Bing: A Musical Autobiography

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Bing: A Musical Autobiography
Box set by Bing Crosby
Released 1954
Recorded April 21-June 19, 1954
Genre Vocal
Label Decca
Producer Buddy Cole
Bing Crosby chronology
White Christmas soundtrack
Bing: A Musical Autobiography
High Society
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars link

Bing: A Musical Autobiography was Bing Crosby's fourth Decca LP, recorded and originally released in 1954.

The album was released as both a set of five LPs with 99 songs and a set of seventeen 45-rpm EPs with 89 songs, each for $27.50. Both box sets came in a hinged box with a jeweler's lock and key and included a 24-page discography.[1] Decca released the individual LPs separately starting in 1958.[2]

Crosby, in a retirement mood by 1954, got together with the Buddy Cole Trio, a small group formed from members of the John Scott Trotter Orchestra, and re-recorded many of his early hits between April and June 1954. The original Decca masters were used for his hits starting with the 1938 recording of "Small Fry."[3] The new recordings were done at the American Legion Hall in Palm Springs, California.[4]

Allmusic's John Bush called A Musical Autobiography "the most laborious exercise in [Crosby's] entire career, narrating a career history and re-recording dozens of songs." It was also issued to commemorate Decca's 20th anniversary. Billboard reported, "Decca's merchandising displays consist of a life like window or floor display of Bing Crosby, mounted on an easel and with Crosby holding a copy of his musical autobiography titled simple, 'Bing.' This set ... is the firm's big push for the fall."[5]

A September 1954 Decca advertisement for A Musical Autobiography described it as "the most-talked about [and] the fastest-selling record album in history." NBC's radio network aired a two-hour tribute to Crosby that promoted the album on Sept. 26, 1954, at 6 p.m.[6]

Crosby's prose memoir, Call Me Lucky, was published in June 1953 by Simon & Schuster. It was written with Pete Martin.[7]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Muddy Water"
  2. "Mississippi Mud"
  3. "My Kinda Love"
  4. "I Surrender Dear"
  5. "It Must Be True"
  6. "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams"
  7. "Out of Nowhere"
  8. "Just One More Chance"
  9. "Stardust"
  10. "Sweet and Lovely"
  11. "Where the Blue of the Night (Meets the Gold of the Day)"
  12. "Paradise"
  13. "Please"
  14. "Just An Echo in the Valley"
  15. "I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance"
  16. "Learn to Croon"
  17. "Down the Old Ox Road"
  18. "Thanks"
  19. "Black Moonlight"
  20. "The Day You Came Along"
  21. "After Sundown"
  22. "Temptation"
  23. "Love Thy Neighbour"
  24. "May I?"
  25. "Love in Bloom"
  26. "I Love You Truly"
  27. "June in January"
  28. "Love Is Just around the Corner"
  29. "It's Easy to Remember"
  30. "Soon"
  31. "I Wished on the Moon"
  32. "Silent Night"
  33. "I'm an Old Cowhand"
  34. "I Can't Escape From You"
  35. "Song of the Islands"
  36. "Pennies from Heaven"
  37. "Sweet Leilani"
  38. "Blue Hawaii"
  39. "The One Rose"
  40. "There's a Gold Mine in the Sky"
  41. "My Heart is Taking Lessons"
  42. "I've Got a Pocketful of Dreams"
  43. "Small Fry"
  44. "Mexicali Rose"
  45. "That Sly Old Gentleman"
  46. "Allá en El Rancho Grande"
  47. "Tumbling Tumbleweeds"
  48. "Only Forever"
  49. "Did Your Mother Come From Ireland?"
  50. "Yes Indeed"
  51. "Brahms' Lullaby"
  52. "You Are My Sunshine"
  53. "The Waiter and the Porter and the Upstairs Maid"
  54. "Deep in the Heart of Texas"
  55. "Wait Till the Sun Shines, Nellie"
  56. "Walking the Floor Over You"
  57. "White Christmas"
  58. "Moonlight Becomes You"
  59. "Road to Morocco"
  60. "Sunday, Monday or Always"
  61. "Pistol Packin' Mama"
  62. "San Fernando Valley"
  63. "I'll Be Seeing You"
  64. "Swinging on a Star"
  65. "Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (That's an Irish Lullaby)"
  66. "Don't Fence Me In"
  67. "Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)"
  68. "It's Been a Long, Long Time"
  69. "The Bells of St. Mary's"
  70. "Put it There, Pal"
  71. "MacNamara's Band"
  72. "Sioux City Sue"
  73. "Begin the Beguine"
  74. "South America, Take It Away"
  75. "Blue Skies"
  76. "Alexander's Ragtime Band"
  77. "The Whiffenpoof Song"
  78. "Now Is the Hour"
  79. "Galway Bay"
  80. "Far Away Places"
  81. "Mule Train"
  82. "Dear Hearts and Gentle People"
  83. "Rock of Ages"
  84. "Sunshine Cake"
  85. "Play a Simple Melody"
  86. "Sam's Song"
  87. "Gone Fishin'"
  88. "In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening"
  89. "Y'All Come"
  90. "Count Your Blessings"
  91. "I Can't Begin to Tell You"
  92. "Danny Boy"
  93. "Ol' Man River"
  94. "Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?"
  95. "I'll Capture Your Heart"
  96. "Little One"
  97. "Now You Has Jazz"
  98. "True Love"
  99. "Well, Did You Evah!"
  100. "Where the Blue of the Night"
  101. "With Every Breath I Take"
  102. "You Belong to My Heart"
  103. "You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby"
  104. "Little Drummer Boy"
  105. "Don't be a Dobadder"
  106. "Frosty the Snowman"
  107. "Let It Snow"
  108. "Silver Bells"
  109. "O Holy Night"
  110. "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town"
  111. "Joy to the World"
  112. "Tenderness"
  113. "Around the World"
  114. "Far Away Places"
  115. "Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy"
  116. "Swingin' on a Star"
  117. "It's Been a Long, Long Time"
  118. "Dinah
  119. "Samantha
  120. Bing Crosby signs off

And Many Many More!

Bonus tracks (on the 2005 CD release)[edit]

When Bing: A Musical Autobiography was re-released as a 4-CD set in 2005, the label added bonus tracks that had no connection with the original album. These tracks were sourced from Bing Crosby's radio shows, publicity discs and from his short film soundtracks. The audio quality varies according to source.

'Paris Honeymoon' selection:

  1. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  2. "The Funny Old Hills"
  3. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  4. "You're a Sweet Little Headache"
  5. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  6. "I Have Eyes"

'The Star Maker' selection:

  1. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  2. "An Apple for the Teacher"
  3. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  4. "Still the Bluebird Sings"
  5. Banter between Ken Carpenter and Bing Crosby
  6. "A Man and His Dream

'I Surrender Dear' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "I Surrender Dear"
  2. "Out of Nowhere"
  3. "At Your Command"

'Just One More Chance' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "Magic C.O.D." (a parody of "I Surrender Dear")
  2. "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams"
  3. "I'd Climb the Highest Mountain"
  4. "Just One More Chance"

'Dream House' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "When I Take My Sugar to Tea"
  2. "It Must Be True"
  3. "Dream House"

'Billboard Girl' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "Were You Sincere?"
  2. "For You"

'Sing, Bing, Sing' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "In My Hideaway"
  2. "Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea"
  3. "Lovable"
  4. "Snuggled on Your Shoulder"

'Blue Of The Night' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "My Silent Love"
  2. "Auf Wiedersehen, My Dear"
  3. "Ev'ry Time My Heart Beats"
  4. "Where the Blue of the Night (Meets the Gold of the Day)"

From 'The Big Broadcast' publicity discs:

  1. Banter between Stuart Erwin and Bing Crosby
  2. "Here Lies Love"
  3. Announcement by Sam Coslow
  4. "Please"

'Please' film soundtrack selection:

  1. "You're Getting to Be a Habit with Me"
  2. "I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance With You"
  3. "Please"

From 'She Loves Me Not' publicity discs:

  1. "Love in Bloom"
  2. "Straight From the Shoulder"
  3. "I'm Hummin', I'm Whistlin', I'm Singin'"

From 'Two For Tonight' publicity discs:

  1. "Two For Tonight"

From 'Doctor Rhythm' publicity discs:

  1. Introduction by Gayne Whitman
  2. "This is My Night to Dream"
  3. "On the Sentimental Side"
  4. "Only a Gypsy Knows"
  5. "My Heart is Taking Lessons"

From 'The Birth Of The Blues' publicity discs:

  1. "The Waiter and the Porter and the Upstairs Maid"
  2. "My Melancholy Baby"

From 'The Big Broadcast' publicity discs:

  1. Banter between Stuart Erwin and Bing Crosby
  2. "Here Lies Love"


  1. ^ "Advertisement (The Crescent)". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Aug 27, 1954. 
  2. ^ "'Star Time' Theme of Decca Package Release". Billboard. Feb 10, 1958. 
  3. ^ Baker, J. Richard. "A Bing Crosby Discography". Retrieved Feb 24, 2013. 
  4. ^ Macfarlane, Malcolm. "Bing Crosby Diary 1950-59". Bing Crosby Internet Museum. Retrieved Feb 24, 2013. 
  5. ^ Rolontz, Bob (Feb 10, 1958). "'Star Time' Theme of Decca Package Release". Billboard. 
  6. ^ "Advertisement (Decca)". Billboard. Sep 25, 1954. 
  7. ^ Crosby, Bing (1953). Call Me Lucky. Simon & Schuster. p. v.