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Phil Harris - His Original & Greatest Hits

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Album Review

Phil Harris talk-singing style made him the pop equivalent of Tex Williams, and he had a clear influence on the Big Bopper and Jerry Reed, to name a couple. His late-'40s and early-'50s recordings for RCA are collected here, including such Harris favorites as "Woodman, Woodman Spare That Tree," "The Preacher and the Bear," "Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette)," and "Deck of Cards." Also present are several novelties such as "I'm My Own Grandpa" and Harris' major hit, "The Thing." Harris' southern Indiana drawl and country repertoire make him seem like a shoo-in for the country charts, but the horns and big-band arrangements place his recordings squarely in the pop camp. This affordable 24-track import compiles a generous assortment of vintage sides and is one of few available collections of Phil Harris' recordings.


Born: 24 June 1904 in Linton, IN

Genre: Vocal

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s

Better known as a longtime actor who made his first film appearance in 1933, Phil Harris was also a successful drummer and singer. Harris played drums with Francis Craig and led his own groups during the 30s, using the song "Rose Room" as a theme. Harris was a regular on Jack Benny's radio show for a decade from 1936-1946 and had his own show with Alice Faye from 1947-54. He had a number...
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