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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Rodgers And Hart Song Book

Dancing On The Ceiling
Blue Room
Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Rodgers And Hart Song Book
Cover Photo: Herman Leonard
Cover Design: Bill Curry
Art Directions: Sheldon Marks
Verve MGV 4022, Vol. 1
Verve MGV 4023, Vol. 2
Verve MGVS-6010, Vol. 2 (Stereo cover example)

From The back cover: About The Arrangements

Most arrangers stamp their own identity in what they write, whatever the tune may be, and it is rare that the true spirit of not only the melody but the lyric is captured. Primarily they complement the vocalist and let it go at that. In this album the rare exception transpires: Buddy Bregman accurately captures not only the soaring Rodgers melodies and the very special Hart Lyrics, but the magic of Ella Fitzgerald's interpretations. – Norman Granz, Producer of the Rodgers and Hart Song Book

From the back cover (Vol. 1): Ella's first recording was made in 1935, shortly after her first appearance as vocalist with Chick Webb's band. Thereafter she appeared on at least one side of almost every record Webb made until his death in 1939. Her output on disks was supported almost exclusively by the jazz cult until mid-1938, when she herself put together a swing versos of an old nursery jingle and came up with a million-seller entitled "A Ticket A Tasket."

To the dismay of the jazz people, and perhaps Ella also, this became her trade mark. The record company tried time and time to come up with another success in the same vein.

Her next sizable seller came seven years later. It was her duet with Louis Jordan – the calypso comic bit, "Stone Cold Dead In The Market." Ella with her marvelous ear and equally marvelous timing turned this into a dialectal delight. It was nearly two years later, in '47, that she came up with another blockbuster. After a series of "cover" ides (recordings of tunes that had become hits originally via other artists on other labels) Ella asked for and got her own way for just one spare piece of acetate. It turned out to be her hit recording of "Lady Be Good."

Bop was the big thing with musicians that year and there was an epidemic of scat singing that identified itself superficially with the new music. "Hey Bob A Re Bob" and such were the anthems, but Ella managed to put all of that nonsense in its proper perspective when "Lady" was release. She had invented her own scat language, and she reeled off chorus after chorus that a put to shame many of the best improvising instrumentalists.

She followed up with "Flying Home' and "How High The Moon" and then began another succession of covers, revivals and mediocrities, none of which seemed designed to hit a very large public.

Finally, in 1956, she changed her record affiliation and it took just one album to prove that there existed a large audience of the things Ella does best, the things she likes best to do... meaning, of course, the better songs. We're referring to the monumental "Cole Porter Song Book," which is one of the outstanding examples of popular vocal art. – William Simon, Music Critic

Vol. 1

Have You Met Miss Jones? - from I'd Rather Be Right (1937)
You Took Advantage Of Me - from Present Arms (1928)
A Ship Without A Sail - from Heads Up (1929)
To Keep My Love Alive - from A Connecticut Yankee (1927)
Dancing On The Ceiling - from Evergreen (1930)
The Lady Is A Tramp - from Babes In Arms (1937)
With A Song In My Heart - from Spring Is Here (1929)
Manhattan - from The Garrick Gaieties (1925)
Johnny One Note - from Babes In Arms (1937)
I Wish I Were In Love Again - from Babes In Arms (1937)
Spring Is Here - from I Married And Angel (1937)
It Never Entered My Mind - from Higher And Higher (1940)
This Can't Be Love - from The Boys From Syracuse (1938)
Thou Swell - from A Connecticut Yankee (1927)
My Romance - from Jumbo (1935)
Where Or When - from Babes In Arms (1937)
Little Girl Blue - from Jumbo (1935)

Vol. 2 (there are numerous errors present on the jacket track list - the following list is from the disc label)

Give It Back To The Indians - from Tow Many Girls (1939)
Ten Cents A Dance - from Simple Simon (1938)
There's A Small Hotel - from On Your Toes (1936)
I Didn't Know What Time It Was - from Too Many Girls (1939)
Ev'rything I've Got -
I Could Write A Book - from Pal Joey (1949)
Blue Room - The Girl Friend (1926)
My Funny Valentine - from Babes In Arms (1937)
Bewitched - from Pal Joey (1946)
Mountain Greenry - from The Garrick Gaieties (1926)
Wait Till You See Her - from By Jupiter (1942)
Lover - from Love Me Tonight (1932)
Isn't It Romantic - from Love Me Tonight (1932)
Here In My Arms - from Dearest Enemy (1925)
Blue Moon - the only Rodgers and Hart song published not as part of a show or music score, but as a popular song (1934)
My Heart Stood Still - from One Damn Thing After Another (1927
I've Got Five Dollars - from America's Sweetheart (1931)

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