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Welcome to Blast2thePast.com

Ray Conniff Biography

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Conniff was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts, and learned to play the trombone from his father. He studied music arranging from a course book.[1] After serving in the U.S. Army in World War II (where he worked under Walter Schumann), he joined the Artie Shaw big band and wrote many arrangements for him. After his stint with Shaw he was then hired by Mitch Miller, then head of A&R at Columbia Records, as their home arranger, working with several artists including Rosemary Clooney, Marty Robbins, Frankie Laine, Johnny Mathis, Guy Mitchell and Johnnie Ray. He wrote a top 10 arrangement for Don Cherry's "Band of Gold" in 1955, a single that sold more than a million copies.
Among the hit singles he backed with his orchestra (and eventually with a male chorus) were "Yes Tonight Josephine" and "Just Walkin' in the Rain" by Johnnie Ray; "Chances Are" and "It's Not for Me to Say" by Johnny Mathis; "A White Sport Coat" and "The Hanging Tree" by Marty Robbins; "Moonlight Gambler" by Frankie Laine; "Up Above My Head," a duet by Frankie Laine and Johnnie Ray; and "Pet Me, Poppa" by Rosemary Clooney. He also backed up the albums Tony by Tony Bennett, Blue Swing by Eileen Rodgers, Swingin' for Two by Don Cherry, and half the tracks of The Big Beat by Johnnie Ray.
In these early years he also produced similar-sounding records for Columbia's Epic label under the name of Jay Raye (which stands for "Joseph Raymond") amongst them a backing album and singles with Somethin' Smith and the Redheads, an American male vocal group.
Between 1957 and 1968, Conniff had 28 albums in the American Top 40, the most famous one being Somewhere My Love (1966). He topped the album list in Britain in 1969 with His Orchestra, His Chorus, His Singers, His Sound, an album which was originally published to promote his European tour (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) in 1969. He also was the first American popular artist to record in Russia—in 1974 he recorded Ray Conniff in Moscow with the help of a local choir. His later albums like Exclusivamente Latino, Amor Amor and Latinisimo made him very popular in Latin-American countries, even more so after performing in the Viña del Mar International Song Festival. In Brazil and Chile he was treated like a young pop superstar in the 1980s and 1990s when he was in his 70s and 80s. He even played live with his orchestra and eight-person chorus in large football stadiums as well as in Viña del Mar.
Wiki Source

Ray Conniff Singers were also very popular back then especially for their Christmas Songs.

Perry Como - Papa Loves Mambo

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Artist: Perry Como with Mitch Ayres and his Orchestra and The Ray Charles Chorus
Title: "Papa Loves Mambo"

Label: RCA Victor
Cat No: 20-5857-A
Release Year: 1954

"My Time is Your Time" (Rudy Vallee, 1929)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

"My Time is Your Time" (Rudy Vallee, 1929) 

Rudy Vallee's second radio theme song, composed by Eric Little and Leo Dance...replacing "Heigh-Ho, Everybody!" for his national broadcasts on the Fleischmann's Yeast Hour.


My partner, my partner,
it's dancing time.
The clock says ten--
won't you say when?

I'm ready, go steady
when we begin--
The time is right,
I think we might,
just chance it and dance it
away tonight...

My time is your time,
Your time is my time,
We just seem to synchronize
and sympathize,
we're harmonizing...

One steps and two steps,
Old steps and new steps,
There's no time like our time
and no one like you!

There's no time like our time and no one like you...

Here's Rudy's entry from the Farlex Web Dictionary:

Vallee, Rudy Hubert Prior (1901-1986)

US singer, actor, and bandleader. Establishing a clean-cut, college-boy image, he became one of the most popular crooners (indicating a smooth, intimate style) of the 1920s. He formed his band the Connecticut Yankees 1928 and hosted a radio programme with the theme song 'My Time Is Your Time' (recorded 1929). From 1929 he appeared in films and stage musicals.
Vallee was born in Island Pond, Vermont, and raised in Maine. After studying at the University of Maine and Yale, he travelled widely, making appearances in England and throughout the USA. In the 1920s he sang through a megaphone, which became a trademark. He served in World War I and in the Coast Guard in World War II. Vallee started as a saxophone player and toured with local bands throughout his teenage years. On leaving college he became a singer, making records like 'The Vagabond Lover' (1929) and 'Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?' (1932). In Hollywood and on Broadway he began as a romantic lead but turned to comedy in the 1940s; his films include George White's Scandals (1934), Palm Beach Story (1942), and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1966). His performing career lasted into the 1980s.