I guess the place we have to start this week is with a 1932 cartoon. I’ve been an ardent fan of Betty Boop and Popeye cartoons since I discovered them as a schoolboy in the 1960s (there’d been a Popeye cartoon on the television at around 5:50pm each weekday in the mid-60s, if my memory serves me well).
I’d especially loved the music on the Betty Boop cartoons, leading me to discover Cab Calloway, Helen Kane, early Louis Armstrong, and others; but some of the music was hard to track down in those pre-Internet days. And so it is only in more recent years that I’ve managed to identify uncredited songs, musicians, and singers.
A favourite of mine had been the song ‘Any Rags’, from a cartoon of the same name made in 1932. I’ve still no idea who the studio musicians were; but I’ve managed to find much earlier recordings of the song, including a 1904 version by Will F Denny.
So sit back, put your feet up, enjoy the cartoon, and enjoy this magnificent vintage recording.