Skip navigation


Singer and ex-friend of Arthur Godfrey, Julius La Rosa, died at the spry age of 86.

La Rosa had a number one hit in 1953 (that’s 31 years pre-“Ghostbusters”) with the Italian language song “Eh Cumpari.”   

I’m sorry, I meant the Sicilian language song… you don’t want to confuse that shit.  It’ll piss everyone off.

The song is basically:

“Hey buddy, music is playing. What is playing? The whistle.  And what does it sound like—the whistle? [make whistling sound] the whistle, tipiti tipiti tam.”

Repeat for saxophone, mandolin, violin, trumpet and trombone.

It was the “Stairway to Heaven” of the 50s.  …but in Italian.

I mean Sicilian.

Crap.

La Rosa

The La Rosa triplets.  Guess which one is Julius.

La Rosa was a regular on both the morning Arthur Godfrey Time (broadcast on both the CBS radio and television networks) and the Wednesday night variety show Arthur Godfrey and His Friends.  That is, until Godfrey fired his ass.

On the air.

I know what you’re thinking?  “He fired his ass?  While on the air?  Clearly that is some career-ending shit!”  And it kinda was.  For Godfrey.

What happened was that, unbeknownst to the general public, Arthur Godfrey was a dick.  He insisted that everyone who works on his shows a) took mandatory dance lessons and b) could not be represented by an agent.  It was also speculated that he was angry because La Rosa got more fan-mail than he did.

That 1st one seems pretty reasonable: take dance lessons to be on a variety show.  I get that.  But La Rosa had a family emergency and he had to miss a few classes.  Plus, La Rosa was no chump, he hired an agent.

It was October 19, 1953.  The country was deep in a depression because the Yankees had just beat the Dodgers in the world series.  Ore-Ida was about to shake up the culinary world with their newest innovation: Tater-Tots.  The film “Stalag 17” taught us all to laugh about Nazi concentration camps.  And Julius La Rosa went onto Godfrey’s morning radio show to sing the song “Manhattan.”  

When he finished, Godfrey took to the mic and said, “that was Julie’s swan song with us.  He goes now, out on his own — as his own star — soon to be seen on his own programs, and I know you’ll wish him godspeed as much as I do”. Godfrey then signed off for the day saying, “This is the CBS Radio Network”.

Once La Rosa, who knew nothing about this, found out what “Swan Song” meant, he got pretty pissed.  [Really, someone had to explain it to him.]

While La Rosa’s popularity continued to thrive, the move changed the way that the public say Godfrey and lead to his eventual decline.  

HA!  Take that!  Earning less and less each year until you are only incredibly well off instead of fabulously well off!  Jerk!

This hit goes to: Joanne!  She is up to 90 points: one hit away from triple digits!

Happy pooling,

SPMI

Current Standings:

Jami: 170 – (Scott Weiland  – 60, Pat Harrington, Jr. – 20, Umberto Eco – 20, Rob Ford – 60, Erik Bauersfeld – 10)

Lee Kwang-Soo (Giraffe): 100 – (Daniel Fleetwood – 70, Abe Vigoda – 10, Nancy Fucking Reagan! – 10!, George Martin – 10)

Occupy the Casket: 100 – (Natalie Cole – 40, Vanity – 50, Boutros Boutros-Ghali – 10)

Joanne: 90 (Joey Feek – 60, Joe Garagiola – 10, Julius La Rosa – 20)

The Girl on Fire: 80 (Wayne Rogers – 20, René Angélil – 30, George Gaynes – 10, James Noble – 10, Doris Roberts – 10)

Team Sushi: 60 (Chyna, aka Joanie Laurer – 60)

Age of Aquarius: 60 (William Guest – 30, Merle Haggard – 30)

Harmony: 60 (Harper Lee – 20, George Kennedy – 10, Frank Sinatra, Jr. – 30)

Mortician’s Daughter: 50 – (Justice Antonin Scalia – 30, Bud Collins)

Tailgating w/ Jesus: 50 (Dolph Schayes – 20, Meadowlark Lemon – 20, Monte Irvin – 10)

Mostly Mike: 20 (Marvin Minsky – 20)

Gianna: 20 (Robert Stigwood – 20)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: