Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Bette Midler Sings the Peggy Lee Songbook
Genres: Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Bette Midler and musical director Barry Manilow follow their successful tribute to Rosemary Clooney with a collection of songs immortalized by Peggy Lee. It starts off with the inevitable "Fever," which Midler does in a br... more »
Bette Midler and musical director Barry Manilow follow their successful tribute to Rosemary Clooney with a collection of songs immortalized by Peggy Lee. It starts off with the inevitable "Fever," which Midler does in a brassy, finger-snapping way that would feel more at home at the Sands c. 1960 than in a dimly lit 1950s boudoir. It's a deliberate, clever choice that works for Midler. The selection hits predictable bases ("Is That All There Is?", "Big Spender") but it's hard to argue when those bases are so loaded. Midler actually sounds a lot more at ease than on the Clooney disc. She handles the upbeat material as well as could be expected, but she also shines on the slower numbers, delivering sultry takes on "Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe," "I'm a Woman," and "He's a Tramp" (a song copenned by Lee, from the Disney movie Lady and the Tramp). The neglected gem in the collection is Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II's "The Folks Who Live on the Hill," popularized by Irene Dunne in 1937 before being covered by Lee. Manilow's arrangements are deliciously lush and Midler uses a slight vibrato at carefully chosen moments, somehow sounding as if she had suddenly been lifted back to the 1940s. It's a real treat that epitomizes an accomplished album. --Elisabeth Vincentelli
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Member CD Reviews
Sinead M. (bookworm) from SAN JOSE, CA
Reviewed on 11/28/2006...
Miss Lee meer the divine Ms M
Bennet Pomerantz | Seabrook, Maryland | 03/27/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The trend in music lately is singers (Like Midler, Manilow, Rod Stewart)are recoring classics or standards. It seems to work, because it record sale magic.
Bette Midler has always been a great soulful singer, from the 1970's to present. Last year, Ms M took on the task for recording the Rosemary Clooney (that's George's aunt) songbook. This time she recorded the songs of Peggy Lee.
Lee has been a soulful jazz queen. Midler is one of the few singers today that could take on such Lee standards like "Fever", "He's a Tramp" , "Big Spender", and "Is that all there is?". Midler take on these pieces with such an aplome that you feel they were written today for Midler herself. The weakest song "The Folks who live on the Hill" does not fit Midler's vocal pattern range, she seem straining in that song. The duet with Barry Manilow on "I Love Being Here with you" reminds me of classic Ms M.
Talking about Manilow, who has recorded songs of the 1950, 1960, and the 1970, produced this CD for Midler. He has done a great job arranging & Producing this cd, Mailow make this seem so easy. It reminds that he was Midler's Piano man for years. He arranges these to suit her brassy style and it works so well
The DVD side has some rare Peggy Lee footage and interviews with Midler and others.
So, to quote Peggy Lee, "Is that all There is? Depressingly YES there is, and you want MORE
Bennet Pomerantz AUDIOWORLD
Peggy Lee Songbook
Pat | 08/09/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Loved the songs. Love Bette Midler. However, after I played the CD on my computer once, I couldn't get it to play again. Don't know if there was something wrong with the CD because I played the other CD's that I received from Amazon that day and they were all fine. Not worth the hassle of sending back the Peggy Lee Songbook."