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Nine Stacks in Search of a Show


I won't whine about all the birthdays, although there are nine being celebrated on tonight's "Big Broadcast." The toughest part, especially when the nonet includes such major talents as Hoagy Carmichael, Tommy Dorsey and Coleman Hawkins, is getting it all to fit into four hours. The nine stacks represent Carmichael to Cecil Scott, and there are twenty more 78s that have to be added. So, it'll be another fruitcake dense program. But I'm not whining!

This week's recording is a happy accident that won't be heard until next week. It turned up in a haul of 2000+ records, and, so far, is the only Japanese recording among them. I wasn't sure if the "Made in Japan" sticker meant it was pressed there, or both recorded and manufactured overseas. Often "foreign" records were made here for export. Some of my Facebook friends (Rivermont Records' Bryan Wright and Yuko Eguchi Wright) smartened me up. This recording of Jerome Kern's standard "Who?" was released in February 1935, credited to singer Ichiro Fujiyama, accompanied by R. Uheles & his Florida Collegians. Yuko informed me that Fujiyama was a well-known vocalist whose specialty was military and folk songs, but that was after the war. It was news to her that he sang pop songs in the mid 30s.

As I write, the stacks are shrinking. Odds are I'll make it from Columbia County to the Bronx before the weather turns foul. Try to listen to "The Big Broadcast." Otherwise I will whine.