Search - Peggy Lee, Benny Goodman :: Complete Recordings 1941-1947

Complete Recordings 1941-1947
Peggy Lee, Benny Goodman
Complete Recordings 1941-1947
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock, Broadway & Vocalists
  •  Track Listings (19) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (19) - Disc #2

In 1941, Peggy Lee had just come down from her home state of North Dakota to join Benny Goodman's band in Chicago as a replacement for Helen Forrest. Lee was young, frightened, and forced to sing the band's songs in Forres...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Peggy Lee, Benny Goodman
Title: Complete Recordings 1941-1947
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Sony
Original Release Date: 6/15/1999
Release Date: 6/15/1999
Album Type: Original recording remastered
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Swing Jazz, Traditional Jazz & Ragtime, Vocal Jazz, Oldies, Vocal Pop, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPC: 074646568620

In 1941, Peggy Lee had just come down from her home state of North Dakota to join Benny Goodman's band in Chicago as a replacement for Helen Forrest. Lee was young, frightened, and forced to sing the band's songs in Forrest's keys. No surprise, then, that the earliest records in this anthology seem a bit stiff and without commitment. She had not yet narrowed her range nor begun to phrase behind the beat (both á la Billie Holiday), but the confidence and speed with which she began to form her style are documented here, and it's amazing to hear how quickly she advanced--keep in mind that all but three of these recordings were made in a one year period between 1941 and 1942. And even when her singing lacks interest, there are some stunning arrangements here by Eddie Sauter and Mel Powell. After six months with the band, Lee was flying: the second CD contains gems such as "Where or When" and "The Way You Look Tonight" with the Goodman trio; her hit cover of Lil Green's "Why Don't You Do Right"; a couple of duos with Johnny Mercer; and three songs from a little-known reunion with Goodman in 1947. By then she was on her own, the Holiday influence was fully assimilated, and her smoky, vibrato-less voice was assured and distinct. --John F. Szwed

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CD Reviews

Musical marriage made in heaven
Ian Muldoon | Coffs Harbour, NSW Australia | 05/01/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Picture this if you will dear listener: a few days ago the President has announced that a state of war exists between the United States and Japan. It is the night before Christmas. A 21 year old Norma Jean Egstrom from Jamestown, North Dakota, stands at a microphone with the sheet music of WHERE OR WHEN written by Richard Rodgers and Larry Hart for BABES IN ARMS in 1937. Next to her, holding his clarinet, stands one of the greatest musicians of the 20th century who for seven years had led one of the most popular big bands in the country. In the background are Mr Lou McGarity and Mr Cutty Cutshall on trombones, Mr Mel Powell on piano, Mr Tom Morgan on guitar, Mr Sid Weiss on Bass and Mr Ralph Collier on drums. What must have been going through the minds and hearts of these musicians on this Christmas Eve? What must this singer, known as Ms Peggy Lee, been feeling? The record they made of WHERE OR WHEN is poignant, wistful and bitter-sweet and in the context of its making, heart-wrenching. The meeting of these composers, these musicians, and this singer, was a musical marriage made in heaven. This release brings together a variety of musicians and arrangers but all feature the two leads. There are 37 other tracks on this splendid release including 10 previously unissued."
Peerless Peggy
Jim Andrews | Chicago, Illinois USA | 12/29/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you THINK you know Peggy Lee, get this incredible collection. The singer with Benny Goodman's Orchestra is quite different from the hit-record maker who came later. Here she's a high, high soprano very wedded to the tempo and so passive she's spooky. It was written that her rendition of "How Deep Is The Ocean" (which reverses the first two verses, incidentally) is like a moon crossing a cloudless sky, silent, steady but oh so hypnotically entrancing. Oh, so true. These recordings absolutely crawl right under your skin. You will listen and listen and listen trying to uncover the unsolvable mystery of just what is going on vocally here and why it is so deeply moving while seemingly so incredibly simple. The Lee who came out of this Lee--the later Lee who is so stylish, perfect, witty, subtle--is a whole different singer but even Peg must appreciate these recordings and how she began."
"Big Band Singer", Peggy Lee
Alfred W Kucinski | Oak Ridge, New Jersey USA | 02/06/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"For all you Peggy Lee fans who did not hear or know of her when she was just starting out as a young girl big band singer, you just have to get this CD. You can hear her grow as a singer from when she first started out with Benny Goodman and his band.
For me, I remember her singing with BG during the war years of the 1940's. The all time favorite of mine is hearing her singing ,"Where or When". Believe me, this CD is worthwhile for all Peggy Lee fans. She, along with the young, at the time, big band singer Doris Day with Les Brown's orchestra were the epitome of girl band singers. Doris Day in her earlier recordings with Les Brown and Peggy Lee with Benny Goodman sound quite similar. As I said before, this CD is worthwhile for all. Peggy Lee fans."