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Bobby Davis | Dance-it-Yourself

Dance-It-Yourself
Bobby Davis | C.A.M. Records

With these two 45 rpm records from C.A.M. Records (Those initials apparently standing in for "Choreography And Music") Tap Wonderland once again provides the only Internet presence for a few tidbits of tap dance trivia. Two hours of surfing found no mention of this record company at all on the Net, only the briefest note of Bobby Davis in a snippet of jazz film archive dancing with Ray Bolger and in one "soundie" where Bobby may have danced like Pat Rooney. There's a bit more about Ms. Nancy Abbate, however, an original member of the Mouseketeers who was selected by Bobby Davis as "Miss C.A.M. Records of 1957".

With no other references to be found, it might be true that these are the only two discs issued by C.A.M. Records, at least in the "Dance-It-Yourself" series which we present here:

But, not only is this record company small and perhaps forgotten, these little records are packaged in such an unusual manner that they have been transformed by time into great tap dance collectibles and special for record collectors, as well. The records' sleeves/jackets are actually the back binding of a small hard cover book.

Bobby Davis Teaches Tap - illustration & packaging

From an instructional point of view the information in these books is a pretty typical presentation of fundamental tap steps. The special choreography for the tunes is depicted using photos of Mouseketeer Nancy, now promoted to Miss C.A.M. Records of 1957. The tunes on the records are original compositions by Bobby Davis, featuring piano, guitar, drum and bass plus a trumpet on I Got a Song, Got a Dance. One side of each record has 8 measures for teaching and 2 choruses for dance routines. The other side has 3 choruses for song and dance. My collections include other books or records that feature original tunes or publish special choreography or routines, but Bobby Davis Dance-It-Yourself series goes all the way promising guidance on "song - lyric - dance rhythm - styling - costume design." Read on and we learn that "Bobby is known from coast to coast not only as a dance instructor and composer,but as a bright night club and resort hotel entertainer." Now, finally, Mr. Davis has a place on the Net, as well.

Mouseketeer Nancy Abbate, Miss C.A.M. Records, 1957
Miss CAM Records of 1957, Mouseketeer, Nancy Abbate

 

About Miss Nancy Abbate

"Nancy, at the age of 15, is quite an accomplished actress and singer as well as a polished dancer. She already has several moving pictures and TV performances to her credit. We've seen Nancy as one of those great little Mouseketeers; also on the Ray Bolger, Donald O'Conner and Jack Benny Shows. She is a very hard worker and takes her career very seriously. She is now a protégé of Bobby Davis in Hollywood,california. Now, Nancy has been chosen by C.A.M. Records as the brightest Dancing newcomer of the year."

Tap Wonderland understands that Ms. Abbate (Caldwell) continues to operate a dance studio in San Diego and we hope she doesn't mind being included on this page. We'd love to hear from her to update our comments. Contact: Tap Wonderland.

— Shinichi Matsumoto