The Dick Hyman Trio – The Unforgettable Sound Of The Dick Hyman Trio (1956)

FrontCover1Richard Hyman (born March 8, 1927) is an American jazz pianist and composer. Over a 60-year career, he has worked as a pianist, organist, arranger, music director, electronic musician, and composer. He was named a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters fellow in 2017.

Hyman was born in New York City to Joseph C. Hyman and Lee Roven. He was trained classically by his mother’s brother, the concert pianist Anton Rovinsky, who premiered The Celestial Railroad by Charles Ives in 1928. Hyman said of Rovinsky, “He was my most important teacher. I learned touch from him and a certain amount of repertoire, especially Beethoven. On my own I pursued Chopin. I loved his ability to take a melody and embellish it in different arbitrary ways, which is exactly what we do in jazz. Chopin would have been a terrific jazz pianist! His waltzes are in my improvising to this day.” Hyman’s older brother, Arthur, owned a jazz record collection and introduced him to the music of Bix Beiderbecke and Art Tatum.

Relax Records released Hyman’s solo piano versions of “All the Things You Are” and “You Couldn’t Be Cuter” around 1950. Hyman recorded two honky tonk piano albums under the pseudonym “Knuckles O’Toole and included two original compositions, and recorded more as “Willie the Rock Knox” and “Slugger Ryan”.

As a studio musician in the 1950s Hyman performed with Charlie Parker for Parker’s only film appearance. He worked as music director for Arthur Godfrey.

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Hyman has worked as composer, arranger, conductor, and pianist for the Woody Allen films Zelig, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Broadway Danny Rose, Stardust Memories, Hannah and Her Sisters, Radio Days, Bullets Over Broadway, Everyone Says I Love You, Sweet and Lowdown, The Curse of the Jade Scorpion and Melinda and Melinda. His other film scores include Moonstruck, Scott Joplin, The Lemon Sisters and Alan and Naomi. His music has also been heard in Mask, Billy Bathgate, Two Weeks Notice, and other films. He was music director of The Movie Music of Woody Allen, which premiered at the Hollywood Bowl.

Hyman composed and performed the score for the Cleveland/San Jose Ballet Company’s Piano Man, and Twyla Tharp’s The Bum’s Rush for the American Ballet Theatre. He was the pianist/conductor/arranger in Tharp’s Eight Jelly Rolls, Baker’s Dozen, and The Bix DickHyman02Pieces and similarly arranged and performed for Miles Davis: Porgy and Bess, a choreographed production of the Dance Theater of Dallas. In 2007, his Adventures of Tom Sawyer, which had been commissioned by the John G. Shedd Institute for the Arts, and set by Toni Pimble of the Eugene Ballet, premiered in Eugene, Oregon.

In the 1960s, Hyman recorded several pop albums on Enoch Light’s Command Records. At first, he used the Lowrey organ, on the albums Electrodynamics (US No. 117), Fabulous (US No. 132), Keyboard Kaleidoscope and The Man from O.R.G.A.N. He later recorded several albums on the Moog synthesizer which mixed original compositions and cover versions, including Moog: The Electric Eclectics of Dick Hyman(Can No. 35),[10] and The Age of Electronicus (US No. 110).

The track “The Minotaur” from the aforementioned 1969 album…The Electric Eclectics… charted in the US top 40 (US R&B Singles No. 27; Hot 100 No. 38) (No. 20 Canada), becoming the first Moog single hit (although, as originally released on 45, it was labeled as the B-side to the shorter “Topless Dancers of Corfu”). Some elements from the track “The Moog and Me” (most notably the whistle that serves as the song’s lead-in) on the same album were sampled by Beck for the track “Sissyneck” on his 1996 album Odelay. (by wikipedia)

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Dick Hyman’s busy career as an in-demand studio musician for all kinds of record dates was already picking up steam at the time of this recording made under his own name circa 1955. Although he established firm credentials as a first-rate jazz interpreter, this session is a bit of a disappointment, as the middle-of-the-road arrangements seem aimed more at an easy listening crowd and they haven’t aged very well over time. The bassist and drummer provide a strictly timekeeping role, so Hyman is left alone to offer a bizarre treatment of “The Very Thought of You” on harpsichord, or joined by an unidentified whistler and guitarist (possibly Toots Thielemans?) for “Moritat” (better known as “Mack the Knife”). This is the kind of music one would expect in a retro-lounge music compilation put out by a reissue label like Rhino. Dick Hyman remains a first-rate pianist and organist in the 21st century, but there are many far superior recordings available under his name that should take priority over this long out of print LP. (by Ken Dryden)

But … still a pretty nice album !

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Personnel:
Joe Benjamin (bass)
Dick Hyman (piano)
Osie Johnson (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. Unforgettable (Gordon) 3.02
02. Panama (Tyers) 2.38
03. Jealous (Finch/Little/Malie) 2.21
04. The Very Thought Of You (Noble) 2.23
05. Moritat – A Theme From “The Threepenny Opera” (Weill) 2.17
06. Baubles, Bangles And Beads (Forrest/Wright) 2.10
07. Cecilia (Doyer/Herman) 2.27
08. East Of The Sun (And West Of The Moon) (Bowman) 2.47
09. Star Dust (Carmichael/Parish) 3.10
10. Out Of Nowhere (Heyman/Green) 2.53
11. Besame Mucho (Velazquez/Skylar) 3.00
12. The Old Professor (Hyman) 2.10

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Kenny Burrell – Introducing Kenny Burrell (1956)

FrontCover1Kenneth Earl Burrell (born July 31, 1931) is an American jazz guitarist known for his work on the Blue Note label. His collaborations with Jimmy Smith produced the 1965 Billboard Top Twenty hit album Organ Grinder Swing. He has cited jazz guitarists Charlie Christian and Django Reinhardt as influences, along with blues guitarists T-Bone Walker and Muddy Waters. Furthermore, Jimi Hendrix has cited Burrell as an influence.

Burrell is a professor and Director of Jazz Studies at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.

Burrell was born in Detroit, Michigan. Both his parents played instruments, and he began playing guitar at the age of 12 after listening Charlie Christian’s recordings. During World War II, due to metal shortage, he abandoned the idea of becoming a saxophonist, and bought an acoustic guitar for $10. He was inspired to play jazz after listening to Oscar Moore, but it was Django Reinhardt who showed him “that you could get your own individuality on an instrument.” He went on to study composition and theory with Louis Cabara and classical guitar with Joe Fava. While a student at Wayne State University, he made his recording debut as a member of Dizzy Gillespie’s sextet in 1951,[9] followed by the “Rose of Tangier”/”Ground Round” single recorded under his own name at Fortune Records in Detroit. While in college, Burrell founded the New World Music Society collective with fellow Detroit musicians Pepper Adams, Donald Byrd, Elvin Jones, and Yusef Lateef.

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Burrell toured with Oscar Peterson after graduating in 1955 and then moved to New York City in 1956 with pianist Tommy Flanagan. Within months, Burrell had recorded his first album as leader for Blue Note and both he and Flanagan were sought-after as sidemen and studio musicians, performing with singers Tony Bennett and Lena Horne and recording with Billie Holiday, Jimmy Smith, Gene Ammons, and Kenny Dorham, among others. From 1957 to 1959, Burrell occupied the former chair of Charlie Christian in Benny Goodman’s band. Since his New York debut Burrell has had a prolific recording career, and critics have cited The Cats with John Coltrane in 1957, Midnight Blue with Stanley Turrentine in 1963, and Guitar Forms with arranger Gil Evans in 1965 as particular highlights.

In 1978, he began teaching a course at UCLA called “Ellingtonia,” examining the life and accomplishments of Duke Ellington. Although the two never collaborated directly, Ellington called Burrell his “favorite guitar player,” and Burrell has recorded a number of tributes to and interpretations of Ellington’s works. Since 1996, Burrell has served as Director of Jazz Studies at UCLA, mentoring such notable alumni as Gretchen Parlato and Kamasi Washington.

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Burrell wrote, arranged, and performed on the 1998 Grammy Award-winning album Dear Ella by Dee Dee Bridgewater, received the 2004 Jazz Educator of the Year Award from Down Beat, and was named a 2005 NEA Jazz Master.

Burrell was a GRAMMY Salute To Jazz Honoree in 2010. The Grammy website states, between “…1956 and 2006, Mr. Burrell has excelled as a leader, co-leader and sideman releasing recordings with stellar musicians in the world of jazz.”

Introducing Kenny Burrell is the second album by American jazz guitarist Kenny Burrell, recorded in 1956 and released by Blue Note Records. In 2000, the album was released on the 2 CD-set Introducing Kenny Burrell: The First Blue Note Sessions with Kenny Burrell Volume 2, plus bonus tracks. (by wikipedia)

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Despite its title, this LP was actually guitarist Kenny Burrell’s second Blue Note album, although the first to be released. Teamed with pianist Tommy Flanagan, bassist Paul Chambers, drummer Kenny Clarke and the conga of Candido, Burrell displays what was already an immediately recognizable tone. At 24, Burrell had quickly emerged to become one of the top bop guitarists of the era, and he is in particularly excellent form on “This Time the Dreams on Me,” “Weaver of Dreams” and “Delilah.” A bonus of this set is a percussion duo by Clarke and Candido on “Rhythmorama.” Enjoyable music. (by Scott Yanow)

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Personnel:
Kenny Burrell (guitar)
Candido Camero (percussion)
Paul Chambers (bass)
Kenny Clarke (drums)
Tommy Flanagan (piano)

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Tracklist:
01. This Time The Dream’s On Me (Arlen/Mercer) 4.59
02. Fugue ‘n’ Blues (Burrell) 6.48
03. Takeela (Burrell) 4.19
04. Weaver Of Dreams (Elliott/Young) 4.43
05. Delilah (Young) 6.04
06. Rhythmorama (Clarke) 6.28
07. Blues For Skeeter (Burrell) 8.05

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The George Shearing Quintet – The Shearing Spell (1956)

OriginalFrontCover1Sir George Shearing, OBE (13 August 1919 – 14 February 2011) was a British jazz pianist who for many years led a popular jazz group that recorded for Discovery Records, MGM Records and Capitol Records. The composer of over 300 titles, including the jazz standard “Lullaby of Birdland”, had multiple albums on the Billboard charts during the 1950s, 1960s, 1980s and 1990s. He died of heart failure in New York City, at the age of 91.

Born in Battersea, London, Shearing was the youngest of nine children. He was born blind to working class parents: his father delivered coal and his mother cleaned trains in the evening. He started to learn piano at the age of three and began formal training at Linden Lodge School for the Blind, where he spent four years.

Though he was offered several scholarships, Shearing opted to perform at a local pub, the Mason’s Arms in Lambeth, for “25 bob a week” playing piano and accordion. He joined an all-blind band during that time and was influenced by the records of Teddy Wilson and Fats Waller. Shearing made his first BBC radio broadcast during this time after befriending Leonard Feather, with whom he started recording in 1937.

In 1940, Shearing joined Harry Parry’s popular band and contributed to the comeback of Stéphane Grappelli. Shearing won seven consecutive Melody Maker polls during this time. Around that time he was also a member of George Evans’s Saxes ‘n’ Sevens band.

Shaering05In 1947, Shearing emigrated to the United States, where his harmonically complex style mixing swing, bop and modern classical influences gained popularity. One of his first performances was at the Hickory House. He performed with the Oscar Pettiford Trio and led a jazz quartet with Buddy DeFranco, which led to contractual problems, since Shearing was under contract to MGM and DeFranco to Capitol Records.

In 1949, he formed the first George Shearing Quintet, a band with Margie Hyams (vibraphone), Chuck Wayne (guitar), later replaced by Toots Thielemans (listed as John Tillman), John Levy (bass) and Denzil Best (drums) and recorded for Discovery, Savoy and MGM, including the immensely popular single “September in the Rain” (MGM), which sold over 900,000 copies; “my other hit” to accompany “Lullaby of Birdland”. Shearing said of this hit that it was “as accidental as it could be.”

Shearing’s interest in classical music resulted in some performances with concert orchestras in the 1950s and 1960s, and his solos frequently drew upon the music of Satie, Delius and Debussy for inspiration. He became known for a piano technique known as “Shearing’s voicing”, a type of double melody block chord, with an additional fifth part that doubles the melody an octave lower. (This style is also known as “locked hands” and the jazz organist Milt Buckner is generally credited with inventing it.[citation needed])

In 1956, Shearing became a naturalized citizen of the United States. He continued to play with his quintet, with augmented players through the years, and recorded with Capitol until 1969. He created his own label, Sheba, that lasted a few years. Along with dozens of musical stars of his day, Shearing appeared on ABC’s The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom. Earlier, he had appeared on the same network’s reality show, The Comeback Story, in which he discussed how to cope with blindness.

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Shaering05In 1970, he began to “phase out his by-now-predictable quintet” and disbanded the group in 1978. One of his more notable albums during this period was The Reunion, with George Shearing (Verve 1976), made in collaboration with bassist Andy Simpkins and drummer Rusty Jones, and featuring Stéphane Grappelli, the musician with whom he had debuted as a sideman decades before. Later, Shearing played with a trio, as a soloist and increasingly in a duo. Among his collaborations were sets with the Montgomery Brothers, Marian McPartland, Brian Q. Torff, Jim Hall, Hank Jones and Kenny Davern. In 1979, Shearing signed with Concord Records, and recorded for the label with Mel Tormé. This collaboration garnered Shearing and Tormé two Grammys, one in 1983 and another in 1984.

Shearing remained fit and active well into his later years and continued to perform, even after being honoured with an Ivor Novello Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993. He never forgot his native country and, in his last years, would split his year between living in New York and Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, where he bought a house with his second wife, singer Ellie Geffert. This gave him the opportunity to tour the UK, giving concerts, often with Tormé, backed by the BBC Big Band. He was appointed OBE in 1996. In 2007, he was knighted. “So”, he noted later, “the poor, blind kid from Battersea became Sir George Shearing. Now that’s a fairy tale come true.”

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He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1992 when he was surprised by Michael Aspel.

In 2004, he released his memoirs, Lullaby of Birdland, which was accompanied by a double-album “musical autobiography”, Lullabies of Birdland. Shortly afterwards, however, he suffered a fall at his home and retired from regular performing.

In 2012 Derek Paravicini and jazz vocalist Frank Holder did a tribute concert to the recordings of Shearing. Ann Odell transcribed the recordings and taught Paravicini the parts, as well as being the MD for the concerts. Lady Shearing also endorsed the show, sending a letter to be read out before the Watermill Jazz Club performance.

Shearing was married to Trixie Bayes from 1941 to 1973. Two years after his divorce he married his second wife, the singer Ellie Geffert, who survived him.

Shearing was a member of the Bohemian Club and often performed at the annual Bohemian Grove Encampments. He composed music for two of the Grove Plays (by wikipedia)

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This was the first recording that George Shearing and his Quintet made for Capitol, an association that lasted up until 1969 and would result in quite a few enjoyable but now long-out-of-print LPs that have not been reissued since. At the time Shearing’s popular group consisted of the leader/pianist, vibraphonist Johnny Rae, guitarist Toots Thielemans, bassist Al McKibbon, drummer Bill Clark and on some selections Armando Peraza and Willie Bobo on percussion. Their easy-listening brand of bopbased music is heard at its best on this Lp on “Autumn in New York,” “Out of This World,” “Moonray” and “Cuban Fantasy.” (by Scott Yanow)

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Personnel:
Willie Bobo (timbales)
Bill Clark (drums)
Al McKibbon (bass)
Armando Peraza (percussion)
Johnny Rae (vibraphone)
George Shearing (piano)
Toots Thielemans (guitar, harmonica)

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Tracklist:
01. Autumn In New York (Duke) 5.03
02. Strange (Fisher/La Touche) 2.49
03. Yesterdays (Kern) 3.13
04. Goodnight, My Love (Arnheim/Tobias/Lemare) 3.11
05. Moonray (Shaw/Madison/Quenzer) 5.07
06. Cuban Carnival (Rugolo) 2.25
07. Midnight In The Air (Feather) 2.25
08. The Man I Love (Gershwin) 4.09

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Don Elliott And Rusty Dedrick – Counterpoint For Six Valves (1959)

FrontCover1.jpgAn extremely popular player in the ’50s, Don Elliott was a fine soloist in the swing mode. He first studied piano and accordion, then played baritone horn and mellophone in his high school band. He switched to trumpet while playing in local dance bands, and as a teen worked with fellow teen Bill Evans. Elliott studied harmony at the Institute of Musical Art in New York in the mid-’40s, then played trumpet in an army band. Following that, he studied arranging and vibes at the University of Miami in 1947. When he returned to New York, Elliott played with George Shearing, Teddy Wilson, and Benny Goodman. He later performed and recorded with Terry Gibbs and Buddy Rich before forming his own band. Elliott took “miscellaneous instrument” honors in Down Beat five straight years in the late ’50s. During the ’60s and ’70s, he did Broadway shows and composed film scores and songs for radio and television commercials. He returned to jazz in 1975, serving as a guest soloist with the New York Jazz Repertory Company at Carnegie Hall. (by Ron Wynn)

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Counterpoint for Six Valves is an album by American jazz trumpeters Don Elliott and Rusty Dedrick which was recorded in 1955 for the Riverside label. The album features six tracks that were originally recorded in 1955 and released as the 10-inch LP, Six Valves along with four additional tracks from 1956. This album was also reissued on the Jazzland label as Double Trumpet Doings. (by wikipedia)

And yes … this is another high class Jazz recording from Don Elliott and Rusty Dedrik

BackCover1.jpgBesetzung:
Rusty Dedrick (trumpet)
Don Elliott (trumpet)
Dick Hyman (piano)
Don Lamond (drums)
Mundell Lowe (guitar)
Eddie Safranski (bass)

Rusty Dedrick.jpgTracklist:
01. Mine (Gershwin) 3.08
02. Vampire Till Ready (Hyman) 5.04
03. Your Own Iron (Hyman) 5.02
04. It’s Easy To Remember (Hart/Rodgers) 4.56
05. The Bull Speaks (Hyman) 3.21
06. Dominick Seventh (Hyman) 5.09
07. Gargantuan Chant (Hyman) 4.42
08. When Your Lover Has Gone (Swan) 5.07
09. Henry’s Mambo (Hyman) 2.16
10. Theme And Inner Tube (Hyman) 2.00

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Big Bill Broonzy & Pete Seeger – In Concert (1956)

FrontCover1.JPGThis LP comes from a 1956 concert at Northwestern University, at a time when Broonzy had returned to his rural roots and was playing the folk circuit. (He would die two years later at age 55.) Like a lot of folk shows of that time, it includes several old chestnuts that we have by now heard too many times – “Midnight Special” (the only real duet by Broonzy and Seeger), and “This Train Is Bound for Glory”, “Crawdad Hole”, and “Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey”, all performed by Broonzy. On “This Train” (perhaps most notable for the inclusion of some civil-rights lyrics) and “Crawdad Hole”, Broonzy basically limits himself to rhythm guitar, employing a sort of do-wacka-do pattern; on “Bill Bailey”, he adds a lot of fills. There’s also a play-party song attributed to Leadbelly, “Green Corn”, led by Seeger, that doesn’t really get anywhere. Other than that, though, the material is pretty interesting. Seeger contributes “Mrs. McGrath”, an uptempo Irish traditional song with antiwar lyrics, and “Goofin’ Off Suite”, an instrumental on banjo that includes his interpretation of “Ode to Joy”. Broonzy plays three blues. The first, “Backwater Blues”, is a 12-bar blues written by Bessie Smith about a late-1920s flood in Mississippi, and is the only slow blues on the record; it gives him the chance to stretch out some on both guitar and vocals. The other two are originals – “Willie Mae”, another 12-bar blues but one on which Broonzy varies the length of the lines greatly, and “Alberta,” featuring a dramatically drawn-out a cappella intro (a device he uses on a number of tracks). But the real surprise is “The Glory of Love”, an old Tin Pan Alley song that Broonzy gives a Piedmont-blues treatment and on which he really shows off his prowess on guitar. The LP also has a couple of distinguishing characteristics that go beyond the music itself – the between-song patter, and the sense of listening in on a moment in history when the folk song revival was, in the words of Studs Terkel (who supplied the somewhat-overwritten liner notes), in its infancy. (fatpidgeon)

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As part of its deal with Verve Records, Folkways Records has provided this tape of a joint concert by Big Bill Broonzy and Pete Seeger, performed at Northwestern University in 1956 and recorded by WFMT radio. Broonzy, in his early sixties, was two years away from his death; Seeger was in his mid-thirties. Each singer was clearly accustomed to performing as a solo, and their banter in this informal song pull was both friendly and also a bit awkward, with Seeger getting the worst of it, if only because his typical affected casualness came to seem a little more affected than usual. Nevertheless, after joining together on “Midnight Special,” the two managed some representative individual performances from their repertories, ranging from Broonzy’s mixture of old folk songs and old pop songs (“The Glory of Love,” “Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey”) to Seeger’s politically oriented folk (the anti-war “Mrs. McGrath”), and borrowed classical material (“Goofin’ Off Suite,” with its Beethoven arranged for banjo). The editing of the tape is sometimes abrupt, and as the singers reach the end of the disc, they make it sound like they’re just breaking for intermission. But both come off effectively before an appreciative audience. (by William Ruhlmann)

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Personnel:
Big Bill Broonzy (guitar, vocals)
Pete Seeger (banjo, vocals, tin whistle)

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Tracklist:
01. Midnight Special (Traditional) 6.07
02. Blackwater Blues (Smith) 3.19
03. Green Corn (Ledbetter) 4.25
04. This Train Is Bound For Glory (Traditional) 4.25
05. Mrs. McGrath (Traditional) 5.41
06. Crawdad Hole (Traditional) 3.51
07. Medley 5.43
07.1. Hillel Instrumental (Seeger)
07.2. The Glory Of Love (Hill)
08. Goofin’ Off Suite (Seeger/Beethoven) 5.11
09. Willie Mae (Broonzy) 3.23
10. Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey (Traditional) 3.30
11. Alberta (Broonzy) 3.06

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Big Bill Broonzy
(June 26, 1903 – August 14, 1958)

Pete Seeger
(May 3, 1919 – January 27, 2014)

Jacqueline François – Serenata (5) (1956)

FrenchFrontCover1.jpgJacqueline François (born Jacqueline Guillemautot) was born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, near Paris, in January 30, 1922, died March 7, 2009 in Courbevoie, Hauts-de-Seine, France).

She began singing at the end of WWII. She has her first hit in 1948 with “C’est le printemps” (“Here is Spring”) and wins the “Grand Prix du Disque 1948”.

She was married to Henri Decker, a French actor.

That same year she records a song that will become her greatest hit and a world success, “Mademoiselle de Paris”.

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She has been performing in French and English for more than four decades and she toured all over the world (she appeared in the Ed Sullivan Show in 1957), being one of the most successful and classy French singers. ((by john25)

And this album was released in Brazil, too  !

Enjoy Jacqueline François’ style and voice!

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Personnel:
Jacqueline François (vocals)
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Michel Legrand et son Orchestre (01., 03., 05. + 10.)
Claude Bolling Et Son Orchestre (02., 04, 06. – 09.)
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Henri Decker (vocals on 05.)
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background vocals:
Les Fontana

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Tracklist:
01. Qué Será, Será (Marnay/Livingston/Evans) 1.56
02. La Marie Vison (Heyral/Varnay) 2.11
03. Tu T’Fous De Moi (Bailly) 1.52
04. Sa Jeunesse… Entre Ses Mains (Aznavour) 3.33
05. Main Dans La Main (Cowell/François) 2.57
06. Serenata (Plante/Anderson/Parish) 2.51
07. Quand Je Monte Chez Toi (Salvador/Broussolle) 2.10
08. Qu’est C’que T’as Fait (Decker/Vendôme) 3.12
09. Rio (Giraud/Delanoë) 2.30
10. L’Amour A Fleur De Cœur (Aznavour) 3.19FrenchLabelB1.jpg

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BrazilLabels.jpgThe labels from the Brazil edition

Sophie Tucker – Bigger And Better Then Ever (1956)

FrontCover1.JPGSophie Tucker, original name Sophie Kalish, also called Sophie Abuza, (born Jan. 13, 1884, Russia—died Feb. 9, 1966, New York, N.Y., U.S.), American singer whose 62-year stage career included American burlesque, vaudeville, and nightclub and English music hall appearances.

Born somewhere in Russia as her mother was on her way to join her father in the United States, Sophie Kalish grew up in Boston and then in Hartford, Connecticut, where her mother ran a restaurant. Her father had changed the family name to Abuza after his arrival in the United States. From her childhood she wanted to be an entertainer, and she began by singing in the family restaurant, in part to escape waiting on tables and dishwashing. In 1906 she changed her name to Sophie Tucker and landed a few singing jobs.

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Her professional career began in 1906 when, after a successful amateur appearance, she opened in a blackface routine at the old Music Hall in New York City. In 1909 she appeared with the Ziegfeld Follies. Tucker traveled the vaudeville circuits from coast to coast for more than 20 years and also made occasional appearances in England, where she gained a substantial following. Her brassy, flamboyant style, set off by her warm and ample presence, was perfectly suited to both sentimental ballads and risqué songs, and she became a great favourite of audiences. In 1911 she first sang “Some of These Days,” which became her trademark. Tucker’s first appearance at the Palace Theater in New York City, which was considered the summit of success in vaudeville, came in August 1914. It was in 1928, at the Palace, that she was first billed as “The Last of the Red-Hot Mamas.” She also appeared in numerous editions of Earl Carroll’s Vanities and the SophieTucker04.jpgShuberts’ Gaieties and in such shows as Louisiana Lou (1911), Round in Fifty in London (1922), Charlot’s Revue (1925), with Gertrude Lawrence, and Cole Porter’s hit Leave It to Me (1938). For a time in the 1920s she operated her own New York club, Sophie Tucker’s Playground.

In the early 1930s, when vaudeville was beginning to seem passé, Tucker turned to nightclubs, while many of her fellow vaudevillians either attempted the movies or slid into oblivion. She made several films, including Honky Tonk (1929), Broadway Melody of 1937 (1937), and Follow the Boys (1944), but she preferred live audiences, and she played to them with great success for more than 30 years. She also made occasional television appearances, mainly on The Ed Sullivan Show, during the 1950s and early ’60s, and she was an active performer until 1965. Her autobiography, Some of These Days, was published in 1945. (britannica.com)

And her´s a very special album by Sophie Tucker. Sophie Tucker tells stories about love and life:

Mother Sophie came to us, speaking words of wisdom ….

Sophie Tucker was accompanied by Ted Shapiro:

Ted Shapiro (October 31, 1899 – May 26, 1980) was a United States popular music composer, pianist, and sheet music publisher.

Shapiro was born in New York City. He became a Tin Pan Alley songwriter and accompanied notable star vaudeville singers of the day, including Nora Bayes and Eva Tanguay. In 1921 he was hired as accompanist and music director for Sophie Tucker. Shapiro worked with Tucker for the rest of her life,[1] appearing at the piano on stage with her, exchanging banter and wisecracks between songs. Shapiro also wrote a number of songs for Tucker.

Ted Shapiro became a member of ASCAP in 1924. His biggest hits were the holiday standard “Winter Weather” from 1941, and “If I Had You”, first published in 1928, which continues to be covered by new recording artists and used in movie soundtracks into the 21st century. His other successful tunes and songs include “He’s Home for a Little While”, “A Handful of Stars”, “To You”, written with Tommy Dorsey and Benny Davis, “Far Away Island”, “Sitting in the Sand A-Sunnin'”, “Now I’m In Love”, “”You’ll Be Reminded of Me”, “Starlight Souvenirs”, “This is No Dream”, “Dog on the Piano”, “Puttin’ On the Dog”, “Waitin’ for Katy”, and “Ask Anyone in Love”.

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Ted Shapiro was one of at least three children of Joseph and Jennie Shapiro. His parents were Jewish immigrants from Kovno, Russia (now Kaunas, Lithuania). He was married twice, the first time being to Joan Max of Miami, FL and the second to Susan Seippel Shapiro.

Some of his songs were written in collaboration with his wife Susan Shapiro (b. November 4, 1923), an accomplished jewelry designer, who owned and operated a store called Trifles and Treasures on Kane Concourse in Bay Harbor Islands, Florida. Ted adopted Susan’s three children: John, Lynn and Jennifer. John and Lynn are Susan’s biological children, while Jennifer was adopted. He was loved and adored by them.

Ted Shapiro died at age 80 in Bay Harbor, Florida. (by wikipedia)

This is an really impessive album recorded by an old Lady with a lot of experiences in her life.

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Personnel:
Sophie Tucker (vocals)
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Ted Shapiro Orchestra

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Tracklist:
01. Take A Look At Yourself (Maurzda/Montgomery) 4.48
02. Be As Big As The World You Live In (Maurzda/Studer) 4.17
03. Open Your Heart, Open Your Mind (Maurzda/Bailey) 4.55
04. With Your Life You Can Do What You Will (Maurzda/Montgomery) 4.16
05. I’m Bigger And Better Than Ever (Maurzda/Shapiro) 2.33
06. Love Is My One Bad Habit (Maurzda/Shapiro) 3.22
07. The Fountain Of Youth (Maurzda/Studer) 4.14
08. I’m As Modern As Tomorrow And As Old As Yesterday (Maurzda/Montgomery) 3.50
09. Sophie’s Matrimonial Mart (Maurzda/Studer) 5.55

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Jonah Jones + Jack Teagarden – Double Exposue – The Giants Of Dixieland (1962)

FrontCover1Here are two “giants of Dixieland” on a low budget album:

Jonah Jones (born Robert Elliott Jones; December 31, 1909 – April 29, 2000) was a jazz trumpeter who created concise versions of jazz and swing and jazz standards that appealed to a mass audience. In the jazz community, he is known for his work with Stuff Smith. He was sometimes referred to as “King Louis II,” a reference to Louis Armstrong. Jones started playing alto saxophone at the age of 12 in the Booker T. Washington Community Center band in Louisville, Kentucky before quickly transitioning to trumpet, where he excelled.

Jones was born in Louisville, Kentucky. Jones began his career playing on a river boat named Island Queen, which traveled between Kentucky and Ohio. He began in the 1920s playing on Mississippi riverboats and then in 1928 he joined with Horace Henderson. Later he worked with Jimmie Lunceford and had an early collaboration with Stuff Smith in 1932. From 1932 to 1936 he had a successful collaboration with Smith, but in the 1940s JonahJones01he worked in big bands like Benny Carter’s and Fletcher Henderson’s. He would spend most of a decade with Cab Calloway’s band which later became a combo.

Starting in the 1950s, he had his own quartet and began concentrating on a formula which gained him wider appeal for a decade. The quartet consisted of George “River Rider” Rhodes on piano, John “Broken Down” Browne on bass and Harold “Hard Nuts” Austin on drums. The most-mentioned accomplishment of this style is their version of “On The Street Where You Live”, a strong-swinging treatment of the Broadway tune with
a boogie-woogie jump blues feel. This effort succeeded and he began to be known to a wider audience. This led to his quartet performing on An Evening With Fred Astaire in 1958 and an award at the Grammy Awards of 1960, receiving the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Album. In 1972 he made a return to more “core” jazz work with JonahJones02.jpgEarl Hines on the Chiaroscuro album Back On The Street. Jones enjoyed especial popularity in France, being featured in a jazz festival in the Salle Pleyel.

A 1996 videotaped interview completed by Dan Del Fiorentino was donated to the NAMM Oral History Program Collection in 2010 to preserve his music for future generations.

Jones performed in the orchestra pit under the direction of Alexander Smallens and briefly in an onstage musical sequence of Porgy and Bess, starring Cab Calloway.

He was inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1999 and died the following year in New York City.

Jonah Jones married the trumpeter, clarinetist and hornist Elizabeth Bowles (1910–1993), sister of Russell Bowles. They had four children. (by wikipedia)

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And here´s Jack Teagarden:

Weldon Leo “Jack” Teagarden (August 20, 1905 – January 15, 1964) was a jazz trombonist and singer. According to critic Scott Yannow of Allmusic, Teagarden was the preeminent American jazz trombone player before the bebop era of the 1940s and “one of the best jazz singers too”. Teagarden’s early career was as a sideman with the likes of Tommy Dorsey, Paul Whiteman and lifelong friend Louis Armstrong before branching out as a bandleader in 1939 and specializing in New Orleans Jazz-style jazz until his death.

Born in Vernon, Texas, his brothers Charlie and Clois “Cub” and his sister Norma also became professional musicians. His father was an amateur brass band trumpeter and started him on baritone horn; by age seven he had switched to trombone. His first public performances were in movie theaters, where he accompanied his mother, a pianist.

JackTeagarden01Teagarden’s trombone style was largely self-taught, and he developed many unusual alternative positions and novel special effects on the instrument. He is usually considered the most innovative jazz trombone stylist of the pre-bebop era – Pee Wee Russell once called him “the best trombone player in the world”[3] – and did much to expand the role of the instrument beyond the old tailgate style role of the early New Orleans brass bands. Chief among his contributions to the language of jazz trombonists was his ability to interject the blues or merely a “blue feeling” into virtually any piece of music.

By 1920 Teagarden was playing professionally in San Antonio, including with the band of pianist Peck Kelley. In the mid-1920s he started traveling widely around the United States in a quick succession of different bands. In 1927, he went to New York City where he worked with several bands. By 1928 he played for the Ben Pollack band.

Within a year of the commencement of his recording career, he became a regular vocalist, first doing blues material (“Beale Street Blues”, for example), and later doing popular songs. He is often mentioned as one of the best jazz vocalists of the era;[citation needed] his singing style is like his trombone playing, in much the same way that Louis Armstrong sang like he played trumpet. Teagarden’s singing is best remembered for duets with Armstrong and Johnny Mercer.

In the late 1920s he recorded with such bandleaders and sidemen as Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Bix Beiderbecke, Red Nichols, Jimmy McPartland, Mezz Mezzrow, Glenn Miller, and Eddie Condon. Miller and Teagarden collaborated to provide lyrics and a verse to Spencer Williams’ Basin Street Blues, which in that amended form became one of the numbers that Teagarden played until the end of his days.

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In the early 1930s Teagarden was based in Chicago, for some time playing with the band of Wingy Manone. He played at the Century of Progress exposition in Chicago.

Teagarden sought financial security during the Great Depression and signed an exclusive contract to play for the Paul Whiteman Orchestra from 1933 through 1938. The contract with Whiteman’s band provided him with financial security but prevented him from playing an active part in the musical advances of the mid-thirties swing era (although Teagarden and Frank Trumbauer recorded a number of small group swing classics throughout his tenure with Whiteman on Brunswick).

Teagarden then started leading his own big band. Glenn Miller wrote the song “I Swung the Election” for him and his band in 1939. In spite of Teagarden’s best efforts, the band was not a commercial success, and he was brought to the brink of bankruptcy.

In 1946 Teagarden joined Louis Armstrong’s All Stars. In late 1951 Teagarden left to again lead his own band, then co-led a band with Earl Hines, then again with a group under his own name with whom he toured Japan in 1958 and 1959.

Teagarden appeared in the movies Birth of the Blues (1941), The Strip (1951), The Glass Wall (1953), and Jazz on a Summer’s Day (1960), the latter a documentary film of the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival. He recorded for RCA Victor, Columbia, Decca, Capitol, and MGM Records.

Early in 1964 Teagarden cut short a performance in New Orleans because of ill health. He briefly visited a hospital, then was found dead in his room at the Prince Conti Motel in New Orleans on January 15. The cause of death was bronchial pneumonia, which had followed a liver ailment. He was buried in Los Angeles.

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As a jazz artist he won the 1944 Esquire magazine Gold Award, was highly rated in the Metronome polls of 1937-42 and 1945, and was selected for the Playboy magazine All Star Band, 1957-60. Teagarden was the featured performer at the Newport Jazz Festival of 1957.

In 1969, Jack Teagarden was inducted into the DownBeat Jazz Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1985. Other honors have included induction in the ASCAP Jazz Wall of Fame in 2005 and inclusion in the Houston Institute for Culture’s Texas Music Hall of Fame.

Jack Teagarden’s compositions include “I’ve Got ‘It'” with David Rose, “Shake Your Hips”, “Big T Jump”, “Swingin’ on the Teagarden Gate”, “Blues After Hours”, “A Jam Session at Victor”, “It’s So Good”, “Pickin’ For Patsy” with Allan Reuss, “Texas Tea Party” with Benny Goodman, “I’m Gonna Stomp Mr. Henry Lee” with Eddie Condon, “Big T Blues”, “Dirty Dog”, “Makin’ Friends” with Jimmy McPartland, “That’s a Serious Thing”, and “‘Jack-Armstrong’ Blues” with Louis Armstrong, recorded on December 7, 1944, with the V-Disc All-Stars and released on V-Disc in March, 1945. (by wikipedia)

Enjoy this trip in the past … but you´ll not only hear this good old Dixie music, but real good Jazz music !

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Tracklist:

Jack Teargarden (recorded 1955):
01. Milenburg Joys (Morton/Rappolo/Mores) 3.20
02. Davenport Blues (Beiderbecke) 3.17
03. One Step (La Rocca) 3.21
04. High Society (Steele/Melrose) 4.21
05. Misery And The Blues (LeVere) 2.44

Jonah Jones Band (recorded 1956):
06. Stars Fell On Alabama (Perkins/Parish) 2.53
07. Wrap The Troubles In Dreams (Moll/Barris/Koehler) 2.05
08. Beale Street Blues (Handy) 3.53
09. Down By The Riverside (Traditional) 2.20
10. The Sheik Of Araby (Wheeler/Smith/Snyder) 3.21

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Various Artists – Les amis de Boris Vian (2010)

FrontCover1.jpgBoris Vian (10 March 1920 – 23 June 1959) was a French polymath: writer, poet, musician, singer, translator, critic, actor, inventor and engineer. Today he is remembered primarily for his novels. Those published under the pseudonym Vernon Sullivan were bizarre parodies of criminal fiction, highly controversial at the time of their release.

Vian’s other fiction, published under his real name, featured a highly individual writing style with numerous made-up words, subtle wordplay and surrealistic plots. His novel L’Écume des jours (literally: “The Foam of Days”) is the best known of these works and one of the few translated into English, under the title of Froth on the Daydream.

Vian was also an important influence on the French jazz scene. He served as liaison for Hoagy Carmichael, Duke Ellington and Miles Davis in Paris, wrote for several French jazz-reviews (Le Jazz Hot, Paris Jazz) and published numerous articles dealing with jazz both in the United States and in France. His own music and songs enjoyed popularity during his lifetime, particularly the anti-war song “Le Déserteur” (The Deserter).

Vian was born in 1920 into an upper middle-class family in the wealthy Parisian suburb of Ville d’Avray (Hauts-de-Seine). His parents were Paul Vian, a young rentier, and Yvonne Ravenez, amateur pianist and harpist. From his father Vian inherited a distrust of the church and the military, as well as a love of the bohemian life. Vian was the second of four children: the others were Lélio (1918–1984), Alain (1921–1995) and Ninon (1924–2003). The family occupied the Les Fauvettes villa. The name “Boris” was chosen by Yvonne, an avid classical music lover, after seeing a performance of Mussorgsky’s opera Boris Godunov.

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Boris’ later childhood was also marked with sickness as he suffered from Rheumatic fever when he was 12. From then on Boris parents became overprotective toward him, and he would later judge them harshly for this in L’Herbe rouge and L’Arrache-coeur.
Formal education and teenage years

From 1932 to 1937, Vian studied at Lycée Hoche in Versailles. In 1936, Vian and his two brothers started organizing what they called “surprise-parties” (surprise parties). They partook of mescaline in the form of a Mexican cactus called peyote. These gatherings became the basis of his early novels: Trouble dans les andains (Turmoil in the Swaths) (1943) and particularly Vercoquin et le plancton (Vercoquin and the Plankton) (1943–44). It was also in 1936 that Vian got interested in jazz; the next year he started playing the trumpet and joined the Hot Club de France.

In 1937, Vian graduated from Lycée Hoche, passing baccalauréats in mathematics, philosophy, Latin, Greek and German. He subsequently enrolled at Lycée Condorcet, Paris, where he studied special mathematics until 1939. Vian became fully immersed in BorisVian02the French jazz scene: for example, in 1939 he helped organize Duke Ellington’s second concert in France. When WWII started, Vian was not accepted into the army due to poor health. He entered École Centrale des Arts et Manufactures in Paris and subsequently moved to Angoulême when the school moved there because of the war.

In 1940, Vian met Michelle Léglise, who became his wife in 1941. She taught Vian English and introduced him to translations of American literature. Also in 1940, Vian met Jacques Loustalot, who became a recurring character in several early novels and short stories as “The Colonel”. Loustalot died accidentally in 1949 falling from a building he was trying to climb on in order to enter into a flat by the window, after a bet. In 1942, Vian and his brothers joined a jazz orchestra under the direction of Claude Abbadie, who became a minor character in Vian’s Vercoquin et le plancton. The same year, Vian graduated from École Centrale with a diploma in metallurgy, and his son Patrick was born.

After Vian’s graduation, he and Michelle moved to the 10th arrondissement of Paris and, on 24 August 1942 he became an engineer at the French Association for Standardisation (AFNOR). By this time he was an accomplished jazz trumpeter, and in 1943 he wrote his first novel, Trouble dans les andains (Turmoil in the Swaths). His literary career started in 1943 with his first publication, a poem, in the Hot Club de France bulletin. The poem was signed Bison Ravi (“Delighted Bison”), an anagram of Vian’s real name. The same year Vian’s father died, murdered at home by burglars.

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In 1944 Vian completed Vercoquin et le plancton (Vercoquin and the Plankton), a novel inspired partly by surprise-parties of his youth and partly by his job at the AFNOR (which is heavily satirized in the novel). Raymond Queneau and Jean Rostand helped Vian to publish this work at Éditions Gallimard in 1947, along with several works Vian completed in 1946. These included his first major novels, L’Écume des jours and L’automne à Pékin (Autumn in Peking). The former, a tragic love story in which real world objects respond to the characters’ emotions, is now regarded as Vian’s masterpiece, but at the time of its publication it failed to attract any considerable attention. L’automne à Pékin, which also had a love story at its heart but was somewhat more complex, also failed to sell well.

Frustrated by the commercial failure of his works, Vian vowed he could write a best-seller and wrote the hard-boiled novel I Spit on Your Graves (J’irai cracher sur vos tombes) in only 15 days. The book was ascribed to a fictitious American writer, Vernon Sullivan, with Vian credited as translator. Vian persuaded his publisher friend Jean d’Halluin to publish the novel in 1947. Eventually the hoax became known and the book became one of the best-selling titles of that year. Vian wrote three more Vernon Sullivan novels from 1947 to 1949.

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The year 1946 marked a turning point in Vian’s life: At one of the popular parties that he and Michelle hosted he made the acquaintance of Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir and Albert Camus, became a regular in their literary circles and started regularly publishing various materials in Les Temps Modernes. Vian admired Sartre in particular and gave him a prominent role—as “Jean-Sol Partre”—in L’Écume des jours (litt. “The foam of the days”) published in English under the title: Froth on the Daydream. Ironically, Sartre and Michelle Vian commenced a relationship that would eventually destroy Vian’s marriage.

Despite his literary work becoming more important, Vian never left the jazz scene. He became a regular contributor to various jazz-related magazines, and played trumpet at Le Tabou. As a result, his financial situation improved, and he abandoned the job at the AFNOR. Vian also formed his own choir, La petite chorale de Saint-Germain-des-Pieds.

The year 1948 saw the birth of Vian’s daughter, Carole. He continued his literary career by writing Vernon Sullivan novels, and also published poetry collections: Barnum’s Digest (1948) and Cantilènes en gelée (Cantelinas in Jelly) (1949). Vian also started BorisVian05writing plays, the first of which, L’Équarrissage pour tous (Slaughter for Everyone), was staged the year it was written, 1950. The same year saw the publication of Vian’s third major novel, L’Herbe rouge (The Red Grass). This was a much darker story than its predecessors, centering on a man who built a giant machine that could help him psychoanalyze his soul. Like the previous two books, it did not sell well; Vian’s financial situation had been steadily worsening since late 1948, and he was forced to take up translation of English-language literature and articles in order to get by. Vian separated from his wife, and in 1950 he met Ursula Kübler (1928–2010), a Swiss dancer; the two started an affair, and in 1951 Vian divorced Michelle. Ursula and Boris married in 1954.

Vian’s last novel, L’Arrache-cœur (The Heartsnatcher), was published in 1953, yet again to poor sales and Vian effectively stopped writing fiction. The only work that appeared after 1953 was a revised version of L’automne à Pékin, published 1956. He concentrated on a new field, song-writing and performing, and continued writing poetry. Vian’s songs were successful; in 1954 he embarked on his first tour as singer-songwriter. By 1955, when he was working as art director for Philips, Vian was active in a wide variety of fields: song-writing, opera, screenplays and several more plays. His first album, Chansons possibles et impossibles (Possible and Impossible Songs), was also recorded in 1955. He wrote the first French rock and roll songs with his friend Henri Salvador, who sang them under the nickname Henry Cording. He also wrote “Java Pour Petula” (a song about an English girl arriving in France, written in Parisian argot) for Petula Clark’s first concert performances in France.

Still in 1955, Vian decided to perform some of his songs on stage himself. He had been unhappy about the fact that French singer Marcel Mouloudji (1922-1994), who had interpreted “Le Deserteur” (The Deserter) on stage the year before, had not accepted the original lyrics because he thought that they would lead to the song being banned. Although Vian accepted a change to one verse, the song was banned from TV and radio channels until 1967. The record of Vian’s songs performed by himself was not successful in France until ten years after his death.

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Vian’s life was endangered in 1956 by a pulmonary edema, but he survived and continued working with the same intensity as before. In 1957, Vian completed another play: Les Bâtisseurs d’empire (The Empire Builders), which was only published and staged in 1959. In 1958, Vian worked on the opera Fiesta with Darius Milhaud, and a collection of his essays, En avant la zizique… Et par ici les gros sous (On with the Muzak… And Bring in the Big Bucks), was published the same year.

On the morning of 23 June 1959, Vian was at the Cinema Marbeuf for the screening of the film version of I will Spit on Your Graves. He had already fought with the producers over their interpretation of his work, and he publicly denounced the film, stating that he wished to have his name removed from the credits. A few minutes after the film began, he reportedly blurted out: “These guys are supposed to be American? My ass!” He then collapsed into his seat and died from sudden cardiac death en route to the hospital.[3]

During his lifetime, only the novels published under the name of Vernon Sullivan were successful. Those published under his real name, which had real literary value in his eyes, remained a commercial failure, despite the support of famous authors of this time.

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Almost immediately after his death, L’Écume des jours, and then L’automne à Pékin, L’Arrache-coeur, and L’Herbe rouge, began to get recognition in France and became cult novels for youths of the 1960s and 1970s.

As a songwriter, Vian had mixed success. When he decided to sing the songs that were rejected by the stars himself, he succeeded only in reaching a limited audience (including Léo Ferré et Georges Brassens), the public remaining unconvinced of his talent for singing.[6] Nevertheless the May 1968 in France generation, even more than the previous ones, loved his songs, especially because of their impertinence.

As a songwriter, Vian also inspired Serge Gainsbourg, who used to attend his show at the cabaret Les Trois Baudets and who wrote, thirty years later: “I took it on the chin […], he sang terrific things […], it is because I heard him that I decided to try something interesting”. As a critic, Boris Vian was the first to support Gainsbourg in Le Canard Enchaîné, in 1957.

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Over the years, Vian’s work have become modern classics, often celebrated and selected as subjects for study in schools. Vian is still viewed by many as the emblematic figure of Saint Germain des Prés as it existed during the postwar decade, when this district was the centre of artistic and intellectual life in Paris. (by wikipedia)

And here´s a pretty good sampler with songs from Boris Vian sung by many artists from the Fifties like Petula Cark, Henri Salvador or Juliette Gréco.

What a wonderful way to discover the world of the one and only Boris Vian.

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Tracklist:
01. Mouloudji: Le deserteur (1954) (Vian/Berg) 3.11
02. Henri Salvador: Faut rigoler (1958) (Salvador/Vian) 3.30
03. Annie Cordy: Nick nack paddy whack (1959) (Vian/Arnold) 2.08
04. Magali Noël: Oh! si y´avait pas ton père (1959) (Salvador/Vian) 2.39
05. Petula Clark: Java pour petula (1959) (Henderson/Steelman/Vian) 2.09
06. Dario Moreno: Venus de milo (1959) (Vian/Freed) 2.34
07. Hugues Aufray: Nous avions vingt ans (1959) (Vian/Goraguer) 2.46
08. Magali Noël: Oh! cest divin (1959) (Vian/Simon) 3.21
09. Juliette Gréco: Musique mecanique (1957) (Vian/Popp) 3.07
10. Philippe Clay: Juste le temps de vivre (1955) (Vian) 1.37
11. Henri Salvador: Moi, je prefere la marche a pied (1958) (Salvador/Vian) 2.31
12. Mouloudji: Je suis snob (1955) (Vian/Walter) 3.12
13. Magali Noël: Mon oncle celestin (1959) (Vian/Bolling) 3.24
14. Claude Piron: D´où reviens-tu Billy Boy (1958) (Scott/Vian) 2.31
15. Henri Salvador: Blouse du dentiste (1958) (Salvador/Vian) 3.29
16. Patachou: On n´est pas la pour se faire engueuler (1955) (Vian/Walter) 3.49
17. Mouloudji: Cinematographe (1955) (Vian/Walter) 3.06
18. Henri Salvador: Va t´faire cuire un (1956) (Legrano/Vian) 2.54

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Big Bill Broonzy & Pete Seeger – In Concert (1965)

FrontCover1.JPGAs part of its deal with Verve Records, Folkways Records has provided this tape of a joint concert by Big Bill Broonzy and Pete Seeger, performed at Northwestern University in 1956 and recorded by WFMT radio. Broonzy, in his early sixties, was two years away from his death; Seeger was in his mid-thirties. Each singer was clearly accustomed to performing as a solo, and their banter in this informal song pull was both friendly and also a bit awkward, with Seeger getting the worst of it, if only because his typical affected casualness came to seem a little more affected than usual. Nevertheless, after joining together on “Midnight Special,” the two managed some representative individual performances from their repertories, ranging from Broonzy’s mixture of old folk songs and old pop songs (“The Glory of Love,” “Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey”) to Seeger’s politically oriented folk (the anti-war “Mrs. McGrath”), and borrowed classical material (“Goofin’ Off Suite,” with its Beethoven arranged for banjo). The editing of the tape is sometimes abrupt, and as the singers reach the end of the disc, they make it sound like they’re just breaking for intermission. But both come off effectively before an appreciative audience. (by William Ruhlmann)

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This LP comes from a 1956 concert at Northwestern University, at a time when Broonzy had returned to his rural roots and was playing the folk circuit. (He would die two years later at age 55.) Like a lot of folk shows of that time, it includes several old chestnuts that we have by now heard too many times – “Midnight Special” (the only real duet by Broonzy and Seeger), and “This Train Is Bound for Glory”, “Crawdad Hole”, and “Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey”, all performed by Broonzy. On “This Train” (perhaps most notable for the inclusion of some civil-rights lyrics) and “Crawdad Hole”, Broonzy basically limits himself to rhythm guitar, employing a sort of do-wacka-do pattern; on “Bill Bailey”, he adds a lot of fills. There’s also a play-party song attributed to Leadbelly, “Green Corn”, led by Seeger, that doesn’t really get anywhere. Other than that, though, the material is pretty interesting. Seeger contributes “Mrs. McGrath”, an uptempo Irish traditional song with antiwar lyrics, and “Goofin’ Off Suite”, an instrumental on banjo that includes his interpretation of “Ode to Joy”.

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Broonzy plays three blues. The first, “Backwater Blues”, is a 12-bar blues written by Bessie Smith about a late-1920s flood in Mississippi, and is the only slow blues on the record; it gives him the chance to stretch out some on both guitar and vocals. The other two are originals – “Willie Mae”, another 12-bar blues but one on which Broonzy varies the length of the lines greatly, and “Alberta,” featuring a dramatically drawn-out a cappella intro (a device he uses on a number of tracks). But the real surprise is “The Glory of Love”, an old Tin Pan Alley song that Broonzy gives a Piedmont-blues treatment and on which he really shows off his prowess on guitar. The LP also has a couple of distinguishing characteristics that go beyond the music itself – the between-song patter, and the sense of listening in on a moment in history when the folk song revival was, in the words of Studs Terkel (who supplied the somewhat-overwritten liner notes), in its infancy. (fatpidgeon)

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Personnel:
Big Bill Broonzy (guitar, vocals)
Pete Seeger (banjo, vocals, flute)

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Tracklist:
01. Midnight Special (Traditional) 6.07
02. Backwater Blues (Smith) 3.19
03. Green Corn (Ledbetter)  4.25
04. This Train Is Bound For Glory (Traditional) 4.25
05. Mrs. McGrath (Traditional) 5.41
06. Crawdad Hole (Traditional) 3.51
07. Medley 5.34
07.1. Hillel (Seeger)
07.2. The Glory Of Love (Hill)
08. Goofin’ Off Suite (Seeger) 5.11
09. Willie Mae (Broonzy) 3.23
10. Why Don’t You Come Home Bill Bailey (Traditional) 3.30
11. Alberta (Broonzy) 3.06

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