Billy Vaughn and his Orchestra- Blue Hawaii

This puppy was a buck.  Got it for the songs, most of which I like.  What is going on this week, other than zipping thru posts?  Well, nothing as much to make note of but still too much to dedicate too much time to writing this.

On that note, Billy Vaughn has always been hit or miss with me.  Well this album from Dot Records, released in 1959, is pretty much a miss.  I found the arrangements to be a tad slow and boring and not really in the whole tropical vein.  Of course, exotica was never really Vaughn’s bag and perhaps this is not fair, but what do you expect me to do about it today?

Well, for a sample, I went with one of my faves, “Hawaiian War Chant”.

Meh. Sorry Billy.  I’ll get you the next time around.


Annette- Hawaiiannette

DSCN2393This was $5.00. I got it at the August Infinity Record Convention at the SW Hilton.


I know it has been discussed in detail in other forums, but notice how modest Annette Funicello (1942-2013) is on the cover. On one picture, she is even wearing a Muu Muu. It is well known that Walt Disney wanted to preserve the pure image, asking her not to expose her navel in her beach movies and such. Compare this to the fact that I have seen Brittney Spears’ privates. How times have changed.



This is a fun album of Annette singing Hawaiian songs. The songs on this album range from traditional to new songs written by the Sherman Brothers. Highlights include the title track, “Blue Hawaii”, “Date Night in Hawaii”, “ Blue Muu Muu”, and “Aloha Oe”. The album was released in 1960 and it produced one of Annette’s best singles, “Pineapple Princess” which charted at # 11. The album itself charted at # 38. From what I can tell, it was her third album.


For a sample, I went with the Sherman Brother’s “Pineapple Princess” and the standard “My Little Grass Shack”.

A photo session featuring Annette Funicello from the set of the made-for TV movie, A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes: The Annette Funicello Story. Image dated September 4, 1995. Copyright © 1995 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. Credit: CBS Photo Archive.

This is a pretty fun record. I am going to give it a Top Rating.


Henry Mancini- Music of Hawaii

DSCN1071A friend of mine bought this for .70 cents. I owe her a dollar to maintain journalistic standards for this but have not gotten around to pay her yet. Will do next time I see

Henry Mancini, known as the greatest composer in film, made over 90 albums in his career, as well as winning four academy awards and twenty Grammy’s. This album, however, made in 1966, focuses on arrangement and orchestration rather than composing. Not to say that he does not do a good job, but it does mean this album is taking away one of Mancini’s chief skills. With one Mancini penned song on the album, the rest of it goes thru his take on the genre of Hawaiian Music. There are many standards including “Hawaiian War Chant” , “Tiny Bubbles”, “Aloha Oe”, and “Blue Hawaii”. These are quite well done. The orchestration is lush . Could have used some more steel strings. Some good chorus vocals though on a few of the tunes.DSCN1072

For a sample, I chose ‘Quiet Village”. Composed by Les Baxter, this tune seems to borrow heavily if not outright plagiarize both Ary Barroso’s “Bahia” and Ravel’s “Bolero”. It would later be covered by Martin Denny who maybe not popularized it , but brought it as much recognition as it would receive.

Satisfactory album. Thanks Jenn. I owe you a dollar next time I see you.