Today’s recording isn’t Christmas-y, but it was originally recorded on December 16, 1944 for broadcast on WJR on December 17, 1944 at 3:15-3:30am. That seems a suitable time of day for this recording, since (in my opinion) it would make a great cure for insomnia. This just isn’t my favorite style of music.
This is a program of Howard Smith on piano. He was born October 9, 1910 and from what I could find about him seemed to be a popular studio musician at the time. He recorded with Adrian Rollini (Adrian Rollini 1934-1938), Red Norvo (Knockin’ on Wood), Tommy Dorsey (This is Tommy Dorsey), and Tommy Dorsey and the Clambake Seven (The Complete Tommy Dorsey Vols. V and VI ) (thanks to www.raysherman.net/BANDS2.html for all that info). He also played with the Freeman String Band in the early ’50s (thanks to www.dixieswing.com/vol16.pdf). That’s about all I could find about him.
This recording contains only three songs: Body and Soul, I Told Every Little Star, and When a Woman Loves a Man. They are solo piano, no other instruments. The actual program was a little longer, but I wasn’t able to play the entire disc due to cracking and delamination of the shellac around the edges of the disc. I think I must have only lost one song though, since my recording is around 13 minutes long and each disc side can only hold 15 minutes. There are a some bursts of noise throughout the recording each lasting a few seconds long. I did my best with noise reduction but they’re still there.
This definitely isn’t my favorite disc in the collection, but since today is the 66th anniversary of its airing I thought it was as good a time as any to post it.
Here’s the link to the download page for those using screen readers: 12-16-1944