Monday, June 18, 2012

Da Doo Ron Ron

Wall Of Sound:  It's Monday afternoon. and it's getting hot out there.  This morning Abq Jew dropped off his son, Dov Yellin the Film Editor, at the ABQ International (one flight a day to Mexico) Sunport, after a wonderful but too-short visit (sort of like the wonderful but too-short visit of Abq Jew's daughter, BU Girl, a couple weeks ago).

So - on his way home from the Sunport, Abq Jew started thinking about how hard it is for folks to learn Hebrew. How, at first, everything seems like nonsense syllables.

And then Abq Jew heard this song on Sirius XM.  Or maybe he heard the song first, and then started thinking about the learning Hebrew problem.

Or maybe Abq Jew didn't even think of the learning Hebrew problem until he thought he needed some Jewish connection to post Da Doo Ron Ron on this blog.

Da Do Ron Ron, Wikipedia tells us, is
a 1963 hit single by The Crystals, produced by Phil Spector in his Wall of Sound style. The song was written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich and Spector. The drummer was Hal Blaine.

That's gold. That's solid gold coming out of that speaker.
    — Spector to Sonny Bono, after listening to the final playback
On May 11, 1963, it reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100. It also reached number five in the UK.
When things slow down this afternoon, as the temperature rises, Abq Jew strongly encourages you to listen to this.  As one YouTube commenter commented:
Wow - like electricity running up and down my spine.  You just cannot hear this without your pulse going up to about 160 and your body can't help but move.

Songfacts provides some, uh, additional facts about Da Doo Ron Ron, including:
  • Phil Spector produced this song. He originally had singer Darlene Love record it at Gold Star Studios in Los Angeles. After singing lead on the Crystals' previous hits "He's A Rebel" and "He's Sure the Boy I Love" with her group The Blossoms, Darlene Love was still working as a session singer and being paid scale. After singing on "Da Doo Ron Ron," she asked for an artist's contract, and Spector responded by erasing her vocals and flying in Crystals lead singer Dolores "La La" Brooks to replace the lead vocal. The backup vocals were provided by The Blossoms (including Darlene Love), and another one of Spector's favorite backing singers: Cher.
  • Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich wrote this song. The refrain of "da doo ron ron" came from nonsense syllables they stuck in as space filler, but Spector was fine with it. By this time, Spector had a lot of influence and insisted on a songwriting credit along with the writers he worked with, so he is listed as a composer of this song.
  • Although it has not been confirmed, legend has it that Sonny Bono was one of the many vocalists who sang backup for this song. Bono was a record producer at the time and knew Phil Spector.
  • With a massive drum sound, this was Phil Spector's biggest production to date, and it is generally regarded as the true beginning of the now famous Wall Of Sound recording technique. 
More interesting facts and Jewish connections:
  • Jew or Not Jew reports that, sadly, Phil Spector is a Jew.  Wikipedia reminds us that  "In 2009 Spector was convicted of second-degree murder in the 2003 shooting death of actress Lana Clarkson in his Alhambra, California home. He is serving a prison sentence of 19 years to life."
  • Hal Blaine (born Harold Simon Belsky) is Jewish.  Dawgnet reports the he was born "to Jewish immigrant parents .... "
  • Jeff Barry (born Joel Adelberg) is also Jewish (he and Ellie Greenwich were briefly married). His web site says: "Born to a working-class Jewish family, Jeff grew up in New York and New Jersey .... "
  • Ellie Greenwich was Jewish. Wikipedia reports that "Greenwich ... was born in Brooklyn, New York, to a Catholic father and a Jewish mother, who both were of Russian ancestry.  At age ten, she moved with her parents and younger sister to Levittown, New York."
Enjoy!  Da Doo Ron Ron is Jewish music!
And it's a great tune for Adon Olam ....

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