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While a small token, a few Parkvillians recorded a few songs -- two of which are featured here -- for your Christmas enjoyment. Clicking the album cover above will take you to a website where you donate money via paypal. Anything you can spare helps keep the spirit bright. Thanks.
Silent Night (right click and save the mp3 file)
Largely considered to be one of Kansas City's finest guitarists, Ruskin is a familiar face to anyone who frequents The Phoenix downtown, where he usually holds court with The Ruskin Quartet. Ruskin also hosts a weekly Open Mic on Tuesdays at Cafe Cedar. When we told Brian about the project, he graciously recorded this song in less than an hour as a donation. It's a truly beautiful rendition of the song.
Learn more by visiting him on Facebook: Brian Ruskin.
Christmas Carols (right click and save the mp3 file)
Most of you know Carolyn Elwess as the Park University archivist and the author of the "From the Fishburn Archives" series of features in The Parkville Luminary. Carolyn plays the fiddle, but I knew better than to ask. So I asked if she had any old recordings in the archives. She did one better.
This is a recording we made of a song roll played on her vintage Duo-Art player piano. Originally played by Dion Kennedy, this roll features 1. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, 2. The First Noel, 3. God Rest ye Merry Gentlemen, 4. O, Little Town of Bethlehem.
Click below to download the bonus track:
Mark Vasto and Matt Scott
Johnny Bourbon: Crooner Detective (right click and save the mp3 file)
I actually recorded a few songs for the album but one wasn't mastered the way I wanted it to be and the other, recorded at West End Studios (great guys) was pretty depressing for an album of uplifting holiday joy. So as a bonus track to this hit single, we offer this radio show, which first aired on The Luminary Hour radio show sometime in 2006. It's a bit racy but it's all innuendo so it was cleared for air play.
Matt Scott is a brilliant comedy writer in the classic Carl Reiner sense and his work has appeared on NBC and elsewhere on the Interwebs.This show stemmed from a discussion we had over some iced teas while he and his girlfriend visited over the holidays. We wondered why Sinatra was given grief for not serving in the war, but Bing Crosby got away with everything. Then we surmised that really, all he ever did was kind of croon his way through life, never breaking a sweat.
This was recorded during the Bush administration, so we kind of played off his "hey, just go shopping and we'll handle the war" vibe. Featuring the voice talents of my lovely wife Nancy and Stacee Mandeville, Matt and myself, the radio show is pretty true to the era it portrays. Those not familiar with Crosby, Cary Grant, The Andrews Sisters, Orson Welles and stereotypical gangsters, cops and announcers may not get the jokes, but hey, they're in there.