And y'all thought I was exaggerating! Anyway.
A link for Noel. It's the Andrews Sisters, from 1944, and yes, they're singing what you think they're singing in the chorus. Frankly, I don't think you can find that in Vegas anymore.
Some notes about the song: during a USO tour, Morey Amsterdam sleazed off the song from the great Trinidad bandleader Lionel Belasco -- named like a London boxer in the days of Pierce Egan, and for much the same reason: Belasco's father was Sephardic -- who in turn had adapted it from a folk song from Martinique. There was a complicated lawsuit. The music business in the 1940s was very strange. Today most people know Belasco through Terry Zwigoff, the movie director from Appleton (Wisconsin), who adapted Daniel Clowes's graphic novel Ghost World in such a way to highlight Belasco's music.
Since I have to do everything bass-ackwards, I first came across Belasco while researching the Venezuelan waltz. Oh, hell. Some things should not fall down the memory hole.
Did I ever thank Colin Alberts for recommending Leo Katz's books to me? I should do that here. (Also, I just realized: William Ian Miller is from my neck of the woods, isn't he? Like, Shawano or something.) Also, if David Tenner is around, Robert Murray's The 103rd Ballot has been inspirational in recent months.
And two book recommedations for Will Baird on Ukraine and Russia. The first, Anthony's recent The Horse, The Wheel, and Language. It's a strong synthesis of late Soviet and post-Soviet archaeological findings on the Indo-Europeans, as well as his recent results on horse domestication. Anthony has something of the North Americanist's perspective, where long-distance migrations and vast social changes due to new domesticates are amply documented. (Incidentally, there's a long post on the Siberian Ket, Alaskan Eyak, Pacific Northwest Tlingit, and Canadian Athabaskan -- including American Southwest Navajo and Apache -- linguistic connection that I'm not going to write. I am a tease, aren't I.) There's an interesting bit of the sociology of anthropology here: many Europeanists believe in the extremely local development of prehistoric European cultures -- little migration, and that caused by the achingly slow spread of agriculture -- which multiple lines of evidence show is flawed, but academic inertia keeps in play.
They ate a lot of fish.
The other book is Andrei Sinyavsky's Russian Folk Belief, a phrase he uses in contrast to Russian ecclesiastical belief. Sinyavsky is perhaps better known in the West under his pseudonym of Abram Tertz, which would be as if an American writer in exile wrote under the name Benny Siegel or Al Capone, or possibly Nat Turner. I picked the book up for its folklore, but there's also a large section on non-Orthodox Russian religious movements, including a section of Protestantism in Russia. It should tell you something about his baseline that Sinyavsky considers Seventh-Day Adventism a rationalist faith; and also, that he has nothing but admiration for the diverse sectarians he met in the camps. I'd quote some, but I'd have to quote the whole chapter.
One more to go.