Song Of The Day 10/20/2012: Ross MacManus & The Joe Loss Blue Beats - "I'm The Greatest"


Ross MacManus was a British trumpet player and vocalist for the Joe Loss Orchestra, who thrived in England during the Big Band era. They are still in existence, although Loss died in 1990. The Joe Loss Blue Beats, who I can't find any exact information about, appeared to be an off-shoot designed for the more immediate pop market of the 1960's. They had a modest U.K. hit called "Patsy Girl," which was an odd, appealing mix of skiffle beats and rocksteady patois. "I'm The Greatest" was the flip side of "Patsy Girl," and in my mind every inch the equal.

Two other things about Ross MacManus: He was responsible for both the music and the vocals on "I'm A Secret Lemonade Drinker," the song featured in advertisements for R White's Lemonade beginning in 1973. These ads were apparently so popular that they ran on British television for 11 years in different permutations, including one with British comedian Frankie Howerd and another with tennis player John McEnroe.

Also, MacManus, who died last year, is the father of my favorite musician of all time.
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