The above disc (image courtesy of http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_YjLAGVGbQ), has "Solitude" as my dad played while he was in the Armed Forces. The song you hear on this page is that recording. While in the Armed Forces, my dad played at dozens and dozens of cities, towns and events with the assigned goal of selling War Bonds and to entice young men into joining the Armed Forces. FYI, the accordion you hear is his Columbo model. The Sonola accordion came his way after the war when Sonola approached my dad and signed the sponsorship deal.
Ernie Felice meets Benny Goodman.
When my dad was young his friend and neighbor Joe Sorci (who played sax) took my dad to meet a music instructor in San Francisco where they both took music lessons. Joe wanted my dad to develop his style of music to be more modern. Joe subsequently introduced my dad to Earl Sylvester (who was also a Sax player). Joe and Earl who took my dad under their wings and taught my dad how to play jazz using lesson books geared for the saxophone. My dad was influenced by how the sax music was arranged for four individual saxophones, all four being in harmony while playing in their own separate keys. This influenced my dad to play his accordion based on how the four sax's were playing. Earl introduced my dad to many actors and influential musicians, including Johhny Thompson who had arranged music for many big bands including Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman. Johnny and my dad became good friends and since Johnny knew Benny Goodman very well he arranged a meeting between Benny and my dad at Benny's house where Benny tested my dad's musical ability by playing a few very complicated pieces on his clarinet. My dad repeated everything that Benny played but also played a few pieces that Benny had trouble repeating. Because of this, Benny asked my dad to meet him at NBC with his other band members where they jammed for a bit, then invited my dad to join them as a band member playing music for the Victor Borge show. Being able to play with Benny's band was motivation for my dad to modify his accordion to change how it sounded. Instead of sounding like a Polka accordion, my dad changed the bellows to make his instrument sound softer and more muted and blend in with the other jazz instruments. Playing with Benny on the Victor Borge show led to Benny inviting my dad to join him to do the Benny Goodman album "Benny Rides Again" where Ernie was featured on several songs.
Below, a photo of 20th Century Fox Music Director Alfred Newman and my dad, Ernie Filice, and below that, one of the movies they worked on together at Fox "With A Song In My Heart".
An actual screen shot taken on-set during the film.
YouTube Clip from "With A Song In My Heart". This is one of many movies in which the Ernie Felice Quartet appeared. Others include "The Big Clock" with Ray Milland and several movies with Doris Day such as "Tea For Two", "It's A Great Feeling" and "Starlift" all while he worked with studio music directors such as Alfred Newman, Ray Milland and Ray Heindorff. In "Paleface" with Bob Hope and Jane Russel, my dad modified his accordion to sound like a concertina which Bob Hope "played" in that movie. After this movie, Bob and Ernie became very good life-long friends, not to mention his friendships with John Wayne, Doris Day and many other actors.
Below: Ernie Felice Quartet plays with The Pied Pipers. Notice that the Ernie Felice Quartet and The Pied Pipers did not appear together in any scene, but only individually. Ernie said that this was done because of record label contacts that did not allow them to appear together.
Below, YouTube clip "Who is Ernie Felice?".
Audio Player below that plays songs requires Flash-enabled device.
Below, a few songs from "Power House"
Track 1: "Powerhouse"
"Oodles of Boodle"
"Just One of Those Things"
"Ritual Fire Dance"
Below, a few songs from "Cocktail Time"
Track 1: "Carolina Moon"
Track 2: :Dream A Little Dream"
Track 3: "O Solo Mio"
Track 4: "Stumbling"
Track 5: "(On a) Street of Dreams" The album lists this track title as "Solitude".
My dad formed a record label with Les Paul. The label was called F&P Records (Felice & Paul). Below are the front and back of the only LP they made. Side two "No More Cryin' & Weepin" had vocals by Mary Ford, Les Paul's wife along with my dad. Who knew that Les Paul ever had a record label. This should be an important bit of music history for anyone who follows Les Paul and my dad.
"I Love You Dearly"
"No More Cryin' & Weepin"
Below Credit: http://learning2share.blogspot.com/2007/08/ernie-felice-quartet-oodles-of-boodle.html
Below image credit to: http://learning2share.blogspot.com/2007/08/ernie-felice-quartet-oodles-of-boodle.html