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Monday, December 28, 2020

A Kiss And Other Love Songs - Mario Lanza


The Moon Was Yellow

A Kiss and Other Love Songs
Marios Lanza - Tenor
Orchestra conducted by Ray Sinatra
RCA Victor LM-1860 Red Seal

From the back cover: Lanza's is a typical American story. He received a natural musical heritage from his Spanish mother and Italian father, an ex-six-day-bike-racer and disabled World War I veteran who worshipped Caruso and collected his records. Raised in South Philadelphia, the boy went in for football, boxing and weight-lifting during his school days.

But he was passionately fond of music, his interest in singing and grand opera going back to his early boyhood. At 10, he knew the plots and principal arias of 50 operas, and at 15, he could discuss the merits of even relatively obscure operatic works with connoisseurs. He used to sit by the hour outside a neighborhood record shop which played Caruso records over its public address system. These Caruso recordings, he says, were his great inspiration and first teacher. While still in his teens, he began singing lessons, earning the money to pay for them by working for his grandfather who had a trucking business. It was while using one of his grandfather's trucks, incidentally, that he got that first lucky break.

During World War II, Lanza did a tour of duty in the Army, and then was given an opportunity to sing in the special services production On The Beam. This led to an assignment with Moss Hart's Air Force show, Winged Victory, with which the young tenor remained until he was muster out in the summer of 1945. Back in civilian life, Lanza was offered a Red Seal recording contract by RCA Victor, together with $3000 to continue his studies. This was the first time in the company's history that a completely unknown singer had been given such a golden opportunity.

Lanza's first film, That Midnight Kiss, met with huge popular success when it was release. His second film, The Toast Of New Orleans, his RCA Victor recordings and extensive concert tours increased his fame and popularity before an ever widening public.

Higher and higher Lanza's star has soared, until his dream of an ideal, which has always been Caruso, has been transformed into reality on film, with his playing the role of the immortal tenor himself in MGM's movie of his life, The Great Caruso.

This was followed by the MGM technicolor production Because You're Mine and his recording of the sound track for The Student Prince. In each of his motion pictures the voice of Mario Lanza has been heard singing songs that made the best seller lists when they were released on phonograph records. In That Midnight Kiss it was Be My Love. From Because You're Mine the title song of the picture became a national best seller and his albums Toast Of New Orleans and The Student Prince have reached the top of the hit chart.

A Kiss
Begin The Beguine (from Jubilee)
Long Ago (from the Columbia film Cover Girl)
The Night Is Young And You're So Beautiful
My Heart Stood Still (from A Connecticut Yankee)
The Moon Was Yellow
Night And Day (from The Gay Divorcee)
My Romance (from Jumbo)
The Thrill Is Gone
Beautiful Love
Besame Mucho
Without A Song

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