I have been looking for this song since my Dad told me the story of him singing it with Helen O’Connell on stage! (I can only imagine how much rum must have been involved in that task). Dad had a fantastic singing voice and my Mom would always brag to me about his voice. She had a fantastic voice too, but, while she was the opera buff, Dad was more blues and jazz.
Finally, this morning while re-reading some of Dad’s posts, I came across this story he told me about “Jealousy (Jalousie). I continued my search for the song and discovered that it was not a song made famous by Helen O’Connell, rather one that was popular and she chose to sing it. It seems Frankie Laine was the artist who made the song popular in 1951. Correct me, please, if I am wrong. I was so excited to find it as it just gives me such great context for my Dad – the person.
I am re-posting this story with great excitement. Here is the link if you wish to check it out:
Frankie Lane (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4AQ5sXJMqs)
Caterina Valente’s version (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IRrI9DiGrw)
Here’s the original story, as told to me in my Dad’s words”
“I have always loved music. During the war, music played a very important role to connect us to home and to lift our spirits. I had a couple hundred records. In those days the records were “78”s.
One of my favorite artists while I posted in Madras, India was Ziggy Ellman. Ziggy played the trumpet. I listened to Ziggy so much and I was such a big fan that my navigator nick-named my Ziggy. To listen to my records, though, I had to wind it up… there was no electricity.
I went often into Madras to buy records. Buying a record then, however, was very different from today. The way we did it then when you went into the place someone gave you a catelogue. You’d look through the catelogue for something you’d like played. A little boy came over and you pointed to the one you’d like to hear. He had a ladder like the one you see in big libraries. We’d point out the one – he’d get on the ladder, find the record, and play it for you. If you liked what you heard, you bought it – if not it would go back into the library of records.He knew where every record was.
One day when I was looking to purchase a record, there was a woman who was in the store at the same time as me. She was with her daughter. There was a song playing at the time. The song was called Jealousy and it was sung by Helen O’Connell. The lady wanted to know the name of the song – I told her it was Jello- See. I said it the wrong way just to tease her. She told the boy she was looking for the song, Jello-See and tried to get him to play it. There was quite a lengthy exchange while the two of them tried to figure out what she wanted. The boy had never heard of the Jello song. Finally he played it on the hi-fi and the lady bought the record.
I sold all my records and gramaphone before I came home – I didn’t need them as we could just go and see the performer in Canada – we didn’t need the recorded version.
I remember the time when I went to see Helen O’Connell in Collingwood. . I motioned her over and told her I heard her record in India – she invited me to get up and sing with her. So I did. The song I sang was… you bet… “Jealousy”.”