“The Garland voice is a powerfully dramatic instrument. It can leave the blase a-tremble, can stir the apathetic to cheers and never fails to mobilize a sort of musical catharsis in the multitude.” – Ernie Santosuosso, The Boston Globe, 1967
September 1, 1937: MGM placed this multi-page ad in the “Film Daily” trade paper, touting the success of Broadway Melody of 1938.
September 1, 1939: Three Wizard of Oz tie-in ads. The first is from the Hotel Bingham in Binghamton, New York, telling people to see the film then have dinner in their restaurant; the second is an ad for free tickets if you’re able to find your name in the want ads in Logan, Ohio; the last one is from Coshocton, Ohio, where there was a special “Kiddie Show” featuring balloons, Oz gifts, and even Judy Garland Dresses available to early attendees.
September 1, 1939: Here’s an ad for the new Decca Records album of songs from The Wizard of Oz. The album is not a soundtrack album but instead, it’s an album of studio recordings of some of the songs from the film. The original soundtrack album market was still several years in the future.
Only “Over The Rainbow” and “The Jitterbug” are Garland vocals. The “vocal trio” who accompanies Judy on “The Jitterbug” is none other than the film’s composer Harold Arlen as The Scarecrow with Bud Lyon as The Tin Man, & Garney Bell as The Lion. The remaining songs are performed by the Ken Darby Singers.
This was actually the first Judy Garland “album” ever released. Previously Judy’s recordings for the label were released as singles and would continue to be. Judy had recorded both of these vocals on July 29, 1939.
Listen to “Over the Rainbow” here:
Listen to “The Jitterbug” here:
Check out The Judy Garland Online Discography’s Pages on the Decca Records version of The Wizard of Oz here.
September 1, 1939: More Ozzy ads, reviews, and articles.
September 1, 1944: Filming resumed on The Clock with Vincente Minnelli as the film’s new director. The first scenes shot under Minnelli’s direction were those on the “Interior Rodin’s Thinker” and “Interior French Gallery” sets.
Judy was due on set at 10 a.m. but didn’t arrive until 10:53 a.m. The fault wasn’t hers. She was in makeup at 8:55 a.m. but they gave her the wrong fall for her hair, hence the delay. She arrived on set at 10:53 a.m. and was ready for filming at 11:02 a.m. Time dismissed: 6:40 p.m.
September 1, 1948: This photo appeared in the September issue of Photoplay, part of an article about Judy. Unfortunately, I don’t have all of the article, just the two pages as shown below. [Update] Thanks to the person who commented (see the bottom of page) the rest of the article is now included.
September 1, 1950: Billy Rose’s latest “Pitching Horseshoes” column first appeared in papers around the country. Summer Stock had been released in August 1950 and was doing great business, garnering Judy great reviews with some mentioning the film as her return after “a brief illness” (her very public suicide attempt that previous June). Rose, obviously a Garland fan, famously called her a “national asset” and “Al Jolson in lace panties.”
An Open Letter to Judy Garland
MISS JUDY GARLAND
LAKE TAHOE, CALIF.
WHAT WITH a non-stop phone, a couple of columns to write, and the arguments incidental to a new television show I’m working on, last Thursday was one of the longest days I remember, and by the time 7 o’clock rolled around I was as low as a policeman’s arch.
Too jittery to relax, I put my hat on and strolled over to Broadway, and on 46th Street I met a movie critic who was on his way to a private showing of your new picture, “Summer Stock.” On the par of the mood and moment I invited myself along.
A hundred minutes later I walked out of the projection room with a slaphappy grin on my face, and the midget miracle which had catapulted me out of the drench and into the dazzle was a chunk of talented girl called Garland.
You see, Judy, I hadn’t seen you on the screen in quite a while, and I had almost forgotten how all-fired good you are. I found your portrayal of a fair girl in “Summer Stock” as convincing as a $20 gold piece, and when you leveled on Harold Arlen’s old song, “Get Happy” – well, I was Al Jolson in lace panties, Maurice Chevalier in opera pumps!
Naturally, you’re wondering why I’m taking heart in ball-pen and writing you this love-and-kudos letter right out in the open.
WELL, LIKE everyone else, I read the front-page stories about you a couple of months back, and from the lies between the lines I sensed that you had been having a bout with the Jim-jams yourself, and that you no longer cared much whether school kept or not.
This letter – and I know it’s plenty presumptuous – is to point out, in case you haven’t thought of it yourself, how important it is to millions of people in this country that school continue to keep for Judy Garland and that she continue to do her stuff in the movies.
“Aw, shucks,” I can hear you say, “I ain’t that important.” Well, let’s see if I can’t get it across to you with a few succinct statistics:
Approximately 60,000,000 people go to the movies each week, and at least half of them, at one time or another, figure to see a big razzmatazz musical like “Summer Stock.”
Okay – pick up a pencil and do a bit of multiplying and dividing, and you’ll find that your inspired shenanigans in this one film will contribute three billion minutes or six thousand years of sparkle to this pesky persimmon of a planet.
AND THAT, my plum, is more than the average mortal could hope to accomplish in a hundred reincarnations.
It gets down to this, Judy: In an oblique and daffy for to foray, you are as much a national asset as our coal reserves – both of you help to warm our insides.
And the day you stop making pictures, you’re going to take a lot of warmth out of the lives of millions of Bills and Betties who live in furnished rooms and cook their breakfasts on hot plates – me-and-my-shadow folk for whom a Judy Garland movie is the best available substitute for the kiss in the dark that never happens.
Your devoted fan,
September 1, 1955: Judy’s fourth recording session at the Capitol Records studios in Hollywood, California. Judy recorded “Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe” for the “Miss Show Business” LP.
Listen to “Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe” here:
September 1, 1955: The second re-release of The Wizard of Oz was playing all over the country. Here is a short article about how the film made Judy a big star.
September 1, 1958: Judy arrived in Chicago for her upcoming concert at Orchestra Hall. She stayed at the Bismark Hotel, and she gave a press conference where this photo was taken as husband Sid Luft looks on.
September 1, 1965: During the previous night’s show at the Circle Star Theater in San Carlos, California, Judy proudly announced that she and Mark Herron were going to be married. Judy’s engagement at the theater was for six shows. Although Judy stated they would be married on September 19th the couple waited and were actually married on November 14th in Las Vegas, Nevada.
September 1, 1967: Judy had just triumphed at The Boston Common in Boston, MA the day before making a special visit to the Veterans Administration Hospital, also in Boston. Judy personally visited about 80 veterans and sang a few verses of “Over the Rainbow. She then did a brief “concert” in the movie room of the hospital for about 50 people. She sang “Just in Time”; a duet of “Bye, Bye Blackbird” with her conductor Bobby Cole; and closed with “Over The Rainbow.”
Below are a few reviews of Judy’s triumph at the Boston Common.
September 1, 1967: Judy’s next engagement: The Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Maryland.
September 1, 1998: Rhino Records released “The Story and Songs from The Wizard of Oz.”
Warner Bros. re-released The Wizard Of Oz into theaters nationwide in late 1998. The re-release boasted a new print of the restored film, as well as a newly restored “digital” soundtrack. The soundtrack for the film had been remastered utilizing the original recording masters, including the existing separate stems. These stems allowed parts of the film to be remixed into true stereo, while the rest of the film was remastered to simulate stereo.
This special edition of the soundtrack album was released by Rhino Records to coincide with the theatrical re-release. It contains most of the songs and dialog recorded “directly from the soundtrack” of the film, recreating and expanding the listening experience many of us had enjoyed with the original M-G-M Records LP’s, while also presenting this listening experience for a whole new generation of fans.
The sound quality on this disc is excellent. Sure, some of it is “simulated” stereo, however it was the only CD that had “Over The Rainbow” as heard in the film, without that annoying jump in volume when Judy sings the second “somewhere” as it has been presented in all of the other Rhino CDs that include the pre-recording. The 2017 2-CD set “Judy Garland – Soundtracks” features the non-audio-jump version in its original mono format with the correct intro (all other versions used an alternate take).
Even with the extant noises such as footsteps (etc.) included, the overall listening experience, especially in the “Munchkinland Sequence,” is vastly superior to the previous mono editions.
The beautiful packaging folds out to reveal a “pop-up” of the main characters, with nice photos on either side.