Lena into the Latin Craze
Paulo Br | Sao Paulo Brazil | 12/29/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"When I bought this cd on a Used Cd store in Sao Paulo, to be honest, I wasn't very enthusiastic about it, but it turned out to be very fine. This is a compilation of two Lps that the Great Lena recorded for a small Label circa 1961, which means she sounds great (artistic and technecly speaking) . The first Lp would be "LENA GOES LATIN" wich brings a lot of standards that she previosly recordes for RCA among others, and the arrangements by a guy called Shorty Rodgers,if not impecable are of really good taste, compared to other "latin sauce " records from this period. TAKE ME is probably the one that works better, many tracks starts with a bossa nova rythim, like the evergreen NIGHT AND DAY, there's a real bosso nova track by the way, MEDITATION (Jobim). Among other cookies, an almost rare J. Mercer song CUCKOO IN THE CLOCK and Porter's OURS.The uncommon version of OLD DEVIL MOON also worths listening There are some flops of course, like Rodgers'and Hart's FALLING IN LOVE WITH LOVE. The CD includes many tracks from another Lp 'SINGS YOUR REQUESTS' that she recordes with MARTIN PAICH arrangements in the same year. Again tracks that made Lena famous before, STORMY WEATHER etc. Although Paich's Swing couldn't ever go wrong, I think the main problem here is the excessive echo they added to Lena's voice in the original mix. But despite this HONEYSUCKLE ROSE sounds very good. CAN'T HELP THAT MAN OF MINE rerecording also is OK. Over all is a really good package (20 tracks) and the general sound quality is quite fine. If you already have some Lena's CDs from the RCA years, this may be a good addition. Why not try it?
(ps. Excuse me for my english writing)."