Hilda Crane & The Revolt Of Mamie Stover/Raksin & Friedhofer

August 3, 2007

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To this reviewer 1956 was the year of Around the World in 80 Days, Lust For Life, and Moby Dick certainly not Hilda Crane & The Revolt of Mamie Stover. Never seen either film and likely never will. In fact the movie guide that I use as a reference by Martin & Porter, which has listings for over 19,000 films, doesn’t show either of them. But the music thanks to Intrada has been remastered and made available to us in their special collection series albiet limited to only 1200 copies. To my knowledge there are still copies available from Intrada directly, at least at the time of this writing in August 2007.Raksin and Friedhofer were not held in the same esteem as Newman, Rozsa, or Waxman perhaps due to the types of films they were assigned to, yet they were looked up to with the highest respect from their colleagues. While I can’t consider either score their best, I can certainly put both of them near the top of the list. Laura from Raksin and The Best Years Of Our Lives from Friedhofer are one of a kind gems that couldn’t be duplicated and must be considered two of the greatest of all time. Both Crane (Alfred) and Stover (Lionel) were 20th Century Fox films and had the honor of being conducted by members of the Newman family.The “Main Title” of Hilda Crane is performed in a Gershwin like style with the sounds of the train, traffic, and the fast city life: This is definitely the most upbeat of the cues. “The Truth” pulls out all of the stops for romance and lushness in a superb arrangement of the main title. David makes excellent use of the violin and flute to achieve the mood he is attempting to convey. “The Second Mrs.” gives us a wonderful muted trombone solo of the theme as it is presented in yet another form. While the overall flavor of the score is quite somber and soap opera like the genius of Raksin comes through loud and clear! This was one that I found myself listening to over and over and over and over again.If you are familiar at all with Jane Russell you’ll quickly realize how well composer Hugo Friedhofer nailed her perfectly with the theme “Walkin Home with the Blues”. Jane was quite a buxom woman and one can just picture her hips swaying to the bluesy, slightly raucous main title. Orchestrated so that the reeds and brass are equally featured it is similiar in style to the Julie London “Cry Me A River” song which probably doesn’t help younger listeners much either help to identify but the older generation understands loud and clear. I can see the stare eyes with the comment who? “The Voyage” begins with a tremolo from the clarinet, a simple sax solo followed by a well done slow easy going blues composition. “Deck Games” is a pleasant variation on the main title starting with a mournful oboe solo and seques into a waltz upbeat arrangement of the theme before returning to the blues featuring the romance of a muted trumpet with lush strings. “Pin-Up” is a nicely played swing song with several band members all getting their hand at being able to play a few bars. The songs with lyrics are included at the end for good reason. “Keep Your Eyes on the Hands” and “If You Wanna See Mame Tonight” are nothing spectacular but need to be included to keep completeness to the release. Jane Russell isn’t much in the singing department but then again we’re interested in this CD for Hugo Friedhofer and David Raksin anyway.Overall this is a very nice find from Intrada, one that you will be quite happy to have in your collection. There are few Friedhofer choices and even fewer Raksin so don’t let this one slip between the cracks. Highly recommendedGolden Score Rating ****

Produced by Nick Redman and Douglass Fake

Intrada Special Collection #31

Track listing1. Main Title (01:56)2. Let’s Get Acquainted (01:18)3. I Should Have Known (01:33)4. Hilda and Mother (03:03)5. Dreams (03:21)

6. The Truth (02:44)

7. Hilda Enters the Church (01:01)

8. The House (04:52)

9. Bleak Day (01:09)

10. The Second Mrs. (01:59)

11. What Are You? (04:31)

12. The Long Wait (01:53)

13. End Titles (02:02)

HILDA CRANE (1956) by David Raksin (tracks 1-13, total time 31:32)

14. Main Title (“Walkin’ Home with the Blues”) (01:59)

15. The Voyage (04:05)

16. Deck Games (05:16)

17. “Sing Me a Song of the Islands” (03:32)

18. “Walkin’ Home with the Blues” (02:39)

19. On the Beach (03:38)

20. Plain Scared (01:07)

21. Escrow and Boot Montage (01:05)

22. Dreaming and Scheming (02:28)

23. Declaration (01:25)

24. Goodbye (01:14)

25. “If You Wanna See Mamie Tonight” (02:30)

26. “Keep Your Eyes on the Hands” (02:03)

27. Pin-Up (01:29)

28. “If You Wanna See Mamie Tonight” (chorus version) (01:22)

29. End Titles (01:35)

30. “If You Wanna See Mamie Tonight” (02:52)

vocal: Rush Adams (bonus track)

THE REVOLT OF MAMIE STOVER (1956) by Hugo Friedhofer (tracks 14-30, total time 40:43)

Total Duration: 01:11:41

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