This was $1. I got it to see what Milton Berle’s contribution to music would be. Hey, where are my manners? Another month of 2017 and another month of Donkey Show. Most of the year, I have been running ahead of writing these posts. Well, I have now fell behind. Oh, well. I have all month to get caught up.
Milton Berle (1908-2002), known as “Mr Television”, was America’s first major TV star. Getting his start on vaudeville and radio, Berle jumped on the rising medium of television in 1948 with the Texaco Star Theater, renamed later to the Buick-Berle Show, and later, just the Milton Berle show.
This record, from Roulette Records, came out in 1957 at the end of his show’s run. As the title would suggest, the album is a collection of songs for his mother, Sandra Berle, who passed three years earlier.
The Hugo and Luigi, who received producer credits at the bottom were Luigi Creatore and Hugo Peretti, songwriters who were also co-owners of the label. The duo would work with Perry Como, Sam Cooke, and Elvis Presley.
Since this record is dedicated to Berle’s mother and given the fact that my mother is probably going to read this, I am going to skip over the fact that Berle was known as one of the largest endowed performers in show bidness.
And although, he worked clean for the large majority of his acts/shows, his performances at the Friar Club were often blue and made light of his gift. Anyway, below, is a rather comical story from SNL writer Alan Zweibel, who oddly enough, used to write the jokes for the Friar’s Club roasts.
Zweibel’s recollection of Berle
Anyway, back to general decency, this record is a collection of older tunes from the first half of the century. I am unsure who the orchestra and chorus are but they do most of the heavy lifting. Berle does an occasional speak over on some of the songs. It is ok, overall. I thought I was getting more Berle content when I bought this.
For a sample, I decided to play tribute to the boys of summer and Bull Durham with “Try A Little Tenderness” because women do get woolly.
Overall, meh. Really don’t get to much out of this. The arrangements are pretty bland and Berle’s voice overs don’t salvage this act. I guess I should factor in what I paid for this but still, meh.