Welcome to another installment of ‘Where On Earth Did You Find This‘ on Disney Nouns! The blog that seeks to share the most obscure Disney references imaginable.
Case in point:
This is a 1942 American film directed by Edward F. Cline and starring Bud Duncan as Snuffy Smith. It was actually a comic strip made into a movie, and done quite well, I might add.
Synopsis: Inspired by and envious of the $21 a month and free khaki britches and gold buttons of his friend Don Elbie (our man Jimmie Dodd), Snuffy Smith joins the US Army with his dog, Mr. Carson, concealed by an invisibility potion. As fate would have it, his company First Sergeant is Ed Cooper, a former revenuer who had unsuccessfully attempted to locate and destroy Snuffy’s still.
The clever Don Elbie (yup, Jimmie Dodd) has invented a new rangefinder that he hopes to have adopted by the army. General Rosewater hopes to test the new rangefinder in war games with a rival general. A pair of Fifth columnists hope to steal the rangefinder but are defeated by Snuffy’s wife Lowizie, Snuffy’s invisible dog and his hillbilly neighbours.
Sounds sane enough. And here is what the title cards have to say about Jimmie Dodd:
Jimmie Dodd actually cares for the only three tunes in the film:
Times a-Wastin, which is Snuffy Smith’s battle cry, was written by four men but sung by Dodd.
The Yard Bird, which referred to the Smith character once inducted, was written and performed by Dodd.
I Don’t Know What To Do Blues was also written and performed by Dodd.
Now here are some stills of Jimmie Dodd as Don Elbie from the film:
Keep in mind that this film was released in 1942, so it is a full 13 years before Dodd became the leader of the Mouseketeers. But we can see that he was already a musical player and songwriter. It was nice to find him in such a substantial role!
Jimmie Dodd (March 28, 1910 – November 10, 1964)
Dodd did many turns in the movies before linking up with Disney, usually uncredited, but Private Snuffy Smith is seldom mentioned.
Please enjoy this YouTube video of Jimmie Dodd as we all know and love him, singing to and about Annette:
About half way through the video, you’ll notice another Mouseketeer comes in to help Annette with her ballet. His name is Bobby Burgess. You can see him in his career after Disney by reading the post entitled Mouseketeer Bobby on Lawrence Welk.