A Mostly Mirthful Blog of Music and Miscellany
please o please tell us all about Nick de Frances!j.
He was the first singer-pianist at Jilly's, beginning in 1955 through approx 1959. He recorded almost not at all, which is somewhat sad because he is said to be nearly unsurpassed in his field. Knew the lyrics to every song, etc. He began performing in approximately 1940. Legend has it that singer Beverly Kenney's suicide was precipitated by that of her good friend De Frances. Probably not a romantic relationship, however, if you catch my drift. "Don't Ask" was released a few days before he did away with himself in 1960. Go figure?
Thanks for the lecture on De Frances...Did he ever made a complete album...I was somewhat "blurred", cause I listened first to the other track 'Fly Me To The Moon' and thought that "he was a she", cause that's a girl singing there!!!!! Who is that.Did de Frances ever made a full album?j.
He cut eight songs for an obscure Phila label, TuneDisk, in 1948. All original songs. Susan Van Dusen, Just for Spite, How Can I Smile, etc. One of the tracks was reissued on Columbia, In Martha's Eyes. The latter shows up on ebay from time to time.
Came across a song of Nick De Frances on YouTube entitled "If I Were A Little Boy" and his voice (that is, his speaking voice, as he speaks in the song) is similar to the voice of the interviewer from the early to mid 1950s interview with BK.Would it be plausible that he conducted the interview?
The interview you write about---if it's the one I'm thinking of ---was not conducted by the deeply mysterious De Francis but by jazz jock Art Ford. "If I Were a Little Boy" sounds, to my ears, like it could almost be the pedophile national anthem. In one of his columns Walter Wincell suggests that the death of De Francis was a murder, but I've received recent communications from someone who found the body and there is NO question in her mind that it was anything but a suicide. Every person I've communicated with considers De Francis just about the best major singer who, finally, never WAS. No wonder he was supposedly/allegedly Beverly Kenney's best friend.
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