S4) Singles for RCA
(Folk, Calypso, World)

Aside :-
As Harry Belafonte came into his own as a concert artist in the mid 1950s, his program quickly incorporated material from around the globe, touching on all musical genres. Consequently, it is inappropriate to refer to the body of work that he has delivered to the RCA vaults as simply, folk music.

Clarification :-
In the interest of narrowing our focus to the essential library of original recordings, this listing excludes all RCA single-play records where both sides have been drawn from long-play albums. When one side is an LP extract the title appears in square brackets (e.g.
[Troubles] ).

 

Title

Time

Year

Catalog No.

Matrix No.

Notes

Chiminey Smoke

2:03

1952

47-4676

E2VW-5957

 

A-Roving

3:23

1952

 

E2VW-5958

 

with Orchestra and Chorus directed by Hugo Winterhalter
3 April 1952, Manhattan Center, West 34th Street, N.Y.C.
Produced by Hy Grill
 

Man Smart (Woman Smarter) *

2:30

1952

47-4892

E2VW-6838

(1)

Jerry (This Timber Got To Roll) *

2:31

1952

 

E2VW-6868

 

Instrumental Accompaniment and Male Chorus
Directed by Eddie Sauter
1 August 1952, Studio 2, 155 East 24th Street, N.Y.C.
Produced by Hy Grill & Dave Kapp

Scarlet Ribbons (For Her Hair) *

2:42

1952

47-5051

E2VW-6872

 

Shenandoah *

3:15

1952

 

E2VW-6873

 
with Millard Thomas, Guitar and Male Chorus
Directed by Eddie Sauter
1 August 1952, Studio 2, 155 East 24th Street, N.Y.C.
Produced by Hy Grill & Dave Kapp
*Titles also issued on the 45 rpm EP, Harry Belafonte Sings Man Smart, RCA-EPA-412.

Gomen Nasai (Forgive Me)

2:31

1953

47-5210

E3VW-0543

 

Springfield Mountain (Too Roo De Nay)

2:28

1953

 

E3VW-0544

 

with Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Henri René
Recorded 6 February 1953
Produced by Dave Kapp

           

Matilda, Matilda

2:27

1953

47-5311

E3VW-1095

(2)

Suzanne (Every Night When The Sun Goes Down)

3:09

1953

 

E3VW-0548

 

with Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Henri René
Recorded 27 April & 6 February 1953
Produced by Hy Grill & Dave Kapp

           

Kukla-Mu

3:04

1953

 

(9)

with Orchestra and Chorus 

           

Hold 'Em Joe

2:30

1954

47-5617

E4VW-2807

 

I'm Just A Country Boy

3:00

1954

 

E4VW-2806

 

with Hugo Winterhalter and his Orchestra (22 musicians)
Recorded 4 January 1954
Produced by Joe Carlton
 

           

Pretty As A Rainbow (After The Rain)

2:17

1954

47-5722

E4VW-2804

 

Acorn In The Meadow

2:39

1954

 

E4VW-2805

 

with Hugo Winterhalter and his Orchestra 

           

[Troubles]

3:38

1955

47-6249

F2PW-5805

 

Hello Everybody

2:13

1955

 

F2PW-5804

 

with Tony Scott and his Orchestra

           

The Blues Is Man-Part 1

2:50

1956

47-6458

G2PW-1826

 

The Blues Is Man-Part 2

2:52

1956

 

G2PW-1827

 

with Orchestra arranged and conducted by Will Lorin

           

Jamaica Farewell

2:46

1956

47-6663

G2PW-4916

(3)

Once Was

2:53

1956

 

G2PW-4908

(4)

William Lorin, Conductor 

           

Mary's Boy Child

2:53

1956

47-6735

G2PW-4902

(4)

Venezuela

2:50

1953

 

E3VW-1096

 

a) William Lorin, Conductor
Millard Thomas and Frantz Casseus, Guitars
b) with Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Henri René
Recorded 27 April 1953

           

Danny Boy

4:43

1956

47-6790

G2PW-4905

(5)

[Take My Mother Home]

6:00

1955

 

F2PW-5800

 

a) William Lorin, Conductor
Millard Thomas and Frantz Casseus, Guitars
b) with Tony Scott and his Orchestra

           

Mama Look A Boo Boo

2:58

1957

47-6830

H2PW-1273

 (10)

[Don't Ever Love Me]

2:46

1957

 

H2PW-1276

 

with Bob Corman's Orchestra and Chorus, featuring
M. Thomas, F. Casseus, V. Messer on Guitars

Cocoanut Woman

2:46

1957

47-6885

H2PW-1274

(6)

[Island In The Sun]

3:21

1957

 

H2PW-1279

 

with Bob Corman's Orchestra and Chorus, featuring
M. Thomas, F. Casseus, V. Messer on Guitars

           

The Marching Saints

2:55

1957

47-7176

J2PW-0919

 

Did You Hear About Jerry

2:55

1957

 

J2PW-0932

 

a) with The Harry Belafonte Singers and Orchestra
conducted by Bob Corman
b) Victor Messer and Millard Thomas, Guitars and Drums

           

Ain't That Love

2:28

1958

47-7289

J2PW-1202

 

The Waiting Game

3:08

1958

 

J2PW-1186

 

a) with Orchestra conducted by Dennis Farnon
b) with The Harry Belafonte Singers and Orchestra
conducted by Bob Corman
 

           

Gotta Travel On

2:42

1958

47-7445

J2PW-8372

 

Tarrytown

2:45

1958

 

J2PW-8373

 

with The Belafonte Singers and Orchestra
conducted by Bob Corman

           

(Mary's Boy Child)

2:53

1956

47-1008

G2PW-4902

Little Bernadette

3:06

1958

 

J2HAW-0566

(8)

a) William Lorin, Conductor
Millard Thomas and Frantz Casseus, Guitars
b) Orchestra conducted by Bob Corman

           

Darlin' Cora

3:39

1959

47-7491

K2PW-1757

 

[Turn Around]

2:23

1958

 

J2PW-0910

 

a) with The Belafonte Singers and Orchestra
conducted by Bob Corman
b) with Orchestra conducted by Alan Greene

           

Round The Bay Of Mexico

2:46

1959

47-7550

K2PW-1756

 

[Fifteen]

2:52

1958

 

J2PW-0909

 

a) with The Belafonte Singers conducted by Bob Corman
b) with Orchestra conducted by Alan Greene

Roll On Buddy

2:45

1965

47-8717

SK3M-5009

 

Little Bit Of Rain

2:49

1965

 

SK3M-5010

 

Conducted by Bill Eaton 

           

Hurry Sundown

2:25

1967

47-9075

TPKM-4293

 

[Mama Look A Boo Boo]

3:07

1966

 

TPKM-4263

(7)

a) Arranged and conducted by Bill Eaton
Produced by Andy Wisell
b) Arrangements by Bob Freedman,
Orchestra conducted by Howard A. Roberts

           

A Strange Song

2:30

1967

47-9263

UPKM-6727

 

Sunflower

2:37

1967

 

UPKM-6728

 

Arranged and conducted by Martin Manning 

Pastures Of Plenty

3:28

1972

74-0628

APKS-8492

 

Women

3:34

1972

 

APKS-8493

 

Orchestra conducted by John Cartwright
With the Howard Roberts Chorale
Strings on b) side arranged by Jack K. Pleis
Produced by Jack K. Pleis

Notes on Singles for RCA:-

1. The first reading of Man Smart from 1952.
2. This is truly the original recording of Matilda from 1953 and should not be confused with the up-tempo show-stopper of later years.
3. The arrangement of Jamaica Farewell (recorded 24 July 1956) that made its way up the charts in 1956-57. It quite distinct from the earlier (9 Nov. 1955), Island-flavoured track show-cased in the Calypso album. It is worthy of note that the LP version is the one that prevails today.
4. Alternate takes of Once Was and Mary's Boy Child chosen for release on single because of their shorter duration. The corresponding LP tracks are concert length. To encourage air-play by the disc jockeys of the day, single-play records were generally kept to within 3 minutes. This left the prerequisite windows for commercials and chat.
5. A shortened rendering of Danny Boy which is missing the mood-setting spoken introduction that leads off the LP track.
6. This offering of Cocoanut differs from the one which appears on the Caribbean album. The LP track exits on an extended scat romp which is absent from the single (end fade-out).
7. The Calypso in Brass rendition of Booboo.
8. Little Bernadette first appeared in Europe as the flip side to Mary's Boy Child and was never released in North America. It resurfaced in 1981 on a vinyl compilation titled, Rare Belafonte (PL43683) issued by RCA Germany.
9. See "Treasure Trove".
10. Mama Look At Bubu (note the unusual spelling) was the only single issued directly under this cover. A black banner set it apart from the other (20) "best of Belafonte" singles which were, in reality, re-releases.

Time out for a Little History:-

RCA Victor introduced the 45 rpm (7 in.) vinyl record in 1949 and within 2 years existing jukeboxes had been retrofitted to accommodate the smaller platters. A year earlier Columbia had come out with the 33 rpm long-play concept intended for musical shows and light classics. With these developments, listeners began the long and costly process of acquiring home Hi Fi systems with multi-speed changers (78, 45, & 33 rpm). During the transition period the major labels continued to manufacture 78 rpm (10 in.) records as an optional format. Made from shellac, they were prone to breakage and high surface noise but, in spite of these drawbacks, many long-standing music lovers were unhappy with the change to vinyl. However, by 1957 RCA felt they could safely retire the 78 rpm disc without threat of serious repercussions.

The catalogue numbers that appear in the foregoing listing are for 45 rpm records, but it is important to note that most pre-1957 titles were also available on 78 rpm.

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