Monday, December 9, 2013

My Head So High Above the Clouds


If you remember this song from childhood, and then remember being surprised/annoyed/bereft when it suddenly disappeared from the annual broadcast, you're probably about my age, more or less two-score-and-ten.

Yes, it's "My World is Beginning Today," aka "Love Theme from Santa Claus is Comin' to Town", a high point for us "sensitive" kids who were enthralled with it from the time it was first aired to a waiting nation in 1970.  Personally, I think it's rivaled only by "There's Always Tomorrow," the similarly haunting number from 1964's Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, as the obligatory touching moment in a holiday special.  If nothing else, the snog would appear to be (based only on my informal survey of friends and acquaintances over the years) among the more reliable methods of predicting future fabulousness:  the more you it made you cry at 10, the likelier you are today to be an urbane, cosmopolitan Confirmed Bachelor (or, these days, Happy Husband) of Artistic Tastes.

Maybe we knew our own towns would turn against us at some point; maybe we dreamed of a hunky ginger who happens along to steal us away; maybe we just envied the bustle.  Whatever it was, someone in the song made a lasting impact, and one wonders if it was more than just the need to cram in more commercials that put it on the chopping block after only a few years.  It's more than a little startling, in retrospect, to think think that a children's special would advocate that respectable women throw it all away to run off with a roughneck - a Christmas fable that suddenly morphs into Picnic.

Well, whatever the reason it went away, thank the gods of YouTube that we have it back.

The singer, by the way, is one Robie Lester, a prolific voice-over artist, especially at Disney, where she was among other things Eva Gabor's singing voice.  I think she's terrific.  This is one lost childhood moment that more than holds up.  Enjoy...

9 comments:

  1. My guess is that it was a combination of the need to fit more commercials and the feminist movement that was taking off about the time the song was cut. It made some young women gag and spew, while others were torn between the dreams of youth and the new dreams of a new world that offered so much promise.

    Such a beautiful piece -- this seems to be a case of throwing out the baby with the bath water.

    What a shame. Thank you for posting.

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    1. Interesting thought - I suppose it isn't exactly "I am Woman," but since I've only ever known men who even remembered it (because it had affected them so as children), that didn't even occur to me.

      It's also, of course, more than a little trippy; perhaps that's what made some network exec decide it was expendable...

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  2. Goodness I SO remember this song, if only for the liberating moment of her letting her hair down. I had no idea they'd cut the number from later television airings. And of course the fact that I member the song and her letting her hair down confirms your theory of artistic confirmed bachelors identifying with this.

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  3. I don't remember the song, but then again, I was the kid who got freaked out about music. It isn't that I dislike music, far from it. But I have this thing about just sitting and listening to music with someone else - can't do it. And yes, my therapist and I are working on it right now.

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  4. Such a crush on younger Kris "Ginger" Kringle (even when voiced by Mickey Rooney). Bested only by my feelings for flesh and blood Eric Scott who played Ben on The Waltons.

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  5. I have never seen or heard this in my life! RIP Miss Lester, whoever you are... Jx

    PS I must admit my attention was piqued by the word "snog" in a post about cherished memories of childhood (in the UK it means a passionate encounter) until I realised it was a typo.

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    1. What I want to know is why my spell check didn't catch this appalling Britishism! Next thing you know it'll be asking to spell aluminum with two i's...

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    2. Or restore the missing "U" from "colour" or "favour" and so on... Jx

      PS Don't even get me started on "jewellery"/"jewelry"!

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