Little Drummer Boy

I heard DRUMMER BOY on the radio and it was almost exactly the arrangement we have for The Caroling Company. It was a version by the Harry Simeone Chorale, so I looked it up on the internet, and found this story:

allmusic > Harry Simeone > Biography: “In 1958 Simeone contracted with the 20th Century Fox label to record a Christmas LP. In the midst of assembling the 25-member Harry Simeone Chorale, he also began seeking material to record, discovering ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ via friend Henry Onorati. The song, of unknown origin but presumably based on melodies of both Czech and Spanish descent, was given English-language lyrics by Katherine Davis in 1941 but not recorded until 1957, when it appeared on the Jack Halloran Singers’ Onorati-arranged Christmas Is A-Comin’.

Simeone loved the song, and made it the first single from his 1958 LP, Sing We Now of Christmas. ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ was immediately hailed as a modern classic, generating some 150 cover versions and global sales topping 25 million. In 1960 Simeone returned to the charts with ‘Onward Christian Soldiers,’ and in 1962 returned to Bethlehem with a second enduring seasonal favorite, ‘Do You Hear What I Hear?’ He died in New York City on February 22, 2005.”

One thought on “Little Drummer Boy”

  1. How very interesting! I never knew all that. But of course I’ve known the songs for years. I think we sang “Little Drummer Boy” in high school mixed chorus. Max

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