Sunday, May 06, 2007

Steve Allen - Monday Nights (1960)

This album has the kind of piano music I really enjoy listening to. Plus, it has two of my favorite songs, "Laura" (from one of my favorite movies of all time) and "Misty". Another plus is that it has the theme song from another of my favorite movies, "Bell, Book and Candle", which I had no idea that Steve Allen co-wrote (the song, that is). Steve Allen was a talented song writer and musician, as well as an actor and host of several TV shows (like "The Tonight Show"!). I remember he and his wife, Jayne Meadows, doing some commercials together and guest-starring together on some TV shows. Now, besides the list of songs on this album, what really drew my attention to it was the picture (gotta love those album covers!) of Steve with this absolutely awesome Plymouth! I don't know much about cars, but, for some reason, I've always liked the old Plymouth cars (like the 1956 Plymouth Fury - wow!). There's just something about them. Anyway, Plymouth was the sponsor of Steve Allen's TV show, so that's why he's photographed with the car. But, this wasn't just any old Plymouth - this was a record-playing Plymouth! I had no idea they had those - a predecessor to our CD-playing cars of today. The liner notes mention the car:

Here's an album made, frankly, to celebrate the move of the Steve Allen Show to Monday Night!!
It was also produced, of course, with the idea of providing a package of mighty pleasant music, but that goes without saying. In any event, the twelve selections in this collection add up to a typically pleasant session with the Allen piano and orchestra and that's good news any night of the week.
As his fans know by now, Steve has the Plymouth people to thank for making the move out of the Sunday TV scramble possible, and for that all TV-lovers as well as music-lovers can certainly be thankful. But whether the listener drives a Plymouth or roller-skates to work, he'll certainly agree that this pretty package of musical evergreens satisfies those who like good music for its own sake as well as those who are always saying to Steve, "We like the comedy on your show but you don't play the piano often enough!"
So whether you're listening to these recordings while relaxing in your music room, dancing by the light of your neighborhood jukebox, or driving along in your new record-playing Plymouth, lotsaluck, as Steve says, and happy listening. We guarantee it.
I bought this record in pretty bad shape - lots of clicks and pops - and I ran it through the click removal twice, but there's still a lot of clicks and pops. In my opinion, it just adds character to the record. Maybe some of you can clean it up some more. Anyway, it's still a good listen, and I hope you enjoy it. Oh - and if you're interested in learning more about those "record-playing" cars of yesteryear, check out Highway Hi-Fi.

Track listing for Steve Allen - Monday Nights:

Side 1:
1. Laura
2. Rosetta
3. You're Driving Me Crazy
4. Notre Dame Victory March
5. Impossible - written by Steve Allen
6. Houseboat - co-written by Steve Allen

Side 2:
1. Bell, Book and Candle - co-written by Steve Allen
2. Misty
3. Blossom
4. Spring in Maine - co-written by Steve Allen
5. I Want a Girl
6. And Even Then - written by Steve Allen


vo5vo said...

Hi Esther,

I am so happy we have more in common.
Steve Allen. Loved him. He had a TV show in the afternoon when I was a kid and he was a laugh riot.
Between him and Soupy Sales life was a barrel of laughs.
He was a genius in music and comedy.
Houseboat and Bell Book and Candle are two movies I enjoy very much.
In Houseboat the father of Sophia Loren was Edwardo Ciannelli. This man was my mothers fathers good friend when they were children in Italy. They would swim and dive off of the big rocks in Ischia an Island above Capri.
In Bell Book and Candle Kim Novack's cat Pye-Wacket was so similar to my Lilac Point Siamese in her movements and Body Shape.
I long to have a cat like her again she was many levels of inteligent above other pets I had.
One more humdum fact is my Dads second car was a 1956 white and green Plymonth Station Wagom with a push button transmission. I had lots of room and big fins.
Thanks for this album and you friendship.

mel said...

Hi Esther,

You post such interesting albums. This one is a gem - although I never saw him on television, I know that he was the composer of a number of songs. This LP is to me a very valuable piece of history as well as being great to listen to. It's going to join the rest of my collection of composers performing their own works.

Thank you so much.

And I'm grateful to Vince for his friendly and interesting comments above.

vo5vo said...


Esther said...

Hi, Vince!

Wow! Thanks for the link! I've been trying to buy that Clint Eastwood album on eBay forever, but the price just goes too high for me. This is an awesome addition to my collection!

Shalanna said...

Wow! I just bought this Steve Allen record on eBay a couple of months ago and my transfer was so crappy that I really didn't enjoy listening very much . . . thank you!!! I am here in Dallas and I frequent Half Price Books (especially Richardson)-they caught on to how much LPs are worth sometime last year, though, and started marking them up$$ hideously. (POUT) Come visit my LJ (shalanna dotte livejournal dotte com) and tell me more about your records if you like. . . I can't stand the way blogspotte works. . .. thanks again!!

Esther said...

Hi, Shalanna!
I live by the BIG HP Books on NW Hwy, so that's the one I visit the most, but I work right across Central from the one in Richardson, so I do go there quite a bit. Yeah, I noticed that they've marked up their records, but sometimes you can find some in pretty good condition in the bargain bin (where I get most of my records).
Thanks for visiting!

silver scout said...

I have a VHS of a Steve Allen Plymouth Show from May, 1960. The guests are Erroll Garner, Tony Bennett, Henny Youngman and Ginger Rogers. After Henny does his standard routine, Ginger does her take on it. It is fall-off-your-chair FUNNY. If it turns up in digital format, it should go direct to Youtube.