Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
I Hate to Sing
Genres: Jazz, Special Interest, Pop
Listen to Samples
This is what's left of Carla Bley's catalogue?
Mortrude Sluurp | 05/04/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Carla Bley has made some incredible music over the last thirty years, most of it for ECM. This album is NOT her best one and the only U.S. domestic release the bean-counters at BMG (the "parent" label---HAH!) decided to leave in print. The best you can say about this one is that her sense of humor--always in large supply with Carla Bley--is quite evident here. But it doesn't even begin to show off how deft a composer she is or how sweeping, elegant and FUN her band arrangements can be. Whoever made this ill-conceived cost-cutting descision should be ashamed of themselves!"
banos | Los Banos | 07/15/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is definitely not one of Carla Bley's best instrumental albums; it is her best comedy, novelty vocal album. I guess her only comedy, novelty vocal album - unless you include Tropic Appetites in that category. It's half live, half studio, from the period where she'd get the worst singers in her band to sing songs she had written especially for them, live. This features the drummer, D. Sharp, who is tone deaf, doing "I Hate To Sing." Hilarious. Too bad they never released him singing "Siam," which Carla did at the Kansas City Women's Music Festival back about this time, or the infamous Masked Marauder song of the same concert. But it also has saxophonist O'Farrell on vocals, and one "song" that's like a short radio theater murder thriller to music. OK, if I had to choose just one of her works to keep in print, it wouldn't be this. But trashing it for not having her best music is like saying you don't like P.G. Wodehouse's Bertie and Jeeves because they aren't as tough as Mike Tyson. She was going for fun, outrageous fun, not a showcase for her best music."
Carla's Humor in her Own Voice
Mortrude Sluurp | Poughkeepsie, NY | 08/21/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I hate to sing captures the Carla Bley Band in the early 80s when Bley's work alternated between "serious and beautiful" (Social Studies) and more humorously-tinged (Musique Mechanique). This release, which was available for only a limited time as an LP in the 80s, is of a pair with Nick Mason's "Fictitious Sports" which includes many of the other novelty/funny numbers the Bley band included in their concerts during the period. "I Hate to Sing" uses Bley's own musicians throughout (Mason's uses folks like Robert Wyatt and others to great effect).
While the music isn't the complex, harmonic type that Bley typically favors, there are humorous lyrics, tongue-in-cheek changes and enough real playing from her band to keep anyone but the crankiest, most humorless music fan entertained through many listens. Of particular note is "The Lone Arranger" which builds off a western-style (i.e., cowboy/walking horse) motif to hilarious conclusion (there is an excellent version of this on the Orchestra Jazz Siciliana CD). Also noteworthy is the start-stop "Battleship" as well as the CD-only Internationale (these are the two instrumentals on the CD). For the rest, kick back and enjoy musicians who are clearly having fun entertaining the live audience. They'll entertain you, too, if you let them.