Ella Fitzgerald The Complete Piano Duets Verve Where do you start with Ella Fitzgerald? There are hundreds of albums – including dozens of very good compilations. You could start with her duets with Louis Armstrong – sure. Many people do. And fair enough. There are her songbook albums – where she showcases the work of […]
James Taylor American Standard Fantasy Though James Taylor is no stranger to offering covers, and has even offered themed albums of interpretations before (two Christmas albums) he’s never sounded quite as joyless and muted as he does here on his half-strength run through some musical-theatre showstoppers and other canonical American standards.
Robert Hunter has died – sad news. He was 78. He occupied an interesting space. He was the primary lyricist for the Grateful Dead and was a silent member but also the heart and soul of the band. Hunter met Jerry Garcia, pre-Dead, when the two were in a bluegrass group. Hunter would go on […]
I’ve been listening to a lot of Rod Stewart lately. And by that I mean The (first) Jeff Beck Group, Faces and Rod’s solo albums. Depending on where you are at with Rod Stewart you walked out after Smiler (or because of it) or A Night On The Town or Blondes Have More Fun – […]
Paul Simon, The Paul Simon Songbook (1965) The first I knew of this was the reissued CD – a few years back now. But until then I didn’t know that Paul Simon had recorded prior to the Simon & Garfunkel albums. I mean, I knew they had cut a single years earlier, together, under a […]
Randy Newman The Randy Newman Songbook Vol. 3 Nonesuch Records For longevity alone it’s funny to think of Randy Newman as any sort of One Hit Wonder. Add in the success of his “sideline” career as a soundtrack composer and it seems even more absurd. But – technically – he is a one hit wonder. […]
Dr Seuss Presents The Cat In The Hat Songbook (1967) Oscar did well to find this – in a punk-specialist store…but often in record stores it’s worth having a look down low (easier for him to do too). Those $1 specials have provided plenty of highlights over the years, some of my all-time favourite records […]
The Ralph Sharon Trio, Music For The Late Hours: The Tony Bennett Song Book The name Ralph Sharon only meant something to me when I heard the MTV Unplugged album by Tony Bennett. Bennett even says, as part of his act, that Sharon has been a dedicated accompanist, the pianist on so many of the […]