Red Headed Stranger and Little Things Mean A Lot
written by Edith Lindeman Calisch and Carl Stutz
Red Headed Stranger
was written for Perry Como in 1953 but never recorded because of some dispute.
John D. Loudermilk recorded it some time around1959. Red Headed Stranger
Willie Nelson recorded in 1976 as the basis for a concept album. Red Headed Stranger
Little Things Mean a Lot
was recorded by Kitty Kallen, was the top song of 1954
This song has been covered by many, many female singers. If you do a search on You Tube you will find them all.
Obituaries for the 2 song writers
Carl Stutz, Radio Announcer, 80
Published: October 14, 1996
RICHMOND, Oct. 13— Carl Stutz, a former radio announcer who was a co-writer of the song ''Little Things Mean a Lot,'' died on Tuesday at the Willow Creek Nursing Home in Chesterfield County, Va. He was 80 years old.
While working at radio station WRVA in Richmond from 1948 to 1961, Mr. Stutz collaborated as a songwriter with Edith Lindeman Calisch, who was the amusement critic for The Richmond Times-Dispatch. He wrote the music; she wrote the lyrics.
Their song "Little Things Mean a Lot" was recorded by the singer Kitty Kallen and was featured repeatedly on "Your Hit Parade" on radio and television during 1954. The recording sold over a million copies in a few weeks.
Mr. Stutz later became a high-school mathematics teacher.
He is survived by two daughters, Riese C. Kelly of Richmond and Lanna Sheehan of Massachusetts.
Edith Elliott Lindeman Calish
21 March 1898-22 December 1984
Entertainment critic of The Times-Dispatch for 31 years and lyricist of the popular songs "Little Things Mean a Lot" and "The Red-Headed Stranger," died Saturday at Stratford Hall Nursing Home in Henrlco County.
She was 86 and had lived at 5100 Monument Ave.
Mrs. Calisch, who wrote under her maiden name, was the widow of A. Woolner Calisch.
A native of Pittsburgh, Mrs Calisch was an alumna of Collegiate School and Barnard College.
She joined the staff of The Times-Dispatch
in 1933, serving as a film and theater critic, enterta1nient writer and amusement editor. She retired in 1964.
In a 1958 retrospective, Mrs. Calisch estimated that by then, she nad seen 6,000 films ("give or take a few"), beginning with "Saturday's Millions," which she described as "a football picture with a difference."
During her career, she wrote, "sound films have achieved the ultimate, color has been perfected, 3D has come and gone, leaving my eyes the worse for wear. Cinerama, Cinema — and other — scopes, Todd-AO and stereophonic sound have been ushered in. Radio became a menace and was overcome. Television has become another menace and is still offering tough competition...
"I've enjoyed most of it, hated a little of it and benefited from all of it," she concluded.
Alf Goodykoontz, executive editor of Richmond Newspapers, said, "Edith Lindeman made a tremendous contribution to the cultural life of this community for many years. She'll be remembered especially for the strong coverage she provided for the area's regional theaters In their formative years."
In collaboration with composer Carl Stutz, Mrs. Calisch wrote several
dozen popular songs in the 1950s. Their biggest hit was "Little Things Mean a Lot," which, as recorded by Kitty Kallen, was the top song of 1954.
"My father - and later, my husband went by the philosophy that it's the little things that mean so much," Mrs. Calisch said, explaining the genesis of the song.
"My dad always said, 'When you've got money, spend it and enjoy it. When you don't, you do without it. There are plenty of things to make up for it."
"Little Things" has been revived repeatedly by recording artists, most recently in 1978 by country singer Margo Smith.
In 1953, Stutz and Mrs. Calisch wrote "Red-Headed Stranger," a Western ballad originally intended for Perry Como. Because of a publishing dispute, Mrs. Calisch said, the tune never reached Como.
In 1976, "Stranger" became the titie song of a best-selling album by country singer Willie Nelson.
"I was just sitting at home one night, playing with the idea of colors," Mrs. Calisch recalled. The redhead she had in mind was her husband. She set the ballad in Blue Rock, Montana, gave the hero a "raging black stallion" -and introduced him to a "yellow-haired lady" riding a bay.
A third Stutz-Lindeman composition, Blackberry Winter," originally recorded by the late "Sunshine Sue" Workman of WRVA radio's "Old Dominion Barn Dance," became a backdoor million seller in the 50s as the flip side of Mitch Miller's "The Yellow Rose of Texas." (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-d3VYRjzdw&feature=related)
Mrs Callsch said she took up songwriting while driving through Kentucky with her husband.
"We had the radio on and a lot of music was coming over, and I said,
"Oh, Lord, I could write better lyrics than that." And my husband, who believed I could do anything I set my mind to, said, 'Well, why don't you?'"
Insipired by the winding roads on that trip, she soon had a first lyric which, she took to Stutz, then an announcer at WRVA.
"We never went any place with the song," Mrs. Calisch recalled. "But I figured if I could write 'Curves In Kentucky,' I could write something a little better."
She was honored by the Songwriters Hall of Fame in l97l.
Before joining The Times-Dispatch
, Mrs. Calisch wrote several children's books used In Jewish Sabbath schools including two volumes of "Bible Tales for the Very Young" and "Tales from Grandfather's Big Book," based on Old Testament stories.