Hey Mister! Thinking Tractor? - The Music from Ford Tractor 1959, 1960, 1964
ORIGINAL CAST RECORDS
In 1959, the Tractor and Implement Division of Ford Motor Company jumped into the foray of Industrial Musicals by producing "Ford-I-Fy You Future," a closed-circuit telecast that announced the new line of Select-O-Speed tractors and Implements to Ford Tractor dealers. A 4-song, single-sided LP was made available of this production that was written by Jerry Bock & Sheldon Harnick - a team that a few years later would write "Fiddler On the Roof." Their musical and lyrical talent is evident throughout the recording.
Phrases such as "Powermaster, Workmaster, and Power Major too" find themselves nestled comfortably inside these songs. Who would have thought you could rhyme "Yuma" with "consumer?" Among the collaged photos on the album cover, the costumed cast is seen on stage singing in front of a new 1959 1801 Industrial Ford Tractor.
The next year, 1960, saw Ford Tractor embarking on a most ambitious and creative endeavor. The Calvacade was a spectacular traveling show that toured 24 cities. Actually combining two shows, one east of the Mississippi River, and the other between the Rockies and the Mississippi, this modern day 3-ring circus included audio visual effects using a new 42' panoramic motion picture screen and a new surround sound audio system, while at the same time live equipment demonstrations were presented. Woven into this cacophony of sight and sound was the original music performed by a 7 member Broadway cast. To top it all off, all of this was under a huge 3-story geodesic dome that held 800 spectators. The staging was overseen by the innovative Jam Handy Organization, which also produced numerous films for Ford Tractor and other Industrial giants of the 1950s and 60s.
The recorded LP from this event was titled "The Wide New World with Ford" - music and songs from The 1960 Cavalcade of Tractors and Equipment. This 6-song single-sided LP offered songs such as "You Can't Miss With Ford," "Tractor-Drivin' Man" as well as a slightly different skit driven version of "More Power To You," that was originally recorded for "Ford-I-Fy Your Future."
The 1964 World Wide Dealer Conference of the Ford Tractor Division at Radio City Music Hall in NYC produced "The New Wide World of Ford," a 7-song double-sided LP. Also produced by Jam Handy, this Rockette fueled presentation was seen by over 5,300 Ford Tractor dealers from "over 120 countries of the free world."
The back cover quotes a dealer from Austria- "Today was the most beautiful day of my life." Was it the high leg kicking Rockettes? The prominent new blue Ford 6000 Commander on stage? The songs "Ford, Fibre, And Food" and "Tractor Wheels"? Possibly a combination of all of these, as well as being "part of it all" - of being a Ford Tractor Dealer!
In 1964, when Ford was introducing their new line of tractors with the new blue color, they probably had no idea as to the value that these, and other similar recordings from this era, would hold for collectors of vintage Ford Tractors, as well as collectors of Industry Musicals, some 40 years later.
17 Tracks total.