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Petula Clark

Posted by altozwei 
Petula Clark
December 21, 2013 09:38PM
Not Dallas specific, but thought I would give this a brief mention here. In 1964, Petula Clark had a mega hit with a tune called "Downtown". I'm sure there are a few here, like me, who remember it well. At that same time, I recall going shopping in downtown Dallas and even though the downtown area was already beginning to decline, it was still a vibrant place to shop, dine, or see shows. Much of this was reflected in the lyrics of the song "Downtown". Years have passed and, while we are seeing a resurgence of interest in our own downtown, it has clearly seen lots of hard times since the 60's as have other urban areas around the country.
Today I caught an interview with Petula Clark on KERA radio. I was astounded to learn that she has continued to perform (she is in her 80's)and still has an amazing voice. She has released a new CD and redone her old hit, "Downtown". I won't post a link here because the last time I did, someone thought it was SPAM and deleted it but I encourage any Petula Clark fans here to Google her version of "Downtown" 2013. It is a slower rendition of the song, laced with a wistful poignance that took me back to the days of shopping downtown with my mother, during the holidays all those years ago.
Re: Petula Clark
December 22, 2013 07:51AM
altozwei Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Not Dallas specific, but thought I would give this
> a brief mention here. In 1964, Petula Clark had a
> mega hit with a tune called "Downtown". I'm sure
> there are a few here, like me, who remember it
> well. At that same time, I recall going shopping
> in downtown Dallas and even though the downtown
> area was already beginning to decline, it was
> still a vibrant place to shop, dine, or see shows.
> Much of this was reflected in the lyrics of the
> song "Downtown". Years have passed and, while we
> are seeing a resurgence of interest in our own
> downtown, it has clearly seen lots of hard times
> since the 60's as have other urban areas around
> the country.
> Today I caught an interview with Petula Clark on
> KERA radio. I was astounded to learn that she has
> continued to perform (she is in her 80's)and still
> has an amazing voice. She has released a new CD
> and redone her old hit, "Downtown". I won't post a
> link here because the last time I did, someone
> thought it was SPAM and deleted it but I encourage
> any Petula Clark fans here to Google her version
> of "Downtown" 2013. It is a slower rendition of
> the song, laced with a wistful poignance that took
> me back to the days of shopping downtown with my
> mother, during the holidays all those years ago.

I heard the same interview, and like you was astounded that Clark still performs and records. I have some of her old lp vinyl records, some left from back in the day, others bought in used record emporia. I still play music on vinyl. I intend to look for her CDs though, and catch up on her more recent work.

I frequented downtown Dallas in the early sixties, and would not have described it as declining at that time. However, by the mid-seventies it clearly had lost its draw for shoppers and night-time activity. I don't remember exactly when the theaters (Palace, Majestic, Tower) shut, but it was a big loss to some of us, evidently of little matter to most.

Dave McNeely



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/22/2013 07:54AM by old man from dallas.
Re: Petula Clark
December 22, 2013 11:35AM
I remember seeing Goldfinger at the Majestic in 1964. Jim
Re: Petula Clark
December 22, 2013 01:17PM
jgoodman Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I remember seeing Goldfinger at the Majestic in
> 1964. Jim

Me too, then again at the Texas Theater in Oak Cliff.

Dave McNeely
Re: Petula Clark
December 22, 2013 04:35PM
Dave, my thoughts about downtown beginning to decline in the 60's was based, in large part, on my parent's recollections of the downtown of the 30's, 40's and 50's. As we would walk around downtown with my mother, she would reminisce about businesses that she remembered fondly but were long gone. It's true that downtown still had much going on in the 60's.
bug
Re: Petula Clark
December 23, 2013 10:46AM
Have loved the song Downtown since I was a kid, like the new interpretation as well...

Here is a link to the above mentioned story:
Petula Clark on NPR
Re: Petula Clark
January 01, 2014 12:39PM
Wow! This is amazing ! Petula Clark--I am going to search out and listen to the newer recording--should be interesting. I was very young--there goes my memories again--who could forget "Downtown". I used to love dressing up and going downtown with my beautiful mother,grandmother and aunts.

It is a major loss that people no longer dress up and go "Downtown" shop, peruse, socialize, shop some more !! Music is quite different on vinyl--to think--some have never listened to a record--and never will---I am proud I have exposed my children to this.

"A mother is not someone to lean on,but someone to make leaning unnecessary"
Re: Petula Clark
January 15, 2014 11:45AM
I was four years old when the song was released, and my mom worked in the Davis Building downtown. So, of course in my four-year-old mind, I associated the song with downtown Dallas. Brings back memories of the green-and-white trolley buses, and Sanger-Harris downtown.
Re: Petula Clark
January 15, 2014 12:08PM
i saw goldfinger as a sneak at the majestic.it hooked me on bond films.
Re: Petula Clark
January 15, 2014 01:02PM
Mrs. Miller's semi-hit of Downtown ruined the song for me.

In case you don't remember it, here she is on YouTube. You'll see what I mean.

[www.youtube.com]
Re: Petula Clark
January 15, 2014 01:54PM
Ah yes! Mrs. Miller. Too bad no one ever thought to record her in duet with Tiny Tim. It could have been magical.
Re: Petula Clark
January 16, 2014 02:00PM
Tiny Tim ruined the ukulele for a whole generation. There is currently a resurgence in interest in the instrument. Check out Jake Shimabukuro on youtube.....

[www.youtube.com]

Dave ewis
bug
Re: Petula Clark
January 16, 2014 03:35PM
Nothing to do with Dallas but speaking of the ukulele,
Israel Kamakawiwo╩╗ole does a wonderful version of Somewhere Over The Rainbow.
You can see it here
Re: Petula Clark
January 17, 2014 09:53AM
Ukulele's have a pretty big presence in the Dallas area these days.
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