Went over Betty Jo’s today and she is sure getting trampier as time goes on. She is going around with Patty’s ex-boyfriend David now. Betty Jo told me all about when Patty was going steady with him and described in detail how Patty and David did all sorts of things to each other. Well I practically heaved right then and there. Betty Jo has never done that or let Dannie do that to her. She thinks it is very disgusting, but she does let boys pet her. David says he loves her now and she thinks he’s nice and says she likes being petted. I have always been a friend of hers, but man she is sure way ahead of me. She is sure going to go to hell if she doesn’t quit letting David feel her up…and everything else she does.
Tuesday March 18, 1952
Buella came down tonight with her new boyfriend and his ’49 Ford convertible. Nice pickings I must say.
Wednesday March 19, 1952
Mary Alice came down tonight, she wants me to go to the Harry James dance with her Friday night right here at the Legion Stadium. So I am all eager and raring to go. Man I haven’t gone to a dance for two weeks, and mark my word I am going to make up for lost time. I am going to have one ball this Friday night!
Thursday March 20, 1952
Went over to Mary Alice’s to see what she is going to wear tomorrow night and she is going to wear a double fine looking dress that she made, and believe me she looks like a queen in it. If she doesn’t have a good time tomorrow night, man there sure will be something wrong with the guy, not her. She looks absolutely flawless in that dress and heels. I am going to wear my high heels too, and I’m going to saunter into that dance and stand up straight, and because I'm so tall I'll go up to my boyfriends and look down on them and say "Hey man, how’s the weather down there!" and then laugh my fool head off!
Friday March 21, 1952
Me and Mary Alice came home together tonight with two nice guys. Got in at 2:30am. The band was super-duper and everybody just looked double fine. It was $1.45 altogether and it was a very respectable dance. If you ask me though, I’d take The Stomp any old time. That’s where I’m headed to tomorrow night!
Saturday March 22, 1952
Went to The Stomp and got in at 1:30am tonight. Came home with Hal and two other guys. I think Hal is a good looking guy, but I don’t think he is nice or anything and I don’t have any special love for him. If it is one thing I cannot stand, it is a guy rubbing his chest against mine. If a guy so much as tries, well it disgusts me more than anything in the world. I do not like his necking either. Boys are always trying something funny and I’m getting sick of it. I don’t like him one bit. I wish I could see Paul again, I like him so much. He is double fine but he is still a guy… if you know what I mean. Oh I think I’ll just quit boys entirely!
As we’ve read over the past months, El Monte's Legion Stadium was a major venue that hosted some of the biggest events in music and sports for many decades. Vilma has seen a number of acts so far: Cliffie Stone’s Hometown Jamboree aka The Stomp, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Roller Derby, Boxing…and now Harry James! This was truly the Staples Center of its time.
Any of you remember that fantastic modern band called the Harry James Orchestra? I suddenly hear the sound of crickets…
To give some perspective on what a major act the Harry James Orchestra was, they were on par with the likes of Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, and Duke Ellington!
Music sure has drastically changed since the 1950’s. Recently one of my friends was telling me about a song she loves, and it is apparently a very popular one. I had to tell her the bitter truth: I had never heard of it because I rarely listen to any music past the decade of the 1980’s. I really think I should have been born in another era! Take me back to the 20’s, 30’s, 40’s 50’s and I’m in heaven! Modern music can’t hold a candle to these decades. The lush, rich beautiful harmonies of the big swing bands of the 1940’s and the rock and roll music that came out of the 1950’s just doesn’t compare to anything we hear today.
I think the difference is that there was still an elegance and yes, an innocence in music that does not exist today. It was tasteful and refined, like a good wine!
There once used to be good and bad taste. That line is now blurred and has already been crossed many times over, as we are bombarded with derogatory, pornographic, and profane no talent music. Golly gee but everything is shoved out there now, it’s no holds barred. Is there no turning back? Well, at least we can go back in time and appreciate and the "super-duper" delightful melodies of an enormously talented trumpet player named Harry James.