ever, for your posts!

The Cheerful Earfull! said...

I didn't even know he had a podcast! Thanks, ANun!