Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
American Folk Songs
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
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Your Pet Poodle | Twin Cities, MN | 11/16/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"On the happy day when I finally found this disc, there was an elderly woman tending the cash register at the store I was in. When checking out, she looked at the disc and sighed,"Oh, Jo Stafford. I had forgotten how GOOD she was." Indeed.
"American Folk Songs" may have been an effort to make a little hay with early '60s folk revival, but it isn't the long-neck banjo variety of hokum served up by the Kingston Trio and other knockoffs. It is not another John Hammond discovery from the hinterlands of Appalachia. Nor is it the tuneless verbosity of Dylan.
It is singing and arranging of the highest caliber, using 19th century (or thereabouts) American standards as a conduit for unparalled folk expression.
Jo unquestionably was one of the finest voices in 20th century popular music. While not a jazz singer per se, her big band credentials were second to none. Classically trained, her voice was an instrument of exquisite nuance. She possessed a warm 'analog' quality that, frankly, is now almost a museum piece.
This disc offers the Copeland-esque arrangments of Paul Weston (hubby) as the very American sounding bed for Jo's artistry. And she delivers. There has never been a more arresting version of "Shenandoh." Each verse builds slightly in intensity, as the open fifths of the strings and woodwinds evoke frontier imagery. "Red Rosy Bush" is simply painfully beautiful. As is "The Nightin Gale."
I concur with the other reviews that the up-tempo stuff falls very flat. But the ballads merit my 5 stars.
I have a fairly extensive record collection, and this is unquestionably one of my most played picks. Highly recommended."
Beautifully Vocal and Haunting
Your Pet Poodle | 10/30/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you ever doubt Jo Stafford is this century's greatest female singer listen to Shenandoh. It is amazing at what a beautiful voice she has. It is unreal. I liked the upbeat and mournful songs. It is exactly what it says folk songs deliverd by the world's most beautiful voice."
Your Pet Poodle | 06/26/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I tried for years to get this album. Finally I wrote directly to Jo Stafford, asking where I could purchase it. She not only made the album available for purchase, but she and her husband Paul Weston autographed it. It is one of my most cherished possessions. The albumn is just as classy as they are. Also required listening, Ski Trails, G.I. Joe, and a wonderful collaboration with Gordon McCrae, Whispering Hope."