Thursday, April 14, 2011

"Nature Boy"

OK, back to the 40's: Nomadic beat poet and pre-hippie Eden Ahbez wrote this pop/jazz ballad in '47 taking the name from his L.A.-based musical group. It contains thematic elements from Dvorak's Piano Quintet No. 2 in A and from Yablokoff's "Shvayg, Mayn Harts". When Nat King Cole heard it he wanted to record it right away but Ahbez could not be found to sign papers. He was finally located camping out under the 1st "L" of the Hollywood sign! It launched Cole's career, peaking at #1 for 8 weeks. Became the theme for the '48 film "The Boy With Green Hair". KILLER version by Casey Abrams on vocalese and upright bass last week on "Idol". Yesterday's answer: "I Wonder What She's Doing Tonight (Tonite)" by Boyce & Hart. Incredible catalog but this was their only hit as performers.

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