Friday, November 29, 2013


Louis Armstrong sang this song with Bing as a guest on Bing's radio show in April 1951. The duet reveals the delightful musical kinship between Bing and Satchmo. Decca preserved this performance on disc, which charted for two weeks that summer.

GONE FISHIN' Nick A. Kenny / Charles F. Kenny)

I'll tell you why I can't find you Every time I go out to your place...

You gone fishin' (well how you know) Well there's a sign upon your door (uh-huh) Gone fishin' (I'm real gone man) You ain't workin' anymore (could be) There's your hoe out in the sun Where you left a row half done You claim that hoein' ain't no fun (well I can prove it) You ain't got no ambition

Gone fishin' by a shady wady pool (Shangrila, really la) I'm wishin' I could be that kind of fool (should I twist your arm?) I'd say no more work for mine (welcome to the club) On my door I'd hang a sign Gone fishin' instead of just a-wishin'

Papa Bing (yeah Louis) I stopped by your place a time or two lately And you aren't home either Well, I'm a busy man Louis. I got a lotta deals cookin' I was probably tied up at the studio You weren't tied up you dog You was just plain old...

Gone fishin' (bah-boo-bah-boo-bah-boo-bah-boo-bah) There's a sign upon your door (Pops, don't blab it around, will you?) Gone fishin' (keep it shady, I got me a big one staked out) Mmm, you ain't workin' anymore (I don't have to work, I got me a piece of Gary) Cows need milkin' in the barn (I have the twins on that detail, they each take a side) But you just don't give a darn (give 'em four bits a cow and hand lotion) You just never seem to learn (man, you taught me) You ain't got no ambition (you're convincin' me)

Gone fishin' (bah-boo-dah-do-dah-do-dah-do) Got your hound dog by your side (that's old Cindy-Lou goin' with me) Gone fishin' (mmm-hmm-hmm-hmm-hmm) Fleas are bitin' at his hide (get away from me boy, you bother me)

Mmm, folks won't find us now because Mister Satch and Mister Cros We gone fishin' instead of just a-wishin' Bah-boo-baby-bah-boo-bah-bay-mmm-bo-bay Oh yeah!

Monday, November 25, 2013


When a young Kathryn Grant married older crooner Bing Crosby, many people thought it would not last. However, they remained married for twenty years until Bing's death. Bing has been dead over 35 years now, and Kathryn remains one of Bing's supporters. On this day, November 25, Kathryn Crosby turns 80 years old.

Born Olive Kathryn Grandstaff in Houston, Texas, she graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1955. Two years later she became Bing Crosby's second wife, being more than thirty years his junior. The couple had three children, Harry, Mary Frances, and Nathaniel. She appeared as a guest star on her husband's 1964–1965 ABC sitcom The Bing Crosby Show. She largely retired after their marriage, but did have a featured role in the courtroom drama Anatomy of a Murder (1959).

She also played the part of "Mama Bear" alongside her husband and children in Goldilocks and starred with Jack Lemmon in Operation Mad Ball (1957).In the mid-1970s, she hosted The Kathryn Crosby Show, a 30-minute local talk-show on KPIX-TV in San Francisco. Husband Bing appeared as a guest occasionally. Since Bing Crosby's death in 1977, she has taken on a few smaller roles and the lead in the short-lived 1996 Broadway musical State Fair.

For 16 years ending in 2001, Crosby hosted the Crosby National Golf Tournament at Bermuda Run Country Club in Bermuda Run, North Carolina. A nearby bridge carrying U.S. Route 158 over the Yadkin River is named for Kathryn Crosby. On November 4, 2010, Crosby was seriously injured in an automobile accident in the Sierra Nevada that killed her 85-year-old second husband, Maurice William Sullivan, whom she married in 2000. Luckily Kathryn recovered...

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


For those that know me, know I am a fan of tape recording. It is a lost art these days. Bing started it all in the 1940s, and here is a great advertisement for an early tape recorder...

Friday, November 15, 2013


It looks like Bing's nephew and godson and the son of Bob Crosby, Chris Crosby is trying to get funding to do a documentary on Bing. Interesting stuff...

For 35 years I've been filming & documenting the life story of my Uncle & Godfather, Bing Crosby. This will set the record straight...

This is a Bing Crosby story that reveals the real Bing, with all his faults and foibles. A story that has emerged through 36 years of research by his Nephew and Godson, Chris Crosby, as he explored the archives and interviewed at length, the friends and family and stars who knew Bing the best. These stories were only revealed to Chris because he was family, and he got the whole truth... over 40 hours of interviews.

Chris developed a new view of Bing and the complicated emotions that drove him. He was a Superstar before the word Superstar was even invented. He lived by a code amidst great personal strife. It wasn't easy... his first wife Dixie Lee was an alcoholic and died in a coma. He was a legend and the press was always gunning for him. A private man... very few people knew the real Bing.

The real truth is revealed about Bing's oldest son Gary, his drinking and anger toward his famous father and his motivation for writing the tell-all book, "Going My Own Way"... including Gary's shocking death bed confession to author Gary Giddens recanting his accusations against Bing. Turns out Bing was a good father after all and Chris Crosby finally sets the record straight. In fact, he was not only helpful to family but many celebrity friends told Chris that Bing was responsible for their success as well.

Bing built 4 churches, started Del Mar race track, owned the Pittsburgh Pirates, oil fields & orange groves, Bing Crosby laboratories were involved in the development of Ampex audio tape and video tape. He's won Grammys, Emmys, Oscars & is still a million selling artist annually. He's been called by his peers: "the biggest star of the 20th Century".


To date, over $200,000.00 of priceless footage has been shot by Chris... all contain personal stories and intimate information about Bing and Bob, things never before revealed. The best moments of these interviews will be used throughout the docudrama, both on camera and voice-over.

To finish the project, funds are being sought for dramatic recreations, still to be filmed and post production editing, mastering, color & sound correction, film clips & music licensing...

For more information, see HERE

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Here is an interesting article on Bing from Life Magazine Jan. 11, 1954, page 57 in regards to Bing's first TV special...

For two years the Columbia Broadcasting System tried to get Bing Crosby to join the parade of film stars moving into TV, but, except for brief guest appearances, the Groaner was "too busy" as oil tycoon, rancher, investor in scores of enterprises. Finally Crosby broke down and put himself on film in a half-hour TV program. To millions of Americans who tuned in last Sunday the Bing Crosby Show brought back memories of radio, 1932, and an era when the blue of the night regularly and tunefully met the gold of the day.

On TV Bing was the same old Crosby. He did a fairly spry song and dance. He indulged in mild horseplay with Guest Star Jack Benny. But, as was proper for a man who has been probably the finest and certainly the most enduring popular singer of his time, Bing kept the show mostly musical, singing in his easy, artful style. Feeling old (49), he sighed as he watched Benny with pretty Sheree North: "Oh to be 39 again." Then, eyeing a graceful retirement on his multimillion-dollar fortune, Crosby decided not to film another TV show until spring.


Friday, November 8, 2013


Here is the usual great review done by the Bing Crosby guru Bruce Kogan. This time around he reviews one of Bing's least liked films - Say One For Me from 1959...

I'm sure that during his career in his later years Bing Crosby was offered the chance to repeat playing Father O'Malley as an older priest and at one point that would have been a natural fit for him. Unfortunately after this film, Bing was done with the clergy.

He tries his best with Father Conroy and his best moments are musical ones especially with Debbie Reynolds, but the story is not convincing. It seems like Bing was doing a favour for someone just being involved in the film. The plot was the worst. Try as I might, I just can't believe that Robert Wagner turns from opportunistic heel to good guy just to win Debbie Reynolds.

In fact the main problem with the movie is Robert Wagner. A good actor he just doesn't have any talent musically. His big number in the movie was You Can't Love Them All was recorded by Dean Martin and had a modest success. Now if Dino had played his part, he might have overcome the script.

Bing's best number is The Secret of Christmas. In addition to recording it for the cast album of this film, six years later he recorded it for Frank Sinatra's Reprise label in a joint Christmas album with Old Blue Eyes and Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians. That is the superior version to the one he did in Say One For Me...

Bruce's rating: 4 out of 10
My rating: 3 out of 10

Monday, November 4, 2013


VIDEO may have killed the radio star but it seems CDs and iPods have not permanently dulled the love affair music buffs have with vinyl records. Vinyl is staging a comeback in the US, Europe and Australia and the nation's only vinyl record manufacturer is in a spin as modern artists elect to produce LPs as well as CDs.

The owners of Tasmanian music stores are also seeing a resurgence driven by collectors and audiophiles who rave about the superior sound, indie and punk bands who like the retro feel, and DJs who want vinyl records for their shows.

Records were thought to be close to obsolete a generation ago as CDs and internet downloads took hold.

But older music lovers like Ashley Cooper, 83, of Glenorchy, never lost touch.

Mr Cooper has about 460 Bing Crosby records and another 180 LPs.

He has built a cupboard to store his prized collection.

"I started collecting when I was about 14 years old and my old 78-speed records are as good today as the day they came out of the shop," Mr Cooper said.

He said he had noticed the recent interest in vinyl.

Andrew Argent from Red Hot Music in Devonport said the resurgence was being driven by younger customers.

New vinyl records arrive every week at the store.

Five years ago, there were none in stock.

"It is still a niche market but it has really taken off in the past two to three years," Mr Argent said.

"Records are more costly than CDs and while the younger ones are happy to pay the price, older shoppers tend to buy second-hand records from markets and garage sales." Mr Argent said the appeal of vinyl stemmed from a combination of factors.

"Vinyl is seen as cool and while some records are bought to never be played, most of the young buyers are giving them a spin," he said.

Vinyl Factory Australia is the nation's last vinyl record manufacturer capable of automated pressings. Business is booming and the factory recently produced 600 copies of Powderfinger's Dream Days at the Hotel Existence.

The records were stamped on a Beatles-era EMI 1400 machine and are among an estimated 500,000 pressings expected to emerge from the company's Marrickville factory this year.