Excellent anthology of the Decca years
R. Riis | NY | 11/08/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Smart and well-done compilation of Judy Garland's best-known Decca hit studio recordings (not the film soundtrack versions). The film recordings tend to be better recorded (and are available on a recommended compilation on Rhino), but the sound here is quite good and the performances are classic. "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" features the rarely-anthologized original wartime lyrics that make the song more poignant in my estimation. Booklet includes track-by-track notes with recording dates and context. Nicely done."
Some of the very best of Judy Garland
Matthew G. Sherwin | last seen screaming at Amazon customer service | 03/05/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD offers an excellent collection of some--not all--of the best of Judy Garland's work for Decca Records when she was an actress at MGM. Judy's voice is in excellent form on this CD although there is a fair amount of surface noise on the initial two or three tracks. In addition, just so you know, these recordings are mostly, if not all, the ones she recorded for Decca Records--they are NOT the recordings from the soundtracks of her movies. That having been said, however, this CD does add some splendid bonuses that we would not have heard were it not for Decca Records: Judy's duet with Bing Crosby on "Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk);" and her duet with The Merry Macs on "The Atchison, Topeka And The Santa Fe."
To state that Judy Garland "had the pipes" to be Hollywood's undisputed Queen Of The Musical would be a crass understatement. Judy's voice sensed and invariably expressed every little nuance of every word and phrase she ever sang. Her voice sounded much, much better than any female recording artist or actress I've ever heard. She could sing like a woman whose heart had been so irreparably broken that even the hardest of hearts would be deeply moved. She could also perform a rousing number that would make you want to jump up and dance with joy from the very moment she began to sing.
On this CD just one listen proves it: Once you've heard Garland, there are no other female singers. She delivers a charming performance of "Over The Rainbow" and this is followed by "Dear Mr. Gable: You Made Me Love You." Her "Friendship" duet with Johnny Mercer charms you and she sings "Blues In The Night (My Mama Done Tol' Me)" in such a way that your heart feels everything she sings. Judy also performs great numbers by George and Ira Gershwin with grand aplomb; her renditions of "Embraceable You;" "But Not For Me" and "I Got Rhythm" stun you with the total synchronicity of the finest Gershwin tune and Judy Garland's magnificent voice.
This CD also contains alternate takes of "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and "Yah-Ta-Ta, Yah-Ta-Ta (Talk, Talk, Talk)." Wonderful!
The liner notes include an extensive essay about Judy, MGM and Decca Records by Ron O'Brien; and the notes include several lovely photos of Judy as well. You get the song credits, too.
I sing the praises of many vocalists when I write reviews of CDs I have in my collection; but there is no one I can think of who deserves praise more than the unparalleled Judy Garland. Indeed, I doubt we'll ever see another quite like her. She was not only a natural talent; she became so polished and sophisticated in her presentations that others could merely aspire to be like her. She remains the greatest American entertainer ever; and she is very possibly the world's greatest entertainer as well. Judy's immeasurable contributions to the arts could never be overlooked or forgotten; and she remains fondly remembered and loved by old fans and new to this day.
Thank you, Judy.
Very Best Of Judy Is Just That!!
Kimberly S. Loeffler | Binghamton, New York USA | 11/01/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Very Best Of Judy Garland (Over The Rainbow)is Just what the album title says. This CD features recordings Garland made in the 40s at Decca Records. All of her classic standards are here and sound brilliant. "Dear Mr. Gable" is here from her early years as well as "Over The Rainbow" and her romantic ballads of "Zing! Went The Strings Of My Heart" and "Our Love Affair" you as a listener also will here her version "Blues In The Night", "Embraceable You" and "I Got Rhythm" Both from (Girl Crazy) are here Plus duets with Bing Crosby, Johnny Mercer and Gene Kelly are a must for any music lover. Since Christmas Is coming you will also get to enjoy Judy's Classic carol of "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" This album is definately a must for Judy and or Music fans. The Very Best of...also includes one of the very best photo's of Judy on the cover!!"