Easter Parade

The whole America as melting pot thing was big when I was growing up. The fact that a Jewish songwriter, Irving Berlin, wrote two classic songs about Christian holidays was often cited in support of the melting pot.

As for me, I’m dreaming of a White Christmas after the Easter Parade. Should I wear a Santa hat or an Easter bonnet? Beats the hell outta me.

Back to Irving Berlin month. It continues with a song that went through many changes after it was written in 1917. The melody was originally used for a sappy sounding ditty called Smile and Show Your Dimple. In 1933, Berlin wrote new lyrics for the melody, and it became this week’s song, Easter Parade.

I didn’t know the story of the song before reading its Wikipedia entry, I know it as the theme song for the 1948 Astaire-Garland musical. That’s where we begin this week’s Irvingfest or is that Berlinpalooza?

Sarah Vaughan and Billy Eckstein’s Irving Berlin album is a classic. I love the sound of their two big voices intertwined. It’s magic.

Next up, my homey, Antoine Domino:

Peter Cottontail? I was teased about that as a kid, but it didn’t bother me because Rosie Clooney wasn’t involved.

Steve Goodman is best known as a folkie, but he turned his hand to the seasonal Berlin classic:

What’s a Good Friday Cocktail Hour without a jazz instrumental version of the week’s song? This time, trumpet titan Roy Eldridge and FCH regular Oscar Peterson.

Have I told you lately how much I love Oscar Peterson?

That’s it for this week. Let’s toast the memory of Chris Owens and her late gentleman friend Mark Davison. They get the last word.

One thought on “Easter Parade

  1. Well, here in Buffalo, we didn’t get any snow for Christmas but we’re getting it now. I called it back in December, although it was a joke at the time. Now it’s just a bad joke & it really sucks. We don’t have an Easter Parade here but we do have a Dyngus Day Parade on Monday. The weather will be windy, cold & rainy but I doubt that will stop the festivities.

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