An extraordinary compilation with a lot of jazz and swing, two geniuses playing Christmas songs and more.
An extraordinary compilation with a lot of jazz and swing, two geniuses playing Christmas songs.
Cole Porter was one of a handful of American musical colossi. He had the genius to conjure up improbable rhyming lyrics to catchy melodies delivering not only a single song but as often or not a whole conundrum of numbers collected within the sphere of a show. This collection of 40 songs exemplifies the talent of Cole Porter and is a testament (tribute) to his longevity in musical history. Wit, humour, sophistication, rhythmic and key changes are small change to his ability.Who else could win a challenge to produce 'Miss Otis Regrets' after questioned whether he could write lyrics from the next words he heard? The cast of star celebrities in this collection say it all. Sinatra, Bennett,Crosby, Ella, Billie,Nat,Marlene, Judy to name a few. Also, the bigger bands of not so long ago, Nat Gonella, Jack Hylton, Geraldo. These need preservation orders and what better than endorse the master composer Mr Cole Porter? Add this to your collection.
This admittedly pricey – but by all means mandatory – Grammy Award-winning box set is the final word on the "songbooks" recorded by Ella Fitzgerald between 1956 and 1964. The audio contents have been completely remastered and each title has been expanded – wherever possible – to include previously unissued material.
Taken from a Jazz at the Philharmonic tour, Ella Fitzgerald is backed by pianist Oscar Peterson, guitarist Herb Ellis, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Jo Jones on two well-rounded sets. Actually, the two dates are quite similar, with eight of the nine songs being repeated (although the second "Stompin' at the Savoy" and "Oh, Lady Be Good" find her backed by a riffing eight-horn all-star group), so this album is mostly recommended to her greatest fans. However, the music is wonderful, there are variations between the different versions, and her voice was at its prime.
Here is an instruction manual for singers. Phrasing, intonation, breath control, taste, musicianship, restraint, humor; it's all here. What with "jazz singing" wandering all over the lot as the century staggers to a close, let's hope that The Complete (what dimensions that phrase has in this context) Ella and Louis will be used for serious course work, and not just by beginners. The package contains everything from the LPs Ella & Louis, Ella and Louis Again and Porgy and Bess, plus two tracks of Fitzgerald sitting in with Armstrong's band at the Hollywood Bowl. The contrast between her polished perfection and his rough perfection is delicious. Armstrong's trumpet playing, nearing its last full burst of glory, is as moving as his voice.The songs are by the cream of American song writers, including Gershwin, Berlin, Porter, Arlen, Ronnell, Duke and Kern. They have never been sung better.