The Movie Hits

The Movie Hits

by Bing CrosbyBing Crosby


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While many of Bing Crosby's films have followed Droopy the Bear into that dark night, the Pearl/Flapper label dusts off some of the musical diamonds from these sometimes cinematic dogs with The Movie Hits. Featuring 22 songs from more than a dozen films released in the '30s and early '40s, this compilation unearths interesting material, much of it performed with the John Scott Trotter & His Orchestra (including the first sessions of that fruitful partnership). The recordings are well-preserved where possible, and the presence of liner notes is a real plus. Over a long career, little on The Movie Hits is must-own music, but there are a handful of treats here, including "Too Romantic" from The Road to Singapore, "My Heart Is Taking Lessons" from Doctor Rhythm, and "Let's Call a Heart a Heart" from Pennies From Heaven. These movie songs aren't far removed from Crosby's non-film recordings (if it ain't broke...), favoring the usual mix of wilting ballads ("My Heart and I"), playful repartee ("Small Fry"), and upbeat advice ("Meet the Sun Half-Way") that made up the bulk of his music from this period. Most of it works, and when it doesn't ("Empty Saddles," for example) the listener need only wait a few minutes for a new (and probably better) song to roll around. The Movie Hits is of most interest to Crosby archivists, who would have trouble tracking these songs down individually. Otherwise, despite some nice additions, this compilation isn't Crosby at his best.

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