December relics, part two
This time of year I spend a lot of time standing at the intersection of Memory Lane and Frustration Freeway.
Yesterday, I took you on a tour of my aging crèche. Last December you kindly indulged me in accounts of favorite holiday movies (including a really old one), traditional cookies and some pleasant and less pleasant family rituals.
Today, I remember Fred Waring.
From my youngest days, the definitive holiday album in our house was The Sounds of Christmas, by Fred Waring and The Pennsylvanians (sometimes called His Pennsylvanians). I’m pretty sure this record made its way into our home about the same time I did.
You can go online and read all about Fred Warning who, by the way, was also promoter, financial backer and namesake of the Waring Blendor. Yes, with an o.
There were songs on that album that you don’t hear—at least I haven’t heard—on other collections: “I Wonder as I Wander,” “Go Where I Send Thee,” for example. I always loved his rendition of “Caroling, Caroling.”
The pops and cracks of the LP are essential elements of the audio experience, and they transferred well when my mother copied the record to a cassette tape for me one year. Short of digging a boom box out of the basement, though, there’ll be no easy way for me to enjoy The Sounds of Christmas this year.
Amazon would be happy to sell me a CD version for 99 dollars. Another site offers a CD copy of the LP for $24, but “to abide by copyright laws, you must own the vinyl record to buy the CD. If you don’t already own the record, you can purchase one with your CD.” I wonder (as I wander) what proof they require that an LP exists somewhere in our family.
While browsing the Fred Waring shelves in cyberspace, I was offered an opportunity to acquire a Waring carol as my ringtone. Having never tapped into an online ringtone, I stupidly completed three steps on a site called Jamster which, by its name, should have clued me in that they’d have no Fred Waring. Indeed, despite the come-on, they didn’t and my mobile account was charged $9.99. I then spent 20 minutes on the phone with a gentleman in the Eastern hemisphere who finally agreed to send me a hard copy refund check via snail mail.
But I digress. Literally.
What’s your definitive holiday album?