Previous Vocal Group Record of the Week
(Week of 4/19/03 - 4/25/03)


SPOTLIGHT ON BABS AND HER BROTHERS/THE SMOOTHIES... PART ONE!

"No Other One"
by Babs And Her Brothers
on Decca 635 A
released in 1936

"Say 'Si Si'"
by The Smoothies
on Bluebird B-10616-A
released in 1940



Photo Of The Smoothies

Above: Photo of The Smoothies (aka Babs And Her Brothers) from the cover of Down Beat magazine dated June 15, 1941. Excerpt from magazine: "One of the best-liked vocal groups in the game, The Smoothies are now part of the new Art Jarrett band, in its debut at Chicago's Blackhawk restaurant. Charlie and Little Ryan are the boys, Babs Stewart the girl." [Note: Ryan is the boys' last name ...they are brothers to each other, not to Babs.]

The vocal trio, formed in Chicago in 1930, joined Fred Waring's (Pennsylvanians) radio broadcasts in 1933. One of the show's sponsers was Old Gold cigarettes whose slogan was "America's smoothest cigarette". The trio would sing "You're An Old Smoothie" during the commercials, hence the origin of their alternate name "The Smoothies".

NOTE: "Babs" was Arlene Johnson when The Smoothies were with Hal Kemp's Orchestra and recorded for Bluebird/RCA Victor (1939-40), including "Say Si Si."

NOTE: There were several different "Babs" over time. On Decca, she was Blanche Redwine (billed as "Babs Ryan"). Almost all of the Bluebird releases, including "Playmates," had Arlene Johnson. A final Bluebird session in 1940 had Rosalind Stuart. There were probably other later "Babs" as the group continued until at least 1947 (ref. Apollo 1015).



Decca Label-No Other One-1936 Bluebird Label-Say 'Si Si'-1940
Above: Label images for (Left) Decca 635 A and (Right) Bluebird B-10616-A. Note that on the Bluebird label, The Smoothies are identified as "Babs, Charlie and Little".

Listen to this week's selections:

A) Click on an option below to listen to Babs And Her Brothers/The Smoothies using Streaming RealAudio.

"No Other One" - Babs And Her Brothers - Decca 635 A - 1936
"Say 'Si Si'" - The Smoothies - Bluebird B-10616-A - 1940
"BOTH SONGS" played in sequence

B) Click on an option below to listen to Downloading RealAudio.

"No Other One" - Babs And Her Brothers - Decca 635 A - 1936 (file size=363KB)
"Say 'Si Si'" - The Smoothies - Bluebird B-10616-A - 1940 (file size=422KB)


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