Saturday, November 15, 2008

Brenda Lee - "Let's Jump The Broomstick" (Decca)

You may know Brenda Lee from all the 60s hits she had ("All Alone Am I," "I'm Sorry," "I Want To Be Wanted," etc.) but her rockin' side is one that gets barely touched on if at all. Today's entry in the "Its Great Shakes" archives of great 45 sounds is an example of that. It's called "Let's Jump The Broomstick" and like the title says, it jumps!

The record was released in 1959 before Lee's string of hits would soon begin. In fact, her very next record, "Sweet Nothin's," would be her first Top Ten record, going to #4 at the end of the year. So, what we have here is a nifty little percussor to her massive success. I would guess that a record like this is one of the reasons she was nicknamed "Little Miss Dynamite."

Brenda Lee is sort of hit or miss with me. I'm not a fan of ballads, I can't stand "All Alone Am I" and I get sick of hearing "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree" repeated ad nauseam every holiday season. This one, however, is an upbeat rocker of the highest order. Maybe it's not exactly killer, but it definitely holds its own.

On it, Brenda gives it a full-throttle, full-speed vocal workout with fast, sharp delivery, while your standard issue 50s rock 'n' roll band keeps up the tempo behind her. I take it as a call to elope as Brenda sings:

My father don't like it
My mother don't like it
My sister don't like it
My brother don't like it
So come on little baby,
Let's jump the broomstick,
Come on let's tie the knot.

She was probably around 13 or 14 when she recorded this, as she had been singing professionally since she was six. She was signed to Decca in 1956 and one of her early records (her first, I think), "Bigelow-6200, had her age posted as 9 on the label. Whatever her age, this one is definitely up there in the rockin' department. At least I think it is.


Delinquent said...

Definitely rockin'. Love it!

Anonymous said...

African/slave term for a wedding

ana-b said...

fourteen sounds about right....i remember reading an interview where she talked about how the recording company promoted her as being younger than she actually was...