Traditional Pop Music
In the treasure trove of golden oldies, there’s the song “Mr. Sandman,” which features some beautiful singing from the famous girl group The Chordettes — and some funny lyrics as well.
The Chordettes were a female vocal group originally organized in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. They were known for their barbershop-type close harmony. Well, it’s barbershop with a doo wop and pop twist. Archie Bleyer, who was the founder of Cadence Records, actively participated in the record. He conducted the orchestra, played his own knees as percussion, and was the voice in the third verse who said “Yes?” (This was referred to many years later by Michael J. Fox on the TV show Family Ties).
“Mr. Sandman” was The Chordettes’ first hit. In 1954, it stayed at #1 on the Billboard U.S. Pop Chart for seven weeks. It went to #11 on the U.K. Chart. The song, by Pat Ballard, has some great rhymes, including rhyming the popular Liberace with Pagliacci, opera’s sad clown. The first recording of the song, before The Chordettes, as by Vaughn Monroe & His Orchestra. There have been many covers since, including versions by Chet Atkins, Blue Diamonds, Marvin Gaye, The chipmunks, The Supremes, The Andrews Sisters, Linda McCartney, Al Hirt, The Puppini Sisters, The Osmond Brothers, and The Fleetwoods — just to name a few.