PE0038. Gene Austin: Singer and Songwriter, incl. Eleven of Austin’s great hits. CCM 1040. - 617742104028
"Arriving with the advent of electro-magnetic recording, Austin, along with Rudy Vallee, Art Gillham, Nick Lucas, Johnny Marvin and Cliff Edwards, adopted an intimate, radio-friendly, close-miked style that took over from the more sentimental style of tenor vocals popularized by such singers as Henry Burr and Billy Murray. Such later crooners as Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, and Russ Columbo all credited Austin with creating the musical genre that began their careers.
Gene Austin was an important pioneer crooner whose records in their day enjoyed record sales and the highest circulation. The Genial Texan ex-vaudevillian and would-be screen idol, Austin constitutes an underrated landmark in popular music history. He made a substantial number of influential recordings from the mid-1920s including a string of best-sellers. His 1926 'Bye Bye Blackbird' was in the year's top twenty records. George A. Whiting and Walter Donaldson’s 'My Blue Heaven' was charted during 1928 for 26 weeks, stayed at #1 for 13, and sold over five million copies (until Bing Crosby's 'White Christmas' replaced it, it was the largest selling record of all time)."