Another Picture Post!

 

*NOTE* This is not a duplicate post, I’m re-posting the same post because the first time I posted it, it was posted with the new WordPress editor which I HATE (omg, it’s awful……) and it jacked up how my readers were viewing my pictures! So here’s today’s post, again, with {hopefully} pictures that you can actually enlarge and download. Bear with me! xo

 

Hello again! Got the batch of photos I was expecting today and I have them scanned to present here. šŸ™‚

This first one is, to my mind, the standout of the group. Itā€™s an original of Jeanette as Juliet fromĀ Rose Marie. It was mounted on paper backing with Claraā€™s name and address written on the backā€¦.but one side of the paper was loose and I peeled it away to find ā€œRose Marieā€ written on the back of the actual photograph in genuine MacScrawl. So I can now say with certainty that this photo is originally from Jeanetteā€™s still collection. The second and third ones are well-known poses from Bitter SweetĀ andĀ Naughty Marietta, but these are hi res scans of originals for anyone who may want a good print of them. I have no way of proving that they were Jeanetteā€™s photographs, but most of this still collection was hers, so thereā€™s a strong probability. Enjoy, but please donā€™t alter or re-sell.

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New(ish) Music! Be Excited!

I had the good fortune recently to run across a Jeanette and Nelson LP album that is a pretty rare (though certainly not impossible if you know where to look) find — it is a “private label” release and only ninety-nine copies were ever made. The music on it is mostly fromĀ Bitter Sweet, but there are two selections fromĀ Smilin’ Through and a good number fromĀ New Moon as well. My brother has the technology to digitize vinyl, so I heckled him and got on his nerves and now I have the entire thing converted to mp3 tracks to share! šŸ˜€

The cool thing is that the music fromĀ Bitter SweetĀ seems to be the “naked” recordings, as in they are the actual recording booth “takes” of the songs that were then (in most instances) used in the final version of the film. So many soundtrack type albums use cuts directly from the final film, and include sound effects and sometimes spoken dialogue that happens to fall within the body of a song. In this case, none of the film dialogue is included, so you can hear, for example, in Dear Little Cafe,Ā the beautiful underscoring and orchestrations that are sometimes ignored in light of what’s happening between the principles. I just went through my DVD ofĀ Bitter SweetĀ to bring you the most accurate information possible about what is and is not in the movie and whether these are the recordings used in the final film, or, in the case ofĀ Tokay, an alternate “take”. I’ll make notes as we go along about what’s what, to the best of my knowledge.

Here isĀ I’ll See You Again, exactly as it sounds in the opening number of the film.

And here is an Alternate Ending of the same song. I assume that this was meant to go at the end of the movie, but that’s NOT the set of lyrics that are used at the end of the movie! Instead, Jeanette sings theĀ though the years my dears may dry / I shall love you til I die / Goodbye lines, which she recorded as a HEART. BREAKING. SOLO. that I will be sharing later at the end of this post.

If You Could Only Come With Me is exactly as used in the film, but it’s so damn pretty. So here. Hashtag friendly blogger.

Both versions ofĀ Tell Me What is Love are smooshed together on one track on this record, for Reasons Which are Best Known to Them. But here they/it are/is, just as they sound in the respective parts of the movie in which they happen.

Here is the alternate version ofĀ Tokay — you can tell it’s an alternate because the super deep bass guy sings more. Someone obviously heard him and ushered him away from the microphone. There was a struggle, and the compromise is that he gets to sing two entire words in the final version.

Here isĀ Dear Little Cafe, the recording that was used in the movie (to my best knowledge), but without the singsong dialogue about cocktails and cold consomme. I love how the instrumental during that part picks up a little swing tempo!

And here is Jeanette’s #SadSariSolo of the same song, you remember this, after Nelson gets stabbed full of holes one time and she’s dressed up as the very chic wider womern.

Here’s Jeanette’s solo ofĀ Kiss Me, which you hear her singing out the window when they are in the street during the card game.

And here is Jeanette’s solo ofĀ If Love Were All —Ā this was not included at all in the movie, but it has totally been published before. However, the quality of mine is better, I think, so I’m offering it again. She’s utterly effing adorable, your ears will thank you.

AndĀ The Call of Life, sung by our most favoritest ever redhead. I feel like I’ve heard her sing this before somewhere, so maybe it’s already out there, but it’s now out there again.

Here’sĀ Ladies of the Town, possibly an alternate take. I couldn’t decide–I thought the tempo seemed a hair slower in this version, but it’s possible that it just seemed that way to me because I wasn’t watching a MacCan-Can at the time.

Finally, here’s Ziguener. I haven’t the foggiest idea if this is an alternate take or not because to be brutally honest with you this only rivals the horror show end ofĀ Broadway Serenade for the honor of being my Least Favorite MacNumber Ever. The costumes blow and the melody gets stuck in my head and I want to hurl myself off a cliff. Someone who is not me can figure out if it’s the film version or not. HOWEVER**************** what makes me think that this MIGHT BE an alternate take is that it goes directly into the “Sari stole her costume from the theatre because she’s like that but if you suggest she’s a costume thief they will probably ban you from the Sari Linden International Fan Club — and runs up 47 flights of stairs with a heart ailment to throw wide the shutters and do a Sky!Duet with Very Dead Husband” part of the movie — and this is when Jeanette gets back at you for making fun of herĀ Ziguener getup because she rips your heart out and steps all over it with tiny angry feet when you listen to the end of this track. Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesus, Jeanette, was that nice? SO SAD SUCH A SAD VOICE SO MANY SADS CARL GET BACK HERE. Those are the lyrics that they use in the movie, but I don’t think it’s the same take. 1) Sky!Nelson isn’t in there and 2) Her voice sounds different.

Moving on, here is my favorite thing (well, maybe) from the whole album, a Jeanette solo of the chorus of the 1917 songĀ Smiles. It was supposed to be inĀ Smilin’ Through, as the lead in toĀ There’s a Long, Long Trail, but if memory serves, the scene just opens with the latter, so this was obviously recorded and then cut. Too bad, because it’s darling and I am a better fellow for having heard it.

Here’sĀ There’s a Long, Long Trail. I fully, happily and openly confess to being a real liveĀ Smilin’ ThroughĀ lover (I named my first novel that, too…..). I love the story, I love the music, this is Jeanette at the height of her beauty IN COLOR, I love Brian Aherne and Ian Hunter. Gene’s is the weakest performance in the cast, and in his scenes with Jeanette, she looks like she’s trying to do her job AND his — but I still find it completely watchable and gorgeous.

Last but not least, here is the stuff fromĀ New Moon!

First up, here’s Nelson’sĀ The Way They Do it in Paree — with an extra verse!! And without sound effects. Oh Lord Above, listen to that man on his last couple of notes. The guy speaks to me on a spiritual level…………..or something. Heh.

Next, we have Rondolet, Round One. Most of Rondolet was cut from the final print of the movie; you just hear little snatches of it here and there. Originally it was supposed to be a big production number that involved Jeanette and a Dancing Nelson. Jeanette counts to eight real cute (probably for the benefit of the Dancing Nelson) and then sings one line. Clearly you need this in your life.

Then we have this Really Cool Trouble Tree Music that sounds like a piece of modern musical theatre, if you ask me, and I’m bummed that there wasn’t an extended version of a hot hot woodsy makeout sesh with this thrumming in the background. Mmmm. Where’s your wig, indeed. Anyway, this ends with a New and Different way to get intoĀ Stouthearted Men. AKA my most favorite Nelson Marching Song.

And last but not least,Ā Rondolet, Round Two. A whole lot of silliness and then a verse apiece for Nelson and Jeanette, insulting each other marvelously, Jeanette going to the chimpanzee place. Rude. Great fun.

Enjoy the music, everybody, and thanks to my brother for digitizing it!

(I should be getting another round of pictures in the mail soon!)

Two Shots from Rose Marie

Recent acquisitions from the estate auction, just arrived today. These are believed to be from Jeanette’s private still collection; one of them is numbered on the back in her handwriting. They are originals and they scanned so beautifully one feels as though one could reach in and touch the subjects.

Please feel free to download/print/frame/enjoy! Click on the shots and then click again to blow them up to their full humongous size. No alterations or re-sale of prints, please. šŸ™‚

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A Veterans’ Day Salute…

…to ALL the major players in this story, who served their country during World War Two.

Lieutenant Jeanette MacDonald, American Women’s Voluntary Services & Army Emergency Relief Fund board member:

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Nelson Eddy, United States Intelligence, who was fluent in German and did top secret espionage work during the war, under the guise of giving an overseas concert tour. His cover was blown and he was injured in Cairo.

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Captain (then Major) Gene Raymond, United States Air Force, who spent most of the war in Europe.

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Thanks to them all for their service! Sure wish modern Hollywood would take a leaf out of that generation’s book.

Noses!

Okay, so this is not a never-before-seen photo or anything, but it IS an original, and better yet, it was JEANETTE’S original. It is from the estate auction and it arrived this morning, bearing the exact same “Jeanette” smell that is woven through the fibers of her scripts, book, gloves and scarf that now live with me. The dramatic/romantic part of my brain can’t help but love these little artifacts and desperately wish they could talk. What would they tell us? Who have those gloves held/shaken hands with? What has theĀ I Married an Angel script seen behind dressing room walls? Laughter, tears, passion? The possibilities are endless.

I’ve bought a good number of photos from this auction and this is my first experience with one that has that very specific, very pretty fragrance. So, my mind is happily wondering…why is this one different? Did she like it, especially? Did she display it somewhere that the others weren’t? Did it, perhaps, line a drawer at her dressing table? Who knows. We’ll never know, of course, but it makes for fun thinking and I’m so, so glad this beautiful thing has found its way to me. ā¤

Wall space is starting to really be hard to come by in my house, but I’m confident that this will find a spot to grace! I have scanned it at high resolution and unwatermarked here for anyone’s downloading and printing pleasure (click on it for the super-sized view), but please don’t alter or try to sell it. Thanks, and enjoy the Beauty and the Baritone in a sweet, sweet pose from Bitter Sweet!

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A Few Pics and No, I’m Not Dead

Hey everybody!

I have so appreciated the pokes and prods and gentle nudges about when the hell I’m going to blog again; you guys are sweet and it’s so great to know that this blog is read and enjoyed by so many of you! We had a great time at the Mac/Eddy Club Meeting here at my home in late September; lots of great food and great conversation with a good-size group of friends! Among the items made from scratch and served were Jeanette’s baked beans, Boston brown bread and Philadelphia-style peach ice cream, all from her own recipes — it was the first time I’d made the brown bread, and I was totally nervous that it would be a failure, but it was AWESOME. I feel like Jeanette gets a lot of crap from all of us and both men in her life about her kitchen habits and cooking abilities, but I’ll just say this: literally everything I’ve ever made from her recipes has been a-freaking-mazing, so I’m pretty sure we all need to shut up. The Mac has yet to steer us wrong in the chow department.

Well. Okay. I’m not even touching that putrid milk-and-applesauce routine and I don’t care what she says it does for the skin or any other such business. I mean, mother of God, Jeanette, that is revolting and you’re freaking weird. I say that in the most loving way imaginable.

And I can’t get cottage cheese anywhere near my mouth for any reason whatsoever, so her favorite pre-concert meal is also off the table for me. (For the curious: cottage cheese with pears and blueberries was a favorite concoction to eat before a show–it was easy on her nervous tummy and gave her protein for performing. Someone once witnessed her scarfing three(!) helpings of that.)

Angela came down a couple of days early and pretty much ran Friday’s dinner. She lugged two huge blocks of frozen eggplant parm (another MacSpecialty) with her on the train all the way from Connecticut and kept me sane and hung out and prepped food and was generally excellent. Obviously. šŸ˜€

We screened Rose Marie in the garage, using my big projection screen and projector from the June LA meeting. It was supposed to be an outdoor screening, but it effing rained LITERALLY ALL WEEKEND, and actually the garage worked really well. Angela and I hung Christmas lights everywhere, hauled in a bunch of seating and scattered tea lights all on the floor. It was cozy and rustic and really cool. Perfect for that movie!

We spent some time watching the interview footage that Sharon shows at meetings, there were a couple of interviews that I hadn’t seen and I requested those (there are perks to being the hostess!!), in addition to some favorites of mine from before. One that I love is Peggy Seo, who was one of the children inĀ The King and I with Jeanette in 1956. It’s just such a sweet accounting of a summer friendship between my favorite human and a kid with whom I can so easily identify…something about her and her recollections of Jeanette really resonates with me. I just love that stuff. Jeanette was such an incredible presence–it sounds sappy, but it’s true. And while I’m always up for a good brawl about did-they-or-didn’t-they, I don’t want to ever lose sight of the specialness and the humanity of this wonderful person.

Speaking of which: “Nelson had her up on a pedestal. She deserved to be up on a pedestal.” So said Samuel “Sunny” Griffin, in interview footage that opened up a whoooole new layer of how I feel about this relationship and these people. It is so worth your time to get yourself to a club meeting and watch the stuff that Sharon Rich has gotten on tape. Just incredible. Sunny was one of the people I had NOT seen in the various club functions I’ve been to and hosted, and I got a sense that I loved him from reading what is quoted in Sweethearts. I felt validated in that feeling – heĀ tells some great stories and there is absolutely no denying the authenticity of the way he speaks, and not a shred of doubt in my mind that he knew all parties well. What cracks me up is that he attended and, I believe, spoke at, a JMIFC meeting, where Gene Raymond recognized and reminisced with him. Blossom did the same thing, when Sharon put them back in touch. It wasn’t until he started talking about the Nelson connection that he was swiftly branded a “pathological liar”…… *giant eyeroll* amazing how that works, huh? Silly rabbits.

Beyond that, I don’t really have a whole lot of earth-shattering news to report. Trust and believe that I’ll share, when I do. I’m super busy with that whole real life thing right now, as well as trying to get Novel #2 finished in anticipation of a possibly-very-ambitious winter release, and that is taking up pretty much every available ounce of my writing energy. I have, however, acquired a few new lovely pictures, and I include them forthwith. Please feel free to download, print and enjoy, but I appreciate them *not* being altered and [insert usual threat about selling my stuff on ebay here].

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Oh, and here are a couple of screen shots fromĀ Rosalie because Nelson Ackerman is an egregiously beautiful specimen.

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You. Are. Welcome.

Talk soon!