Make horrid scars and gashes.


Lionel Barrymore "Hallowe'en: A Musical Fantasy" (MGM, 10-A, 78 RPM, 1947)

Released by MGM in 1947, this 3 disc 78 rpm set is one of the earliest Halloween records I have. Narrated by Lionel Barrymore and based on a performance he produced at the Hollywood Bowl in 1945, it's a real departure from the more frightening manifestations of the supernatural that we tend to associate with the holiday. As Barrymore explains it in his liner notes:

"This is the story of a little girl named Myrtle, and Myrtle's dreams of wonderful things. It's the story of Boo Boo the big bear in the woods who stole little children, and of six delightful little elves who popped out of eggs and rescued Myrtle from the bear. [...] For the benefit of grown-ups, (although you children may be interested, too) I originally wrote the composition for piano and narrator, but since then prepared it for a symphony orchestra. I felt the story had great musical possibilities, especially the scene where the little elves become hypnotized by a flame of light."

Mr Barrymore is helped here by conductor Miklos Rozsa, soprano Marion Bell (Myrtle), tenor Edward Lear (Bertle the shoemaker),and "deep, deep bass singer" John Ford (the fearless woodman). While this certainly isn't going to frighten anyone (nor was that the intent), as a window into the 60-years-past world of "Hallowe'en" (and kid-culture), I found it pretty interesting. For an opposing viewpoint though, let me quote my friend Scott (who originally made me a cassette transfer of the 78's years ago): "You know how that thing is subtitled 'a musical fantasy'? That's because it's a complete fantasy that anyone would ever want to hear it more than once". But hey, he's a cynic.

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Blogger Dave said...

Very cool. Another one I've been waiting on. I've seen this on ebay for over $100.00 so obviously we're all in debt to Jason for the freebie. Thanks a million as always.

6/03/2006 8:41 PM

Anonymous steve said...

Jason, thanks for this! That cover, promising elves, mushrooms, an axe, and the disembodied head of Lionel Barrymore is obviously a lot to live up to. Nonetheless, as you say, this is a fascinating first pass at a holiday recording for kids at "Hallowe'en". I love that archaic spelling as well, my prim, ancient-as-dust third grade teacher would have had it no other way.

6/04/2006 4:26 AM

Blogger Dr.Terror said...

Goody Goody, been wanting to hear this forever.

6/04/2006 2:25 PM

Blogger Rob Bodnar said...

Great blog!

6/09/2006 8:24 AM

Anonymous Smurfwreck said...

I just wanted to thank you for taking time to rip and post these records. This is such an awesome bit of sharing and it's just, well swell.

6/26/2006 8:38 PM

Blogger HarveyMidnight said...

Hey Jason;

Hope everything is going well with ya.. no update in a while.

I do have an interesting find, I thought you could also share it here. Awhile back, I got ahold of album-- thru sharity of course-- called 'Moon Maid' by the Electrosoniks. Turns out, that album is the music that is heard in the background on the 'Tales of the Frightened' Boris Karloff albums.. although, the songs were slowed down a great degree, to set a more mystical & scary mood. But I've got the songs as mp3 and I've got versions that I myself slowed down to have a 'genuine' soundtrack from 'frihtened'. Let me know if you're interested. Thanks again for all the great Halloween stuff.

7/23/2006 9:49 AM

Blogger Mr. Happy said...

Yepp, this is a very cool blog you have here, indeed. Thanks for all the great posts until now. If it's of interest for you (I guess it will be so if I see your site) - I've just added the Horror Hop / Monster Bop comps from the german Buffalo bear label - the best ones I know in 50s/60s R'n'R featuring a lot of rare novelty stuff. If you like feel free to visit me and get them.
Again thanks a lot for your work and keep your site the way it is!

8/01/2006 2:26 AM

Blogger Giggling Ghost said...

Love your site...I'm adding a link to it from mine.

8/06/2006 12:42 PM

Anonymous EvB said...

Spectacular stuff! thanks a lot

8/10/2006 10:13 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

aah what a wonderful blog!! i listened Hallowe'en and i think it's awesome. great post mate. long live!!

8/11/2006 6:41 PM

Blogger Ben T. said...

Where are ya hidin', Jason?

It's gettin 'round time to start preparing the Halloween mixes and we haven't heard from you in a while. Everything Okay?

I found an interesting Halloween-themed record from the Classroom Materials Company, full of kids ghost stories and Halloween poetry. I'll probably put it up on my blog this evening, so folks can have plenty of time to work it into their mixes

8/13/2006 4:33 PM

Blogger Dave said...

Can't wait to hear that Ben.

BTW - I got the Sleep No More LP n the mail finally so I'll be getting that to you soon.

Jason - come back to us!!


8/13/2006 7:51 PM

Blogger HarveyMidnight said...

"It's gettin 'round time to start preparing the Halloween mixes..."

Hey, cool. So there's a 'season' of Halloween Mixes, where lots of folks share their kooky audio presentations?

Where do I sign up? When are they 'due'

Cuz I've been using a lot of the stuff I got from ol' scarstuff here, to make my OWN Haunted House audio tour-- Once it's done I'll post in on my blog, and give mad props to Jason, for all the great shares on this site!

Hope to hear from ya soon, Jason...

8/14/2006 3:08 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, I just came across this site. Awesome! I have a couple of questions. I noticed that you have Fat Albert and Peanuts Halloween. Can you post those again?

Also, I'm looking for a Halloween album from the 80's. I don't remember who put it out, but I do remember a track called "The Green Man". I was so scared of that. There is a "Green Man" on the cover of the album digging a grave. Do you know what I'm talking about?

Great site.

8/18/2006 10:12 PM

Anonymous Neil said...

I too just wanted to thank you for posting these records. This is great stuff.

Do you have Peter Cushing reading Hammer's The Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires. I'd love to hear that.

8/19/2006 3:09 AM

Blogger Dave said...

Niel - I've seen that Peter Cusing LP on ebay before.

8/19/2006 1:44 PM


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