Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Blues, Jazz, Pop, Classic Rock, Broadway & Vocalists
Blessed with a light, clear, bell-like voice & a musician's ear, coupled with excellent diction, Mildred Bailey could sing a song with such conviction & warmth that she could make the listener believe in it no matter how... more »
Blessed with a light, clear, bell-like voice & a musician's ear, coupled with excellent diction, Mildred Bailey could sing a song with such conviction & warmth that she could make the listener believe in it no matter how superficial the actual message. She was the number one white singer of the swing era, and truly was Mrs. Swing. 100 tracks have been shoehorned onto four CDs including all her greatest recordings between 1929 & 1942. Includes 52-page booklet. Standard jewel cases housed in a box. Proper. 2003.
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algabal | 08/16/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"All I can say is that I bought this box, listened to it more than any other collection of music I've ever owned, and then started buying all 9 CDs in the Chronological Classics of Mildred Bailey series. Never since I first discovered the recordings of Lee Wiley and Ethel Waters did a voice stun and touch me like hers. Her voice has been described as light and sweet, which it is, but that belies the amazing complexity and emotionally wrenching quality of her best performances (of which there are many). Witness her version of "Rockin' Chair", easily the best version of the song I have ever heard. All I can say is, if you think you enjoy vocal jazz and don't know Mildred, you've got a lot of listening to do.
Buy this set for a cheap introduction to Mildred Bailey, although you may find yourself wanting more as I did.
(Let me also recommend the music of Ethel Waters, Anita O'Day, Connee Boswell, Annette Hanshaw and Lee Wiley, other superlative, jazz singers who are not heard nearly enough today.)"
Mildred is so good YOU REALLY NEED THE BOX SET!
Tony Thomas | SUNNY ISLES BEACH, FL USA | 02/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mildred Bailey was not just the first real Jazz band singer. She was one of the earliest real jazz singers and she continued to have a jazz based strain to her singing throughout her career unlike some singers with her success who might have gone more pop. She was fun. She was fun. She was fun. She jived, she joked, she played.
She is just so good you can't just have dribs and drops and drabs, you need the Box Set. Oh Mildred we miss you soooo bad!
You are going to smile when you hear Mildred and know she is really serious when she is serious. She could bring out the jazz in the most wooden of accompaniest, but usually she had great musicians, white, black or otherwise playing behind her, because Mildred is fun.
In an age before television, Bailey continued to have fans white and Black who did not know she was white. This remains true even recently when I have loaned tapes of Mildred to other African Americans without any liner notes or anything and had them ask why they had never heard of this great Black singer.
However, I do find it distressing that Mildred Bailey seems to be so forgotten. She was the first prominent female band singer in Jazz. She was and is fun to listen to and a great voice. Mildred was actually able to swing and swing hard even with Paul Whiteman. She produced masterpieces using some of the same small groups as Billie Holday for HER Columbia recordings, although Bailey semed to prefer Herschal Evans to Lester Young. Bailey was also pretty out front for the time as a white female singer performing with an all black combo--"Mildred Baily and Her Oxford Browns." Mildred was simply magnificent in the small combos her husband Red Novro organized, She had a sense of humor about her performances and a bit of salaciousness that you won't find in Billie's recordings.
I don't think it was just out of sentimentality, but in tribute to her artistry, that Sinatra and Bing Crosby (who owed his career to Bailey's bringing him in contact with Whiteman)spent thousands of dollars helping her out in the last years of her life when health problems and the end of her career led her to very hard times.
Mildred was a great singer, a great jazz pioneer, and a lot of fun. How does anyone get along without the joy her music has brought to my life. There have been times when my life was worse than it is now when I was depressed and just thinking about one of Mildred's tracks on this CD started to turn my life around!"
GREAT MILDRED BAILEY COMPILATION
A. POLLOCK | PLYMOUTH, DEVON United Kingdom | 08/03/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mildred Bailey, initially heavily influenced by Bessie Smith and Ethel Waters, chose not to follow either the blues style or the melodic ballad method they each had made their own. In fact, when Mildred recorded her first songs in 1929, she could claim to be the first successful white female jazz vocalist, having taken a similar route as Billie Holiday who she admired. However, their voices were dissimilar, with Mildred's having a high bell-like quality enabled by perfect diction, and the ability to interpret lyrics in a believable way which heightened any song's sentiments. Both she and Billie had careers which were beset with personal problems and resulted in their early deaths - in Mildred's case at age 48. Compared with Billie, Mildred's recording career has received less attention, and this four CD set containing 100 tracks from the initial 1929 recording session follows through the years until 1942. Fortunately, Mildred was usually backed by the very best musicians and she recorded with husband Red Norvo's Orchestra, as well as under her own name when they recorded for different record companies. There were also odd sessions with the Dorsey Brothers and Benny Goodman. Apart from featuring songs of the day which did not become standards, there are those which did like HEAT WAVE, PLEASE BE KIND, and PRISONER OF LOVE. She also had her own popular hits, ROCKIN' CHAIR, LAZY BONES and SMALL FRY for which she is particularly remembered. What is clear is the sheer variety of material Mildred recorded, with all songs stamped with her individual style and effort. This collection, together with its excellent career over-view and discography, is certainly one which should help bring her name back into popularity, ensuring she finds her place as one of the great early vocalists"