Search - Nat King Cole :: Night Lights

Night Lights
Nat King Cole
Night Lights
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
  •  Track Listings (20) - Disc #1

Night Lights is the Nat "King" Cole album that time forgot. Recorded with Cole's regular musical director Nelson Riddle over Christmas and New Year of 1955-1956, it's never been released complete until now. This is Cole as...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Nat King Cole
Title: Night Lights
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 1
Label: Capitol
Release Date: 6/5/2001
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Traditional Jazz & Ragtime, Vocal Jazz, Easy Listening, Oldies, Vocal Pop, Classic Vocalists, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 724353196424, 0724353196455

Night Lights is the Nat "King" Cole album that time forgot. Recorded with Cole's regular musical director Nelson Riddle over Christmas and New Year of 1955-1956, it's never been released complete until now. This is Cole as pop singer rather than jazz pianist, and while the album is only now making its debut on this 24-bit digitally mastered CD, several numbers were released as singles and became chart hits: "Too Young to Go Steady," "To the Ends of the Earth," and "Never Let Me Go." That still leaves 12 cuts which have never been issued before, and as these were all brand-new songs at the time, that makes them world premiere recordings. The nostalgic "Sometimes I Wonder" plays virtually as a trial run for Cole's classic take on "Stardust," while "Once Before" and "I'm Willing to Share This with You" add ethereal voices in distinctive 1950s Hollywood style. Impeccably produced, with sophisticated arrangements by Riddle that balance lush strings, subtle rhythms, and instrumental colors from instruments such as flutes and celesta, this is warm-hearted, tender, and glowingly romantic music. Though they don't match the very best in Nat "King" Cole's catalog, these 20 ballads still make a fine album. They sat on the shelf for decades but the restored sound is first rate. --Gary S. Dalkin

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CD Reviews

The "lost" album now available
wendyb1 | Glendale, CA USA | 06/06/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"NIGHT LIGHTS (an unissued studio album from 1955-56) is the missing link in the recorded history of Nat King Cole.For NIGHT LIGHTS, Cole and his longtime arranger and conductor Nelson Riddle planned a lovely, thoughtful collection of new songs. These were the work of composers ranging from such established hitmakers as Jimmy McHugh to comparative newcomers like Moose Charlap (father of contemporary jazz pianist, Bill Charlap). Cole and Riddle recorded 20 tracks over several sessions, yet the album was never released in that form, and 12 of the tracks have never been heard at all.A handful of tracks did see the light of day as singles. And all of these singles became milestones in the Cole career, being both chart hits and Cole perennials: "Too Young To Go Steady," "To The Ends Of The Earth," "Never Let Me Go" and "I Just Found Out About Love." It should come as no surprise then, that the songs that were not released are of the same high caliber. Fans will appreciate hearing these songs for the first time which come from a high point in Cole's vocal career.1. Night Lights (#11 Pop 9/56) 2. I Got Love * 3. Stay * 4. Mr. Juke Box * 5. I Just Found Out About Love (from the musical STRIP FOR ACTION) 6. Dame Crazy (from STRIP FOR ACTION) 7. Too Young To Go Steady (from STRIP FOR ACTION) (#21 Pop 3/56) 8. Love Me As Though There Were No Tomorrow (from STRIP FOR ACTION) 9. The Shadows * 10. Believe * 11. To The Ends Of The Earth (#25 Pop 9/56, flip side of Night Lights) 12. Never Let Me Go (from Paramount Pictures' "The Scarlet Hour" 1955) (#79 Pop 3/56) 13. I Promise You 14. The Way I Love You * 15. Once Before * 16. Make Me * 17. Sometimes I Wonder * 18. I Need A Plan * 19. I'm Willing To Share This With You * 20. The Story's Old * * previously unreleased track"
One of the best new albums of 2001 was made in 1956!
wendyb1 | 07/29/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Take a trip on a CD time-machine to a different era, and enjoy a "brand new" Nat King Cole album that was recorded more than 45 years ago, but which somehow never saw release. Except for a few singles that came out of these sessions, the album was buried in the Capitol Records' vaults until now. Night Lights has been expertly remastered by Bob Norberg, and the songs sound fresh in clean in their original mono format. There are also nice liner notes written by Nat King Cole expert Will Friedwald that give insight into who wrote the songs, how they were recorded, etc.The songs themselves are a treat--lovely confections arranged by the legendary Nelson Riddle. And Nat's voice is in top form--sensuous or jaunty depending on the song. When Nat sings "Believe in what you're doing/And do what you believe in/And Life will offer love and laughter/Ever after--just believe!" you'll smile and probably get a mood boost that will last the rest of the day. About the half of the songs are jazzy, brassy, uptempo, numbers, while the other half are three minute string laden romantic epics of the kind they just don't make anymore (although I guess Diana Krall is helping them make a comeback). If you're a Nat King Cole fan, you owe it to yourself to buy this great disc which gets my vote as one of the best new albums of the year."
Where Has This Been All These Years?
Stormy Hunter | Encinitas, California USA | 09/23/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

""Night Lights" is not CLASSIC Nat King Cole, but it is a very good album, with solid arrangements from Nelson Riddle. The songs straddle the fence between swingin' and novelty; the dated lyrics will make some people wince. It's worth the price of the CD just to have "Never Let Me Go" back in print. This bonus track most certainly is classic Cole and up till now very hard to find on CD. One wonders how this set got "lost" for 45 years, but any newly discovered tracks by an artist of Nat King Cole's stature are worth owning!"