I've never met a version of "Gonna Get Along Without You Now" I didn't like. Word on the internet is that it was originally recorded by Teresa Brewer in 1952 in a swingin' big bandish style (with a jaw harp thrown in as a gimmicky hook to remind us that sometimes Teresa likes to get a little country). Since then, it has been recorded in an endless array of styles. It's really hard to choose which I like the best. Is it the Latin R&B of Trini Lopez? Or the 1950s kiddie pop of Patience & Prudence? How about Skeeter Davis? Or maybe Laverne & Shirley? The truth of the matter is, my favorite version is whatever version I'm listening to at any given moment.
This version is by "sister act" Cynthia and Kay Strother who performed as the Bell Sisters in the early to mid-1950s. It's a bit of a curiosity featuring a calypso rhythm accompanied by an unusual atmospheric vocal arrangement. It's true this record walks that fine line between the incorporating of influences and the cultural appropriation/exploitation that was so prevalent in mid-century America. It kind of sounds like a 1940s Disney princess singing her answer to Harry Belafonte's "Jamaica Farewell." But for some reason, it works for me. It leaves me feeling as if I'm sailing away into the sunset of a happy ending in an enchanted animated feature film. Are there three tiny fairy godmothers dancing around my head waving magic wands? When I listen to this record, it feels likely.