Anton Karas – Vienna, City Of Dreams (1963)

FrontCover1Anton Karl Karas (7 July 1906 – 10 January 1985) was an Austrian zither player and composer, best known for his internationally famous 1948 soundtrack to Carol Reed’s The Third Man. His association with the film came about as a result of a chance meeting with its director. The success of the film and the enduring popularity of its theme song changed Karas’ life.

Anton was born illegitimate at Marchfeldstraße 17, Brigittenau, Vienna to Theresia Streckel. He was later legitimized by her marriage to a factory worker, Karl Josef Karas. One of five children, Anton Karas was already keen on music as a child. He wanted to become a bandleader, which was impossible because of his family’s financial situation. He was allowed to learn to play an instrument, as were his two brothers and two sisters. He later reported that his first zither was one he found in his grandmother’s attic at the age of 12.

Autogrammkarte, 1951

As ordered by his father, he became an apprentice tool and die maker at the age of 14, while taking evening courses in music at a private institution. He finished his apprenticeship in 1924, and worked in a car factory until becoming unemployed in January 1925. Having already begun to study at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna in 1924, he subsequently earned a living as an entertainer in a Heuriger. He soon earned more than his father, and continued his studies until 1928.

In 1930, he married, with the birth of his daughter following three months later. From 1939 to 1945 he was with the German Wehrmacht anti-aircraft warfare, temporarily in Russia, where he took a zither along. He lost more than one instrument from war action, but always managed to find another one.

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In the summer of 1948, director Carol Reed was preparing to shoot The Third Man in Vienna and was staying in the Hotel Sacher, along with many of the British elements of the Allied Control Commission for Austria. Robert Baty, the young son of the Director of Education, C.W. Baty, was tasked with showing the director around the city. On the second day, they stopped at a Heuriger and heard Karas playing the zither in the background. This is described in Karas’ L.A. Times/Reuters obituary which states that:

Reed, desperately searching for a theme tune … chanced on the tavern in Vienna’s Grinzing wine-growing district. Struck by the simple zither melodies, Reed asked a stunned Karas if he would compose the music for the film. Karas protested, saying he had never actually written music. As Karas later told the story, the director insisted and invited Karas to England. The Austrian became homesick and asked to return. Reed told him he could; when he had written the music. Under this pressure, Karas wrote his Harry Lime theme.

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The film—with the music a contributing factor—was a success, and Karas’ life was changed drastically.[4] As a result, he toured globally and performed for many celebrities, including members of the British Royal family. Princess Margaret invited him to London’s Empress Club, where he played twice a week while in London. He also appeared before Queen Juliana of the Netherlands, members of the Swedish royal family, and Pope Pius XII.

By the end of 1949, half a million copies of “The Harry Lime Theme” had been sold, an unprecedented number. The success of the score caused a surge in zither sales.

In Austria, the film opened on 10 March 1950, in Vienna’s Apollo Kino, and it initially offended some Viennese inhabitants, as it focused on the disgrace of the destroyed city. Vienna’s newspaper critics hated the film, except for its music. When Karas returned to Austria after his first world tour in July 1950, he was welcomed by Chancellor Leopold Figl and other members of the government. Most importantly, the public liked the film. In Brigittenau, where Karas was born, people queued for tickets which were sold out eight days in advance.

The original single from 1948:
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Karas disliked the glamour, and his soundtrack proved to be an enduring one-hit wonder. He later stated, “I never was a star, and never felt like one. It is because of that film that I was pushed from one place to the other … My only desire was to be back home again.”[citation needed] He toured again in 1951, travelling to Montreal and Las Vegas, followed by other tours, including Japan in 1962, 1969 and 1972, where he performed for Emperor Hirohito.

In 1954, he opened a Heuriger, which became fashionable among cinema celebrities including Orson Welles, Gina Lollobrigida, Curd Jürgens, Hans Moser, Paul Hörbiger, Marika Rökk and Johannes Heesters, thereby becoming a tourist attraction. He was not satisfied, as he preferred to perform for locals who would understand him, his language and music. Because of this, he retired and retreated from the limelight in 1966, explaining, “I’m not a tourist guy, and what I did there had hardly anything to do with ‘Vienna Heuriger’.”

The first few bars of “The Third Man Theme” are engraved on his grave marker in Vienna. (wikipedia)

And here´s a nice sampler with many ofhi beautful mloies.

Enjoy this trip to Vienna, the city of dreams:

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Personnel:
Anton Karas (zither)
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Die 2 Rudis:
Rudi Kurtzmann (bass)
Rudi Schipper (accordeon)

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Tracklist:
01. The Harry Lime Theme (Karas) 3.12
02. Nothing Doing! (Keine Ahnung) (Karas) 2.11
03. Drink Brothers Drink (Trink, trink, Brüderlein) (Lindemann) 2.13
04. Ottakringer-March (Foderl) 2.01
05. In Grinzing (Benatzky) 3.29
06. Im Prater blühn wieder die Bäume (Stolz) 2.07
07. Lili Marlene (Leip/Schultze/Connor) 2.07
08. Vienna, City Of My Dreams (Sieczynski) 2.42
09. Zither Man (Karas) 1.59
10. Mei Matzleinsdorf (Obermayer) 3.15
11. Mein Herz Binker-Waltz (Karas) 2.33
12. Liebes Wien, du Stadt der Lieder-Waltz (Strecker) 1.42
13. Mei‘ Muatterl war s Wienerin-Polka (Gruber) 2.25
14. The Cafe Mozart Waltz (Karas) 2.54

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The official website:
Website

Ella Fitzgerald – The Essential Ella (1991)

FrontCover1Ella Jane Fitzgerald (April 25, 1917 – June 15, 1996) was an American jazz singer, sometimes referred to as the “First Lady of Song”, “Queen of Jazz”, and “Lady Ella”. She was noted for her purity of tone, impeccable diction, phrasing, timing, intonation, and a “horn-like” improvisational ability, particularly in her scat singing.

After a tumultuous adolescence, Fitzgerald found stability in musical success with the Chick Webb Orchestra, performing across the country but most often associated with the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem. Her rendition of the nursery rhyme “A-Tisket, A-Tasket” helped boost both her and Webb to national fame. After taking over the band when Webb died, Fitzgerald left it behind in 1942 to start her solo career. Her manager was Moe Gale, co-founder of the Savoy, until she turned the rest of her career over to Norman Granz, who founded Verve Records to produce new records by Fitzgerald. With Verve she recorded some of her more widely noted works, particularly her interpretations of the Great American Songbook.

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While Fitzgerald appeared in movies and as a guest on popular television shows in the second half of the twentieth century, her musical collaborations with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and The Ink Spots were some of her most notable acts outside of her solo career. These partnerships produced some of her best-known songs such as “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, “Cheek to Cheek”, “Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall”, and “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)”. In 1993, after a career of nearly 60 years, she gave her last public performance. Three years later, she died at the age of 79 after years of declining health. Her accolades included 14 Grammy Awards, the National Medal of Arts, the NAACP’s inaugural President’s Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.(wikipedia)

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And here´s another official compüilation from Verve Records, a rare release from Australia.

Recognized worldwide as “The First Lady of Song,” Ella Fitzgerald is arguably the finest female jazz vocalist of all time. Blessed with a highly resonant voice, wide range, and near-perfect elocution, Fitzgerald also possessed a deft sense of swing, and with her brilliant scat technique, could hold her own against any of her instrumental contemporaries. She came to initial popularity as a member of drummer Chick Webb’s band in the 1930s, scoring a hit with a “A-Tisket, A-Tasket,” before ascending to wide acclaim in the 1940s with Jazz at the Philharmonic and Dizzy Gillespie’s Big Band, and issuing landmark performances like “Flying Home” and “How High the Moon.”

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Working with producer/manager Norman Granz, she gained even more acclaim with her series of albums on Verve, recording definitive versions of the music of the Great American Songbook composers, including 1956’s Sings the Cole Porter Songbook. Over her 50-year career, she earned 13 Grammy Awards, sold over 40 million albums, and picked up numerous accolades including a National Medal of Arts and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. A hugely important cultural figure, Fitzgerald made an immeasurable impact on the development of jazz and popular music, and remains a touchstone for fans and artists decades after her passing. (by Matt Collar)

Another chance to discover “The First Lady of Song” !

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Personnel:
Ella Fitzgerald (vocals)
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The Buddy Bregman Orchestra (on 01,, 02, 06, 14. – 16)
Billy May And His Orchestra (on 03. – 05. 08., 17., 20. + 21.)
Nelson Riddle And His Orchestra (on 07., 13. + 19.)
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Max Bennett (bass on 10.)
Ray Brown (bass on 10.)
Herb Ellis (guitar on 10.)
Jim Hall (guitar on 09. 11. + 12.)
Gus Johnson (drums on 09., 11., 12. + 22.)
“Philly” Joe Jones (drums on 10.)
Lou Levy (piano on 09. + 12.)
Wilfred Middlebrooks (bass on 09., 11. + 22.)
Oscar Peterson (piano on 10.)
Paul Smith (piano on 11. + 22.)

Booklet01A

Tracklist:
01. The Lady Is A Tramp (Rodgers/Hart) (1956) 3.24
02. Manhattan (Rodgers/Hart) (1956) 2.51
03. The Very Thought Of You (Noble) (1962) 2.46
04. From This Moment On (Porter) (1956) 3.20
05. A Foggy Day (G.Gershwin/I.Geshwin) (1959) 3.33
06. With A Song In My Heart (Rodgers/Hart) (1959) 2.46
07. Cheek To Cheek (Berlin) 1958) 3.48
08. I’ve Got A Crush On You (G.Gershwin/I.Geshwin) (1959) 3.30
09. A-Tisket A-Tasket (live) (Fitzgerald /Feldman) (1951) 1.55
10. These Foolish Things (Strachey/Link/Marvell) (1957) 3.49
11. Mack The Knife (live) (Weill/Brecht/Blitzstein) (1960) 5.06
12. Caravan (live) (Ellington/Tizol/Mills) (1958) 2.44
13. I Can’t Get Started (Duke/Gershwin) (1962) 3.33
14. I’ve Got You Under My Skin (Porter) (1956) 2.45
15. Night And Day (Porter) (1956) 3.05
16. Everytime Time We Say Goodbye (Porter) (1956) 3.34
17. It’s Only A Paper Moon (Arlen/Harburg/Rose) (1960) 3.35
18. I Get A Kick Out Of You (Porter) (1956) 4.05
19. I Got Rhythm (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) (1959) 3.07
20.  My Funny Valentine (Rodgers/Hart) (1956) 3.53
21. That Old Black Magic (Arlen/Mercer) (1961) 4.11
22. Misty (live) (Gamer/Burke) (1960) 2.42

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More from Ella Fitzgerald:
More

The official website:
Website

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Various Artists – Songs And Dances Of Turkey (1956)

FrontCover1Turkish folk music (Türk Halk Müziği) is the traditional music of Turkish people living in Turkey influenced by the cultures of Anatolia and former territories in Europe and Asia. Its unique structure includes regional differences under one umbrella. It includes popular music from the Ottoman Empire era. After the foundation of the Turkish Republic in 1923, Turkish President Mustafa Kemal Atatürk ordered a wide-scale classification and archiving of samples of Turkish folk music from around the country, which, from 1924 to 1953 collected around 10,000 folk songs. Traditional folk music was combined with Western harmony and musical notation to create a more modern style of popular Turkish music. (wikipedia)

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The geographical bridge between Europe and Asia, the folk dance and music of Turkey is an amalgam of Eastern and Western cultures. Their folk dances demonstrate various relationships found in the world around them (i.e. man and nature, man and woman, man and war, man and agriculture, etc.).(folkways.si.edu)

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Songs and Dances of Turkey presents ancient classical music, folk songs, popular songs, and modern classical music from Turkey. Native instruments such as the darbuka (hand drum), kaval (end-blown flute), and baglama are featured prominently. Also included are dances such as the zeybek (from the Aegean provinces) in which dancers spread their arms broadly in imitation of an eagle in flight. Liner notes include a brief introduction, track notes, and illustrations of some of the featured instruments. (Press release)

For most of us this music will sound very unfamiliar, but this music is nevertheless very magical and fascinating.

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Personnel:
unfortunately the most of the musicians are unknown
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The Historic Turkish Music Chorus And Orchestra Of Radio Istanbul (on 14. + 15.)
The Band Of The Military Academy (Harp Okulu) In Ankara (on 20.)

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Tracklist:
01. Dance Of Kars 1.54
02. Hop, Hop, Hop (Love Song From Central Turkey) 2.10
03. Zeybek (1) (Dance From Izmir) 1.31
04. Zeybek (2) (Dance From Izmir) 1.19
05. Girl From Kermen (Love Song From Central Turkey) 2.03
06. Dance (from Rize on the Black Sea) 1.34
07. Camel Bells (Caravan Song From Trabzon On The Black Sea) 1.43
08. The Waters Of The Valley (Love Song From Erzurum) 2.01
09. Kazaska (Dance From Kars) 1.39
10. Dance (From Rize On The Black Sea) 1.10
11. Shepard’s Song (From Rize On The Black Sea) 0.43
12. Bacon Is In The Larder (Dance From Rize On The Black Sea) 1.35
13. Black Pepper (Popular Love Song From Istanbul) 1.38
14. Classic Song (1) (Istanbul) 3.55
15. Classic Song (2) (Istanbul) 2.36
16.Flute Solo (Istanbul) 1.34
17. Zurna And Davul (1) (Dance From Ankara) 1.50
18. Zurna And Davul (2) (Dance From Ankara) 1.07
19. Mehter (Classical, From Istanbul) 5.02
20. Izmir March 3.14
21. Dance From Kars 2.15
22. Every Morning, Every Dawn (Love Song From Trabzon On The Black Sea) 2.28

All songs: Traditional

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Julie London – The Best Of Julie London (1992)

FrontCover1Julie London (née Peck; September 26, 1926 – October 18, 2000) was an American singer and actress whose career spanned more than 40 years. A torch singer noted for her sultry, languid contralto vocals, London recorded over thirty albums of pop and jazz standards between 1955 and 1969. Her recording of “Cry Me a River”, a track she introduced on her debut album, was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2001. In addition to her musical notice, London was nominated for a Golden Globe Award in 1974 for her portrayal of nurse Dixie McCall in the television series Emergency!.

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Born in Santa Rosa, California, to vaudevillian parents, London was discovered while working as an elevator operator in downtown Los Angeles, and she began her career as an actress. London’s 35-year acting career began in film in 1944, and included roles as the female lead in numerous westerns, co-starring with Rock Hudson in The Fat Man (1951), with Robert Taylor and John Cassavetes in Saddle the Wind (1958), with Gary Cooper in Man of the West (1958) and with Robert Mitchum in The Wonderful Country (1959).

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In the mid-1950s, she signed a recording contract with Liberty Records, marking the beginning of her professional musical career. She released her final studio album in 1969, but achieved continuing success playing the female starring role of nurse Dixie McCall in the television series Emergency! (1972–1979), in which she acted with her husband Bobby Troup. The show was produced by her ex-husband Jack Webb.

London was a chain smoker from the age of 16 and at times smoked in excess of three packs of cigarettes per day. She suffered a stroke in 1995 and remained in poor health for the following five years. In late 1999, she was diagnosed with lung cancer but forwent treatment due to her weakened physical state. On October 17, 2000, London was rushed from her home to the Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center after choking and struggling to breathe. She died in the hospital in the early morning hours of October 18 of what was later determined to be cardiac arrest; she was 74.

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London was cremated and buried next to Troup in the Courts of Remembrance Columbarium of Providence at Forest Lawn-Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles.[62] Her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (for recording) is at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles. (wikipedia)

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And here´s a nice compilation:

Julie London´s ravishing beauty and warm, sultry voice made her a singing and acting sensation during the 1950´and 1960´s. Her 1955 recording of Cry Me A River, with its simple, intimate accompaniment of guitar and bass is widely regarded as the definitive interpretation. This album presents this all time classic, along with nineteen more of her most popular recorings (takefrom the linernotes)

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Personnel:
Julie London (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians

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Tracklist:
01. Come On-A My House (Bagdasarian/Saroyan) 2.39
02. In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning (Mann/Hilliard) 2.51
03. Slightly Out Of Tune (Desafinado) (Jobim/Mendonca/Hendricks/Cavanaugh) 2.08
04. I Loves You Porgy (G.Gershwin/Heyward/I,Gershwin) 2.43
05. Hot Toddy (Flanagan/Hendler) 1.52
06. Cry Me River (Hamilton) 3.01
07. More (Theme From “Mondo Cane”) (Newell/Ortolani/Olivero) 2.48
08. Our Day Will Come (Hilliard/Garson) 2.25
09. A Taste Of Honey (Marlow/Scott) 3.23
10. My Heart Belongs To Daddy (Porter) 2.49
11. Love Letters (Young/Heyman) 2.54
12. Midnight Sun (Hampton/Burke/Mercer) 2.31
13. Must Be Catchin’ (Stanley) 2.10
14. Black Coffee (Webster/Burke) 3.00
15. Daddy (Troup) 2.16
16. Blue Moon (Roders/Hart) 2.35
17. Baby, Won’t You Please Come Home (Warfields/Williams) 2.16
18. Sway (Gimbel/Ruiz) 2.38
19. Never On Sunday (Towne/Hadjidakis) 2.25
20. Fascination (Manning/Marchetti) 1.57

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More from Julie London:
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A fan website (now deleted):
Website

Various Artists – Greatest Love Songs (2001)

FrontCover1And here is one of these countless compilation albums with “Greatest Love Song” …

… Compilations of this kind are part of the music industry to earn a little more money with low budget productions.
Many of the songs are actually “sad love songs” and I think there is something for everyone on these two CDs.

My favourite songs are “Morning Has Broken “, “Island In The Sun”, “The Air That I Breathe”, “Light My Fire”, “When A Man Loves A Woman”, “Pretty Woman”, “Wonderful World”, “My Girl”, “Only You”, “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” and “Brown Eyed Girl” … they touch my soul.

Enjoy your sentimental side.

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Tracklist:

CD 1:
01. Al Martino: Spanish Eyes (Kaempfert/ingleton/Snyder) 2.49
02. America: Sister Golden Hair (Beckley) 3.21
03. Art Garfunkel: Bright Eyes (Batt) 3.59
04. Barry White: You’re The First, The Last, My Everything (White/Sepe/Redcliffe) 3.26
05. Bellamy Brothers: If I Said You Have A Beautiful Body Would You Hold It Against Me (D.Bellamy) 3.12
06. Cat Stevens: Morning Has Broken (Stevens/Farjeon) 3.19
07. Chicago: If You Leave Me Now (Cetera) 3.54
08. Commodores: Three Times A Lady (Richie) 3.38
09. Dean Martin: Everybody Loves Somebody (Lane/Coslow/Taylor) 2.46
10. Diane Warwick: Heartbreaker (B.Gibb/R.Gibb/M.Gibb) 4.18
11. Eric Carmen: All By Myself (Carmen) 4.54
12. Everly Brothers: All I Have To Do Is Dream (Bryant) 2.24
13. F. R. Davids: Words (Fetoussi) 2.51
14. Gary Pucket: Young Girl (Fuller) 3.08
15. Gary Wright: Dream Weaver (Wright) 4.18
16. Harry Belafonte: Island In The Sun (Belafonte/Burgess) 3.23

CD 2:
01. Hazlewood/Sinatra: Summerwine (Nayer/Mercer) 3.39
02. Hollies: The Air That I Breathe (Hammond/Hazlewood) 4.03
03. Jose Feliciano: Light My Fire (Morrison/Manzarek/Densmore/Krieger) 3.04
04. Leo Sayer: When I Need You (Hammond/Sager) 4.07
05. Pat Boone: Love Letters In The Sand (Kenny/Coots) 2.08
06. Paul Anka: Put Your Head On My Shoulder (Anka) 2.37
07. Percy Sledge: When A Man Loves A Woman (Lewis/Wright) 2.49
08. Righteous Brothers: Unchained Melody (Zaret/North) 3.37
09. Roy Orbison: Pretty Woman (Orbinson/Dees) 2.59
10. Sam Cooke: Wonderful World (Cooke/Adler/Alpert) 3.00
11. Temptation: My Girl (Robinson/White) 2.41
12. The Platters: Only You (Ram/Rand) 2.36
13. Them: It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue (Dylan) 3.48
14. Tom Jones: She’s A Lady (Anka) 3.36
15. Van Morrison: Brown Eyed Girl (Morrison) 3.03
16. Walker Brothers: The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Any More (Crewe/Gauido) 3.01

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Booklet1

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Peggy Lee – Gold – The Lady Is A Tramp (2006)

FrontCover1Norma Deloris Egstrom (May 26, 1920 – January 21, 2002), known professionally as Peggy Lee, was an American jazz and popular music singer, songwriter, composer, and actress, over a career spanning seven decades.

From her beginning as a vocalist on local radio to singing with Benny Goodman’s big band, Lee created a sophisticated persona, writing music for films, acting, and recording conceptual record albums combining poetry and music.

Lee recorded over 1,100 masters and composed over 270 songs. (wikipedia)

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Peggy Lee’s alluring tone, distinctive delivery, breadth of material, and ability to write many of her own songs made her one of the most captivating artists of the vocal era, from her breakthrough on the Benny Goodman hit “Why Don’t You Do Right” to her many solo successes that showed her bewitching vocal power, a balance between sultry swing and impeccable musicianship. Lee started out in the early ’40s as the vocalist for the Goodman band, and shortly thereafter became a star in her own right.

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Though she had numerous pop hits, she constantly crossed the line between pop and jazz, and was hailed by numerous critics as one of America’s finest singers in either genre. In addition, Lee was involved in the film world as both an actress and a composer, most actively in the ’50s (she received an Academy Award nomination for her role in Pete Kelly’s Blues). She was a pioneer of the cool vocal style, and best-known for her hit version of the Little Willie John tune “Fever,” off 1958’s Sea Shells. A tireless artist, she continued working until her health gave out in the ’90s. (by John Bush)

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And here´s a low budget album … with many of their songs and hits …

Peggy Lee really had a great smoky voice that never has been duplicated. So, enjoy this trip … another sentimental journey in this blog … with many rare live recordings !

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Personnel:
Peggy Leee (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians

Alternate edition:
Alternate Edition

Tracklist:
01. The Lady Is A Tramp (Rodgers/Hart) 2.15
02. Too Young (Dee/Lippman) 2.09
03. If I Could Be With You One Hour Tonight (Creamer/Johnson) 1.39
04. These Foolish Things (Link/Marvell/Strachey) 2.20
05. Just One More Chance (Coslow/Johnston) 2.26
06. A Guy Is A Guy (Brand) 1.26
07. Shangai (Hilliard/DeLugg) 2.05
08. If Never Happened To Me (Elly) 2.52
09. Make The Man Love Me (Kelly) 2.16
10. It’s All Over Now (Skylar/Marcotte) 2.41
11. It Takes A Long Long Train With A Red Caboose (Charles/Markes) 2.53
12. Golden Earrings (Young/Livingston/Evans) 2.51
13. Love, Your Magic Spell Is Everywhere (Goulding/Janis) 2.59
14. What Is This Thing Called Love (Porter) 1.46
15. I Got Lucky In The Rain (Adamson/McHugh) 2.18
16. He’s Just My Kind (Huddleston/McIntyre) 3.01
17. Linger In My Arms A Little Longer, Baby (Magidson) 2.46
18. For Sentimental Reasons (Watson/Best) 2.27
19. My Last Affair (Johnson) 2.54
20. I’m Confessin’ (That I Love You) (Dougherty/Reynolds/Neiburg) 2.39

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Liner Notes

Singles

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More from Peggy Lee:
More

The official website:
Website

Peggy Lee01

Lena Horne – Stormy Weather (1990)

FrontCover1Lena Mary Calhoun Horne (June 30, 1917 – May 9, 2010) was an American dancer, actress, singer, and civil rights activist. Horne’s career spanned over seventy years, appearing in film, television, and theatre. Horne joined the chorus of the Cotton Club at the age of sixteen and became a nightclub performer before moving to Hollywood.

Horne advocated for human rights and took part in the March on Washington in August 1963. Later she returned to her roots as a nightclub performer and continued to work on television, while releasing well-received record albums. She announced her retirement in March 1980, but the next year starred in a one-woman show, Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, which ran for more than 300 performances on Broadway. She then toured the country in the show, earning numerous awards and accolades. Horne continued recording and performing sporadically into the 1990s, retreating from the public eye in 2000.

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You can read more about Lena Horne here.

And here´s another pretty good compilation … enjoy this wonderful lady !

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Personnel:
Lema Horne (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians (see booklet)

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Tracklist:
01. You’re My Thrill (Gorney/Clare) 3.17
02. Good For Nothin’ Joe (Bloom/Koehler) 3.22
03. Love Me A Little Little (Holmes/Smith/Orr) 3.04
04. Don’t Take Your Love From Me (Nemo) 3.08
05. Stormy Weather (Arlen/Koehler) 3.22
06. Ill Wind (Arlen/Koehler) 2.31
07. The Man I Love (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) 3.20
08. Where Or When (Rodgers/Hart) 2.43
09. I Gotta Right To Sing The Blues (Arlen/Koehler) 3.12
10. I Didn’t Know About You (Russell/Ellilngton) 3.06
11. One For My Baby (And One More For The Road) (Arlen/Mercer) 3.22
12. As Long As I Live (Arlen/Koehler) 2.48
13. It’s Love (Comden/Green/Styne) 2.13
14. Let Me Love You (Howard) 3.19
15. Just In Time (Comden/Green/Styne) 2.57
16. Get Out Of Town (Porter) 2.22

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More from Lena Horne:
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Ella Fitzgerald – The Best Of The Song Books- The Ballads (1994)

FrontCover1Ella Jane Fitzgerald (April 25, 1917 – June 15, 1996) was an American jazz singer, sometimes referred to as the “First Lady of Song”, “Queen of Jazz”, and “Lady Ella”. She was noted for her purity of tone, impeccable diction, phrasing, timing, intonation, and a “horn-like” improvisational ability, particularly in her scat singing.

After a tumultuous adolescence, Fitzgerald found stability in musical success with the Chick Webb Orchestra, performing across the country but most often associated with the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem. Her rendition of the nursery rhyme “A-Tisket, A-Tasket” helped boost both her and Webb to national fame. After taking over the band when Webb died, Fitzgerald left it behind in 1942 to start her solo career. Her manager was Moe Gale, co-founder of the Savoy, until she turned the rest of her career over to Norman Granz, who founded Verve Records to produce new records by Fitzgerald. With Verve she recorded some of her more widely noted works, particularly her interpretations of the Great American Songbook.

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While Fitzgerald appeared in movies and as a guest on popular television shows in the second half of the twentieth century, her musical collaborations with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and The Ink Spots were some of her most notable acts outside of her solo career. These partnerships produced some of her best-known songs such as “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, “Cheek to Cheek”, “Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall”, and “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)”. In 1993, after a career of nearly 60 years, she gave her last public performance. Three years later, she died at the age of 79 after years of declining health. Her accolades included 14 Grammy Awards, the National Medal of Arts, the NAACP’s inaugural President’s Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. (wikipedia)

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And here´s a beautful compilation:

Though her career stretched from the ’30s to the ’80s and she’s widely considered possibly the greatest female jazz singer or all time, Ella Fitzgerald will probably forever be best known for a mid-’50s collection of albums collectively called the Songbooks, where she devoted entire albums to the works of such composers as Harold Arlen, Cole Porter, and Duke Ellington. THE BEST OF THE SONGBOOKS: THE BALLADS is one of the many compilations based on these recordings, and one of the best.

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From its beautiful, informative packaging to its gorgeously remastered sound, this 16-track, 64-minute collection treats the material with the respect it deserves. The material, of course, is first-rate, wall-to-wall standards from Johnny Mercer’s wistful “Laura” to Ellington’s sly “Do Nothin’ Til You Hear From Me.” Fitzgerald’s performances are equally outstanding, as are the mostly big-band arrangements. This is as good as jazz ballad collections get. (by AllMusic)

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Personnel:
Ella Fitzgerald (vocals)
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Billy May’s Orchestra (on 06., 12. + 16.)
Duke Ellington And His Orchestra  (on 04.)
Nelson Riddle’s Orchestra (on 01. – 03., 97., 08. + 15.)
Paul Weston’s Orchestra (on 09. + 13.)
Buddy Bregman’s Orchestra (on 10. + 14.)
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on 05 + 11.:
Barney Kessel (guitar)
Joe Mondragon (bass)
Paul Smith (piano)
Alvin Stoller (drums)
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Stuff Smith (violin on 11.)
Ben Webster (saxophone on 11.)

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Tracklist:
01. Oh, Lady Be Good! (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) (1959) 4.04
02. I’m Old Fashioned (Kern/Mercer) (1963) 3.30
03. Laura (Raksin/Mercer) (1964) 3.46
04. Day-Dream (Strayhorn/Ellington/Latouche) (1957) 4.00
05. Easy To Love (Porter) (1956) 3.26
06. It Was Written In The Stars (Arlen/Robin) (1961) 5.11
07. How Long Has This Been Going On? (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) (1959) 3.47
08. Let’s Begin (Kern/Harbach) (1963) 3.00
09. Now It Can Be Told (Berlin) (1958) 3.12
10. There’s A Small Hotel (Hart/Rodgers) (1956) 2.51
11. Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me (Russell/Ellington) (1956) 7.43
12. Ill Wind (You’re Blowin’ Me No Good) (Arlen/Koehler) (1961) 3.53
13. You’re Laughing At Me (Berlin) (1958) 3.17
14. A Ship Without A Sail (Hart/Rodgers) (1956) 4.10
15. Trav’lin’ Light (Mundy/Mercer/Young) (1964) 3.50
16. This Time The Dream’s On Me (Arlen/Mercer) 4.35

CD1

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The official website:
Website

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Ken Griffin – You Can’t Be True,Dear (1956)

FrontCover1Kenneth W. “Ken” Griffin (December 28, 1909 – March 11, 1956), was an American organist.Griffin was born in Columbia, Missouri. His biggest hit was “You Can’t Be True, Dear” (1948), which was first released as an instrumental, and later that year re-released with a vocal by Jerry Wayne dubbed in. Both versions became popular, selling over 3.5 million copies. He also starred in a 1954-55 syndicated television series, 67 Melody Lane. He recorded on a variety of recording labels, especially Columbia.

It was in the 1940s in Aurora, Illinois, that Griffin broke into the nightclub circuit, playing at the Rivoli Cafe nightly. The sessions at the Rivoli were broadcast on the radio station, WMRO, and the program became popular.

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Griffin died on March 11, 1956 in Chicago, Illinois at the age of 46, of a heart attack, and was buried at Lincoln Memorial Park in Aurora. Columbia had many hours of Griffin’s unreleased recordings on tape, and continued to release “new” recordings of Griffin’s music for a number of years after his death. His version of “Ebb Tide” was played in the fifth-season premiere of the TV drama Mad Men. (wikipedia)

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I guess this album was released on the occasion of his death and contains a few nice organ pieces, as one might hear them at a fairground, for example. Not really necessary, but of course an important part of American light music during he Fifites.

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Personnel:
Ken Griffin (organ)

SingleTracklist:
01. A1 You Can’t Be True, Dear (Ebeler/Cotton/Otten/Griffin) 2.02
02. You Belong To Me (Price/King/Stewart) 2.30
03. You You You (Olias/Mellin) 2.27
04. Side By Side (Woods) 2.05
05. September Song (Weill) 2.28
06. Oh, How I Miss You Tonight (Davis/Burke/Fisher) 2.25
07. Open Up Your Heart (And Let The Sunshine In) (Hamblen) 2.40
08. Till We Two Are One (Martin/Glazer) 2.34
09. Somebody Else Is Taking My Place (Ellsworth/Howard/Morgan) 2.45
10. My Heart Cries For You (Sigman/Faith) 2.39
11. Far Away Places (Kramer/Whitney) 2.37
12. The Bells Of St. Mary’s (Adams/Furber) 2.38

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Elvis Presley – All The Best (1988)

FrontCover1Elvis Presley belongs on the short list of artists who changed the course of popular music in the 20th century. He may not have invented rock & roll, but he was indisputably its first rock star, a singer whose charisma intertwined tightly with his natural talent for a combination that seemed combustible, sexy, and dangerous when Presley seized the imagination of America in 1956 with four successive number one singles in 1956. Elvis spent the next two decades near the top of the charts, weathering changes in fashion, self-inflicted career missteps, and comebacks as his music expanded and evolved. Throughout his career, Presley never abandoned the rock & roll he pioneered on his early singles for Sun Records, but he developed an effective counterpoint to his primal rockabilly by honing a rich, resonant ballad style while also delving into blues, country, and soul, progressions that came into sharp relief with his celebrated “comeback” in the late 1960s.

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Some musical nuances were overshadowed by Presley’s phenomenal celebrity, a fame maintained by a long string of B-movies in the ’60s and extravagant Las Vegas shows in the ’70s, elements that were essential in creating a stardom that persisted long after his premature death in 1977. The myth of Elvis grew in his absence, aided by turning his Memphis home Graceland into a tourist attraction, which made him an enormous cultural icon only loosely tied to his rock & roll origins; fortunately, the passage of time helped clarify the depth and range of his musical achievements. He undeniably kick-started the rock & roll era, shaping the sound and attitudes of the last few decades of the 20th century in the process, but he also built a distinctive body of work that reflected the best of what American music has to offer. (by Richie Unterberger)

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And here´s another low budget with 41 (!) songs from “the one and only Elvis Presley … many of them are not so popular. taken from from a time when he was still known, but no longer so successful as in the Fifties.

Enjoy this sentimental trip, but I missed “One Night” !

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Personnel:
Elvis Presley (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians

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Tracklist:

CD 1:
01. Heartbreak Hotel (Axton/Durden/Presley) 2.09
02. Blue Suede Shoes (Perkins) 2.01
03. Hound Dog (Leiber/Stoller) 2.17
04. Don´t Be Cruel (Blackwell) 2.04
05. Love Me Tender Matson, Presley 2.47
06. Old Shep (Foley/Willis) 4.10
07. All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) 1.59
08. Loving You (Leiber/Stoller) 2.16
09. Teddy Bear (Mann/Lowe) 1.49
10. Jailhouse Rock (Leiber/Stoller) 2.26
11. Treat Me Nice (Leiber/Stoller) 2.14
12. Hard Headed Woman (De Metrius) 1.57
13. Ain’t That Lovin’ You Baby (Otis/Hunter) 2.35
14. A Fool Such As I (Trader) 2.40
15. Stuck On You (McFarland/Schroeder) 2.17
16. It´s Now Or Never (Gold/Schroeder/di Capua) 3.16
17. Such A Night (Chase) 3.01
18. Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Turk/Handman) 3.08
19. Wooden Heart (Wise/Weisman/Twomey/Kaempfert) 2.03
20. Flaming Star (Edwards/Wayne) 2.26
21. Surrender (Pomus/Shuman/de Curtis) 1.54
22. Crying In The Chapel (Glenn) 2.24

CD 2:
01. Can’t Help Falling In Love (Peretti/Creatore/Weiss) 3.02
02. (Marie’s The Name) His Latest Flame (Pomus/Shuman) 2.09
03. Little Sister (Pomus/Shuman) 2.31
04. Good Luck Charm (Schroeder) 2.24
05. Suspicion (Pomus/Shuman) 2.35
06. Return To Sender (Blackwell/Scott) 2.09
07. (You’re The) Devil In Disguise (Giant/Baum/Kaye) 2.21
08. Viva Las Vegas (Pomus/Shuman) 2.13
09. Edge Of Reality (Giant/Baum/Kaye) 3.13
10. Don’t Cry Daddy (Davis) 2.47
11. In The Ghetto (Davis) 2.48
12. Suspicious Minds (James) 4.20
13. Kentucky Rain (Rabbitt/Heard) 3.23
14. Seperate Ways (West/Mainegra) 2.32
15. Burning Love (Linde) 2.55
16. The Wonder Of You (Knight) 2.38
17. American Trilogy (Newbury) 4.24
18. My Way (François/Revaux/Anka) 3.58
19. Softly As I Leave You (de Vita/Shaper) 2.56

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More from Elvis Presley:
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