Friday Factory Tune: Pennies from Heaven

For what is a mint if not a factory?

From CNET, “Geek Gestalt Expore the Northeast.”

CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman is back on the road again. This year, beginning June 24, he’ll be driving a car loaded with tech gear thousands of miles up and down the East Coast, searching for the most interesting spots for technology, military, research and development, naval shipbuilding, and more. He’ll begin at a NASA facility in Virginia, hit induction day at the Naval Academy, watch paper money get made in Washington D.C., and coins get made in Philadelphia, and see how the famous PostSecret project comes together.

A visit to the Philadelphia Mint sounds like fun, not to mention an opportunity to post a Friday Factory Tune video from the British TV series, “Pennies from Heaven.” Every so often there’s a flurry of stories about retiring the penny because it makes no economic sense. But if it costs us this song, no!

That’s Kenneth Colley lip-syncing the version by Arthur Tracy, aka the Street Singer, born Abba Avrom Tracovutsky in Kamenetz-Podolsk, Russia; with his family’s emigration, Tracy escaped almost certain death there. You may remember Colley as Admiral Piett in the Star Wars movies.

This “Pennies from Heaven” version is abridged; the full song with instrumental break is available at here. The Steve Martin movie used the full song in a more elaborate production. Blah. More interesting is Albert Finney doing the Bing Crosby version in “Karaoke/Cold Lazarus” as a tribute writer to Dennis Potter, then dying of cancer.

Also, best performance from the “Pennies from Heaven” TV series, “You couldn’t be cuter.” Bob Hoskins lip-synching Al Bowlly! Now, that was a voice, and that was a band.

Thanks to James Lileks for prompting these explorations.

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