2007   OCTOBER 12   #285

Peter Haas and "Bugs" Bower / The Cricketones Chorus & Orchestra - The Jungle Book Adventures of Rudyard Kipling's Mowgli

Running Free (Mowgli's Theme) (1:56)
For a Friend (3:15)

""Running Free" is a theme for Mowgli from an original kiddie-record adaptation of Kipling's Jungle Book. The lyrics, by Peter Haas, are okay if a bit uninspired, but the music by "Bugs" Bower works a treat; it's unexpectedly lovely and haunting. The B-side, "For a Friend," is more what you might expect from this sort of thing, but it's fun; I particularly enjoyed the occasional interjections of "dope-dee-doh!" (So I'm simple sometimes. So sue me.)

The credits for this are a bit convoluted. The single is on the Cricket label (an imprint of Pickwick), and credits "The Cricketones Chorus & Orchestra" as the performers. Like Peter Pan's "Caroleers," however, this seems to be an in-house name subject to change per marketing whims. These songs were originally released as part of a full LP on the Happy Time Records label (another imprint of Pickwick), which credits the performers as "The Ron Marshall Voices" on the label and as "The Happy Time Chorus and Orchestra" on the cover, and credits Haas and Bower, who apparently collaborated on a lot of these adaptations for Happy Time sometime in the 1960s.

If anybody's interested, somebody's selling a copy of the LP on ebay right now for $12.99 (which is the only reason I know the LP exists).

- Contributed by: Corey K.

Images: Label (front), Label (back), LP Cover, LP Label, LP Back

Media: 45rpm 7" Single
Album: The Jungle Book Adventures of Rudyard Kipling's Mowgli
Label: Cricket
Catalog: C-172A & C-172B
Credits: The Cricketones Chorus & Orchestra; Story & Lyrics by Peter Haas; Music by "Bugs" Bower