Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Cole Porter Songbook
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Long considered a jewel in Verve Records' very impressive crown, Fitzgerald's songbook collections of various composers--a series that was started by the success of this set--are all wonderful, but her natural wit and inte... more »
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Long considered a jewel in Verve Records' very impressive crown, Fitzgerald's songbook collections of various composers--a series that was started by the success of this set--are all wonderful, but her natural wit and intelligence was at its most perfect with Cole Porter's erudite, urbane songs. While not as scat-oriented as her small group outings, these Porter sets offer her most realized pop performances. Also, the gold remastering does a fine job of bringing out the nuances in the arrangements, making this a treasure for the serious collector and the casual listener alike. A true American music gem. --Skip Heller
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MY DESERT ISLAND RECORDING
MOVIE MAVEN | New York, NY USA | 10/16/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If I had to choose only one recording that would accompany me to a desert island, it would be this two disc set. I first heard it when I was a teenager and am still loyally playing it many years later. I have been through two sets on vinyl, three cassette versions and I now own one CD set for my house and one CD set for my car. Do I sound obsessed? Guilty! This is simply superb music making on every level. Ella was in her prime and her voice has, perhaps, sounded this sweet on other recordings but certainly never any sweeter. If she, as usual, gives some of the lyrics short shrift, this is undoubtedly made up for by the way she sounds: pure and sassy and loaded with charm and sophistication. The arrangements are clever and/or romantic and lush and lift Ella to an even higher level. Porter was, of course, one of the 3 or 4 finest lyricists/composers that the American theatre has ever known and all of his songs in this album sound as if they were written for Ella and not for the Broadway stage. If you can only buy one CD set this year or can only afford to give one gift this coming holiday season, believe me this is the set to buy."
The one album to have if stranded on a desert isle...
VINCENT P TARSITANO | PORT ORANGE, FL USA | 06/18/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have thousands of cds in my collection, but, if I were ever forced to chuck them all, except for one, this collection is very probably the one I would hang on to. These readings constitute some of the purest pop in all of American music.
Unlike the drama of a Streisand or a Celine Dion or the vocal gymnastics of a Whitney or Mariah, here especially, "The First Lady of Song" shows her greatness by not ever pushing. As a fellow vocalist, I must say that I have been strongly influenced by Ella's pure, straight-ahead singing.
And the tunes...Cole Porter wrote truly elegant, "tasty" songs with clever lyrics. I learned many of these great tunes and a good bit of technique by listening to this album. A treasure that's included is the often-bypassed "Do I Love You," which is one of the most elegant love songs ever written. Buddy Bregman's arrangements are brilliant--everything from simple piano accompaniment ["Miss Otis Regrets," where Ella's understated delivery actually heightens the drama of this unusual song] to small combo ["Let's Do It (Let's Fall In Love)," where the slow, "love-making pace" actually creates a sexiness and extra sense of fun)] to full string and horns [the best arrangement ever of "Begin The Beguine," truly a WONDER!!].
All of Ella's songbooks are masterpieces, but this one is the "TOP," the Coliseum... A delicious treat from beguine-ing to end. [I need to stop!] So many of Mr. Porter's great tunes are included.
Viva Ella, The First Lady of Song! Viva Cole Porter, master tunesmith.
ESSENTIAL FOR ANY COLLECTOR."
Fine Fitzgerald sings perfect Porter
A Williams | Neutral Bay, NSW Australia | 12/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The late great Ella Fitzgerald had probably the best jazz voice ever put down on tape.This collection of Cole Porter songs was the first of the "Song Book" collection issued by Verve and was so successful that they followed it up with an Gershwin and Rodgers and Hart collections, though in my opinion the Porter song book is the best.The recordings were laid down in 1956, the year after Porter's final Broadway musical, Silk Stockings, opened. Ella recorded them with the Buddy Bregman orchestra at Capitol Studios, L.A.The one flaw (if it is a flaw) with this set is that almost all the songs are so commonly recorded that you find yourself comparing them to other artists. Unsurprisingly Ella's voice compares well, some of the orchestrations are, however, not quite up to later standards as those by such masters as Nelson Riddle. Don't mistake me, Buddy Bergman did a fine job for 1956 but at times the orchestration seems dated and at others tries a little too hard to keep up with Ella.The style of the tracks varies greatly, according to the mood of the song. Ella picks up the beat and syncopation in such masterpieces as "You're The Top" and slows and sexifies the voice in "I Love Paris" and "Love For Sale." Overall the collection has a mellow, jazzy feel that varies between romantic and downright sexy.If you are looking for a good collection to load into the CD player for a romantic dinner, a quiet night watching the lights on Sydney Harbour with a brandy in one hand or just appreciate the varied styles and depth of talent of Miss Ella Fitzgerald then it is hard to go past this two CD set."