Sunday, May 21, 2006

Hawaiian Room

Another restaurant record, this one is Hawaiian Room presents Melodies for Dancing from the Enchanted Islands by the Hawaiian Room Orchestra featuring George Hines on vocals and steel guitar and (allegedly Hawaiian) Johnny Coco on vocals. I never heard of a native Hawaiian go by the name of Johnny Coco but what do I know? I'm not sure what year this came out but those are some hellacious fonts on the cover!

This is a VERY haole recording. I doubt anyone who ever even met a person of Polynesian descent ever came within a mile of the studio during this recording. Its more whitebread than Pat Boone. Its still worth having though. The Hawaiian Room was one of the old classic tiki establishments and the mugs, souvenirs (of which this is) and the ephemera are very collectible. Beyond that its a more than decent collection of orchestrated Hawaiian standards (with the exception of the first track "Enchanted Island" which is an original) and some of the tracks have enough sweet falsetto to make me think that "Johnny Coco" may actually be a Hawaiian braddah.

Before anyone gets all snippety with me, "Sweet Lelani" was spelled thus on the cover and so that's how I spelled the file and the same with "Little Brown Girl" as opposed to "Gal."

Though the cover says MGM Records, my copy was pressed by Quality Records Ltd for distribution in Canada. I wish I knew what year this was recorded. To my uneducated ear the recording sounds early 50s if not a bit earlier.

From "The Hawaiian Room, situated in the Hotel Lexington, Lexington Avenue and 48th Street," NYC.

Lordy, rapidshare is slow on the upload tonight...

Doo doo de doo...da da da ta, bop de dah...

OK, let me go surf the net a little bit...

Finally! Here it is: The Hawaiian Room


Blogger johnny dollar said...

kono man you are continuing to rock with the shares. hey, if you ever find the restaruant record of 'marion miller at the outlander,' i would be your bestest friend. i missed buying it on ebay and am very sad :(

9:45 AM  
Blogger johnny dollar said...

DOH! i mean mainlander. what the hell was i thinking.

9:45 AM  
Blogger Kono said...

Thanks J$

I grew up in St Louis so that Mainlander album would be a real coup to find.

7:18 PM  
Blogger A Taste of Vinyl said...


Hans back at it and he posted this!

Right up your alley. It's great!

4:38 PM  
Blogger Kono said...

Thank for the tip Timbo. I will download it post haste. Also thanks for the software tip. I think I forgot tell you that. Appreciated!

10:58 PM  
Blogger Tiki Lika said...

While Googling around to see if there's a copy available for d/l somewhere, I came across a review of this LP in the April 20, 1957 Billboard available on Google Books. In their 1 paragraph review they noted it was danceable & easy going but not authentic and therefore gave it a thumbs down. I still haven't found it posted elsewhere, if anyone ever comes across it, pls post a link.

9:13 PM  

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