Friday, November 07, 2014

Mae West: Decca Echo

The Decca label released a fine collectible starring MAE WEST. Here's a detailed review by drama critic and Mae West fan William E. Sarmento.
• • "New Mae West record will never be duplicated!" • •
• • William E. Sarmento wrote: Horace Greeley is purported to have said once, "Go West, young man, Go West." I assume he meant come what Mae. If you have trouble finding a reason to chuckle in this world today, I might offer the same advice.  Take time to listen to the words and wisdom of Mae West. 
• • William E. Sarmento explained: During the past year, Decca Records released a couple of albums that were, indeed, collectors' items. Recorded from the soundtracks of their films, Decca presented "W. C. Fields" and "The Marx Brothers." Both albums were hits with those millions who treasure the memories of mad movies which starred these performers.
• • William E. Sarmento emphasized: Now comes the album which surpasses even those two — — "Mae West" — — from her original film soundtracks.  Unlike the W.C. Fields and Marx Brothers recordings, which had intrusive narrations by Gary Owens, the Mae West album is entirely soundtrack material — — and it is just great. If there were no record inside the folder, I think the album would be worth buying just for the collection of still photos inside the cover showing the voluptuous star in scenes from her many films.
• • William E. Sarmento continued:  But the albums has Mae West and that's plenty.  Without any attempt to identify the films, Miss West is presented in a collection of rapid fire lines, usually written by herself for her motion pictures, which will have more than one meaning to the naive.  However, Miss West had only one meaning in mind. In an album that is a "must" for West fans, there are several surprise bonuses. Miss West is heard with W.C. Fields in their classic exchanges from the only film in which they would appear together, "My Little Chickadee."
• • William E. Sarmento added: And if you listen closely to other film excerpts, you will hear such stars as Cary Grant and Randolph Scott briefly.  Miss West is heard singing a few songs from her film soundtracks also.  Wait until you hear, "Little Bar Butterfly" from "Klondike Annie" — — as well as "Frankie and Johnny,'' "Mister Deep Blue Sea," and "My Old Flame." This is a fun filled album for those of you who remember Mae West in her movie years. And for you who have just discovered the vivacious lady, it will provide you with new appreciation. 
• • William E. Sarmento concluded: I ought to mention Decca has another album, "The Fabulous Mae West" which includes a collection of songs by the lady who this year simply stole "Myra Breckinridge" from Raquel Welch. In fact, Mae West is the only possible reason one would want to see that loathsome film. As for me, I prefer to listen to the album, "Mae West." By the way, Mae West is still going strong at age 76.
• • Source: Review by William E. Sarmento, Sun Drama Critic written for The Lowell Sun (Lowell, Massachusetts);  published on Sunday, 8 November 1970.
• • On Wednesday, 7 November 1934 • •
• • On Wednesday, 7 November 1934 Vassar's "Polite Questionnaire" asked coeds on campus this question: "Who (sic) did your father dote on in 1932?  Mae West, Aimee Semple McPherson, or Margaret Sanger?"
• • Source: Vassar Miscellany News, Volume XIX, Number 11, on 7 November 1934.
• • On Friday, 7 November 2003 in Los Angeles • •
• • Mae's apartment house The Ravenswood was designated a landmark in the month of November — — on Friday, 7 November 2003.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Hollywood — Film Daily Production Hall of Fame 1933 — 1934 commends Mae West, for her spectacular draw at the box-office.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The Collegian mentioned Mae West.
• • "Mae West Stars" • •
• • The editors wrote: Mae West and W. C. Fields will co-star in "My Little Chickadee" at the Student Center tonight. The film, which begins at 7:30, features Miss West as a city siren who tries to take the wild and wooly West.   The comedy is a film classic.
• • Source: Item in The Collegian (University of Richmond); published on Friday, 7 November 1958 
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •    
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this past decade. The other day we entertained 1,223 visitors. 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3043rd blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

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• • Mae West record jacket

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