Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Buona Sera King Louis

When I was younger, I grew up hearing a lot of Louis Prima. There wasn't anyone in our family who didn't know the words to Buona Sera, Just A Gigolo or Angelina & Zooma Zooma.

His music was usually upbeat, always fun and included many lyrics in reference to his Italian heritage which made it easy for us to identify with what he was talking about. Watch him here with Gia Maione:


I have Louis Prima's Capitol Collector Series on my iPod. I often listen to it when driving at night. It lifts the spirit and make the hours fly by. See some of the infectious chemistry between Louis Prima and Keely Smith:


More of them here singing Hey Boy, Hey Girl and then a real special treat; Louis Prima, Keely Smith and Frank Sinatra! Watch Keely trying to "break in" on these two:



Louis Prima has so many fun songs. Some of my favorites are: There'll Be No Next Time (I love Sam Butera in this one!),
5 months, 2 weeks, 2 days, The Lip (you'll find yourself singing along) and Lazy River. Eddie really likes Banana Split For My Baby and I find him singing when it's on. Check out the lyrics to that one below - if you click on the link, you can follow along:

Banana split for my baby,
A glass of plain water for me.
Banana split for my baby,
Glass of plain water for me

Dispenser Man, if you please
Serve my chick a mess of calories

Banana split for my baby,
A glass of plain water for me.

Flip back the lid, scoop anything in sight,
Make it a rainbow of red, brown and white
Chocolate chip and everything that’s nice,
Tutti Frutti once and spumoni twice

Banana split for my baby,
And a glass of plain water for me.

Spread the whipped cream for at least an hour
Pile it as high as the Eiffel Tower
Load it with nuts, about sixteen ton
Top it with a pizza just for fun

Banana split for my baby,
A glass of plain water for me.
Banana split for my baby,
A glass of plain water for me.
Stack her up with crazy goop
Cause that’s the stuff she likes to wade through

Banana split for my baby,
A glass of plain water for me.

Now add the cherries, the kind she likes to munch,
Skip one banana use the whole darn bunch
Drown it in fudge, six or seven cans,
give her two spoons, she'll use both hands

Banana split for my baby,
And a glass of plain water for me.

Separate checks, It must be
Charge the split to her, the water to me

Oh, the banana split’s for my baby,
A glass of plain water’s for me.
Ain't got no money
The glass of plain water’s for me!


Anyone who is a fan will remember his 1936 hit Sing, Sing, Sing and also his movie debut in the movie The Jungle Book as the high spirited orangutan King Louie, where he sings I Wanna Be Like You. See the actual movie footage here.

This is some really fantastic music and listening to it not only brings a smile to my face, it reminds me of my heritage and the family members that made this part of my life.

2 comments:

Heather J. said...

I grew up listening to Louis Prima too! I just love him. You can't help but sing along when he's on.

Just a few months ago I was watching THE JUNGLE BOOK with my son and I finally realized that he does the voice of King Louis, the swinging monkey king. So now kiddo likes him too. :)

chez bez said...

I've loved Louis Prima for many years now. In fact, I used to date a girl whose dad reminded me very much of him from looks to personality. The relationship with the girl ran its course, but I still miss hanging out with her dad.