Nights at the Roundtable with Nat "King" Cole and his solo demo version of "I Wake Up Screaming After Dreaming Of You", recorded in Hollywood, 1948.
March 28, 2012

Nat "King" Cole. Even the demos were magic.

Something unusual tonight. Not really part of the off-the-air musical numbers, but a rare demo done by one of the immortals of Jazz. A solo demo, presumably for the publisher of a song Nat "King" Cole would record in March of 1949 in New York. I Wake Up Screaming After Dreaming Of You features Cole at a small recording studio on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. Studio & Artists was a hotbed of demo recordings as well as off-the-air recordings for clients during the heyday of Radio. The Studio was located less than a block away from the famed CBS Broadcasting Studios in Hollywood and about three blocks east of the NBC Studios on the corner of Sunset and Vine.

Like a lot of the small studios in business in Hollywood at the time, it was centrally located to all the Network Operations. And some studios, like the famous Radio Recorders, were going 24 hours a day between sessions with such notables as Elvis Presley and recording daily Soap Operas off the Network line for clients and Advertising agencies.

When Radio became a thing of the past, so did the studios. And even though Radio Recorders is "kind of" still in business (only as a location which had a fire a couple weeks ago), the other studios closed up shop and tossed their goods. With gems like this relegated to the dumpster, it begs the question of what else was lost and what else is still lurking around.

But for now, here's a sample of what got rescued. Nat "King" Cole at his always best.

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