Title: Jackie Gleason - White Christmas Album
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Christmas Always
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Posts: 1096

(Date Posted:09/28/2008 20:10)

Hi Chip and everyone....

Just under 88 more days till Christmas

I was wondering if the following eBay listing is an original album from Jackie Gleason?  It doesn't list the record label and the seller was unsure about the release date.

I have his 2-record set "All I Want For Christmas"  Capital Records STBB 346, but from the picture in the listing on eBay really doesn't show that much.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=370089930532&_trksid=p3907.m32&_trkparms=tab%3DWatching

I thank you in advance
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Christmas Isn't Just A Day In December, It's A Way Of Life
Susan

Christmas Music Guru
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Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3458

RE:Jackie Gleason - White Christmas Album
(Date Posted:09/29/2008 00:42)


No Susan, it is not an original release; and neither is your double-LP.

Jackie Gleason's two original Christmas LPs are "Merry Christmas" (Capitol Records #W758 for mono and #DW758 for re-channeled stereo), which was released in 1956, and "'Tis The Season" (Capitol Records #T2791 for mono and #ST2791 for stereo), which was released in 1967.

The 2-record set, "All I Want For Christmas" (Capitol Records #STBB-346), which was released in 1969, is an abridged version of both LPs. For this reissue Capitol Records deleted 4 of the 14 songs from Jackie's first LP "Merry Christmas," and 1 of the 10 songs from his second LP "'Tis The Season." If this 2-record set is all you have in your collection by Jackie Gleason, I suggest that you chuck it and purchase the original LPs.      

As for the LP, "White Christmas" (SPC-1008), this is a compilation album that was released by Pickwick Records in the 70s. It contains 9 songs: 7 songs from the first album, and 2 songs from the second album.

It is such a shame that most people today only know Jackie Gleason for the great comedian and actor he was -- on both TV and in the movies, and are completely unaware of the brilliant music career he had and all the great albums he released in the 1950s and 60s -- many of them huge chart successes. These two Christmas albums are bona fide treasures of his musical legacy.



(Message edited by Christmas Music Guru On 09/29/2008 00:47)
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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Christmas Always
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Rank:Diamond

Posts:1096

RE:Jackie Gleason - White Christmas Album
(Date Posted:09/29/2008 07:33)

Hi Chip,

Thanks so much.  I really appreciate it.  Will have to look for the original releases.

Yes it is sad that most people only know Jackie Gleason from "The Honeymooner's"  There was an episode where he tried to hit the high note on his trumpet and he couldn't do it.  I wonder how hard it is for someone who is a professional to make it sound like they aren't?

When I lived in Westchester County (1970-1975)  I remember watching Jackie Gleason, I belleve either on WNEW-5 or WCBS-2 in The Life Of Riley  It was on after midnight if memory serves.  I don't know if he played Riley in any of the radio broadcasts, but it was definately him on TV.  I know that WNEW has new Call Letters now, but since I am not even remotely close to NYC The only stations I believe are still the same are WPIX, WABC, WCBS and WNBC.

I wonder how may members also remember The Jackie Gleason show that was on TV when he was the bartender?

Once again, I thank you for your help.  Also if any of my above comments are incorrect, please clarify them for me.
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Christmas Isn't Just A Day In December, It's A Way Of Life
Susan

Christmas Music Guru
3# 



Rank:Honorary Member

Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3458

RE:Jackie Gleason - White Christmas Album
(Date Posted:09/29/2008 23:13)


Susan,

How uncanny you should mention the Honeymooners episode, "Young Man with a Horn," as it just happened to be airing on WPIX-TV at the very same time I was writing my post to you last night. What a coincidence!

You're right about how hard it is for someone who is a professional to make it sound like they aren't. I remember an episode years ago on the Mike Douglas show when Jo Stafford was a guest; she was playing around with Mike and trying to sing like she didn't know how -- off-key, etc., and to this day I vividly remember my mother remarking how hard that was for her because she was such a good singer. However, with regard to Jackie Gleason, while he could compose, arrange and conduct, he actually could not read or write music, nor could he play a musical instrument (with the exception of a little dabbling on the vibraphone). So, on this particular episode of the Honeymooners, when it looked like he was struggling with trying to play that horn, he really was. Since he didn't know how to read or write music, to compose, what he would do is after he conceived a melody in his head, he would then communicate the tune orally by humming it to an assistant who would then put it into musical notes.

In addition to the ignorance there is today of Jackie's music career, there is almost an equal unawareness of the depth he had as an actor -- especially among younger folks. He was absolutely brilliant in movies like The Hustler (with the late Paul Newman), Gigot and Requiem for a Heavyweight. He was nominated for an Oscar by the Academy in 1961 for Best Supporting Actor for his role in The Hustler, but unfortunately he did not take home the prize; although I personally believe of the five people nominated that year, he was the clear-cut winner.

With regard to "The Life of Riley," William Bendix played the role on radio from 1944-1951, then Jackie Gleason played the role on television from 1949-1950, followed by original star William Bendix who played the role on television from 1953-1958. As for Joe the Bartender, this was one of the many well-known characters that Jackie played on his TV variety show in the 1950s and 60s. Others included Reginald Van Gleason III, The Poor Soul and of course, Ralph Kramden.

As for the local TV stations here in New York, only channel 5 has changed its call letters in recent years. The local New York TV stations are WCBS (2), WNBC (4) WNYW (5), WABC (7), WWOR (9), WPIX (11) and WNET (13).

One last thing Susan: if you could do me a favor, in the future I would appreciate it if you -- and everybody on the board for that matter -- could file threads about music under the Music category. It makes it a lot easier for members when they are searching for an old thread if they are filed under the correct category. Thanks in advance.    
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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

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