Phil Harris' original hits is a great CD to find if it's still out there. This on the other hand is a re-recorded selection of some of them on the MFP label from 1969. They didn't do such a bad job and the big band numbers especially retain the impact and verve of the originals.
"Although he was born in Linton, Indiana, Harris actually grew up in Nashville, Tennessee and identified himself as a Southerner (his hallmark song was "That's What I Like About the South"). His upbringing accounted for both his trace of a Southern accent and, in later years, the self-deprecating Southern jokes of his radio character. Harris began his music career as a drummer in San Francisco, forming an orchestra with Carol Lofner in the latter 1920s and starting a long engagement at the St. Francis Hotel. The partnership ended by 1932, and Harris led and sang with his own band, now based in Los Angeles. From December, 1936 through March, 1937, he recorded 16 sides for Vocalion, most were hot swing tunes that used a very interesting gimmick; they faded up and faded out with a piano solo (probably these were arranged their pianist Skippy Anderson). This was a novel approach and quite unusual for the time. On September 2, 1927, he was married to actress Marcia Ralston in Sydney, Australia. The couple adopted a son, Phil Harris, Jr. (b. 1935). They were divorced in September, 1940. Phil Harris played drums in Henry Halstead Big Band Orchestra in the 1920s. In 1933, he made a short film for RKO called So This Is Harris, which won an Academy Award for best live action short subject. He followed it up with a feature-length film called Melody Cruise. Both films were created by the same team that next produced Flying Down To Rio, which started the successful careers of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers."