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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Thrill To The Fabulous Carol Bruce

Thrill To The Fabulous Carol Bruce
Tops L1574

Available from at least one online vendor so I will not be posting a sample.

Surprisingly nice mood/blues set from a vocalist better known for her stage productions. Bruce trades in the typical forceful "broadway" vocal stylings that you hear from most period cross-over artists for a more listenable (to my ears) subtle and soulful blues sound.

From the back cover: Carol's rise to supremacy in the musical comedy field was given initial impetus when she scored resounding success in Louisiana Purchase. Not satisfied with holding down a lead role in this show, she was also featured vocalist on the Ben Bernie radio show and simultaneously made her bow in the upper bracket supper club circuit, appearing at the Cafe Pierre, the Sert Room of the Waldorf-Astoria and the Persian Room of the Plaza.

Hollywood was inevitable and after the close of Purchase, Carol was signed by Universal Studios. Here she made her quota of pictures including This Woman Is Mine with Franchot Tone, Keep Em Flying with Abbott and Costello and Behind The Eight Ball with the Ritz Brothers. Personal appearances and numerous club dates followed in the wake of her Hollywood stint. Her return to New York was an auspicious one when she wowed fans and critics at the famed 'jewel box' of the East – the Copacabana. Then came a co-starring role on the Al Jolson Show and an appearance at the Paramount Theatre on Broadway.

Carol's greatest personal triumph, however, was her recreation of the immortal Helen Morgan role of "Julie" in Kern's and Hammerstein's classic Showboat. To play this part had always been an ambition of Carol's and it was a dream come true when she found herself on stage playing her favorite character. when the show opened at the Ziefeld Theatre in New York, the critics were unanimous in their praise and heaped accolades on the young star – Carol Bruce. The called it one of the truest and most moving portrayals of a role ever witnessed on the American musical stage. Her magnificent job won for her the Donaldson Award and a coterie of fans who will never forget the Julie as played by Carol Bruce, nor the songs as sung by her.

Showboat was followed a season later by "Along Fifth Avenue". She then started doing a considerable amount of Summer Stock work appearing in Bloomer Girl, One Touch Of Venus, Annie Get Your Gun, Lady In The Dark and others.

Television has not been denied the beauty and talent of this beautiful star. She has gone before the cameras on such shows as Toast Of The Town, Show Time USA, The Earl Wrightson Show, The Is Show Business, The Faye Emerson Show, The Milton Berle Show and Musical Comedy Time. She has also turned in superlative acting jobs in strictly dramatic roles on Studio One and The Armstrong Circle Theatre, etc.

Miss Bruce's successful revival of Pal Joey on the summer circuit in 1951 led to the equally successful revival of the show on Broadway. Miss Bruce subsequently took over for Vivienne Segal in New York and then toured the states as "Vera Simpson". Mr. Jack Hylton of London was so impressed with Carol's performance that he immediately signed her to create the role in his London production. Miss Bruce became an overnight sensation and the complete toast of London during her nine month stay. During this time, Carol also appeared at the London Palladium with Noel Coward. Upon her return to the States, she did many television appearances and added new laurels last summer when she re-created the role of "Mother God'damn" in Shanghai Gesture>

Miss Bruce also has recorded many platters for Columbia, RCA Victor and TOPS. She performed "Lady In The Dark" May 1957 at the Ann Arbor Festival.

Blue Skies
Blue Prelude
I Get The Blues When It Rains
Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man
Carol's Blues
I'll Be Seeing You
St. Louis Blues
The One I Love Belongs To Somebody Else
Calypso Blues
The Glory Of Love
Blue & Brokenhearted
Take Me In You Arms

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