Lita Roza

  • Real Name: Lita Roza
  • Birth Date: c.1926
  • Birth Place: Liverpool
  • Lita Roza may well have inherited her musical talents from her Spanish descended father who played piano in Liverpool clubs whenever the opportunity arose. She was the eldest of his seven children and began work at an early age in order to supplement the family income. Factory work was among her first jobs which also included several as assistants in various Liverpool shops. However, she appeared as a dancer in a pantomime in Norwich while still only twelve, and by the time she was fifteen she was working with fellow Liverpudlian- comedian Ted Ray- in the stage show 'Black Velvet'.

    She was still in her teens when she managed to secure a job as a singer in the "New Yorker" -a wartime Southport club. She used this as a stepping stone to gain another job as singer- with the Harry Roy Orchestra in London. She moved on from this to work with other bands of the era including that of Edmundo Ros. However, by the time she was eighteen she had decided to retire from show business- choosing marriage to an American and a life in Miami in exchange. However, this did not last and she returned to the UK, finding employment with Ted Heath.

    Her years with the Heath band were probably the most productive of her long career. Her original rendition of 'Allentown Jail' is arguably the best recorded version of this fine ballad ever to have been created. In contrast, the jazzy upbeat "Blacksmith Blues" shows her versatility. Sadly, her most successful recording- and the only one many people associate with her is now widely regarded as dreadful; "How Much Is That Doggie In The Window"- a cover version of the Patty Page US hit.

    Lita left the Heath band during 1954 and remarried in 1956- this time to fellow musician Ronnie Harris- trumpet player with the Geraldo Orchestra. She remained a top UK recording artist during the remainder of the 1950s and even re-recorded the wonderful 'Allentown Jail'; on 45rpm. However, her subsequent recordings never really recaptured the magic she had shown while with Ted Heath.

    The EP shown on the right (DFE6386) - with a wonderful picture of the singer- is the earliest that I've so far come across bearing Lita's name; possibly it is her first, but I cannot confirm that. It seems strange that Decca did not put out her material on extended play before that date, but perhaps that is the case. In any event, like most of Lita Roza's early output on vinyl, this record is very hard to find and not usually cheap to buy.


    1950s & 1960s 45rpm UK Discography

    • Some 78rpm items are listed in Green
    • Collector's Items are shown in Red
    • See lower list for EP releases

    Decca F9731 1951 Allentown Jail/ I Wish I Knew  
    Decca F9785 1951 I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair/ A Wonderful Guy  
    Decca F9955 1952 Oakie Boogie/ Raminay  
    Decca F10070 1953 (How Much Is) That Doggie In The Window/ Tell Me We'll Meet Again #1
    Decca F10128 1953 Seven Lonely Days/ No-one Will Ever Know  
    Decca F10144 1953 Crazy Man, Crazy/ Oo! What You Do To Me  
    Decca F10240 1954 Changing Partners/ Just A Dream Or Two Ago  
    Decca F10269 1954 Make Love To Me/ Bell Bottom Blues  
    Decca F10277 1954 Secret Love/ Young A Heart  
    Decca F10363 1954 Skinnie Minnie (Fishtail)/ My Kid Brother  
    Decca F10393 1954 Call Off The Wedding/ The "Mama Doll" Song  
    Decca F10427 1955 Heartbeat/ Leave Me Alone  
    Decca F10431 1955 Let Me Go Lover/ Make Yourself Comfortable  
    Decca F10479 1955 Tomorrow/ Foolishly  
    Decca F10536 1955 Two Hearts, Two Kisses (Make One Love)/ Keep Me In Mind  
    Decca F10541 1955 The Man In The Raincoat/ Today And Ev'ry Day  
    Decca F10611 1955 Hey There/ Hernando's Hideaway #17
    Decca F10679 1956 Jimmy Unknown/ The Rose Tattoo #15
    Decca F10728 1956 Too Young To Go Steady/ You're Not Alone  
    Decca F10761 1956 No Time For Tears/ But Love Me (Love But Me)  
    Decca F10792 1956 Innismore/ The Last Waltz  
    Decca F10830 1956 Hey! Jealous Lover/ Julie  
    Decca F10861 1957 Lucky Lips/ Tears Don't Care Who Cries Them  
    Decca F10884 1957 Tonight My Heart She Is Crying/ Five Oranges Four Apples  
    Decca F10921 1957 I Need You/ You've Changed  
    Pye 7N15119 1958 Pretend You Don't See Him/ Ha-Ha-Ha!  
    Pye 7N15133 1958 I Need Somebody/ You're The Greatest  
    Pye 7N15139 1958 I Could Have Danced All Night/ The Wonderful Season Of Love  
    Pye 7N15149 1958 Sorry, Sorry, Sorry/ Hillside In Scotland  
    Pye 7N15155 1958 Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)/ It's A Boy  
    Pye 7N15190 1959 This Is My Town/ Oh Dear What Can The Matter Be  
    Pye 7N15204 1959 Allentown Jail/ Once In A While  
    Pye 7N15241 1959 Let It Rain Let It Rain/ Maybe You'll Be There  
    Columbia DB7785 1965 What Am I Supposed To Do/ Where Do I Go From Here  
    Columbia DB7689 1965 Keep Watch Over Him/ Stranger Things Have Happened  

    EP Discography

    • Collector's Items are shown In Red
    • See Upper List For Singles releases

    Decca DFE6386 1956 "Lita Roza"  
    Jimmy Unknown/Too Young To Go Steady/Hey, Jealous Lover/Julie
    Decca DFE6399 1957 "Lita Roza No.2"  
    Five Oranges, Four Apples/Tonight My Heart She Is Crying/A Woman's Intuition/It Could Happen To You
    Decca DFE6443 1958 "Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea No.1"  
    You Took Advantage Of Me/My One And Only Love/Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea/I Cover The Waterfront

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