Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Open, general discussion of music during the era of classic/nitrate movies
User avatar
bobfells
Posts: 3037
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:03 pm
Location: Old Virginny

Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Unread post by bobfells » Mon Apr 01, 2019 1:22 pm

Bebe Daniels and Gloria Swanson impressed their fans with their previously unrealized singing abilities in talkies. Joan Crawford was game and MGM provided her with a good song for her film, POSSESSED (1931).

https://youtu.be/d3JkEh6pPq8
Official Biographer of Mr. Arliss

http://www.ArlissArchives.com" target="_blank
http://www.OldHollywoodinColor.com" target="_blank
https://www.Facebook.com/groups/413487728766029/" target="_blank

TerryC
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:01 pm

Re: Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Unread post by TerryC » Tue Apr 02, 2019 10:43 pm

I converted it to CD-R a long time ago, but I used to have an entire LP of Crawford “singing”. It is a chronological survey of every song from all her movies. Wherever she did not use her own voice, the various dubbers sing. It also includes several of her private home recordings. Fascinating stuff.

User avatar
bobfells
Posts: 3037
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:03 pm
Location: Old Virginny

Re: Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Unread post by bobfells » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:32 am

Joanie had what they used to call "moxie," a drive to try new things for her career. Singing is a good example. Even after she was an established star, she wanted to have a broader range than just acting to the camera. When she was married to Franchot Tone, he persuaded her to do live radio before a studio audience to give her experience with reactions from an audience. She made several mid and late 30s appearances on Lux Radio Theater, sometimes co-starring Tone, where it was said her hands were shaking as she held her script.

Her first appearance was in July 1936 just after De Mille had taken over as host. She and Tone performed an adaptation of her film CHAINED. In May 1937 she returned to Lux with Tone at her side to play the Katharine Hepburn role in MARY OF SCOTLAND, stepping out a bit from her comfort level. In Feb 1938 she tackled ANNA CHRISTIE with Spencer Tracy, and was back in June in a non-movie role, Ibsen's A DOLL'S HOUSE, with Basil Rathbone, of all people. All these shows can be heard for free online.

Rehearsals were intensive for the Lux broadcasts extending an entire week before the show and studios were known to push their stars into appearing to promote their newest films. Joanie seems to have ended her Lux appearances after A DOLL'S HOUSE perhaps having obtained the audience experience she wanted and sparing herself further stage fright. But like her singing, she was up for the challenge.
Official Biographer of Mr. Arliss

http://www.ArlissArchives.com" target="_blank
http://www.OldHollywoodinColor.com" target="_blank
https://www.Facebook.com/groups/413487728766029/" target="_blank

User avatar
s.w.a.c.
Posts: 2617
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2008 2:27 pm
Location: The Land of Evangeline

Re: Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:07 am

bobfells wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:32 am
Joanie had what they used to call "moxie,"
But then she had Royal Crown Cola, before she finally settled for Pepsi.

Image
Twinkletoes wrote:Oh, ya big blister!

wich2
Posts: 1650
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:11 am

Re: Joan Crawford Sings 1931! How Long Will It Last

Unread post by wich2 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:10 pm

There are several stories of why the radio "cage" frame around the mic came into being; one is that Jack Barrymore was just too physical at mic, and another is that La Crawford needed the thing to steady her and keep her in proper range.

At any event, she did do more broadcast work after the '38 LUX, including series like SUSPENSE and SCREEN GUILD THEATER.

(Several movie actors were not good radio actors - one was famously canned from LUX for stinking.)

- Craig

Post Reply