Various Artists

Song Hits from Walt Disney’s Pinocchio

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By 1950, the 1940 Walt Disney film Pinocchio was an established children's classic, but there had never been an original soundtrack album drawn from it. Decca Records, a pioneer in original Broadway cast and original soundtrack albums, identified that lack and hired Cliff Edwards, who had been the voice of Jiminy Cricket in the film, to go into the recording studio with an orchestra led by Victor Young, Julietta Novis, and the choral groups the King's Men and the Ken Darby Singers to create an album of Leigh Harline and Ned Washington's songs from the film, among them, of course, the hit "When You Wish Upon a Star." In fact, Harline and Washington had written more music than was actually heard on-screen, and some of it was given an airing here. In addition to the other featured songs, "I've Got No Strings," "Give a Little Whistle," and "Hi-Diddle-Dee-Dee (An Actor's Life for Me)," the Decca album contained vocal versions of "Turn On the Music Box" and "Little Wooden Head," which had been heard only instrumentally in the film; "Three Cheers for Anything," which was written for the film but cut; and "Jiminy Cricket," which was written for exploitation (i.e., to promote the film) but not included in the score. That made eight songs, four of them sung by Edwards, enough to fill both sides of a 10" LP, the dominant format in 1950. (The set was also released as a box of four 45's.) Edwards was his usual charming self, and the songs held together well even if the many other singers were not, for the most part, individually identified. When the 12" LP became the dominant format in the mid-'50s, subsequent reissues of this material were combined with a similar Decca album from 1940 containing music from The Wizard of Oz.

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