Santo & Johnny
"The Best Of Santo And Johnny"
May 14 - 20, 2017
Year of Release: 1997
All Night Diner
Theme From Come September
(In The Still Of The Night)
A Thousand Miles Away
Over The Rainbow
Crying In The Chapel
You Belong To Me
Save The Last Dance For Me
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If I were to learn how to play the guitar (especially the electric guitar), Santo & Johnny's "Sleep Walk" would be the first to learn.
Having this great instrumental on a 45 (the Canadian-American label) when I was younger, it was truly (and still is, decades later) one of the greatest
instrumental tracks ever recorded. Santo & Johnny were brothers, as their last name was Farina. Their father, Anthony, was inspired by the steel guitar,
and he wrote to his wife, Josephine, that he would like their boys to learn the instrument. (Anthony Farina was stationed in the Army at the time.)
Santo Farina was four years older than his brother, Johnny. Both Santo and Johnny are still with us today, as Santo is semi-retired, and Johnny currently
tours and records with his own band. Johnny is also president of Aniraf Inc., an international record company based in New York City.
The Best Of Santo And Johnny captures their best, at guitar playing. Where most would think of "Sleep Walk" as their "one-hit wonder,"
not necessarily true, as this 24-track compilation proves. This is great guitar playing. For Les Paul, Brian Setzer Orchestra fans and guitar players
everywhere, this will an entertaining compilation.
With the success of "Sleep Walk," there were "soundalikes" -- this was common back in the early years of Rock & Roll, from many other artists.
"Tear Drop," (written by Santo & Johnny, along with Santo's wife, Ann), "I'll Remember" is another "almost" "Sleep Walk" as it mixes
with the famous Five Satins' "In The Still Of The Night." Likewise, "A Thousand Miles Away," and is also compared to another 50's hit,
"All Night Diner" was the b-side of "Sleep Walk," and Les Paul fans will enjoy this one, comparing to the guitar legend. This song was also
written by the Farinas: Santo, Johnny and Santo's wife, Ann. "Lazy Day" was also written by the three Farinas, with its laid back style.
The three Farinas penned "Bulls-Eye," as it would sound like what would become a particular sound in the 1960s, Surf music. The three Farina's
"Hop-Scotch" is a "cool" track, and so is another "cool" one, "Theme From Come September." "Anna" is upbeat, and has the Spanish
guitar style. Santo & Johnny does a take on the classic Christmas song, "Jingle Bells" as "Twistin' Bells."
There are many cover tunes by Santo & Johnny, making this compilation evern better: "Caravan" (Duke Ellington), "Summertime"
(George Gershwin), "Over The Rainbow" (from The Wizard Of Oz), "Crying In The Chapel" (Elvis Presley),
"Venus" Frankie Avalon), "School Days" (Chuck Berry), "You Belong To Me" (Jo Stafford), "Deep Purple"
(Nino Tempo & April Stevens), "Blue Moon" (The Marcels), "Dream Lover" (Bobby Darin), "Save The Last Dance For
Me" (The Drifters), "Canadian Sunset" (Eddie Haywood & Hugo Winterhalter) [a song I really didn't remember], and "Tenderly"
Santo & Johnny surely can influence many guitar players and future guitarists who would become a part of music history. "Sleep Walk" is one
of those songs that every guitarist should learn how to play. Another is include "Pipeline" by The Chantays. Santo & Johnny are best remembered
for "Sleep Walk," a "one-hit wonder" to some. But after hearing this Best Of, Santo & Johnny never received the recognition as many guitarists
who would become more famous. The Best Of Santo & Johnny is meant to be heard. Not just for "Sleep Walk," but for their talents as
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