Grant Green – Live At The Lighthouse (1972)

FrontCover1Some of Grant Green’s hottest moments as a jazz-funk bandleader came on his live records of the era, which were filled with extended, smoking grooves and gritty ensemble interplay. Live at the Lighthouse makes a fine companion piece to the excellent Alive!, though there are some subtle differences which give the album its own distinct flavor. For starters, the average track length is even greater, with four of the six jams clocking in at over 12 minutes. That makes it easy to get lost in the grooves as the musicians ride and work them over. What’s more, the rhythmic foundation of the group is noticeably altered. Live at the Lighthouse is one of the few Green albums of the period not to feature loose-limbed funky drummer Idris Muhammad, and his spare, booming sound and direct James Brown inspiration give way to the busy, bubbling, frequently up-tempo polyrhythms of drummer Greg Williams and extra percussionist Bobbye Porter Hall. They push the rest of the group to cook up a storm on tracks like “Windjammer” (which is taken at a madly up-tempo pace compared to the version on Green Is Beautiful), Donald Byrd’s modal piece “Fancy Free” (which features some of Green’s best soloing of the date), and organist Shelton Laster’s soulful original “Flood in Franklin Park.” Laster winds up as probably the most impassioned soloist, breaking out of the pocket for some spiralling, hard-swinging flights. For his part, Green works the grooves with the ease of a soul-jazz veteran used to the concept. The results make Live at the Lighthouse one of his best, most organic jazz-funk outings. (by Steve Huey)

Recorded live at the Lighthouse Club in Hermosa Beach, California on April 21, 1972

 GrantGreen

Personnel:
Claude Bartee (saxophone)
Gary Coleman (vibraphone)
Wilton Felder (bass)
Grant Green (guitar)
Bobbye Porter Hall (percussion)
Shelton Laster (organ)
Greg Williams (drums)
+
Hank Stewart (announcer)

BackCover

Tracklist:
01. Introduction by Hank Stewart 2.30
02. Windjammer (Creque) 12.15
03. Betcha By Golly, Wow (Bell/Creed) 7.41
04. Fancy Free (Byrd) 14.44
05. Flood In Franklin Park (Laster) 15.00
06. Jan Jan (Davis) 12.18
07. Walk In The Night (Bristol/McLeod) 6.37

LabelD1

*
**

 

Dewey Terry – Chief (1972)

FrontCover1Don and Dewey were an American rock and roll duo, comprising Don “Sugarcane” Harris(June 18, 1938 – December 1, 1999) and Dewey Terry (July 17, 1937[2] – May 11, 2003). Both were born and grew up in Pasadena, California.

In 1954, Dewey Terry was a founding member of a group called the Squires while still in high school. He was later joined by a friend, Don Bowman (who would later change his name to Harris). In 1955 the Squires released a record on the minor Los Angeles-based label Dig This Record. In 1957 the group broke up, but Don and Dewey remained together.

Later that year they were signed by Art Rupe’s Specialty Records label and for the next two years produced rock and roll. Both Don and Dewey played guitar, with Dewey often doubling on keyboards. When not playing guitar or bass, Don occasionally played the electric violin, a skill for which he subsequently became well known under the name of “Sugarcane” Harris. Legendary drummer Earl Palmer played frequently on their sessions.

DonDeweyAlthough Don and Dewey did not have any hits of their own, several of the songs that they wrote and/or recorded would appear on the charts later, performed by other artists. “I’m Leaving It Up to You” became a #1 hit for Dale & Grace in 1963. “Farmer John” was a hit by The Premiers, reaching #19 in 1964 after having been covered by The Searchers a year earlier. “Koko Joe” (written by the then Specialty Records producer Sonny Bono), “Justine” and “Big Boy Pete” were staples for The Righteous Brothers for many years. (Indeed, it has frequently been noted that the early Righteous Brothers act was quite closely based on Don and Dewey’s.) Finally, “Big Boy Pete” became a minor hit in 1960 for The Olympics, reaching #50 and a #4 hit for The Kingsmen when recorded with new lyrics as “The Jolly Green Giant” in 1965.

DonDewey2In 1959 Don and Dewey and producer Bono left Specialty Records for Rush Records, where they recorded a few songs but split up shortly afterward.

In 1964 Art Rupe recorded both Don and Dewey and Little Richard (another Specialty Records act) and, although some energetic music was generated, there were to be no further hits for either act. The pair played briefly in Little Richard’s band and then went their separate ways once again.

“Don and Dewey” is also an instrumental by the band “It’s a Beautiful Day”. It features on track 1 of their 1970 album “Marrying Maiden”. The band feature a violin, so this may have been the inspiration to write this piece.

That same year, 1970, Sugar Cane Harris (sic) re-emerged to a wider rock audience, playing violin on the Hot Rats solo album by Frank Zappa, with Captain Beefheart (vocals) on “Willie The Pimp” and on the lengthy instrumental jam, “The Gumbo Variations”. and in later years, went on to play on many more solo Zappa, and The Mothers of Invention albums. He had previously featured in the late 60s, on recordings with Johnny Otis of The Johnny Otis Show, and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. (by wikipedia)

So far, so good…

DewyTerry01And this is first solo album for the rare Tumbleweed Records Label:

This label was launched in 1971 by a group of businessmen, among them Bill Szymczyk, who would soon be famous as producer for Eagles and Larry Ray, both associated with ABC/Dunhill Records.
The label was located in Denver and largely financed by Gulf+Western. It took only nine albums to spend all the money, after which the label folded in 1973.
Since there was substantial financial support, packaging and production values were of a high level (for such a small label). (by dis

Dewey Terry is a soul singer, pianist and guitarist with a strong church / blues feel in his music.

The album opens with a ballad accompanied only with his expansive piano and then kicks in with a great “Stax like” version of his co-written song, with Don Harris, “Big Boy Pete”.

The rest of the album features funky blues and soul with great sound by the legendary producer Bill Szymczyk. (by vinylhistory.com)

Booklet08A“The Dewey Terry ‘Chief’ album is great — I did the arrangements with Dewey and it was a blast to make. Dewey died last year (2003) and Don ‘Sugarcane’ Harris died in ’98. They were both dear friends and I produced many projects with them. True originals and funnier than any comedy team. As an example, when playing at Tulagi in Boulder in 1973 Don was coked up and drank a bottle of Cuervo. We were in the dressing room and Don somehow got hold of a butcher knife and lunged at Dewey — Dewey held his trembling arm with the knife aimed at his chest and calmly said “now Don, I told you a hundred times — liquor and weapons do not mix”. I played many gigs with these guys and it was always a laugh riot.” Robb Kunkel

Billboard1972Billboards, 1972

Personnel:
Mel Brown (horn)
GaGa (drums)
Don Sugar Cane Harris (violin)
Danny Holien (guitar)
Jim Horn (horn)
Robb Kunkel (guitar)
Harvey Mandel (guitar)
Steve Swenson (bass)
Dewey Terry (vocal, guitar, keyboards)

BackCover1Tracklist:
01. She’s Leavin’ Me (Terry) 1.51
02. Big Boy Pete (Terry/Harris) 3.25
03. Funky Old Town (Terry/Kunkel) 5.01
04. Suit For The Cat (Terry/Harris) 4.41
05. Do On My Feet (What I Did In The Street) (Terry) 4.42
06. Reef Ade (Terry) 1.31
07. Well Known Man (Holien) 4.28
08. Sweet As Spring (Terry) 3.48
09. De Blooze (If You Wanna Get Groovy Now) (Terry) 5.35
10. Let Them Ol’ Stars And Stripes Shine (Terry) 3.39

LabelB1*
**

 

 

Led Zeppelin – How The West Was Won (2003)

FrontCover1How the West Was Won is a triple live album by the English rock group Led Zeppelin, released by Atlantic Records on compact disc on 27 May 2003, and DVD-Audio on 7 October 2003. These original performances are from the band’s 1972 concert tour of the United States, recorded at the L.A. Forum on 25 June 1972 and Long Beach Arena on 27 June 1972.

Guitarist Jimmy Page considers Led Zeppelin at this point to have been at their artistic peak, as is mentioned in the album’s liner notes. In an interview he gave to The Times newspaper in 2010, when asked which performances from Led Zeppelin’s career stand out to him now, he made reference to these gigs:

I think what we did on … How the West was Won – that 1972 gig – is pretty much a testament of how good it was. It would have been nice to have had a little more visual recordings, but there you go. That’s the conundrum of Led Zeppelin!

For many years, live recordings of these two shows only circulated in the form of bootlegs, and even then only certain audience recordings were available to fans and collectors (for example, Burn Like a Candle). Though several soundboard recordings of Led Zeppelin concerts were circulated amongst fans after having been stolen from Page’s personal archive some time in the mid–1980s, no soundboards of the 1972 Long Beach or LA Forum shows were taken, meaning the release of How the West Was Won was the first chance fans had of hearing the soundboard versions of these concerts.

LedZeppelin01AThe songs from the two shows underwent some extensive editing and audio engineering by Page at Sarm West Studios in London before being released on the album. Some songs which were played at the concerts, such as “Communication Breakdown”, “Tangerine”, “Thank You” and a rare version of “Louie Louie” from the 25 June show, were left off How the West Was Won.

LedZeppelin02For years, Led Zeppelin fans complained that there was one missing item in the group’s catalog: a good live album. It’s not that there weren’t live albums to be had. The Song Remains the Same, of course, was a soundtrack of a live performance, but it was a choppy, uneven performance, lacking the majesty of the group at its peak. BBC Sessions was an excellent, comprehensive double-disc set of their live radio sessions, necessary for any Zeppelin collection (particularly because it contained three songs, all covers, never recorded anywhere else), but some carped that the music suffered from not being taped in front of a large audience, which is how they built their legacy — or, in the parlance of this triple-disc collection of previously unreleased live recordings compiled by Jimmy Page, How the West Was Won. The West in this case is the West Coast of California, since this contains selections from two 1972 concerts in Los Angeles: a show at the LA Forum on June 25, and one two days later at Long Beach Arena. This is the first archival release of live recordings of Zeppelin at their peak and while the wait has been nigh on interminable, the end result is certainly worth the wait. Both of these shows have been heavily bootlegged for years and while those same bootleggers may be frustrated by the sequencing that swaps the two shows interchangeably (they always prefer full shows wherever possible), by picking the best of the two nights, Page has assembled a killer live album that captures the full, majestic sweep of Zeppelin at their glorious peak.

LedZeppelin03And, make no mistake, he tries to shove everything into these three discs — tight, furious blasts of energy; gonzo freak-outs; blues; and rock, a sparkling acoustic set. Like always, the very long numbers — the 25-minute “Dazed and Confused,” the 23-minute “Whole Lotta Love,” the 19-minute “Moby Dick” — are alternately fascinating and indulgent, yet even when they meander, there is a real sense of grandeur, achieving a cinematic scale attempted by few of their peers (certainly no other hard rock or metal band could be this grand; only Queen or David Bowie truly attempted this). But the real power of the band comes through on the shorter songs, where their sound is distilled to its essence. In the studio, Zeppelin was all about subtle colors, textures, and shifts in the arrangement. On-stage, they were similarly epic, but they were looser, wilder, and hit harder; witness how “Black Dog” goes straight for the gut here, while the studio version escalates into a veritable guitar army — it’s the same song, but the song has not remained the same. That’s the case throughout How the West Was Won, where songs that have grown overly familiar through years of play seem fresh and new because of these vigorous, muscular performances. For those who never got to see Zeppelin live, this — or its accompanying two-DVD video set — is as close as they’ll ever get. For those who did see them live, this is a priceless souvenir. For either group, this is absolutely essential, as it is for anybody who really loves hard rock & roll. It doesn’t get much better than this. (by by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

Booklet1Personnel:
John Bonham – drums, percussion, background vocals, co-lead vocals on 10.)
John Paul Jones (bass, keyboards, mandolin, background vocals)
Jimmy Page (guitar, mandolin, background vocals)
Robert Plant (vocals, harmonica)

BackCover1Tracklist:

CD 1:
01. LA Drone (Jones/Page) 0.15
02. Immigrant Song  (Page/Plant) 3.41
03. Heartbreaker (Bonham/Jones/Page/Plant) 7.23
04. Black Dog (Jones/Page/Plant)  5.40
05. Over The Hills And Far Away (Page/Plant) 5.07
06. Since I’ve Been Loving You (Jones/Page/Plant) 8.01
07. Stairway To Heaven (Page/Plant) 9.36
08. Going To California  (Page/Plant) 5.36
09. That’s The Way (Page/Plant) 5.53
10. Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp (Jones/Page/Plant) 4.52

CD 2:
11.1. Dazed And Confused (Page)
11.2. Walter’s Walk (Page/Plant)
11.3. The Crunge (Page/Plant/Bohnham/Jones) 25.25
12. What Is And What Should Never Be (Page/Plant) 4.41
13. Dancing Days (Page/Plant) 3.42
14. Moby Dick (Bonham/Jones/Page) 19.20

CD 3:
15.1. Whole Lotta Love (Page/Plant/Bohnham/Jones/Dixon)
15.2. Boogie Chillun (Besman/Hooker)
15.3. Let’s Have A Party (Robinson)
15.4. Hello Marylou (Mangiaracina/Pitney)
15.5. Going Down Slow (Oden) 23.08
16. Rock And Roll (Bonham/Jones/Page/Plant) 3.56
17. The Ocean (Bonham/Jones/Page/Plant) 4.21
18.1. Bring It On Home (Dixon)
18.2. Bring It On Back (Bonham/Jones/Page/Plant) 9.30

CD3A*
**

Manitas de Plata – Et ses guitares Gitanes (1972)

FrontCover1Manitas de Plata (born Ricardo Baliardo; 7 August 1921 – 5 November 2014) was a French flamenco guitarist. Despite achieving worldwide fame, he was known for disrespecting certain rhythmic rules (compás) that are traditional in flamenco.

Ricardo Baliardo was born in a gypsy caravan in Sète in southern France. He became famous by playing each year at the Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer gypsy pilgrimage in Camargue, where he was recorded live by Deben Bhattacharya.

Manitas de Plata (“Little Hands of Silver”) only agreed to play in public ten years after the death of Django Reinhardt, unanimously considered the king of gypsy guitarists. One of his recordings earned him a letter from Jean Cocteau acclaiming him as a creator.

Upon hearing him play at Arles in 1964, Pablo Picasso is said to have exclaimed “that man is of greater worth than I am!” and proceeded to draw on the guitar.

ManitasDePlata
Manitas de Plata garnered fame in the United States only after a photography exhibition in New York, organized by his friend Lucien Clergue. He had recorded his first official album in the chapel of Arles in France, in 1963, for the Phillips label. It was later re-released, in 1967, by the Connoisseur Society label and sold through the Book of the Month Club. This was a popular LP that brought him to the attention of an American audience. An American manager obtained a booking for him to play a concert in Carnegie Hall in New York on November 24, 1965.

He toured the world from 1967, and recorded discs. He played with the dancer Nina Corti. In 1968 he played at the Royal Variety Performance in London.

Manitas de Plata was the father of Jacques, Maurice, and Tonino Baliardo and uncle to Paul, François (Canut), Patchaï, Nicolas and André Reyes (the sons of his cousin, flamenco artist José Reyes (1928-1979) ), all members of the rumba flamenca band Gipsy Kings. Australian multi-instrumentalist Chris Freeman, his student in 1971, acknowledged de Plata’s influence and teachings.

ManitasDePlata2
Manitas de Plata died in a retirement home in Montpellier on 6 November 2014. The cause of death was not disclosed, but de Plata had been in poor health since suffering a severe heart attack in April 2013.

Many members of his own family were also well known flamenco musicians, including his younger brother Hippolyte Baliardo (1928-2009), and his eldest son Manero Baliardo (1940-2012). Another son, Bambo Baliardo, is still an active musician and performer as of 2015. (by wikipedia)

ManitasDePlata4This is one of his countles albums and this album was a very sucessful one.

Manitas de Plata inspired Pablo Picasso to exclaim: “That man is of greater worth than I am!”.

On the cover you can see the guitar, which was autographed by the Painter Pablo Picasso:

PicassoPlata1968It´s time to disover the music of Manitas de Plata again … it´s flamenco time !

PicassoPersonnel:
Maurice Balliardo (guitar)
Hipolito Balliardo (vocals)
Ricardo “Manitas de Plata” Balliardo (guitar, vocals)

Booklet1Tracklist:
01. Campanitas 2.15
02, Gitano De Quatro Costados 7.03
03. Alegria Del Castillo 2.05
04. Guitarras Morescas 7.19
05. Guitarras Y Tumba 5.00
06. Improvisation 7.00
07. Dos Hermanos 4.00
08. Malaguenita 2.50

Music composed by Ricardo “Manitas de Plata” Balliardo

LabelB1*
**

ManitasDePlata3

Frankie Miller – Once In A Blue Moon (1972)

FrontCover1This first album by Scotland’s Frankie Miller features pub-rock favorites Brinsley Schwarz as his backup band. That alone is reason enough to own this record. Add to that a nice batch of songs (mostly originals) and you have an enjoyable album. (by Jim Worbois)

To put this disc in a proper context, please remember it was 1972, we were burned out on psychedelic music, and it’s follow up, “heavy” music. The Band had shown Clapton the bright light, and groups were going back to their roots. Frankie Miller and the band that backed him on this debut disc, Brinsley Swartz, seemed to be on the same path of rediscovery.

The only difference was that Frankie’s voice was as big as all outdoors, full of grit, soul, and sandpaper…..AND he could write great songs. The Brinsleys were a great band, including Mickey Jupp, Bob Andrews, future Graham Parker’s Rumour members, and Nick Lowe on bass (Rockpile, Solo Artist).

But this was “MILLER TIME”. The Brinsleys played supportively, but never intruded on the Scotsman’s vocals. Several of these tracks hinted at what was to come, as far as Miller’s songwriting went. Tracks like “I Can’t Change It”, “You Don’t Need Laugh”, and “After All (I Just live My Life)”, all introspective self-analytical songs, offer glimpses of a true singer-songwriter. But this is a feel good disc to listen to, or to sing along with. There’s a good mix of orignal pub rock, like “Candlelight Sonata…”, “It’s All Over”, and “In No Resistance”, mixed in with cover songs and blues, “I’m Ready”, “Mail Box”, and Dylan’s “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues”.

Overall, this was an eye-opening debut album. A major talent, with the pipes of Otis Redding (a frequent comparison), was about to burst on the horizon. (by Hoodoo Chile)

Article1973Sounds July 21, 1973.

Personnel:
Bob Andrews (piano, accordion)
Ian Gomm (guitar)
Nick Lowe (bass)
Frankie Miller (vocals, guitar, harmonica)
Bill Rankin (drums)
Brinsley Schwarz (guitar)

BackCover1Tracklist:
01. You Don’t Need To Laugh (To Be Happy) (Miller) 3.30
02. I Can’t Change It (Miller) 3.12
03. Candlelight Sonata In ‘F’ Major (Miller) 2.33
04. Ann Eliza Jane (Miller) 3.10
05. It’s All Over (Miller) 2.42
06. In No Resistance (Miller) 3.05
07. After All (I Live My Life) (Miller/Doris) 3.47
08. Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues (Dylan) 4.05
09. Mail Box (Miller) 3.15
10. I’m Ready (Dixon) 3.12

LabelB1*
**

Cannonball Adderley Quintet – Vienna (1972)

FrontCover1From the Miles Davis sextet in 1959 to appearing on the Kung Fu TV series in 1975; and even getting a tribute by Joe Zawinul on Weather Report’s Black Market album, that’s a big arch for anyone, but probably all in a day’s work for Cannonball Adderley.

This is a fine electric jazz show from a finely-honed unit. Keyboardist George Duke has some stellar moments on Black Messiah while Cannonball’s brother, Nat, gets to shine on Hummin’. Meanwhile, Soli Tomba entrances with its Asian feel. For those not familiar with this show (seems well circulated among Cannonball fans), you will be easily tempted to leave it on repeat mode.

Recorded live at the Stadthalle, Vienna, Austria; November 4, 1972.
Very good FM broadcast.

CannonballAdderley01

Personnel:
Cannonball Adderley (saxophone)
Nat Adderley (cornet)
Walter Booker (bass)
George Duke (piano)
Roy McCurdy (drums)

Live01Tracklist:
01. Band introduction by Kurt Votava 0.39
02. Black Messiah (Duke) 19.16
03. Hummin’ (N.Adderley) 10.03
04. Soli Tomba (Booker) 5.17
05. Directions (Zawinul) 4.35
06. Mercy, Mercy, Mercy (Zawinul) 3.18
07. The Scene (N.Adderley/Zawinul) 0.55

Live02*
**

Live03

Eugene Ormandy + Philadelphia Orchestra – Great Ballet Music (Tchaikovsky) (2002)

FrontCover1“Tchaikovsky was made for ballet,” writes musicologist David Brown Before him, musicologist Francis Maes writes, ballet music was written by specialists, such as Ludwig Minkus and Cesare Pugni, “who wrote nothing else and knew all the tricks of the trade.” Brown explains that Tchaikovsky gifts for melody and orchestration, his ability to write memorable dance music with great fluency and his responsiveness to a theatrical atmosphere made him uniquely qualified in writing for the genre. Above all, Brown writes, he had “an ability to create and sustain atmosphere: above all, a faculty for suggesting and supporting movement … animated by an abundant inventiveness, above all rhythmic, within the individual phrase.” In comparing Tchaikovsky to French composer Léo Delibes, whose ballets Tchaikovsky adored, Brown writes that while the two composers shared similar talents, the Russian’s passion places him in a higher league than that of the Frenchman. Where Delibes’ music remains decorative, Tchaikovsky’s touches the senses and achieves a deeper significance. Tchaikovsky’s three ballets, Maes says, forced an aesthetic re-evaluation of music for that genre.

Tschaikovsky01
Brown calls Tchaikovsky’s first ballet, Swan Lake, “a very remarkable and bold achievement.” The genre on the whole was mainly “a decorative spectacle” when Swan Lake was written, which made Tchaikovsky’s attempt to “incorporate a drama that was more than a convenient series of incidents for mechanically shifting from one divertissement to the next … almost visionary.” However, while the composer showed considerable aptitude in writing music that focused on the drama of the story, the demand for set pieces undercut his potential for complete success. The lengthy divertissements he supplied for two of the ballet’s four acts display a “commendable variety of character” but divert action (and audience attention) away from the main plot. Moreover, Brown adds, the formal dance music is uneven, some of it “quite ordinary, a little even trite.” Despite these handicaps, Swan Lake gives Tchaikovsky many opportunities to showcase his gift for melody and, as Brown points out, has proved “indestructible” in popular appeal. The oboe solo associated with Odette and her swans, which first appears at the end of Act 1, is one of the composer’s best–known themes.

SwanLakeTchaikovsky considered his next ballet, The Sleeping Beauty, one of his finest works, according to Brown. The structure of the scenario proved more successful than that of Swan Lake. While the prologue and first two acts contain a certain number of set dances, they are not designed for gratuitous choreographic decoration but have at least some marginal relevance to the main plot. These dances are also far more striking than their counterparts in Swan Lake, as several of them are character pieces from fairy tales such as Puss in Boots and Little Red Riding Hood, which elicited a far more individualized type of invention from the composer. Likewise, the musical ideas in these sections are more striking, pointed and precise. This characterful musical invention, combined with a structural fluency, a keen feeling for atmosphere and a well-structured plot, makes The Sleeping Beauty perhaps Tchaikovsky’s most consistently successful ballet.

The Nutcracker, on the other hand, is one of Tchaikovsky’s best known works. While it has been criticized as the least substantial of the composer’s three ballets, it should be remembered that Tchaikovsky was restricted by a rigorous scenario supplied by Marius Petipa. This scenario provided no opportunity for the expression of human feelings beyond the most trivial and confined Tchaikovsky mostly within a world of tinsel, sweets and fantasy. Yet, at its best, the melodies are charming and pretty, and by this time Tchaikovsky’s virtuosity at orchestration and counterpoint ensured an endless fascination in the surface attractiveness of the score. (by wikipedia)

NutcrackerHeare you can hear excerpts from these 3 ballet music from Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky by the Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by Eugene Ormandy:

Longtime Philadelphia Orchestra conductor Eugene Ormandy (November 18, 1899 – March 12, 1985) (born Jenó Blau) developed what came to be known as the “Philadelphia Sound.” (He groused that it should be called the “Ormandy Sound,” even though its fundamentals had already been established during Leopold Stokowski’s long tenure with the Philadelphia Orchestra.) Largely as an effort to overcome the dry acoustics of the Stamporchestra’s home, the Academy of Music, Ormandy emphasized lush string sonorities and, often, legato phrasing and rounded tone. He was lauded even by his own musicians for his ability to conduct everything from memory, even complex contemporary scores. Still, aside from the voluptuous tone, Ormandy’s interpretations rarely bore an individual stamp. They were, however, highly polished, intelligently balanced, and well paced, always serving the scores honorably, and often with a dash of controlled excitement.

Ormandy initially studied violin with his father, and entered Budapest’s Royal Academy of Music at age 5, falling under the tutelage of Jenö Hubay at 9. He received a teacher’s certificate at 17, and served as concertmaster of the Blüthner Orchestra in Germany, also giving recitals and performing as a concerto soloist.

Omandy01He moved to the United States in 1921 (taking citizenship in 1927), lured by the promise of a lucrative concert tour. That tour fell through, though, and Ormandy was forced to make ends meet by taking a back-desk job with the Capitol Theater Orchestra in New York City, accompanying silent films. Ormandy soon advanced to the position of concertmaster, and made his conducting debut there in September 1924 when the regular conductor fell ill. By 1926 he was named the orchestra’s associate music director, and made extra money conducting light classics on the radio. Important debuts soon followed: he conducted the New York Philharmonic at Lewisohn Stadium in 1929, and the following year became guest conductor of the Robin Hood Dell Orchestra in Philadelphia. On October 30, 1931, came his first performance with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

The following year he was engaged as music director of the Minneapolis Symphony, with which he made several recordings, but he didn’t remain long in the Midwest. In 1936 the Philadelphia Orchestra called him back as associate conductor, to share baton duties with Leopold Stokowski, who was being eased out. Ormandy became the orchestra’s music Omandy02director in the autumn of 1938, and held that position for 42 years, until his retirement at the end of the 1979-1980 season (whereupon he was named Conductor Laureate). He led the Philadelphia Orchestra on several national and international tours, including, in 1973, the first appearance of an American symphony orchestra in the People’s Republic of China. Ormandy was knighted in 1976 — Queen Elizabeth II’s way of observing the American bicentennial.

Ormandy was always a proficient, well-prepared conductor, but he was most comfortable in Romantic and post-Romantic music; especially noteworthy were his performances and recordings of Richard Strauss and Sergei Rachmaninov. He established an especially close professional relationship with the latter in the 1930s, and premiered his Symphonic Dances. Ormandy also led the first performances of many works by American composers, and gave the U.S. premieres of several Shostakovich symphonies, among other works. In 1948 he led the Philadelphia Orchestra in the first symphony concert broadcast on American TV, beating Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony by 90 minutes. Ormandy and the orchestra recorded extensively for Columbia and RCA, especially during the stereo LP era; their discography ranged from the first recording of Shostakovich’s thorny Symphony No. 4 to “easy listening” treatments of recent movie music, harking back to his nights in the Capitol Orchestra. (by James Reel)

The recordings was made in the years 1972 + 1973.

BalletPersonnel:
Philadelphia Orchestra counducted by Eugene Ormandy

Booklet02ATracklist:

Swan Lake, suite, Op. 20   
01. Act 1. Scène 3.06
02. Act 1. Valse 6.03
03. Act 2. Scène 3.05
04. Act 2. Danses des cygnes: Coda 2.54
05. Act 3. Danse hongroise: Czardas. Moderato assai – Allegro moderato 1.55
06. Act 3. Vivace 0.59
07. Act 4. Scène finale 6.16

The Sleeping Beauty, suite, Op. 66:
08. Introduction 4.12
09. Act 1. Valse 4.34
10. Act 1. Pas d’action 10.20
11. Act 2. Panorama 2.41
12. Act 3. Marche 3.30
13. Act 3. Pas de caractère 1.40
14. Act 3. Apothéose 2.15

The Nutcracker, suite, Op. 71:
15. Ouverture miniature 3.34
16. Danses caractéristiques. a. Marche 2.13
17. Danses caractéristiques. b. Danse de la Fée-Dragée 2.07
18. Danses caractéristiques. c. Danse russe. Trépak 1.11
19. Danses caractéristiques. d. Danse arabe 3.36
20. Danses caractéristiques. e. Danse chinoise1.16
21. Danses caractéristiques. f. Danse des mirlitons 2.31
22. Valse des fleurs 6.53

Music composed by Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky

CD1*
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