• Two exciting new Carpenters releases are in the pipeline! The new book Carpenters: The Musical Legacy will be available on November 16, 2021 and can be ordered here. A big thanks to the authors and Richard Carpenter for their tremendous effort in compiling this book! Also, the new solo piano album Richard Carpenter's Piano Songbook is being released January 14, 2022, and is available for ordering here.

Richard on piano in 1965/'66? (with Karen maybe?)

Walkinat9

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
Hi all,

Came across these 3 articles from Mid-'60s SoCal newspapers... would this be our Richard do you think?

1️⃣ I like the thought of Richard playing accompaniment music to these silent movies "The Night Club" (1925), "Dancing Mothers" (1926) and "Teddy at the Throttle" (1917) .
The location however was not in Downey or Long Beach, but Whittier (although that's very close to Downey).
Or was this a namesake after all? On the other hand, Richard would have known enough early 20th century music from his Dad's 78s collection to prepare a special program and also, a year later he worked at the Coke Corner in Disneyland singing turn-of-the century songs with John Bettis...

Clipping from the Whittier Star Review, April 14, 1966



2️⃣ Knowing Richard loves classical music too, this may very well have been him accompanying baritone George Loudenback on songs like "If Music be the Food of Love" by Purcell and "Cantata 56" by Bach.

Clipping from the Independent, December 7, 1965



3️⃣ This? is our Richard for sure, considering that Frank Pooler was involved :)

Clipping from the Independent, February 7, 1965

The only song I can think of with the title mentioned in the article would be one that's on a 78rpm album I have by Tommy Dorsey (from 1947). It's based on Tchaikovsky's "Waltz of the Flowers", but it could have been something else as well, of course.

"Some things will never change" - Tommy Dorsey & His Orchestra (voc. Audrey Young) [YouTube]

I just wonder if Karen would have been a member of the choir at this point...
Anybody who knows?

Greg
 

Chris May

Resident ‘Carpenterologist’
Staff member
Moderator
Hi all,

Came across these 3 articles from Mid-'60s SoCal newspapers... would this be our Richard do you think?

1️⃣ I like the thought of Richard playing accompaniment music to these silent movies "The Night Club" (1925), "Dancing Mothers" (1926) and "Teddy at the Throttle" (1917) .
The location however was not in Downey or Long Beach, but Whittier (although that's very close to Downey).
Or was this a namesake after all? On the other hand, Richard would have known enough early 20th century music from his Dad's 78s collection to prepare a special program and also, a year later he worked at the Coke Corner in Disneyland singing turn-of-the century songs with John Bettis...

Clipping from the Whittier Star Review, April 14, 1966



2️⃣ Knowing Richard loves classical music too, this may very well have been him accompanying baritone George Loudenback on songs like "If Music be the Food of Love" by Purcell and "Cantata 56" by Bach.

Clipping from the Independent, December 7, 1965



3️⃣ This? is our Richard for sure, considering that Frank Pooler was involved :)

Clipping from the Independent, February 7, 1965

The only song I can think of with the title mentioned in the article would be one that's on a 78rpm album I have by Tommy Dorsey (from 1947). It's based on Tchaikovsky's "Waltz of the Flowers", but it could have been something else as well, of course.

"Some things will never change" - Tommy Dorsey & His Orchestra (voc. Audrey Young) [YouTube]

I just wonder if Karen would have been a member of the choir at this point...
Anybody who knows?

Greg
All our Richard (as you put it)! And no, Karen wasn't with the choir yet. :)
 

Don Malcolm

Well-Known Member
Great stuff, guys. It's REALLY easy to forget just how talented and versatile Richard is as a pianist. This is a great reminder of just what he brought to the table when it came time to produce and arrange music. He really could do it all, and he'd have had an incredibly successful career in any number of high-level areas of music if it hadn't been for the fact that he had a "kid sister" who was one of the greatest vocalists of all time. It's wonderful that we'll get another reminder of his skills at the keyboard with the new collection--here's hoping that it sells well enough that Decca will consider giving him the green light to showcase some other sides of his pianistic prowess in a followup project.
 

David A

Well-Known Member
Hi all,

Came across these 3 articles from Mid-'60s SoCal newspapers... would this be our Richard do you think?

1️⃣ I like the thought of Richard playing accompaniment music to these silent movies "The Night Club" (1925), "Dancing Mothers" (1926) and "Teddy at the Throttle" (1917) .
The location however was not in Downey or Long Beach, but Whittier (although that's very close to Downey).
Or was this a namesake after all? On the other hand, Richard would have known enough early 20th century music from his Dad's 78s collection to prepare a special program and also, a year later he worked at the Coke Corner in Disneyland singing turn-of-the century songs with John Bettis...

Clipping from the Whittier Star Review, April 14, 1966



2️⃣ Knowing Richard loves classical music too, this may very well have been him accompanying baritone George Loudenback on songs like "If Music be the Food of Love" by Purcell and "Cantata 56" by Bach.

Clipping from the Independent, December 7, 1965



3️⃣ This? is our Richard for sure, considering that Frank Pooler was involved :)

Clipping from the Independent, February 7, 1965

The only song I can think of with the title mentioned in the article would be one that's on a 78rpm album I have by Tommy Dorsey (from 1947). It's based on Tchaikovsky's "Waltz of the Flowers", but it could have been something else as well, of course.

"Some things will never change" - Tommy Dorsey & His Orchestra (voc. Audrey Young) [YouTube]

I just wonder if Karen would have been a member of the choir at this point...
Anybody who knows?

Greg

These are great, Greg, thanks for sharing. I really enjoy these snippets or snapshots in time. It activates my mental time machine.
 

Walkinat9

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
here's hoping that it sells well enough that Decca will consider giving him the green light to showcase some other sides of his pianistic prowess in a followup project.

I hope so too! Although I can hardly wait for this one, it would be great to have another one with Richard's personal (including non-Carpenters) favorites. I think it would be really really great to hear Richard in a jazz combo, maybe playing a Wurlitzer electric piano as well? I very much enjoyed the jazzy things he did in songs like "The girl from Ipanema", "Dancing in the street", "Nowadays Clancy can't even sing", "This masquerade" (there are even several YT videos of people trying to play/teach Richard's solo in that song), to name but a few <3 <3 🎹
 

Walkinat9

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
These are great, Greg, thanks for sharing. I really enjoy these snippets or snapshots in time. It activates my mental time machine.
I totally agree, David! And here's another one I found :)

Clipping from a Whittier newspaper, August 1964

Again, I'm not too sure if this is a namesake, since it says "Richard Carpenter from Bellflower". But...Bellflower is adjacent I believe to the south of Downey and if I'm not mistaken The Carpenter family lived in the southern part of Downey in 1964, so maybe...? Would be almost too much of a coincidence that another piano-playing Richard Carpenter lived so close. I mean, a passage on page 51 of the Ray Coleman book says it all:

Still only seventeen, Richard had an insatiable hunger for making music. "He'd play for anything that came along," (Bruce) Gifford says. "If someone wanted to sing 'Auld Lang Syne' and needed an accompanist, Richard would play. And everyone wanted Richard to back them." :cool:


The newspaper article even mentions some original compositions and arrangements. That may very well have been "our" Richard doing some arranging :)
These were some of the songs that were played (links for sound), to give a bit of an idea, should you be interested:
- Blues in Hoss' Flat
- Let's Fall in Love
- Nancy Jo
- Squeeze Me
- Angel Eyes
- Johnny One Note
- Shiny Stockings
- Have You Met Miss Jones?

Oh and let's not forget that Frank Chavez was the drummer in the band here. We all know what role he played in Karen's musical life (also documented in the late 1980's and in the mid 1970's :) )




Okay... this actually may very well be a namesake in an annual talent show in 1960, paying tribute to a few Richard Rodgers/Oscar Hammerstein musicals...
I think it will be a bit hard to read, but about halfway in the second column it says:

Last but not least is a trip to "South Pacific". Selections will include "Nothin' Like a Dame" with Charles Grove, Vincent Pavone, James Clairmonie, William Wirth, Richard Santora and Richard Carpenter. (not on the photos)

Clipping from The Bridgeport Post (Connecticut, 1960)
 
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