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Mum & Dad Bought Their Records at Woolies Import

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Audio CD, Import, January 26, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

This time capsule takes you to the Woolworths record bins in '50s/'60s England, where the store sold their own cover versions of U.S. hits. Check out these UK spins on The Great Pretender (Sam Browne); Hernando's Hideaway (Benny Lee); The Yellow Rose of Texas (Bob Dale); Rock Around the Clock (Canadians); Little Things Mean a Lot (Rita Williams); If I Give My Heart to You (Beryl Templeman), and more!

Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 26, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Imports
  • ASIN: B00131P3NE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,763,686 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bruce R. Gilson on August 8, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
In the 1950s, the British subsidiary of Woolworth's had their own record label, which offered for sale, at bargain prices, covers of big US and UK hits done by singers who were professional, but not at the top of their careers. Some had been big-band singers, on the downswing of their careers, others just never caught on. This collection of 50 of these recordings spans the mid-to-late-1950s era.

Some of the covers, actually, sound to me better than the US originals: I've never liked Bill Haley's "Rock around the Clock," the Fontane Sisters' "Happy Days and Lonely Nights," or the Platters' "The Great Pretender" (though I've heard an Australian singer, Jimmy Parkinson, do a version I liked of the last of these). So it's not surprising that the Canadians' version of "Rock around the Clock," Bob Dale's "Happy Days and Lonely Nights," and Sam Browne's "The Great Pretender," in this collection, are to my ear improvements on the originals. I also prefer Patti Forbes' rendition of "Mr. Wonderful" to the original, even though Peggy Lee, a good singer, did that original. On the other hand, Julie Dames' version of "With All My Heart" (as compared to Jodie Sands', the big version in the US, or Petula Clark's UK version, which I've only known in recent years) is much less pleasant, and David Ross, who has versions of "Singing the Blues" and "Green Door," is far inferior as a singer to Guy Mitchell and Jim Lowe (or Frankie Vaughan, who did a better British cover of "Green Door").

In between are cases like Bob Dale's "Wanted" and Beryl Templeman's "We Kiss in a Shadow." These are decent versions but not as good to my ear as the US originals.
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