Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Kiss Kiss Crazy

Janice Smith
"Fats" Johnson Orchestra

Connor-Fotine, True-Blue ASCAP

Balboa 45-004

(also issued on Brunswick 55018)

"Kiss Kiss Crazy" was penned by Tommie Connor and Larry Fotine, who was the owner of Balboa Records in Van Nuys, California.  Fotine also led the orchestra here under the "Fats" Johnson alias.

Larry Fotine
Larry Fotine was born Lawrence Constantine Fotinakis in Camden, New Jersey on April 27, 1911. Around age 14, he started studying piano and then self taught composition, arranging and orchestration. About 1935, he organized a local youth orchestra and played various engagements in the surrounding cities. He later joined the Sammy Kaye Orchestra as an arranger from 1940 to 1945, and from 1945 to 1947 was arranger for the Blue Barron, and Art Mooney Orchestra. By 1948 he organized his own orchestra, and later joined the Lawrence Welk orchestra in 1958. As an arranger he worked with Mr. Welk for two years. Larry Fotine was a member of ASCAP and said to have written and published many songs. He released in 1959 his own 20th Contemporary Classical work for the Balboa label under the alias “Constantine and His Orchestra” with composer credits to Larry Fotine. He also went under an alias name “Beale Street Buskers”. In the late 1980's, he was still active writing music as background music and tunes for a variety of animated cartoon series. Larry passed away of a ruptured aortic aneurysm on November 25, 1990.  
From http://www.discogs.com/artist/880490-Larry-Fotine

Janice Smith cut several 45s on Balboa, the last as late as 1976. A such extended association (twenty years!) with the same label seems to suggest that she was perhaps very close to Larry Fotine.  There was also a country single on Hall Of Fame, a Nashville label : Candy Kisses / Jealous Heart.  But this is perhaps another Janice Smith?  Anyway, I've not found any info on this singer.

How to Kiss
"Kissing comes by instinct, and yet it is an art which few understand properly.  A lover should not hold his bride by the ears in kissing her, as appears to have been customary at Scotch weddings of the last century. A more graceful way, and quite as effective in preventing the bride from "getting away." is to put your right arm around her neck, your fingers under her chin, raise the chin, then gently but firmly press your lips on hers.  After a few repetitions, she will find out it doesn't hurt, and become as gentle as a lamb."
In the same volume the author condemns the use of rouge by women.

From Henry T. Finck "Romantic Love and Personal Beauty" (1902), quoted by David L. Cohn "The Good Old Days", Simon and Schuster, 1940

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