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June 13, 2006


cary grant

ken - muchos gracias... been looking for this full album!!! great shit.


I was so glad to hear these songs! I am Lou Carter's niece. Sadly, he passed away last year. He was a wonderful uncle and a very cool guy.


Thanks for the Louie the Cab Driver songs. My Mom use to sing us "Nose Full Of Nickles" and "Whats A Matta Wit You". They reminded her of growing up in Manhattan as a kid.


Ken -

Back in the early 60s my dad picked up a 45rpm single by Lou Carter, with recordings of "Red Sweat" and "The Day I Wrote I Love You In The Dust." Was there another Lou Carter album that these would have been recorded on? Any chance that these could be made available in MP3 format in the future?

Thanks for bringing back some good memories.





I Got A Rose Between My Toes (Complete Lyrics)
I got a rose between my toes
from walkin' barefoot tru the hothouse to you
pretty baby

I got a t'orn right near my corn
from walkin' barefoot tru the hothouse to you

And when I fell into the tomatoes
I seen her heart skip a beat

I knew that love was born
when she pulled the t'orn
of the flower out of my feet

I didn't even feel no pain
because there wasn't any rain in the sky
pretty baby

I didn't need no iodine
because the sun began to shine upon me

For now my feet feel glad and gay
ever since that lucky day
I got a rose between my toes
from walkin' barefoot tru the hothouse to you

(musical interlude)

I didn't even feel no pain
because there wasn't any rain in the sky
pretty baby

I didn't need no iodine
because the sun began to shine upon me

For now my feet feel glad and gay
ever since that lucky day
I got a rose between my toes
from walkin' barefoot tru the hothouse to you

Rob Schultz

Back in the early 90s I bought Louieā€™s Love Songs at a garage sale. I loved this album, as did everyone that I played it to. I made a failing effort to locate him but, 4 or 5 years later one of my housemates happened to be filling in on keys for a gig his father couldn't make. During the gig someone in the band told a joke that he said he heard from Lou Carter!!! Through these means I was able to find out what town he lived in and gave him a ring on the phone. He invited me down to see him play at Trumpets in Montclair. Between sets I sat at a table with Lou and his wife. He told me that while on the road with the Jimmy Dorsey band he'd come up with these tunes and would sing them to his fellow musicians to pass time on the bus rides between gigs. For extra cash they'd record (radio?) jingles and while doing this in the studio he'd also record the songs. The songs made there way to (if I recall correctly) Julius LaRosa and then Perry Como, where he was featured as the singing cabbie. He put out 3 albums as the cabbie. "How Deep Is Which Ocean" was one. He told me that some stations up in Canada were playing his music. Mentioned playing with Herb Ellis, Billy Holiday singing a song of his, being invited to perform on some Billy Crystal TV special. He wrote and recorded some amazing music.

Richard DiPrima

One of your commentators mentioned Lou Carter's "How Deep Is Which Ocean?" That was a wonderful album in which every song responded to a question posed by another popular song. Some of the lyrics replying to "Where Did The Night Go?" were these:

Where does the night go? I haven't got a clue.
And so I'll have to answer by simply asking you:
Where does the thread go in socks with open toes?
Where does the bump go when doctors fix your nose?
If all these things I knew
Then I'd know where the night goes to.
etc., etc.

Wonderful stuff!

He also produced, on record, a kind of multi-song, mini-musical drama called "Aqueduct Alley." (Part of the title song: "It's a little street where life is sweet,/Where the cop aint even got no beat/That's Aqueduct Alley./Like a picture on a postal card/ If it wasn't for the lumber yard./That's Aqueduct Alley./Look at Angelo the grocer wave at every passer-by/Between all the salamis that are hangin' there to dry." etc.)

(The rest of these lyrics and many other of Lou Carter's are preserved (pickled?) in my memory, if anyone is curious.)

Lou Carter and Mozart got me and my roommates through college in the late 50s and early 60s.

Richard DiPrima

Mark Gaggia

Hello and thanks,
I have been looking for this guy since I was a young man. I used to sing "a rose between my toes" and "Nose full of nickels" on the rooter bus going to the LA Doger baseball games when I was a kid. My dad is still alive and he will really get a kick out of hearing these again. Thanks so much. You have a wonderfully entertaining, weird web site. i just bookmarked it.

PS; Been looking for a couple of old songs by an unknown artist; one starts "down in old savanah lived a guy whose name was joe" and something about "soon a kid named sammy moved in across the street, the stuff that sammy fed the gals you wouldn't dare to eat" (as I remember it from fifty years ago) and the other; "I took a little trip, way across the sea. I sailed a sailing ship to sunny Waikiki...the moment I arrived, I heard a lady say, 'If this is Hawaii, why don';t I get a lay?'" Any ideas on tracking THOSE down. Thanks... Mark G on Whidbey


I've been looking for this album for 20+ years, ever since my 33.3 LP version - which my father bought when Lou Carter was still appearing on TV - disappeared when I moved from one state to another. At last, I can have my wife and kids hear the originals by the man who created them, and not just listen to my renditions of the songs. I blow it every time I try to sing them for someone else bacuse I can't keep from laughing. The songs are wonderful and I'm really happy to have them again. I didn't realize there was a second album; after all these years I can look for new songs by my favorite artist! Thanks very much.

John Carter

I'm Lou Carter's son and I'm delighted that people are still enjoying my father's music. He did indeed make three "cabbie" albums: Louie's Love Songs, Louie Writes Again, and How Deep is Which Ocean? During that time, he made several appearances on the Perry Como Show. We actually still have a couple of the original scripts.

He also co-wrote, with Johnny Frigo and Herb Ellis, the jazz standard, "Detour Ahead" and another song, "I Told You I Love You, Now Get Out." The former was recorded by everyone from Billie Holiday to Bill Evans; the latter was sung by Cybill Sheperd in an old Moonlighting episode.

Shortly after the Como appearances, he settled down and began a successful career writing and producing radio jingles. He would spend part of the week in his New York office writing and arranging and the rest of the week in the studio producing, playing piano and singing on the commercials. On occasion, my brother and I would accompany him to the studio. We'd see a parade of A-list musicians and singers -- such as Ron Carter and Marlene Ver Planck -- come through the door.

Throughout the years, he also regularly played jazz piano at local venues and was very much in demand. He would often fulfill requests to do a "cabbie" tune or two. He continued to play professionally well into his 80s.

Despite his accomplishments, he was a very humble man who always maintained a great sense of humor. I remember once when he was probably about 84 years old, he returned from a gig for which the audience was made up of people bussed in from retirement homes. When I asked him how it went, he said, "I gotta tell you John, senior citizens are just the worst!"

He passed away two years ago at the age of 87. I know he's up there getting a kick out of the fact that people are still having a laugh or two from his music.

Jeff Wilkinson

It was saddening to hear that Lou passed away.
My wifes father bought Louie's Love Songs when her and her siblings were kids (they are now getting close to their 60's). About 15 years ago (long after her father had died)we found the album tucked away in a corner in her mothers garage. Apparently they all loved the album and knew all the words to the songs. I took the album and digitally recorded it, cleaned up the scratches etc, put it on cd and gave it to her mother. Since then it is played at every family gathering (and I mean EVERY)! It reminds them so much of their father because he sang and spoke just like Louie does on the record. Her mother (in her 90's)gets such a kick because the "kids" know all the words and have a big singalong. That is, as long as they can because most of the time they are falling about laughing at the lyrics.
I recently bought a copy of the Louie Writes Again and am eagerly waiting for a copy of How Deep is Which Ocean and I'll "re-master" both of these.
I'm sure everyones going to be listening and adding these songs to their singalongs!

BTW, can anyone tell me when these albums were released? There are no dates on the sleeves.

Jim Fitz

Anyone know where I can get CD's of Louie's Love Songs and Louie Writes Again??
My original LP (anybody remember what that is?) has scratches and doesn't play well anymore.


Radio personality Bob Crane (later of Hogan's Heroes fame) enjoyed playing "I Got a Rose Between My Toes" and "If I Had a Nose Full of Nickels" on his KNX CBS radio show in LA during the 50s and early 60s, and he worked them into his show regularly. Thanks for sharing these and other Lou Carter songs. They've been great fun to listen to!

Mike S

Hi Ken, I just found this site about Lou Carter. My father, Frank Simini was a personal freind of Lou's (I believe his real name was Lou Carlucci). Frank was a tailor in the 30's and 40's and did tailoring for the Meadowbrook Theatre in NJ as well as others. He knew many of the big band leaders, musicians and artists (he was good friends with Jimmy Dorsey and my mother has signed pictures of him among others with notes to Frank). My father told me many times that he gave Lou Carter his big break in the business by getting him an audition, I'm not sure with whom, but I'm pretty sure my mother still has the original audition 78 record. I remember listening to it many years ago. I have the Louie's Love songs pictured above. My father died in 1976. I don't remember seeing Lou at the viewing or cemetary, but distinctly remember looking out of the limosine in front of the church after the funeral. There was a man standing there in a long coat. My mother said it was Lou Carter. Thaks for the tribute to him. My father would have loved it. - Mike

Frank Simini, Jr.

Ken, I was so surprised, and yet, not surprised, when my brother, Mike told me about this site dedicated to "Louie da Cabbie" . He and my father were good friends and I can remember Lou making visits to our home in Belleville, N.J. He seemed somewhat embarassed one night when we were sitting in the diningroom and I pulled out a copy of "Louie's Love Songs" and asked if I could listen to it. I still remember his spot on "The Perry Cuomo Show". Perry would introduce him and Lou would come out in a cabbie jacket and cap, sit down at a grand piano and play and sing his magical songs. Many of my girlfriends were amazed to here me sing " I got a rose between my toes " to them. A few years ago we brought my mother, Kay Simini, to "Michael's Pub" in Dover when Lou was playing there. He sat at our table and we had a great conversation with him. It meant a lot to mom to see him again. I brought the old and tatered "Louie's Love Songs" album to the restaurant and Lou was gracious enough to add a few words to the album cover. He was a great guy and my father was very proud to be his friend. Sincerely Frank Simini, Jr.

P.S. E-mail. Would like to get together sometime.


my dad used to sing all of these songs to me growing up. i've spent years looking for them and now we can share the memories again. thanks!

joshy two time

I have been searching for this forever! Anyone know where I can download or buy it at?

jon zipkin

Thank you SO much - my family have a beat up copy of this lp in our attic that my mom bought as a youngster and played for my brother, sister and I as kids. We all love it but haven't owned a record player in years. I've wanted my neice and nephew to get turned on! This will be an easy way to get them interested. Best! - Jon

Terry Shorr

Lou Carter was one of my all-time favorite entertainers, as a musician and as a humorist. What a wonderful combination. I am glad to learn from his son's posting that he lived a long and productive life. Sadly, my copy of "Louie's Love Songs" was lost long ago through many moves, though I've often recalled his great songs. I really wish all of his recordings were available on CD and his performances on DVD.

I hope that my many departed relatives who loved his music are able to listen to him now.

Roger Rybarczyk

I have one original Lou Carter's Louie's Love Songs vinyl LP with album cover in storage. I'll have to search for it, but I should be able to find it. Any offers? Asking $75.00 because Lou was a great talent, you'll love this record, it's hard to find and I need the money.

Roger Rybarczyk
Kalamazoo, Michigan
[email protected]

Peggy Fox

I'm helping a friend and colleague who is writing a book on Italian Americans in jazz. Would someone be able to supply me with Lou Carter's birth and death dates and places? Thanks very much.

Mike S

Hi Peggy, My father was a good friend of Lou and got him his first audition with Jimmy Dorsey's band. My father was a tailor and used to tailor suits for big band musicians in the late 30's, early 40's in northern NJ and NYC. He was also good friends with Jimmy Dorsey and my parents would have dinner with him when he played in the NYC area. See my post above - Feb 20, 2009. My mother still has a number of autographed pictures of some of the band leaders and singers of that era, and about 200 78-speed records, and a couple of Lou Carter 33s.

I found this information on a jazz website - Louis Carter, 87, of Bloomfield died Sept. 25, 2005 in Mountainside Hospital, Glen Ridge, NJ. Born in Newark, NJ, he lived in Bloomfield for 41 years. A jazz pianist for many years, he performed under the name of Lou Carter with several big bands, including Jimmy Dorsey and Glenn Gray. He also appeared on national television, including the Perry Como show as Louie the cabbie. Mr. Carter was also a commercial writer for Purcell Productions. He was a member of the American Federation of Musicians Local 802, New York, and the American Federation of Musicians Local 16, Newark. Surviving are Emma, his wife of 46 years; a daughter, Nancy Villani; two sons, John and David; two sisters, Ann Napoli and Yolanda Ressa; six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. You can find more information on Lou by surfing around the web.

Good Luck with the book!!

Mike S.

John Carter

Lou's birth date was September 15, 1918.

Ellen Catino

We always listened to lou carter and I know his whole cabby album by heart. He was our neighbor in Bloomfield. he always made everybody laugh-he had such a great sense of humor and just a fun person.

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