27 May

Ca C’Est Paris

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GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5207

Ca C’Est Paris

1 Ca C’Est Paris (Jean Lucien Boyer; Jacques Charles; Jose Padilla)
JOS CLEBER AND HIS COSMOPOLITAN ORCHESTRA
Philips P 10055 R 1954
2 April In Paris (Vernon Duke, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LF 1020 1950
3 En Avril A Paris (Charles Trénet; Walter Eiger)
FRANCK POURCEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
French HMV 7 EGF 136 1954
4 Tourbillon De Paris (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER Conducting THE MODE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Vogue Mode MDINT 9080 1962
5 La Seine (Guy Lafarge, arr. Hal Mooney)
HAL MOONEY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Time S 2005 1960
6 Mademoiselle De Paris (Paul Durand; Eric Maschwitz; Henri Contet)
ART WAINER AND THE LATIN QUARTER ORCHESTRA
MGM D 124 1954
7 Sous Les Toits de Paris (Under The Roofs Of Paris) (Raoul Moretti; René Nazelles)
FRANCK POURCEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV DLP 1150 1957
8 Sous La Ciel De Paris (Under Paris Skies) (Waltz Of Paree) (Jean Brun; Hubert Giraud)
CYRIL STAPLETON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3206 1955
9 Sous Les Ponts de Paris (Under The Bridges Of Paris) (Vincent Scotto)
FRANCK POURCEL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV DLP 1150 1957
10 An American In Paris (George Gershwin)
DAVID CARROLL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury SML 30022 1961
Paris Original (From "How To Succeed In Show Business Without Really
Trying") (Frank Loessser)
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CS 8627 1962
12 Paris Promenade (William Hill Bowen)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV B 10954 1956
13 Paris Stay The Same (Victor Schertzinger, arr. Jo Boyer)
EDDIE BARCLAY AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MG 20190 1955
14 Paris In The Spring (Mack Gordon; Harry Revel)
HUGO WINTERHALTER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LSP 1904 1959
15 Paris Honeymoon (Laurie Johnson)
GROUP FORTY ORCHESTRA
KPM Music KPM 086 1961
16 Heart Of Paris (Coeur de Mon Coeur) (Georges Auric; Mitchell Parish)
THE CLEBANOFF STRINGS AND ORCHESTRA
Mercury SR 60163 1960
17 Midnight In Paris (Herb Magidson)
ROGER ROGER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Pacific STO-D16005 1962
18 Lovers In Paris (Al Sherman)
MONIA LITER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
London LL 1643 1957
19 Paris Canaille (Leo Ferré, arr. Michel Legrand)
MICHEL LEGRAND AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Philips BBL 7026 1955
20 Rainy Night In Paris (Black)
NORRIE PARAMOR AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol ST 10190 1959
21 Paris Fashions (Cecil Milner)
THE HARMONIC ORCHESTRA Conducted by HANS MAY
Harmonic/Charles Brull HMP 266 1948
22 Paris Oui Oui (David Rose)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM 30521 1952
23 Miss Paris (Roger Roger)
ROGER ROGER AND HIS CHAMPS ELYSEES ORCHESTRA
Chappell C 674 1960
24 Poor People Of Paris (La Goulante du Pauvre Jean) (Marguerite Monnot)
DAVID CARROLL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury SML 30022 1961
25 Paris Soir (Vivian Ellis)
TELECAST ENSEMBLE
Chappell C 561 1957
26 Oh! Paris, Gai Séjour De Plaisir (Charles Lecocq)
GRAND ORCHESTRE DE PARIS Conducted by PAUL BONNEAU
Ducretet-Thomson 250-V-062 1955
27 Lights Of Paris (W. Noack)
LONDON CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Bosworth BC 1091 1939
28 I Love Paris (from "Can Can") (Cole Porter)
MONTE CARLO LIGHT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Conducted by ERWIN HALLETZ
Polydor 237078 SLPHM 1962

Stereo: tracks 5, 10, 11, 14, 16, 17, 20, 24 & 28; rest in mono.

BOOKLET NOTES

The City of Paris was a favoured settlement for our ancestors over two thousand years ago, no doubt due to its position on the River Seine and the rich agricultural conditions in the surrounding area. All this contributed to a pleasant lifestyle, and it was hardly surprising that it became the largest city in the world by the 12th century, a position it retained until other developing nations eventually overtook it in size at the turn of the 18th century. But size is not always everything, and for centuries Paris was at the forefront of Europe’s leading centres of learning and the arts. As such it attracted the best scholars and artists, and this was certainly true in musical terms. Today’s inheritors of this proud tradition still carry on the unique French style that is not afraid to adapt, yet still manages to retain that certain ‘je ne sais crois’. This tribute to Paris confirms the spell it still exerts not only for its own musicians and composers, but also the countless admirers from around the world who have fallen for its charms.

It seems only right that these notes should give precedence to the French musicians performing in this collection, and it would be hard to find a more worthy contender to begin with than Franck Pourcel (1913-2000), who was born in Marseille. He is widely recognised as one of the biggest names in French popular music, and during his lifetime it is estimated that he recorded over 2,000 songs. He achieved world-wide success with I Will Follow Him which he co-composed with Paul Mauriat. It is possible that earlier he may have disappointed some of his loyal fans when he decided to emigrate to the United States in 1952, but he did not desert the country of his birth. He often returned to France to record, and he even conducted for France at the Eurovision Song Contest between 1956 and 1972. He expanded his conducting into the classical arena, but this did not prevent him writing for top singers such as Petula Clark. Air France commissioned him to compose a special piece in 1975 for their Concorde fleet, and his days as an émigré were well behind him when this outstanding conductor, composer and arranger of superlative light orchestral music died at his home in Neuilly-sur-Seine on 12 November 2000 aged 87.

It seems a shame when some musicians get saddled with labels that do not give an accurate description of their achievements. Roger Roger (1911-1995) sometimes gets referred to as a bandleader, but one can think of many true ‘bandleaders’ who come nowhere near Monsieur Roger’s considerable contributions to light and popular music. He started writing for French films towards the end of the 1930s (firstly documentaries, then feature films), and was responsible for the famous pantomime sequences in Marcel Carné’s Les Enfants du Paradis (1944). After the Second World War Roger played piano and conducted a 35-piece orchestra for a major French weekly radio series Paris a l’Heure des Etoiles, which was syndicated overseas and even broadcast in the USA. His own instrumental cameos that were featured in the show brought him to the attention of the London publishers Chappell & Co., who were rapidly expanding their Recorded Music Library of background music. Roger’s quirky compositions neatly complemented the kind of music being created at the same time by Chappells’ other top composers, and radio, television and film companies around the world soon appreciated the fresh and, occasionally, unusual sounds he created. Although he was married to the opera singer Eva Rehfuss, Roger is reported not to have liked the human voice. This may explain why he seems to have devoted his career from the 1950s onwards to creating so much purely orchestral material, although he did ‘experiment’ for a while with electronic music in the 1960s, much to the consternation of some of his most avid supporters. In hindsight it is surprising that the post-war French film industry seemed to ignore his talents. Although he made a few commercial recordings, the main thrust of his composing abilities was directed towards the production music libraries of many leading publishers, not just Chappells, and these recordings were only made available to commercial users. The downside of this was that so much of his very appealing work could not be purchased by his admirers.

Eddie Barclay(1921-2005)(real name Edouard Ruault – he changed it in 1944 when he came into contact with American liberation forces) was famous in France for two reasons: his music, and his nine wives. His career took off at the end of World War 2 when he realised that his jazz with a French flavour was much in demand. He launched what he claimed to be the first discothèque, Eddie's Club, based on the American clubs that had opened to serve US military personnel. He certainly came up against the right influences at the right time: he regularly visited the Hot Club of France where Stéphane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt performed. Eddie started his own band in 1947, which accompanied many of the top visiting American artists such as Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie. His list of close friends reads like a ‘Who’s Who’ of top French entertainers, particularly Michel Legrand and Charles Aznavour. Gradually Eddie began extending his talents into conducting and record production for several leading singers, and eventually he formed his own record company. He persuaded his post-war friend Quincy Jones (who had studied in Paris) to come back to France and become artistic director of Barclay Records for a while at the end of the 1950s. Thanks to his strong contacts with the American record industry Eddie Barclay built up a leading role in the production and distribution of LP records in France where he became known as the ‘king of microgroove’.

Michel Jean Legrand (born in Paris 24 February 1932) was one of the first Europeans to work with legendary jazz innovators Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Stan Getz and Bill Evans. This may help to explain why so much of his work has a jazz ‘edge’, although it is also appealing through being beautifully crafted in purely orchestral terms. Whether he is concentrating as a pianist with orchestral backing, or employing the full forces of a symphony-size orchestra for a film score, he manages to create a unique sound that his admirers applaud. Music critics regard him as one of the most important post-war film music composers in the world. He entered the Paris Conservatoire at the age of 10, studying under Nadia Boulanger, whose pupils also included Aaron Copland and Quincy Jones. With his studies behind him, he was chosen by Maurice Chevalier to be Musical Director for his 1954-55 tour of the USA. This opened many doors for young Michel, and ensured that he would not have to worry about finding work for the rest of his life. But his immediate future was back home in France where the 1964 film Les Parapluies de Cherbourg broke new ground with the dialogue being sung. Several songs became international hits, with recordings by the likes of Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Andy Williams. Eventually Michel Legrand settled in Los Angeles, where his film career blossomed even more, including the title song for the 1983 James Bond movie Never Say Never Again. Legrand has composed over 200 film and television scores, several musicals, and made well over one hundred albums. He has won three Oscars (out of 13 nominations), five Grammys, and has been nominated for an Emmy. He was 22 when his first album, I Love Paris, became one of the best-selling instrumental albums ever released. Apart from his film work, he has conducted many top orchestras around the world.

Paul Bonneau (1918-1995) seems to get categorised as a French composer of classical music, but his name often crops up in connection with light music. He studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris, where it is noted that he received three important prizes between 1937 and 1945. For much of this time the Second World War was being waged, which could explain why his musical studies seem to have been so extended: in 1939 he became the important-sounding assistant manager of music of the French Army, but one wonders how long this appointment lasted. In 1945 he is listed as bandmaster of the French Republican Guard, but before then he was already conducting light classical music for French radio. His first broadcast was on 27 November 1944, and he went on to conduct 638 programmes over the next 30 years. Paul Bonneau was a prolific composer and arranger. He collaborated on 51 French films and composed serious works such as Ouverture pour un Drame, Concerto for Saxophone and Orchestra and Un Français à New York (for orchestra, dedicated to the memory of George Gershwin). He arranged many light symphonic pieces for orchestra and adapted Offenbach for the Paris Folies operetta in 1976, and seems to have been particularly busy as a ballet composer. His name appears as conductor and composer on many recordings for the French subsidiary of London publishers Chappell & Co.

Having covered the French contributors to this collection in some depth, it is hardly necessary to mention most of the other orchestras since they will already be well-known to regular purchasers of Guild Light Music CDs. But an exception has to be made for the conductor of the opening track, which also gives this collection its title. Jos Cleber (also known as Jozef Cleber and Josef van Cleber, born Maastricht, The Netherlands, 1916-1999) was a Dutch composer and conductor who was only fifteen when he started playing the violin in a local orchestra. He also played the piano, saxophone, clarinet and trombone, and developed a great liking for jazz, no doubt influenced by Duke Ellington, whom he greatly admired. During the Second World War he was part of Paul Godwin’s Orchestra in Zurich, and when hostilities ceased he returned to The Netherlands and played trombone in Dolf van der Linden’s Metropole orchestra. For a while he was also a trombonist in the famous Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra. In June 1948 he travelled to Indonesia, triggering an enduring love of the country and its people (in later years he orchestrated their national anthem). He founded the "Cosmopolitan Orchestra" for Radio Batavia, so named because it composed of 40 musicians of many different nationalities. He worked in Dutch radio until 1962, when he left to settle in South Africa.

In making a special mention of the first orchestra, it would seem only right to praise the conductor who provides such a splendid finale to this collection. Erwin Halletz was born in Vienna on 12 July 1923, and he also died there on 27 October 2008. In addition to conducting, he also performed on the saxophone and clarinet. Like many of his peers in European broadcasting stations at that time, he also found himself called upon to conduct for his country’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest. In those days it may have been considered an honour, but today …?

David Ades

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Geoff Leonard was born in Bristol. He spent much of his working career in banking but became an independent record producer in the early nineties, specialising in the works of John Barry and British TV theme compilations.
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