Tuesday, December 30, 2008

From the archives: I'm thinking if you liked Anna Russell...

...you’re probably going to love Jonathan and Darlene Edwards, a husband-and-wife team who recorded five albums over the years at the urging of their mentors, the great Paul Weston and Jo Stafford. Jonathan (Paul) plays a mean piano and Darlene (Jo) has never been in better voice. Upon winning a grammy they were astounded to learn it was for comedy, not their musical artistry.

Well, thanks once again to YouTube, here is a real end-of-the-year treat. I give you the incomparable, the often imitated but never duplicated, the unbelievable (have your earplugs handy) Jonathan and Darlene Edwards performing “Five Foot Two, Eyes of Blue”.

[A slightly different version of this post was first published on December 30, 2007. --RWP]


  1. You're right! I love Jonathan and Darlene! I don't even have to listen to the YouTube. Somewhere in my house is "Jonathan and Darlene in Paris." "April in Paris" is my favorite track from the album. Has to be heard to be believed! On second thought, I may listen to the YouTube; my old vinyl record is just about worn out, even if I could find it.

  2. i once listened to kellie smith and louie prima on an old 45 disc but i had never heard of these two...i guess i will have to go back and listen since i have made this comment and bob always complains when i comment out of IGNORANCE, and not knowing what i am taliking about or commenting in the wrong place or not commenting on the topic at hand...i am always in trouble when i comment on one of bob's blog and i don't know why, we are the same age, have beento some of the same places and both have the old time religion

  3. Pat - Somehow I knew we were kindred souls! Anyone who is a fan of Jonathan and Darlene Edwards is a friend of mine! And I love the album cover that shows all six fingers on Jonathan's hands....

    Putz - I don't know whether to be shocked or hurt (jk). I didn't realize I was complaining, and I don't think I have ever once called you ignorant. Doesn't sound like something I'd say. However, I distinctly remember asking you to comment on the blog where the comment was made, not somewhere else, because it just makes everyone more confused. Seems reasonable enough to me. Age, travel, and religion have absolutely nothing to do with it!

  4. I know Jo Stafford only from the soundtracks of movies set in World War II. I love her version of "Haunted Heart" that was used in The End of the Affiar. I had no idea she did songs like this.

  5. i love ya ddude, no matter wether or no[t i say the right things or not because you make things interesting for me and that is what i blog for..what do yoputhink of kellie smith and louie prima/??????thaty is all i wanted to talk about...jonathan and darlene were fabulous by the way...so can we agree to agree???

  6. Ruth - Each song Jo did as Darlene Edwards was better (translation: worse) than the last one! What makes Darlene so great is that she never sings flat like so many other singers. Not at all! She always sings sharp, which is very hard to do.

    Putz (David) - I'm all for agreeing to agree. Until we disagree, of course! But we will be complete gentlemen about it and stay above the fray!

    I certainly do remember Keely or Keeley (definitely not Kellie) Smith and Louis Prima. They were husband and wife and made really good records, unlike Jonathan and Darlene Edwards. Another wannabe-songstress from that era whom you may remember from The Ed Sullivan Show (which was also called Toast of the Town for a while) was Mrs. Elva Miller. When she warbled, her vibrato was so wide that a truck could practically drive through it. She always ate ice chips onstage just before she sang, and often would whistle during her performance. I especially remember her rendition of Petula Clark's Downtown. The kids today don't know what they're missing!

  7. You brought back a memory. When I was a kid, there were books full of 78 rpm records up in our attic. Finally, we got a record player and could listen to them. One of my favorites was "I'm My Own Grandma" by Jo Stafford. A terrible thing happened one day.....I leaned my elbow on the page sleeve holding that record, and it broke in two. Oh, man, was I disappointed, and in hot water with my parents.

    Happy New Year!