Music Monday: Three versions of Bing Crosby’s “Great Day”

In my first year of college (at Dickinson), I did the sound for a show that required 20s-40s music. There was a good music library and one of the music profs gave me a collection to use. Several tracks featured Bing Crosby (surprise surprise), but the stand out for me was this rendition of “Great Day”:

I found this pretty shocking, as my prior exposure had been the Kellogg’s commercial versions:

It’s a catchy song! But I had NO conception of the original nor that it was so thoroughly religious. Perhaps it’s a gospel song? It’s hard to Google.

I found a few other versions by Crosby that aren’t up to snuff:

Meh. Underproduced and no chorus back up makes it feel a bit weak.

This is like a jazz-disco version and I hate it!

McCartney’s version definitely echoes Crosby’s:

I’d never heard this before. It’s not bad at all! I think a straight cover could be interesting, esp. if Paul would do it all bluesy.

Some quick Googling has not turned up the history of this song! Or even whether McCartney’s is an homage.

I find it a bit grim! Though Gabriel’s horn rootin’ tootin’ cracks me up every time.