Eric Miller | tulsa | 06/12/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Rockin' Chair. Lazy River. Bread and Gravy. Hoagy Carmichael evoked the blissfully relaxed lifestyle of a rural America that no longer exists. (Sometimes I wonder if it ever did.) His musical world is among the most distinctive and influential in 20th century jazz and pop, and for that reason you should give him a listen. There's no better start than this CD. I'm no expert on remastering, but the sound quality here appears to be excellent.Most of the tracks are from the 1930's. Hoagy is alone at the piano in several tracks, and accompanied by an all-star orchestra in others. Then there are covers by a few of his contemporaries. My only problem is that they left out his 1930 recording of "Georgia on My Mind,"(my favorite) and they should've included another version of "Star Dust" - namely, Louis Armstrong's. But it's impossible to do these kind of cross-sections without disappointing someone. Overall, an excellent introduction to genius."
Stardust, but not quite stardust
vinegarhill3 | Swansboro, North Carolina | 05/06/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"First of all, let me say I absolutely love Hoagy Carmichael's music. He's one of the greatest American song writers. But, I was disappointed on a few of the tracks. I wanted a CD for driving and I got it for my trip to New Orleans. I wanted to hear Hoagy sing the songs he wrote. Instead, he played his piano and riffed on the melody on some of the songs. Some he sang on. Not bad, but I did want that voice in the car as I drove. Otherwise, it's a good album, just not great. Stardust is probably my favorite song of all time (when Cole Porter's Begin the Beguine doesn't nudge it out of first place) and I wanted to hear Hoagy sing it. There are two songs that have never been done badly, no matter who records them--Stardust and Amazing Grace. Just perfect melodies. And I'm a big fan of Willie Nelson's version of Stardust, he just knocks me out when he sings it. I really, really wanted to hear Hoagy sing it."