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Charley ItchnerToday’s track is taken from the four-song EP Eddie Lund Presents…Jumpin’ at the Bar Léa. From the liner notes:

“Without doubt, Bar Léa is the busiest and most colorful jive joint in the South Seas. Patronized by socialite and stevedore alike, favorite rendezvous of movie stars on location, it is found in the very center of Papeete’s native quarter. The orchestra bursts into a tamuré (Rock ‘n’ Roll à la Tahiti), the tiny dance floor fills with stomping feet and swinging hips, and Bar Léa demonstrates that it’s the noisiest, goingest joint in the South Pacific, where hilarity hits a new high.”

“Rock ‘n’ Roll à la Tahiti”? It sounds more like a crazed country hoedown to me, but what do I know.

I couldn’t find a whole lot on Charley Itchner outside of some French internet radio playlist that features a different song from this EP, but it turns out there is a lot of information out there about the presenter of this EP, Eddie Lund. He even has his own Wikipedia page, and the Hip Wax Tahitian discography lists a ton of records that he is associated with, though this EP is not listed there.

The Tahiti Records label was based in Papeete, the capital of French Polynesia, though the address on the center label is of a Hollywood, CA. distributor.

Charley Itchner et l’Orchestre Bar Léa- Tamuré Bar Léa (Tahiti Records, 1959)