Thanks for the Memory [Prism]

by: Bob Hope

Prism Leisure is a British label specializing in budget-priced reissues consisting of material that the company either licenses inexpensively or, when the recordings are over 50 years old and thus in the public domain in Europe, simply transfers from old records. This Bob Hope compilation includes some of the comedian's few musical recordings for Decca (e.g., the 1938 single "Thanks for the Memory"/"Two Sleepy People" and 1939 single "The Lady's in Love With You"/"Penthouse Serenade (When We're Alone)," both duet records with Shirley Ross) along with airchecks from his many radio appearances. On every track except the standup routine that opens the album, Hope is accompanied by at least one other entertainer, among them his longtime movie partner Bing Crosby, Jimmy Durante, Dorothy Lamour, Peggy Lee, Ethel Merman, and Margaret Whiting. Those are all musical efforts, albeit with some comic chatter, while "Bob Gets Married" is a sketch featuring Hope's radio partner Jerry Colonna and Frances Langford. Although remembered primarily as a comedian, Hope could carry a tune, even holding his own against the mighty Crosby, and these tracks, recorded between 1938 and 1952, include some of his best-known musical performances as well as some of his trademark rapid-fire comic patter. ~ William Ruhlmann

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