Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Swingin' With Bing: Bing Crosby's Lost Radio Performances
Genres: Jazz, Miscellaneous, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Bing Crosby was without doubt the most popular and influential media star of the first half of the 20th century. He was the best-selling singer until the rise of Elvis, the biggest movie star of the ?40s, and, as host of ... more »
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Bing Crosby was without doubt the most popular and influential media star of the first half of the 20th century. He was the best-selling singer until the rise of Elvis, the biggest movie star of the ?40s, and, as host of a long-running radio show, the most popular radio star of all time. For the first time ever, Shout! Factory is proud to present the very best of his radio performances, remastered from transcription discs recorded and broadcast from 1942 to 1954. Bing?s charming banter and relaxed live performances serve to remind us of his warmth and superior artistry, and guest stars such as Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Nat "King" Cole, Dinah Shore, The Mills Brothers, and The Andrews Sisters provide more than fitting accompaniment. DISC ONE: BING MEETS NAT KING COLE & THE ANDREWS SISTERS With Jud Conlon?s Rhythmaires and John Scott Trotter & His Orchestra DISC TWO: BING MEETS ELLA FITZGERALD & LOUIS ARMSTRONG (Their Complete Radio Duets ? Part 1) Featuring: Dinah Shore, Jack Teagarden and Red Nichols - With Jud Conlon?s Rhythmaires and John Scott Trotter & His Orchestra DISC THREE: BING MEETS ELLA FITZGERALD & LOUIS ARMSTRONG (Their Complete Radio Duets ? Part 2) Featuring: Red Nichols, Joe Venuti, Jack Teagarden, Les Paul, Ziggy Elman, Toni Arden and The Mills Brothers - With Jud Conlon?s Rhythmaires and John Scott Trotter & His Orchestra
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Jon Oye | IL, US | 08/28/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not only does this handsomely mounted 3-cd set provide an excellent sampling of the best the "golden age" of radio had to offer musically, it's also a unique opportunity to own, in a single package, some of the finest performances of a number of giants of 20th Century American Popular and Jazz Music.
Presiding over the proceedings is Bing Crosby, the top selling recording artist of the first half of that century, at his relaxed and deft best. There's also a healthy dose of Louis Armstrong, the first genius of Jazz, as well as Ella Fitzgerald, perhaps the medium's foremost female vocalist.
Not enough? Check for a pulse, then note that Nat "King" Cole, the Andrews Sisters, Les Paul, the magnificent Mills Brothers, Dinah Shore, and noted Jazz instrumentalists Joe Venuti and Jack Teagarden are also along for the ride. They were all guests on various installments of Bing's radio program, circa 1945-50, heard regularly by an amazing one-third of the U.S. population.
The booklet alone makes this collection a must-have. About the only Crosby CD-booklet to which it can be compared -- "Bing - His Legendary Years" -- runs a distant second to these attractive and informative 39 pages, courtesy of producer Ken Barnes (who worked with Bing during the last decade of his life). This one is loaded with photos, many in color, as well as an insightful overview of Bing's career, a look at the restoration and transfer of the original transcription discs which were used for the set, and personal reflections about Bing the man from Ken.
It's great to hear these radio performances after state-of-the-art re-mastering, which obviously has made them sound much better than before - particularly the selections which had been previously available on the old Bing & Ella CD, "My Happiness", and the "Fun With Bing & Louis" CDs. Something that's always bothered me about the latter - the annoying changes in speed from track to track, which alternately made Bing sound like everything from a low baritone to a low tenor - has thankfully been fixed for this presentation.
A unique aspect of this set is that each disc has been edited to sound like one continuous performance, rather than fading in/fading out from one track to the next. Although I was skeptical at first, it in fact makes for a pleasant, consistent listening experience, as opposed to the cut-and-paste hodgepodge effect that many radio compilations have produced. Imagine if Bing gave an all star concert with his fellow musical icons - this is as close as we'll ever get to what that would have sounded like, thanks to the editing.
There are some interesting connections here. Armstrong, with whom Bing shared a mutual admiration society (Bing called him "the beginning and the end of American music"; Pops described Crosby's voice as "like gold being poured out of a cup") was an obvious influence on the young Crosby. Bing later returned the favor when Pops began to vocalize and used Bing as his model. Ella always said her main inspiration was Connee Boswell -- who had been a protégé of Bing's in the 1930's. Nat "King" Cole was obviously influenced by Bing, as was every singer who grew up from the late 1920's through the 1940's. So, in essence, this is a collection of interrelated musical giants who shaped Popular Music communing in a never-to-be-repeated Olympian performance. I do not exaggerate!
I hope more of this worthy caliber of Bing Crosby product will follow. Thanks to everyone who made it possible, especially the redoubtable Ken Barnes.
Finally a restoration worthy of these great musicians
Ian Muldoon | Coffs Harbour, NSW Australia | 09/29/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's a doggone shame, if I may use that term, the way in which musicians' work has been re-issued by companies, including the work of Bing Crosby, a great musician of the 20th Century. Only two CD's are comparable to the SWINGIN WITH BING and both were done by Robert Parker of Australia and issued as CLASSIC CROSBY 1931-1938 and Bing CROSBY 1927-1934 both in digital stereo. It's as if those who listen to popular music are somehow less deserving of the care and attention that is paid to so called "classical" music. Don't get me wrong. I love good music period, regardless of genre, but there has it seems to me been a pretty cavalier attitude to the likes of Mr Crosby. MOSAIC have done a wonderful job on issuing the TRANSCRIPTIONS of Miss Peggy Lee and Miss June Christy and I thought they would have done the same for Mr Crosby. In SWINGIN WITH BING the glorious restoration was done the PETER REYNOLDS MASTERING Studio in Colchester England. In addition, the producer has done a judicious editing job by leaving out the second rate jokes and most of the patter but retained the FEEL of live performance, the joy of the moment, and concentrated on the MUSIC. These are the greatest artists in the heyday of radio with Bing Crosby as host. The program is perfect with great ballads such as MY FOOLISH HEART (superior to Mr Sinatra's I Believe), the usual pop classics SOUTH AMERICA TAKE IT AWAY, neglected masterpieces,STRANGE MUSIC, in total over 60 tracks.
Finally, I've been very happy to pay the premium price for this wonderful package. Not to be missed if you love some of the best music of the last century performed as it is here by the best."
Most comprehensive Crosby radio collection available!
Greg Van Beek | West Bend, Wisconsin | 08/26/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is, without a doubt, the most comprehensive look at Bing Crosby's radio work that has ever been produced. And there was no better man to tackle the job of compiling it all than Ken Barnes. Ken's production values and attention to detail are extraordinary. If Ken's involved with a project, you can be assured the results will always be outstanding and top notch. It's a pity that Bing Crosby never made a commercial recording with the great Ella Fitzgerald, whom Bing cited on numerous occasions as his favorite singer. But we're fortunate Bing had her as a guest on his radio shows often, and that Ken has painstakingly assembled all of their extant duets together for this album. Not only that, but you also can revel in classic live performances pairing Bing with Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, the Andrews Sisters, the Mills Bros. and more. If you want to hear the ultimate crooner, live and in his prime, this is the one CD set with which to begin your journey into the realm of Crosbyana. A detailed and informative booklet is included with the set. It's heavily illustrated with many rare and previously unseen images. So go on, take a chance. Purchase this set at once. I guarantee you the magic of Bing captivate you as it has so many others for so many years."