Summertime is here! And you can always count on Bear Family Records to bring some vintage music offerings to the Summer BBQ. Another entry into their long-running “Destination” series, Destination Summer Sea Cruise is exactly what it sounds like; A compilation containing tracks on the theme of cruises, water and summer.
This series, along with similar fare from this label, are a treasure trove of familier, unfamiliar and “I can’t believe this exists!”. The album starts with a couple of iconic recordings by Frankie Ford and Ricky Nelson, easing the listener gently into the theme. The timeless Sea Cruise, in particular, was a must for something with this subject matter. The track is revisited in a rare recording by The Keil Isles later on in the compilation.
With a tracklisting consisting of an enormous thirty-three tracks, this compilation is packed with various flavours. From the gentle organ filled instrumental interpretation of Beyond the Sea to late 50s Rock ‘n’ Roll to luscious ballads, nostalgic moods and so much more. I’m carried away by the throwback lyrics of songs such as Soda Pop and Seashore Stomp, the sweeping strings of It’s a Lovely Day Today and soothed by the blissful instrumentals of Rippling Waters and Sleepy Lagoon (Yes the composition of Desert Island Discs fame!) Other highlights include the delightfully crunchy guitars of Let’s Gonna Be A Party, the Country styling of Hank Thompson, Jack Scott’s pleasing reading of Cool Water and so many more! This truly offers something for everybody! The album finishes on the unmistakeable sound of Les Paul & Mary Ford’s In The Good Old Summertime, a fitting end.
With the nature of such a compilation, the quality of the recording differs from track to track. Each track sounds great through a pair of speakers, but some may have understandable analogue artefacts if heard through headphones. Overall, the sound is exactly what you’d expect.
Some compilations can feel like a bunch of tracks thrown together, not this one. Each track offers something different to the mix, and the combination of flavours makes this eclectic selection fun to listen to. If you’re taking a cruise this summer, or even just a day trip to the beech, you can’t go wrong with this compilation that fits the mood nicely. Destination Summer Sea Cruise: 33 Ocean Steamers For Your Vacation is available from Bear Family Records.
- Frankie Ford – Sea Cruise
- Ricky Nelson – A Long Vacation
- Billy Mure’s Supersonic Guitars – By The Beautiful Sea
- Earl Grant – Beyond The Sea
- Karl Hammel, Jr – Summer Souvenirs
- Floyd Brown – Thunderbird Beach
- Vince Maloy – Soda Pop
- The Ives – Sunshine
- Rickey Leigh & The Twins – Seashore Stomp
- Speedy West – Rippling Waters
- Bobby Gray – There’s Gonna Be A Party (On The Beach)
- Chubby Chops & The Twisting Cyclones – Summertime
- Pete Cummins & The Redeemers Four – The Surfin’ Freeze
- The Polaras – Breaker
- Hank Thompson & His Brazos Valley Boys – Teach’em How To Swim
- Mitchell Torok – Teenie Weenie Bikini
- Dick Haymes & Eileen Watson – It’s A Lovely Day Today
- The Keil Isles – Sea Cruise
- Joey Dee & The Starliters – Twistin’ On A Liner
- Big Jay Mercer With Joe Anderson & The Groovers – Bemudas
- Marlon ‘Madman’ Mitchell & The Rocketeers – Bermuda Shorts
- Harry James & His Orchestra – Sleepy Lagoon
- The Strollers Feat. Artie Malvin – Moonlight Cocktail
- Billy Vaughn & His Orchestra – Sail Along Silvery Moon
- Myron Lee & The Caddies – Magic In A Summer Night
- The Techniques – Moon Tan
- Mina e l Solitari Tintarella Di Luna
- Helene Dixon – The Breeze (That’s Bringing My Honey Back To Me)
- Don Drummond & The Skatalites – Cool Shade
- Marvin Rainwater – Hot and Cold
- Jack Scott – Cool Water
- The Shells – Sippin’ Soda
- Les Paul & Mary Ford – In The Good Old Summertime