At first glance, this well-stocked collection appears to be a soundtrack album from Dimples, a 1936 motion picture starring Shirley Temple and Frank Morgan, with choreography by Bill Bojangles Robinson and a cast that featured John Carradine and Stepin Fetchit. Although the album does open with a cluster of excerpts from Dimples, most of the material comes from other films including Curly Top, Poor Little Rich Girl, Stand Up and Cheer, Bright Eyes, and Captain January. Dimples was apparently chosen as the headliner because little Shirley's nubile facial indentations attained iconic status during years of lucrative exploitation by the motion picture industry. With 26 tracks in tow (albeit some of them only a little over a minute in duration), Dimples beats many other Temple samplers for sheer quantity, and conveys the essence of her composite silver screen persona. In addition to the almost unbearably wholesome "That's What I Want for Christmas" and her lushly orchestrated lullaby "Good Night My Love," this set includes "But Definitely," a Tin Pan Alley delight that would have suited Fats Waller and features Shirley's ‘Bo-bo-bo-bo-bo' Bing Crosby imitation. "Baby Take a Bow" features a pair of squabbling adults who swap insults ("who's that bunch of poison-ality?") until with a flourish, little Shirley struts forward and transforms the song into a pouting paternal ode now retitled "Daddy Take a Bow." Over the course of "Oh My Goodness" she mills the lyric through a standard Hollywood array of ethnic stereotypes (including pidgin Chinese and caricatured Russian), ultimately working up to a Cab Calloway-styled finale. These are truly amazing accomplishments for a child who was essentially fed to Moloch and survived to reinvent herself as public servant and international politician.
AllMusic Review by arwulf arwulf
feat: Stepin Fetchit
feat: James Dunn
feat: James Dunn
feat: Bill Robinson