Steve Allen, via means of Coral Records wants you to understand the complex necessity of Romantic Rendezvous… in fact, Mr. Allen is (was) so adamant, he enlisted the help of his Piano with Neil Hefti and his Orchestra. Romance, however it is defined, starts here, with a blue radio, and a red comforter. Apparently opened toed shoes are also a plus, but with Steve Allen, accessories are questionable.
60 tracks on one LP… are you kidding me? “Hells no” says Dick Hyman with his 1957 release, 60 Great All Time Songs Vol. 2 For Your Listening And Dancing Pleasure. As far as I can tell, there are four volumes total in the Great All Time Songs library, none of which I currently own, with the exception for the Vol. 2 you’re currently looking at. So, you know, there’s that.
Have monkey, will operate organ. Bent Fabric, the whimsical piano master, follows his animal friendly, attention stealing formula with his 1964 effort, Organ Grinder’s Swing. A must for any fan of the solemn cool, Mr. Fabric opens the door to soothing piano rolls, a relaxing atmosphere, and adorable, domestic animals. Still on the lookout for his more prominent 1964 release, The Drunken Penguin, I find comfort in these open window, cool breeze piano eruptions, which are perfect for late night rye consuming moments of sporadic clarity. Thank you, Mr. Fabric.
As a special note, happy beautiful birthday to my amazing, and domestic animal loving mother, without whom, there would be no Groove. Happy birthday, mom!
Native American for “crooked river,” the Cuyahoga spans 100 or so miles, twisting and bending through Ohio state shores, until it unloads into Lake Erie, the scariest of the Great Lakes. The river is famous for catching fire a reported 13 times since 1868, and is the subject of Randy Newman’s 1972 rolling, Baroque pop classic, Burn On.
Inspiration comes from many, varied mediums. Today’s post was influenced by last night’s movie of the week, the 1989 baseball classic Major League. Set in Cleveland, Ohio, the film’s opening features the serene, everyday life of the city’s residents set to the backdrop of Mr. Newman’s fiery piano rolls. Baseball, and therefore summer lingers in the air, as does the faint, distant smell of a glorious, polluted river engulfed in flames.
I didn’t exactly pay $1.57 for Bent Fabric’s debut album, Alley Cat, but a record released in 1962 (adjusted for inflation, of course) calculated at $11.76, priced at $2.99 just yesterday, was something I certainly couldn’t turn down.
Bent Fabricius-Bjerre, AKA Bent Fabric, is an 88-year-old Danish pianist/composer who, on this album, plays merry ol’ ragtime music with the cunning grace of someone like Sergei Rachmaninov… only, you know, with cats.