. . . . . . . .
This mini information magazine on old records is issued monthly and covers many aspects of collecting 78rpm records
Rare Acoustic Labels
This pre World War One label comes from the Bel Canto Company, who also issued their recordings on the cheap Palladium and Operaphone labels.
This recording by Will Terry was made in England, but as with many companies of this era, the records were pressed abroad, in this case in Prussia.
The SONGS of BILLY WILLIAMS (1878-1915)
Where Does Daddy Go When he Goes Out?, one of the best and sauciest of his later songs.
There were versions all recorded late 1912:
Recorded early in 1913 were:
Pathe 79973 and
On the Columbia version Billy announces the title, adding his terse comment: "you may as well ask where the fire goes when it goes out!(laugh) Oh dear oh dear (laugh)." To conclude he sings unaccompanied ending on a monotone thus: "I'm going downstairs so... oh goodness me, what a voice! (laugh)"
The Zonophone version starts almost identically with the title, and: "well you may as well ask where the fire goes when it goes out!(laugh). At the end he sings in a deliberately deep voice and remarks: "I've got a bit of a scab voice tonight, never mind about a base voice or a bass voice or... (laugh). I'm awfully sorry for singing these songs you know. Of course we have to do something for a living haven't we? Oh yes, it's awfully jolly... goodnight old sport hahahah." A typical chatty piece!
The Homphone version starts exactly as the Columbia one though the end is a mixture of both previous efforts: "What a funny voice I've got tonight," as he sings on a monotone. "Father, you'll pop out when you go out tonight. I'll bet you that(laugh)." Whatever he meant by that.
The Jumbo starts with a slight variation "I say mother...." followed by the title and then the familiar: "well you may as well ask where the fire goes when it goes out (Laugh)... come on me lads." The ending is more abrupt with only some unaccompanied singing and: "there's a funny note(laugh)."
The Favorite version starts the same as the Columbia even down to the oh dear:"you may as well ask where the fire goes when it goes out!(laugh) Oh dear oh dear (laugh)." In the second chorus he sings Three Blind Mice and the customary unaccompanied singing at the finale yields: "that's a funny voice isn't it?" plus some incoherent further remarks.
On Pathe, not for the first time, he slightly muffs his announcement after the title: "well you as well ask me where the fire goes when it goes out." The final singing solo brings forth the observation: "that's a bass voice I've got tonight, or a scout voice, or something like that (laugh)."
Unlike his earlier songs, there's not nearly so much variation in the recorded versions. Despite this, we should let that detract from the general brilliance of the lyrics.
Mabel Wayne (1904-1978)
You probably haven't heard the name before, but she was the composer of several hit songs, notably with Maurice Sigler and Al Hoffman of Little Man You've had a Busy Day. This number was a standard of all the big bands, and Paul Robeson recorded a beautiful version of it too. Other hits included Who Made Little Boy Blue and A Little Spanish Town.
She was born in Brooklyn of German/Norwegian descent but ran away from home in true show-biz style, also of course marrying, albeit briefly at age sixteen. Her first published song was Don't Wake me Up, Let me Dream, but it was really the lovely song Ramona that made her name. Tin Pan Alley found it hard to take, that a mere girl had written a hit, the first woman ever to do so. And especially since she was a platinum blonde, though in some reports she's described as a redhead. Her next number was Chiquita, followed by the hugely popular It Happened in Monterey. No wonder she was dubbed "our outstanding woman composer" in 1929. After the Stock Market crash she changed direction and formed her own band in which she sang. I don't think it ever recorded although it was featured in her own radio program. However, composition was in the blood, and she went back to song writing with the successful 1934 Little Man. Later that year she came to Britain and was the featured vocalist in a Henry Hall radio show, but again, she made no recordings. She also wrote songs for several British musicals.
She continued composing after the war, one of her last succcesses being the 1949 A Dreamer's Holiday
start of mag