Search - Tony Bennett :: Steppin Out

Steppin Out
Tony Bennett
Steppin Out
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
 
  •  Track Listings (18) - Disc #1

This is the album that transformed Tony Bennett from crooner to hipster, a run that culminated in his 1994 MTV appearance. Steppin' Out is Bennett's tribute to Fred Astaire, who introduced as many American standards as any...  more »

      
   
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CD Details

All Artists: Tony Bennett
Title: Steppin Out
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 7
Label: Sony
Original Release Date: 10/5/1993
Release Date: 10/5/1993
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Traditional Jazz & Ragtime, Vocal Jazz, Oldies, Vocal Pop, Classic Vocalists, Musicals, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 074645742427

Synopsis

Amazon.com
This is the album that transformed Tony Bennett from crooner to hipster, a run that culminated in his 1994 MTV appearance. Steppin' Out is Bennett's tribute to Fred Astaire, who introduced as many American standards as anyone due to his relationships with such songwriters as Berlin, Porter, Kern, and the Gershwins. While Bennett avoids some obvious choices ("Night and Day" and "A Foggy Day" had been covered in his earlier Sinatra tribute), he picks a number of classics from Astaire's 1930s heyday as well as some songs from his MGM years, including the gem of the album, "You're All the World to Me." Bennett is ably assisted, as always, by the Ralph Sharon Trio. Great singer, great songs, great album. --David Horiuchi

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Member CD Reviews

Stan T. from EAGLE, ID
Reviewed on 7/16/2007...
From Amazon.com
This is the album that transformed Tony Bennett from crooner to hipster, a run that culminated in his 1994 MTV appearance. Steppin' Out is Bennett's tribute to Fred Astaire, who introduced as many American standards as anyone due to his relationships with such songwriters as Berlin, Porter, Kern, and the Gershwins. While Bennett avoids some obvious choices ("Night and Day" and "A Foggy Day" had been covered in his earlier Sinatra tribute), he picks a number of classics from Astaire's 1930s heyday as well as some songs from his MGM years, including the gem of the album, "You're All the World to Me." Bennett is ably assisted, as always, by the Ralph Sharon Trio. Great singer, great songs, great album. --David Horiuchi
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.

CD Reviews

Tony Bennett raises the bar for this elegant tribute to Fred
Matthew G. Sherwin | last seen screaming at Amazon customer service | 05/31/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Steppin' Out is indeed a fine tribute to Fred Astaire by Tony Bennett. Tony sings these ballads with sensitivity; and that enhances the songs on this album. The quality of the sound is excellent and the artwork is very nicely done.

"Steppin' Out With My Baby" has an excellent jazzy musical arrangement and Tony sounds better than ever! Tony aces this easily with his fine vocal talents; and you can just grasp that image of Fred Astaire dancing so elegantly as you hear this song. The arrangement for the piano is especially nice; and The Ralph Sharon Trio enhances the ballad even further--great! "Who Cares?" features Tony Bennett front and center as he sing this wistful ballad; and this sounds like classic music to me--it's excellent for lounge music as well. In addition, "They Can't Take That Away From Me" is easily a major highlight of this entire album; Tony delivers this with panache and Fred Astaire would certainly have felt very honored! Tony sings "They Can't Take That Away From Me" without a single superfluous note--and that's very impressive.

"Shine On Your Shoes" is a bouncy little tune you're bound to enjoy; Fred sang this brilliantly and Tony Bennett pays a great tribute to this classic song as he sings this flawlessly. "He Loves And She Loves" is yet another wonderful number on this CD; and when Tony goes into the main lyrics of the song this number really takes flight! "He Loves And She Loves" gets a very tender interpretation by Tony and the musicians and it all works very well. There's also "They All Laughed;" this triumphant tune really shines bright and I love it!

"All Of You" is a marvelous, classic love song that could never be forgotten; and I always smile whenever I hear this beautiful ballad. "Nice Work If You Can Get It" gets the royal treatment from Tony Bennett and The Ralph Sharon Trio; and I really like "Nice Work If You Can Get It." Similarly, "It Only Happens When I Dance With You" is a gorgeous love song that will touch you with its beauty and its message of true love for another--how wonderful!

There's even a superb medley of "You're Easy To Dance With/ Change Partners/ Cheek to Cheek;" and this is another major highlight of this album. Tony handles complicated tempo and key changes like the pro he was and still remains; and "That's Entertainment" is a number I could never tire of hearing--great number! The CD ends strong with Tony Bennett performing "By Myself;" this last song is a very sensitive number that Tony delivers with great feeling and "By Myself" also leaves you wanting more.

Tony Bennett is a living legend and he's practically a part of Americana--he's that big an artist. I highly recommend this CD for his fans; and people who enjoyed the songs from all those Fred Astaire movies will cherish this CD for quite some while to come.
"
Perfectly Fred
Gregor von Kallahann | 06/26/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Unlike some of Tony Bennett's numerous other "tribute" records, there is little about the packaging of STEPPIN' OUT that screams "dedicated to Fred Astaire!" In fact, not having glanced at the self-penned liner notes before playing this CD, it took me `til the medley that is track 15 (and which makes two overt references to the dancing legend) to realize that, hey, this must be a Fred Astaire tribute! As the kids say, d'oh!

But as I say, the packaging doesn't exactly have Tony tipping his (top) hat here. The Sinatra tribute PERFECTLY FRANK had a mature Tony sitting in the audience watching a young Frankie. It screamed "tribute." On the cover here, we have Tony tripping the light fantastic with an exuberant and gravity defying young lady, in her own white tie and tails, who is quite striking but isn't exactly a Ginger Rogers clone. And while the song roster includes the numerous Great American Songbook titles, you'd have to be of an even older generation than I am to instantly recognize them all as having been intimately associated with Astaire. They've been covered numerous times since, and it's hard to say that any one recording artist "owns" them.

Now I've always enjoyed the old Fred Astaire movies, and I rather liked him as a singer. It surprised me nonetheless to learn that the classic songwriters of the day loved having him perform their tunes--because he performed them AS WRITTEN. But maybe it shouldn't be so surprising, when you think about it,s, that an artist who was primarily a dancer would sing the songs straight and exercise his more interpretive instincts via the dance.

So now you've got Tony Bennett, who--conversely--may be the ultimate interpretive singer, tackling the same tunes that Astaire sang so straightforwardly and serviceably for his films. Is there an irony there? Well, at the very least, there's a stylistic gap that is certainly interesting. Tony's patented warm, husky vocals, elegant as they can be in their own way, are certainly a world apart from Astaire's classic smoothness. And isn't that point? Bringing something new to the equation? Putting a new spin on these old classics?

It's hard to pick a favorite track here. Unlike Amazon reviewer David Horiuchi above who champions the track "You're All the World To Me," I'd have a hard time picking a favorite tune here. The album works brilliantly as a whole. But I do have do have to admit that while I like some of the breezier numbers (the title track, "That's Entertainment, "Shine on My Shoes" and several other fun outings), I am particularly drawn to the slightly melancholy deliveries Bennett offers on such tracks as "They Can't Take That Away From Me," "Dancing In the Dark," "I Guess I'll Have to Change My Plan," and the wistful closer "By Myself." This is where Tony brings his own distinctive interpretive skills to this tribute project. And it works brilliantly.


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