VAN CAMP, Robert and MUSIKER, Reuben
Dolf van der Linden: Biography and Discography. 115: Feb 1994, 20-31
Obituary. 139: Jun 1999, 3-4

VAN DER SCHAGT, Carrie and Dick
Jos Cleber. 127: Jul 1996, 55

Arthur Pryor, 1870-1972. 148: Sep 2001, 25

Denny Vaughan by Murray Ginsberg. 141: Jun 2001, 15-20

The Luton Girls Choir. 119: Dec 1994, 67-68

Obituary. 151: Jun 2002, 68-69

Ron Goodwin: an Active Promoter of Young Music Makers.
155: Jun 2003, 58-59

VOGEL, Bernhard
There Was Magic Abroad in the Air: Revisiting Sinatra Sings Great Songs From
Great Britain. 141: Dec 1999, 8-17

VON PAUL, Catherine
The Classic-Pop Revolution is Happening. 109: Oct 1992, 35

VOSS, Louis
Louis Voss and the Kursaal Orchestra by Brian Reynolds. 137: Dec 1998, 41-42

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My Journey Through Melody. 154: Mar 2003, 22

WALTON, Robert. Robert Farnon Series .
Manhattan Playboy. 122: Jul 1995, 14; Portrait of a Flirt. 123: Oct 1995, 76-77; Melody Fair. 124: Dec 1995, 14-15; Willie the Whistler. 125: Feb 1996, 37; Journey into Melody. 126: Apr. 1996, 17; Jumping Bean. 127: Jul 1996, 15;
A Star is Born. 128: Oct 1996, 12-13; Peanut Polka. 129: Dec 1996, 21-22;

WALTON, Robert. Robert Farnon Series
How Beautiful is Night. 130: Mar 1997, 17-18; Gateway to the West. 131: Jul 1997, 22-23; Westminster Waltz. 132: Oct 1997, 50; In A Calm. 133: Dec 1997, 22-23; Pictures in the Fire. 135: Jun 1998, 9; Poodle Parade. 136: Sep 1998, 15;
A La Claire Fontaine. 137: Dec 1998, 11; Yes We Have No Bananas. 138: Mar 1999, 21-22; Honey Child. 139: Jun 1999, 6-7; The Hucklebuckle. 140: Sep 1999, 9-10; Prelude and Dance for Harmonica and Orchestra: Analysis.140: Sep 1999, 26-27; Joanne. 141: Dec 1999, 41; Pow Wow. 142: Mar 2000, 8; String Time. 143: Jun 2000, 19-20; Playtime. 144: Sep 2000, 12-13; Lake of the Woods. 145: Dec 2000, 9-10; Little Miss Molly. 146: Mar 2001. 42; Lazy Day. 147: Jun 2001, 13-14; Ottawa Heights. 148: Sep 2001, 19-20; En Route. 149: Dec 2001, 37-38; Proud Canvas. 150: Mar 2002, 30;Holiday Flight. 151: Jun 2002, 45; Stardom. 152: Sep 2002, 36;Canadian Caravan. 153: Dec 2002, 19: Sophistication Waltz. 154: Mar 2003, 40; All Sports March 155: Jun 2003, 42; Main Street. 156: Sep 2003, 33; Mid Ocean. 157: Dec 2003, 23; Malaga. 158: Mar 2004, 24; To A Young Lady. 159: Jun 2004, 35; Goodwood Golop. 160: Sep 2004, 17; Mountain Grandeur. 161: Dec 2003, 33; Mr Rinch. 162: Mar 2005, 22; Robert Farnon: A Tribute. 163: May 2005, 15-16; A Promise of Spring.164: Jun/Jul 2005, 31; Promenade Overture: 165: Sep2005, 54; Taj Mahal. 166: Dec 2005, 14; Tête a Tête. 167: Mar 2006, 15; Alcan Highway. 168: Jun 2006, 39, 59; Open Skies. 169: Oct 2006, 31; 'Moomin'. 170: Dec 2006, 68-69

WALTON, Robert. Other Articles
--------Angela Morley's Canadian in Mayfair. 159: Jun 2004, 51-52
--------High Heels by Trevor Duncan. Analysis. 161: Dec 2004, 54
--------David Rose's Holiday for Strings: Analysis. 162: Mar 2005, 63-64
--------C. Armstrong Gibbs' 'Dusk'. Analysis. 166: Dec 2005, 60-61
--------Holiday Spirit by Clive Richardson. 167: Mar 2006, 79
--------Music in the Air by Byron Lloyd [Analysis]. 168: Jun 2006, 58-59

More Vintage Television Themes. 116: May 1994, 14-15

Claus Ogerman. 142: Mar 2000, 20-21

WEBB, Roger
Obituary. 155: Jun 2003, 31

Ben Webster by Richard Jessen. 145: Dec 2000, 37-39

WEDGE, Philip (Pip)
----------Newsletter from Toronto Canada. 122: Jul 1995, 46-47;
---------Canadian Notes. 144: Sep 2000, 35-36; 145: Dec 2000, 25;
146:Mar 2001, 61-62; 147: Jun 2001, 58; 148: Sep 2001, 39-40;
149: Dec 2001, 78; 150: Mar 2002, 50-51; 152: Sep 2002, 34-35;
153: Dec 2002, 35-36; 154: Mar 2003, 19-20; 155: Jun 2003, 17-18;
156: Sep 2003, 57-59;157: Dec 2003, 57-59; 158: Mar 2004, 42-43;
159: Jun 2004, 44-46; 160: Sep 2004, 32-33, 60; 161: Dec 2004, 66-68;
162: Mar 2005, 12-13, 15; 164: Jun/Jul 2005, 16-17;
165: Sep 2005, 72-73; 167: Mar 2004, 20-22; 168: Jun 2006, 65-67;
169: Oct 2006, 27-29
---------Robert Farnon: a Personal Memory. 163: May 2005, 3-4

Philip Green: Musician Extraordinaire. 129: Dec 1996, 64-65

WELK, Lawrence
Obituary. 109: Oct 1992, 31

Paul Weston by Steve Keller. 113: Sep 1993, 27
---------Obituary. 129: Dec 1996, 16.
---------Paul Weston, 1912-1996: A Tribute to a Master of Mood Music by Reuben
Musiker. 130: Mar 1997, 21-23

WHITE, Edward
Edward White [Composer] by David Ades. 111: Feb 1993, 18-21

News From Norwich. 106: Feb 1992, 13; 107: Apr 1992, 17; 108: Jul 1992, 38;
109: Oct 1992, 15; 112: May 1993, 20; 114: Dec 1993, 31; 115: Feb 1994, 40;
116: May 1994, 53; 117:Jul 1994, 45; 118: Oct 1994, 35; 119: Dec 1994, 52;
120: Feb 1995, 27; 121: Apr 1995, 43; 123: Oct 1995, 55; 126: Apr 1996, 66-67;
130: Mar 1997, 56-57; 131: Dec 1997, 48; 132: Oct. 1997, 71; 135: Jun 1998, 63;
138: Mar 1999, 42; 151: Jun 2002, 53.
---------Top Rank Record Label. 111: Dec 1993, 22-23

Vic White: an Obituary by Eric White. 141: Dec 1999, 56.

Phyllis Tate, 1911-1985. 157: Dec 2003, 10
---------Philip Lane. 158: Mar 2004, 77

Radio Luxembourg. 116: May 1994, 57-61
---------Archive Railway Films and their Mood Music. 131: Jul 1997, 34
---------Dear Mr Wilkins [Ken Wilkins and his Collection of Incidental Radio and TV
Music Archives] by Jim Palm. 151: Jun 2002, 39-44

Charles Williams by David Ades. 111. Dec 1993, 30-33
---------Charles Williams by Tony Clayden. 112: May 1993, 10-11; 113: Sep 1993,
--------Aerial Activity:Tribute to Charles Williams by Terry Bennett.115:Feb 1994, 35-37

Joe Williams by Will Friedwald. 116: May 1994, 4-5

Sidney Torch Recalled. 164: Jun/Jul 2005, 40-50

WILLIAMS, Ralph Vaughan
Ralph Vaughan Williams by Philip Scowcroft. 160: Sep 2004, 34-35

Biography. 131: Jul 1997, 11

Concert Review. 144: Sep 2000, 18
---------Interview with Clive Davis. 150: Mar 2002, 6-9

Who Was Leslie Jones. 119: Dec 1994, 44-46

Hugo Winterhalter on Compact Disc by Reuben Musiker

WOOD, Arthur
Arthur Wood by Arthur Jackson. 122: Jul 1995, 40-41, 48
---------The Archers and All That: a Note on Arthur Wood (1875-1953) by Philip L
Scowcroft. 139: Jun 1999, 63-64

WOOD, Haydn
Haydn Wood, 1882-1959 by Philip Scowcroft. 139: Jun 1999, 15-16

And the Band Played On. 134: Mar 1998, 9-10.

George Lloyd. 142: Mar 2000, 42
James Stevens. 158: Mar 2004, 69

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YORKE, Peter
My Thanks to You, Peter [Yorke] by Reg Otter. 164: Jun/Jul 2005, 36-37

YOUMANS, Vincent
Vincent Youmans for Orchestra by Reuben Musiker. 129: Dec 1996, 17-20

Passing Notes: A Brief Biography by Malcolm Harvey Young.
166: Dec 2005, 52-56; 167: Mar 200-6, 32-36

YOUNG, Victor
Profile by Arthur Jackson. 159: Jun 2004, 33-34

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Obituary. 151: Jun 2002, 71-73

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Reviewers in this issue: David Ades, Peter Burt, Paul Clatworthy, Tony Clayden, David Daniels, Roger Hyslop, Barry McCanna, Ray Pavene, Edward Trub, Edmund Whitehouse

The KT Editor’s CD Choice for this issue

MARTY GOLD AND HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Sounds Unlimited’ & ‘For Sound’s Sake!’ Dance. Ballerina, Dance; There Goes My Heart; The Donkey Serenade; Skylark; When Your Lover Has Gone;When I Fall in Love; Canadian Sunset; Alone Together; Ol’ Man River; Don’t Worry ‘bout Me; Tonight; Moonlight in Vermont : El Cumbanchero; Baubles, Bangles and Beads; Memories of You; Yesterdays; More Than You Know; In a Sentimental Mood; All the Things You Are; Rockin’ Chair; I Love Paris; September Song; Love is Here to Stay; Mood Indigo Vocalion CDLK 4479 (67:09) Although American arranger/composer/conductor Marty Gold (he died in 2011 aged 95) made 28 albums, none of them has come my way until now. And this 2-on-1 is really good. Originally recorded for RCA Victor in 1963 and 1964, the orchestra of strings and big band swing, staffed I understand by many of New York’s best musicians, perform some imaginative arrangements – presumably by Mr Gold himself – with excellent solos on trumpet, flugelhorn, tuba, alto and tenor sax. The sound is superb with the ear-catching separation of early stereo recordings. Mike Dutton’s remastering from the original analogue tapes is spot-on as usual. If you enjoy this as much as I did, you should note that there is another Marty Gold 2-on-1,which I have not heard, ‘Something Special For Movie Lovers’(1965) & ‘Suddenly It’s Springtime’ (1964) on Vocalion CDLK 4486. PB

ANDRE KOSTELANETZ ORCHESTRA ‘Music Millions Love’ Carousel Waltz; I’m Always Chasing Rainbows; Slowly; Unknown; Here Comes Heaven Again; When Day Is Done; A Prisoner Of Love; If I Loved You; It’s A Grand Night for Singing; Chanson Boheme; Flamingo; You Are Love; BIues In The Night; Begin The Beguine; Night And Day; Day By Day; I Dream Too Much; Jockey On The Carousel; All Through The Night. Sounds of Yesteryear DSOY 304 (75:32)) Live performances recorded February 1946. The Kostelanetz Orchestra is joined by Perry Como, at the time just as popular as Bing Crosby. The other vocalist is mezzo-soprano Gladys Swarthout. The music is sumptuous and atmospheric. CD compiler Michael Highton seems to imply he is a bigger fan of Como than Kostelanetz, saying several times the audience had to wait while the Orchestra played! The seldom heard tune Slowly written by David Raksin is my favourite track. PC

GEOFF LOVE AND HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Star Wars and Other Space Themes’ 12 tracks incl. UFO, Star Trek, Barbarella; Space:1999; Thunderbirds; Dr Who … ‘Close Encounters Of The Third Kind and Other Disco Galactic Themes’ 10 tracks incl. the title tune; Logan’s Run; The Time Machine; Blake’s 7; The Omega Man … Vocalion CDSML 8497 (44:29 & 44:14) These 1978 albums are not like Love’s other Music for Pleasure re-issues I have been reviewing in JIM recently. As Oliver Lomax explains in his very comprehensive liner notes, the arrangements and musical direction are the responsibility of Nick Ingram – Geoff just wielded the baton. We are in the realms of disco/funk again here. CD1 does have four conventional orchestral tracks: an excellent version of John Williams’ Star Wars (main title theme) and his Princess Leia’s ThemeAlso Sprach Zarathustra, and Bliss’ March from "Things to Come". But Mars ("The Planets") is not what it seems! CD2 is pure disco all the way, which may be too far for some readers. Flight FantasticSolar Sailor and Space Patrol are Ingram originals. I’m glad I persevered with these discs and, if you try them, you might be too. Incidentally, it is interesting to read that William Armon was orchestra leader on most of Geoff’s discs, a position he also held from the early ‘70s with Mantovani; and I believe was seen in the famous Morecambe and Wise / André Previn BBC TV sketch. PB

PAUL MAURIAT AND LE GRANDE ORCHESTRE ‘More Mauriat’ & ‘Prestige De Paris’ Black is Black; Sunny; Winchester Cathedral; Guantanamera; Love, Me, Please Love Me; Reach Out I’ll be There; Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down); Lara’s Theme; Is Paris Burning?; En Bandoulière / C’est si Bon; Sous les Ponts de Paris; La Vie en Rose; Moulin Rouge; Domino; La Mer; La Goualante du Pauvre Jean; Les Feuilles Motes; La Seine; Parlez-Moi d’Amour; Fascination; Mon Homme Vocalion CDLK 4482 (58:04)

‘Overseas Call’ & ‘Exclusivamente Brasil (Vol.3)’ 21 tracks incl. You Can Do It; From Jupiter with Love; N.Y One; Eva Come Back, Power Jam (Part 1) …. Ế Preciso Muito Amor (You Need Lots of Love); Na Pa Z Do Seu Sorriso (Peace in Your Smile); Começar de Novo (A New Beginning); Infinito Desejho (Infinite Desire); Estrela Radiante (Radiant Star)… Vocalion CDSML 8498 (71:44) There are over 120 Mauriat albums listed online and here are four re-issued on two 2-on-1s by Mike Dutton – how does he make a choice? The French composer, conductor and arranger (1925-2006) studied classical piano early on, attending the Conservatoire de Marseille from the age of 10, soon becoming very interested in both pop and jazz. At age 17 he started his own orchestra. In the late ‘90s his sales were estimated at around 800,000 units every year. It was reckoned that he had sold 60 million recordings by the end of his career. While never exciting me in quite the same way as similar releases from his friend and mentor Franck Pourcel, the first two early albums (from 1966) make for very pleasant listening in M Mauriat’s arrangements. If you are a fan or only know of Mauriat forLove is Blue, you won’t be disappointed.

The second two albums are something quite different and reflect Mauriat’s wide musical tastes. The first, from 1978, was partly recorded in New York’s Power Station Studios and has 11 tracks described as funk/soul; all composed and arranged by Mauriat and his fellow countryman, the pianist Gérard Gambus. The few vocals are in English. Mauriat was "big" in South America (as he was in Japan) and the third volume of Brazilian numbers from 1980 (what happened to the first two volumes?) was recorded in Rio de Janeiro. Arranging is again shared and there are some wordless vocals. An interesting album but if you favour his cut-glass string sound, this CD probably won’t be for you. There are no liner notes for either of these releases, making your reviewer work harder! PB

‘MUSIC WHILE YOU WORK VOL.3’ Calling All Workers Intro Opening Sig Raymond Agoult & His Players; The London Scottish Ronnie Munro & His Orchestra; Morning Glory Bernard Monshin & His Rio Tango Band; Last Night On The Back Porch Nat Allen & His Orch; In The WoodpileSilly Billy;Windows Of Paris The Banjoliers Directed by Jack Mandel; Alcantara Anton & His Orch; Kumana;Caio,Caio, Bambina Ken Beaumont & His Sextet; Midnight In Mayfair Fredric Cooper & His Tipica Orch; White Wedding Raymond Agoult & His Players; Snow Coach George Scott-Wood & His Music;Oh Mein Papa Jack White & His Band; Paris MetroBonita Isy Geiger & His Orch; The Willow WaltzSyd Dean & His Band; Blue Moonlight Cecil Norman & The Rhythm Players; Josita Maurice Arnold & His Sextet; Tanto Gusto The Gerald Crossman Players; Pearly King Polka Harold Collins & His Orch;My Big Best Shoes Norman Whiteley & His Sextet; Little White Lies Jack White & His Band; Three Jolly Sailorman Maurice Arnold & His Sextet; Portrait Of My Love Harold Collins & His Orch; Faire Frou-FrouThe Banjoliers/Jack Mandel; Rio Chambira Bernard Monshin & His Rio Tango Band; Lei On Parle Francaise Frederic Cooper & His Tipica Orch; The Lady Is A Tramp The Eddie Stevens Sextet; Miss Ponytail Raymond Agoult & His Players; Don Roberto George Scott-Wood & His Music; Medley Harry Leader & His Band Cottage Industry Records FBCD 335 (79:04) This new release is Volume 3 in a series of MWYW CDs produced by Frank Bristow in Australia. Whereas the previous two volumes originated from the Decca wartime-issued 78 rpm records, the new programme has been assembled from the enormous – and unique – archive of off-air recordings which Brian Reynolds has amassed over many years. There is a sizeable amount of material here: within the 28 tracks are a total of 39 tunes (because there are some medleys included) and these are performed by around 20 orchestras and ensembles. Most of these were "regulars" and their names will be familiar to aficionados of the programme. All of the performances date from the middle/late Fifties to the early Sixties. Alan Bunting has worked his usual magic on the restorations; some of the recordings were made on very basic domestic equipment and these required a considerable amount of time and skill to bring them up to a decent standard. The accompanying booklet contains a wealth of information and many photographs of the performers. This was originally a joint project of Brian Reynolds and the late Brian Stringer, who very sadly passed away during the preparatory stages, and it has now been entirely taken over by Brian Reynolds. I believe that there are more issues in the pipeline and I personally hope that they will be as thoroughly enjoyable as this one, which has provided very good entertainment during a couple of long stints cleaning and tidying-up in my workshop. Warmly recommended. TC

[Available from Frank Bristow, 2 Cross Street, Brighton 3186, Victoria Australia ( ) Aust. $22.70 (Paypal). A limited quantity also available from Brian Reynolds (details on inside cover].

HAL MOONEY & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Music In The Mooney Manner’ 48 tracks incl. CD1 ‘Any Time’ (1959): Aries; Taurus; Gemini; Cancer; Leo; Virgo … ‘An Affair To Remember’ (1959): Oh What A Beautiful Morning; Hey There; Anna; I’ll Be Seeing You; Ruby; But Not For Me … CD 2 ‘Woodwinds and Percussion’ (1961): Swampfire; Baby It’s Cold Outside; Lover; Tonight; Old Devil Moon; Bye Bye Blues … ‘Dreamland…USA’ (Stereo Version) (1961): California Here I Come; When It’s Sleepy Time Down South; Beautiful Ohio; Back Home In Indiana; Manhattan; Way Down Yonder In New Orleans …Jasmine JASCD 717 (66:55 & 63:42) This release arrived just before JIM went to press and even on a short acquaintance it has been a very appealing listen. Hal Mooney, Brooklyn NY born in 1911, was a professional pianist as a young man and became an arranger, eventually joining the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra. After serving his country during the Second World War he moved to Hollywood as a freelance and began to write for vocalists such as Crosby, Sinatra, Garland, Lee, Starr and Eckstine. In 1956 he was contracted as in-house arranger and A&R Director at Mercury Records, where he remained until the late 1960s. He then joined Universal Studios and became MD on some of the biggest TV shows of the 1970s: ‘Colombo’, Marcus Welby M.D., ‘The Rockford Files’, The Six Million Dollar Man’ and ‘Bionic Woman’. He died in 1995. Billy May meant it as a compliment when he described him as a "nuts and bolts arranger." Like Ossie Dales in his liner notes I must confess that although I was aware of Mr Mooney I’d never paid him much attention. Strings are to the fore on the dozen tracks, originally known as ‘Music Horoscope’, the first (and possibly best) of the four great sounding original albums here, and were all composed by the man himself. The second album is of film themes with a Billy Mayish up-beat big band tempo to them. The third album, in Mercury’s Perfect Presence Sound series, is much as you would expect from its title with even David Rose’sHoliday for Strings, together with the likes of Morton Gould’s Pavanne and Edward B Claypoole’sRagging the Scale, getting the woodwinds and percussion treatment. On the final album a musical tour of the States ends with the title tune, Dreamland...USA, another Mooney composition. Including some outstanding arrangements, this is a quality release. So I’m with Ossie again when I say "Welcome to my CD collection, Hal Mooney", and I too feel sure he will be as welcome on your shelves. PB

THE SHADOWS (1958-1961) ‘Kon-Tiki’ 47 tracks incl. Feelin’ Fine; Don’t Be A Fool With Love; Chinchilla, Serious Charge; Jet Black; Driftin’(all as The Drifters); Saturday Dance; Lonesome Fella; Bongo Blues; Apache; Quatermassters Stores; Man of Mystery; The Stranger; F.B.I.; Midnight; The Frightened City; Back Home; 36-24-36; The Savage; Peace Pipe / Jet Black (live); Driftin’ (live) Be Bop A Lula (live)(all as The Drifters); Mustang; Theme from Shane; Shotgun; Theme from Giant; Shadoogie; Blue Star; Nivram; Baby My Heart; See You In My Dreams; All My Sorrows; Stand Up And Say That; Gonzales … Jasmine JASCD 205 (50:29 & 63:24) The first time around I listened to this 2-CD set at one sitting and wallowed in nostalgia for nearly two hours. CD 1 opens with Jean Dorothyand Teenage Love, the A and B sides of the first and only single from July 1958 by The Five Chesternuts, forerunners of "The Shads". Two of the five were guitarists Hank B Marvin (Brian Rankin) and Bruce Welch (Bruce Cripps). These then joined The Drifters and in 1959, along with Jet Harris (bass) and Tony Meehan (drums), became The Shadows. In September 1961 the Columbia label released their first LP, ‘The Shadows’ (CD 2, tracks 8-20), which along with the title single (CD 1, track 19) and an EP, ‘Shadows to The Fore’ (CD 2, tracks 4-7) were Number 1 in all three of their respective UK charts at the same time … a first. The in-between years had been melody all the way; their style polished and the guitar-playing expert. Personally I could have passed on the occasional vocal. Highly informative liner notes from producer Groper Odson complete a most entertaining package. PB

BILLY VAUGHN ‘Golden Memories Of Billy Vaughn’ Five Original Albums 61 tracks incl. Song of India; At the Woodchopper’s Ball; The Chipmunk Song; Peter Gunn;; Oh; Topsy II; One O’clock Jump; Hernando’s Hideaway; Summit Ridge Drive; 12th Street Rag; Tequila; Patricia; Sentimental Me; Near You; Tennessee Waltz … True Love; The Sound of Music; The Threepenny Opera; Some Enchanted Evening; All the Way; Sayonara; Look For a Star; Snowfall; Mona Lisa; Paper Roses; Greenfields; Beyond the Sunset; Because They’re Young; He’ll Have to Go; Theme from "The Apartment" … Jasmine JASCD 215 (74:14 & 76:19) Richard "Billy" Vaughn (1919-1991) had more popular hits than any other orchestra leader during the rock and roll era, with a total of 36 albums and 42 singles in the Billboard charts. The two well-filled CDs here feature Vaughn’s signature twin sax sound where he uses an alto sax for the melody, with a second alto sax a third away. Supporting instruments always include four tenor saxes for the body, with a rhythm section usually containing one of two guitars, a piano, drums and a bass. Other instruments are also used and there are a number of splendid tracks with a full orchestra. The five original Dot albums are: Golden Hits’,‘Golden Saxophones’’Theme From A Summer Place’ (this topped the Billboard chart in 1960), ‘Look For A Star’ and ‘Theme From "The Sundowners"’. Although the majority of titles are familiar, Vaughn’s varied arrangements hold the interest throughout the set. These discs will make a welcome addition to any collection. My wife, who does not always share my enthusiasm for our kind of music, thought they "sounded nice" – from her that’s high praise. PB

FRED WARING & HIS PENNSYLVANIANS ‘Say It With Music – The Many Moods Of Fred Waring’ 51 tracks incl. I Hear Music; Greensleeves; Say It With Music; The Rose of Tralee; Din Skol, Min Skol; Sleep; In The Still of The Night; You and I; Dear Hearts and Gentle People; Zorro; Blueberry Hill; Loch Lomond; The Unconstant Lover; Sleigh Ride … Say It With Music; The Loveliest Night of The Year; Outside of Heaven; High Noon; Silk Stockings; On Top of Old Smokey; Tulips and Heather; Lollytoodum; I Have to Tell You; Be Kind to Your Parents; Mame; ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas; Easter Parade … Jasmine JASCD 725 (77:35 & 79:49) Fred Waring, with his orchestra and choir, has been one of the most famous and popular musicians in American musical history … and no wonder! This 2-CD set is a fine follow-up to another Jasmine release (JASCD 149) I made my "Best Buy for Christmas" in December 2010. Apart from the varied tracks listed above and one of the best versions of Seventy-six Trombones I’ve heard, there are a number of patriotic pieces including God Bless AmericaGive Me Your Tired, Your Poor and Battle Hymn of the Republic. A number of sacred songs are also given the Waring treatment like Ezekiel Saw the Wheel; Blessed AssuranceLi’l David Play on Your Harp; I Love to Tell the Story, And Ev’ry Time I Feel the Spirit. Roy Ringwald’s The Song of Easter, celebrating Holy Week, is narrated by Mr Waring himself and has 14 African-American spirituals interwoven into it. Fred was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal for his work a year before he died in 1984. This release with its excellent musicianship and joie de vivreis guaranteed to lift your spirits. PB

RICHARD CLAYDERMAN ‘Romantique’ 16 tracks incl. Spartacus: Adagio; Les Misérables – Medley; The Flower Duet; West Side Story – Medley; Schindler’s List; Hallelujah; Le Onde; You Raise Me Up; Nessun Dorma; Lara’s Theme … Decca 3724563 (63:11) Once referred to in a Gramophone magazine review as "a French Liberace, without the candlesticks", this is the internationally acclaimed classically trained pianist’s first new studio album for ten years and is a nice-sounding varied compilation. It includes Ballade Pour Adeline, which he first recorded in 1976 and sold 22 million copies in 38 countries, and Prokoviev’s Montagues and Capulets, the theme from the BBC’s ‘The Apprentice’. It was recorded in Sofia last September with the Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra conducted by Deyan Pavlov. M Clayderman, born Philippe Pagѐs in 1953, has recorded over 1,200 melodies, achieved sales of around 90 million worldwide, and is credited with 267 gold and 70 platinum discs. This full-price release is a good buy but would have been even better had the possibility of another four tracks been pursued. PB

REGINALD DIXON ‘The Very Best Of …’ Favourites Forever; Treasured Moments; Organ Magic! 3 CDs Memory Lane / Yesteryear GLM/Y-38-18. [121:46] It would take more than a page to list all the titles, so please forgive the omission! But titles are not really necessary if you are already an admirer of one of Britain’s top theatre organists of the last century. For many years he was a fixture at Blackpool’s Tower Ballroom, but he also had many fans around the world who eagerly waited for his latest 78s. This CD covers the period from 1934 to 1938 and most of the tracks are Dixon’s familiar medleys. The nicely illustrated booklet with this 3-CD set contains a biography and a detailed list of all the titles – all that is missing is the original catalogue numbers (this applies to most of the Memory Lane collections reviewed in this issue), but that will not worry organ fans. They will warmly welcome this well restored and expertly compiled collection. DA

BILLY MAYERL ‘Piano Exaggerations’ Christopher Duckett 16 tracks inclJazzaristrix; Sweet William; Song Of The Fir Tree; Bats In The Belfry; Loose Elbows; Cobweb; Antiquary; Evening Primrose; Marigold … Shellwood SWCD42 [46:51] Billy Mayerl was an incredible pianist. His mail order school inspired thousands who wanted to emulate his deceptive easy going style, and we know that a number of light music composers (Cyril Watters once confessed to us!) were influenced by him. As well as his piano pieces, Billy also ventured into light music pastures later in his life, to the benefit of production music publishers. It seems that his early death at the age of 56 was hastened by his liking for whisky and smoking, but his work continues to exert a strong influence even today, more than 50 years after his passing. We are familiar with the definitive performances of Eric Parkin, but Mike Lorenzini at Shellwood Productions has discovered an amazing talent named Christopher Duckett. Although his name may be new to some record collectors (and enthusiasts of the piano), Christopher is already known inside the music profession. He graduated from the Royal College of Music (where he had been award the Prokofiev Prize among other awards) and has a busy professional career as a soloist, accompanist and repetiteur. His concert performances have taken him to many countries in Europe, and his love of the kind of syncopated jazz that became Billy Mayerl’s trademark should result in many more recordings in the future. You can’t help smiling when you sit back, relax and wallow in this kind of music. It’s such a shame that today’s pianists don’t get heard on radio and television as much as they deserve. DA [Shellwood CDs are available for £11.50 inc. postage worldwide].

BILLY MAYERL ‘Piano Music By Billy Mayerl Vol. 1’ Philip Martin (piano) 21 tracks including Aquarium Suite, Puppets Suite, Three Contrasts … SOMMCD 0124 (76:22) Londoner Billy Mayerl (1902-1959) showed a prodigious talent from a very early age. When little more than a child, he studied piano at Trinity College of Music and around the age of 13 he was the soloist in a performance of Grieg's Piano Concerto at the Queen's Hall, London. Also about this time, he composed his first piano piece in the syncopated style for which he was to become famous, although it had to wait until 1925 when it was published under the title of ‘The Jazz Master'. He was a regular broadcaster in the early days of BBC Radio from the famous 2LO studio in Savoy Hill, London, and he established a friendship with George Gershwin, who entrusted Mayerl with giving the British premiere of Rhapsody In Blue. He enjoyed a varied and very successful career as a performer, arranger, composer and conductor and his Correspondence School for budding pianists ran for 30 years and became a world-wide phenomenon. I well remember his BBC broadcasts in the early post-WWII years, with his Billy Mayerl Rhythm Ensemble. Over the years, Mayerl's compositions have enjoyed good representation on recordings, and anyone aspiring to emulate his dazzling virtuosity faces a formidable task. The Irish-born pianist Philip Martin certainly fills the bill in this respect, and the result is a very pleasing CD, which is warmly recommended to all those who enjoy this style of music. TC

‘SONG OF PARADISE The Piano Music Of Reginald King’ Mark Bebbington 23 tracks, including Song of Paradise, Three Miniatures, Three Impressions, In the Shade of the Palms, Summer Breezes … SOMMCD 0125 (76:25) This disc also features solo music from the same era as that immediately above. The enterprising SOMM Company has achieved quite a "coup" with the first commercial recordings of the compositions of another Londoner, Reginald King (1904-1991). During his lifetime he was considered a significant figure within the Light Music world. His training at the Royal Academy of Music influenced his composing style and his music is suffused with lyrical warmth and a rather restrained "classical feel". The pieces here include at least three which will be familiar to many in their orchestral guise: Song of Paradise (which was the pianist’s signature tune for many years), In the Shade of the Palms and Summer Breezes. The latter was used as the second tune in the famous 'White Kitten' interlude on early post-WWII BBC Television and it is interesting to compare the two versions. Pianist Mark Bebbington definitely "rises to the occasion" and delivers great performances of these works, a good number of which will be probably receiving their first hearing for very many years. Compared with the music of many of his contemporaries, Reginald King's compositions are much less well-known; this new disc can only help to bring his name to a wider audience. Yet another warm recommendation – congratulations are due to all who have been involved in this productionTC

ROGER WILLIAMS ‘America’s Best Selling Pianist’ Four Original Albums 1957-1961 51 tracks incl. Gigi; O Mio Babbino Caro (Oh My Beloved Daddy); An Affair to Remember; Two Different Worlds; Forgotten Dreams; Yellow Bird … Stardust; Stranger in Paradise; Traumerei; Moonlight and Roses; To a Wild Rose; Dark Eyes … Moonglow; Unchained Melody; Tennessee Waltz; Hey There; April in Portugal; My Heart Cries for You … Theme from "The Sundowners"; Theme from "The Apartment"; Temptation; One Finger Symphony; Homesick for New England; La Montana (If She Should Come to You) … Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini, Sailor; Main Theme from "Exodus" Jasmine JASCD 718 (78:31 & 77:21) I well remember Roger Williams – born Louis Weentz in 1924 – being one of the most popular virtuoso instrumentalists of the mid-20th century, and it is very surprising that so few of his 116 LPs – 18 receiving gold and platinum awards – have been reissued on CD. Those nice people at Jasmine Records have begun to put that right with two of the four albums on this 2-CD set – ‘With These Hands’ (1959, US Album Chart No.8) and ‘Always’(1960, No.25) – appearing in this format for the first time. The other two albums are ‘Songs of the Fabulous Fifties’ (1957, No 6) and ‘Temptation’ (1960, No.5)*. The final three tracks listed above are from ‘Songs of the Soaring 60’s’ (1961, No.35). Roger’s piano playing is stylish and beautifully fresh throughout and his technique befits one who had a classical training. The US Billboard magazine ranks him as the top-selling piano recording artist in history. He was the first pianist to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He was also known as the "Pianist to the Presidents", playing for Harry S Truman to George H W Bush. In 2010 he was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame. At that time Autumn Leaves (CD 2, track 12) was the best-selling piano solo record ever and the only one to top the Billboard charts. Roger died on October 8, 2011, one week after his 87th birthday. It is encouraging that these recordings are deservedly back in the lists and as Bob Fisher May writes in his liner notes: "If the arrival of Roger Williams original LPs on CD for the first time prove as popular as we hope there are plenty more where these came from". PB

[‘Temptation’ coupled with ‘Yellowbird’ is also on Sepia 1196, released in July 2012.]

NEIL DIAMOND ‘The Very Best Of : Original Studio Recordings’ Forever in Blue Jeans; Beautiful Noise; Love on the Rocks; Cherry, Cherry; I Am…I Said; Sweet Caroline; Cracklin’ Rosie; Play Me; I’m a Believer; Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon; Holly Holy; Solitary Man; Song Sung Blue; You Don’t Bring Me Flowers (with Barbra Streisand); Hello Again; Red, Red Wine; If You Know What I Mean; Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show; Pretty Amazing Grace; Kentucky Woman; Shilo; America; Hell Yeah Sony 8876405882 (78:46) You get exactly what it says on the box here. The album stands out, however, from other similar compilations in that Neil has persuaded Sony to include, along with the US Columbia (CBS) recordings, tracks he made prior to joining them in 1973 for Bang Records (mid-‘60s) and Uni/MCA (1968-1972), and for Capitol Records (‘The Jazz Singer’ in 1980). Born in 1941, in his five decades on disc Neil has sold 160 million albums worldwide, with 16 Top 10 albums and 37 Top 10 singles – including that with Barbra Streisand. He possesses probably one of the most distinctive voices in the business, and is second to none in putting a song across. He is also an immensely inventive songwriter. The Monkees recorded his I’m a Believer in 1966 and sold six million copies. Other songs have been covered by the Hollies, Lulu (The Boat that I Row), Elvis Presley, UB4 (UK no.1 with Red Red Wine), and many others. All 23 tracks on this album are self-penned, only four of them being with other artistes. The compilation is further enhanced by four pages of fascinating notes written by Neil himself called "Recollections". Also included in the box are five postcard pictures of the singer. I do hope that if you are not in the habit of buying popular vocal albums you will give this one a listen. PB

SACHA DISTEL ‘From Sacha With Love’ 29 tracks incl. All of Me; Let’s Do It; S’Wonderful; Sans Toi; Scoubidou … Jasmine JASCD 244 (77:11) If French is the language of romance, then surely nobody employed it to greater effect than Sacha Distel. A trained jazz guitarist, he had a musician's respect for the lyrics, and his warm, rich voice was just as seductive when his sang in his accented English. This compilation offers the best of both worlds; the first dozen tracks are from the RCA LP‘From Paris with Love’, which was arranged and conducted by Ray Ellis, the remaining 17 are sung in his native tongue. Sound quality is excellent, but tracklist information is minimal. BMC

GORDON MACRAE ‘High On A Windy Hill’ 56 tracks incl. Cara Mia; It’s Magic; Younger Than Springtime; Summertime; Jim Bowie; Little Brown Church; I Believe; Rock of Ages Jasmine JASCD 723 (78:44 & 79:58) An exemplary compilation of songs, some in stereo, by this exceptional singer. He had a glorious voice, which he used to great effect on screen, most memorably in ‘Oklahoma’ and ‘Carousel’, from which Oh, What a Beautiful Morning and Soliloquy respectively are featured. Many other songs from stage and screen are included, together with sacred songs, Christmas tunes and some singles, and Van Alexander, Frank de Vol and Paul Weston number among the accompanists.BMC


THE MILITARY WIVES ‘Stronger Together’ Presented by Gareth Malone OBE Rule the World; Right Here Waiting; Stronger Together; When Will I See You Again; In the Bleak Midwinter; Annie’s Song; Get Here; One Voice; Long and Winding Road; Songs That Won the War – Medley; Meet You at The Moon; Counting Time; Sing; In My Dreams featuring Jon-Joseph Kerr (Remembrance Version)Decca 3710695 (49:06) A follow-up to the earlier chart-topping ‘In My Dreams’ reviewed in JIM 192. This time the choirs are from Lympstone, Plymouth, Dishforth, Catterick, Portsmouth, Chivenor (the original choir), Warminster, Middle Wallop, Defence Academy, Abingdon, Salisbury Plain, Wattisham, and Marham. The CD is as heart-warming and enjoyable as its predecessor, particularly in the crystal-clear diction of the choirs. Gareth co-wrote the title song with Eliot Kennedy. Sing, of course, was the Diamond Jubilee anthem. Although all of ten minutes longer than the first album it is still short measure from Decca, and I found the small white print on a blue background for the liner notes difficult to read. But proceeds from the sales of the album (a minimum of £1 per unit sold at full price) will again support the Military Wives Choir Foundation to carry on what Gareth Malone has so commendably begun. PB

JANE MORGAN ‘At The Cocoanut Grove’ & ‘What Now My Love?’ Fascination/Love Makes the World Go Round/You and The Night and The Music; Paris Medley; The Second Time Around; The Day the Rains Came; Lillian Russell Medley; It Takes Time/Fascination (Reprise): Guess I’ll Have to Hang My Tears Out to Dry; Black Coffee; The End of the Love Affair; I’m a Fool To Want You; What Now My Love; Goodbye; It Never Entered My Mind; Love Look Away; Here’s That Rainy Day; Waiting for Charley to Come Home; Bonus Tracks: Fly Me to the Moon; Count Every Star Sepia 1215 (74:51) Always welcome to these pages, these are the last two new albums, released in 1962, of the 17 the lovely Jane made for Kapp Records, to whom we should forever be grateful for first recording her in 1956 (‘Jane Morgan – An American Songbird In Paris’ Sepia 1098). The Paris Medley, which Richard Schoener describes in his illuminating booklet notes as "a nostalgic nod to her early days as an American chanteuse in the night clubs of Paris", has Ms Morgan singing three of the five numbers in French: Mon Coeur est un Violon (My Heart is a Violin)La Petite Waltz and La Seine. Lillian Russell was one of the most famous American actresses and singers of the late 19th and early 20thcenturies. Among her numbers here are Oh those Hips, Oh those LipsDon’t Throw Stones at Mother,Moonlight Bay, Daisy Bell and Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet. Throughout the first album the orchestra is under the direction of Dick Hazard. On the second album the MDs are Peter Matz and Burt Bacharach, who also produced the record. A standout track is the title song where Bacharach – like Nelson Riddle for Shirley Bassey (both released in 1962; I wonder who thought of it first?) – uses the theme from Ravel’s Bolero as the music’s framework. The final two items listed above are "Bonus Tracks" with Jack Elliott wielding the baton. Let us hope that sales will justify the continuation of more marvellous Morgan re-issues. PB

PATTI PAGE ‘The Collection’ 18 tracks incl. With My Eyes Wide Open I’m Dreaming; Would I Love You (Love You, Love You); Mockin’ Bird Hill; Mister and Mississippi; Detour; Come What May; You Belong to Me; Why Don’t You Believe Me; Changing Partners; Cross Over the Bridge; Let Me Go Lover!; Allegheny Moon; Old Cape Cod; Left Right Out of Your Heart Spectrum 5443222 (50:52) Born Clara Ann Fowler in 1927, Miss Page died on the first day of January this year. With her distinctive vocal colour and good diction she was rated alongside Jo Stafford, Kay Starr and Rosemary Clooney and became the biggest selling female singer of the 1950s. Bigger in the US than in the UK, 111 of her singles (mainly on the Mercury label), spanning from 1948 to 1982, were in the Top 100 Billboard Chart – almost without interruption. Tennessee Waltz spent 13 weeks at the top of the chart in 1950 and went on to sell a reported 10 million copies in the States. There were three more No.1 hit singles between 1950 and 1953 (also included on this disc): All My Love (Bolero)I Went to Your Wedding, and (How Much Is That) Doggie in the Window. The last-named made the UK Singles Chart at No.9. Many of Patti’s hits had her double-tracked in duets with herself, and later releases became increasingly country flavoured. If you are without a Patti Page album on your shelves, this inexpensive digitally remastered compilation from 2001 is well worth acquiring. PB


Andy Williams 47 tracks incl. Misty; Danny Boy; Tonight; Tammy; The Heather on the Hill … Delta 38359 (73:38 & 73:27)
Tony Bennett 48 tracks incl. Blue Velvet; Chicago; Smile; April in Paris; Jeepers Creepers …. Delta 38360 (73:25 & 72:37)
Bobby Darin 50 tracks incl. Lazy River; Things; Skylark; Caravan; Some of these Days … Delta 38361 (69:45 & 72:47)
Ray Charles 45 tracks incl. Georgia on My Mind; My Bonnie; Side by Side; Yes Indeed … Delta 38365 (72:52 & 72:14)
Johnny Mathis 50 tracks incl. Misty; Easy to Love; Stranger in Paradise; My Romance … Delta 38366 (73:57 & 73:08)

These five budget-priced 2-CD sets share the generic title and in a contest the prize would surely go to Bobby Darin. That compilation includes three Atlantic albums, namely ‘That’s All’ and ‘This is Darin’, both arranged and conducted by Richard Wess, and ‘Love Swings’ with Torrie Zito, plus eight tracks from ‘Two of a Kind’, his 1961 collaboration with Johnny Mercer, in which Billy May did the honours. Tony Bennett’s approach to the standards was more cavalier, as evidenced by Love for Saleand Crazy Rhythm, both from his 1957 album ‘The Beat of My Heart’. But his liberties pale in comparison to those of Ray Charles, whose mannerisms are most charitably described as wayward. Both Andy Williams and Johnny Mathis were great ballad singers, and both albums are weighted in favour of that aspect of their art. The songs are for the most part closely associated with the golden age of musicals, both stage and screen and the selections should commend themselves to lovers of the genre. There is a but, which is that it’s not unreasonable to expect the original play or film to be identified, but such information is lacking, as are also any details of the accompaniments. BMC

DAVID WHITFIELD ‘Cara Mia’ Cara Mia; My Son John; When You Lose The One You Love; I’ll Find You; On The Street Where You Live; Song Of The Vagabonds; Climb Ev’ry Mountain; Trees; You Are Too Beautiful; Hear My Song Violetta; Look For The Silver Lining … 66 tracks 3 CDs [178:48]Memory Lane GLM/Y-52 This collection by one of Britain’s most popular singers of the 1950s is divided into three sections: ‘Showcase’, ‘Treasured Moments From Stage And Screen’ and ‘Favourites Through The Years’. The brief track details above include pieces from each of them, so you’ll know what to expect. David Whitfield almost exploded onto the popular music scene in 1954 with Cara Mia, in which he was accompanied by none other than Mantovani (who also co-composed the song). It sold over a million copies in the USA, but the excellent booklet notes by Martin Moritz remind us that it was not actually David’s first taste of chart success. His first Decca singles were released a year before Cara Mia, and his version of Answer Me (the original melody was written by the famous German light music composer Gerhard Winkler) reached the charts accompanied by Stanley Black. Numerous singles followed, in which David was given backings by the top arrangers and conductors on Decca – Roland Shaw, Stanley Black, Cyril Stapleton and, of course, Mantovani. Although he continued working into the 1970s it was the pre-Beatles era of the 1950s that witnessed David Whitfield’s phenomenal success. This is admirably captured in this great souvenir of a very good singer. DA

The following eight reviews are all by Paul Clatworthy

‘THE PHILADELPHIA STORY’ 1940 DSOY 909 (72:07) 17 tracks

‘THE MALTESE FALCON’ 1941 DSOY 902 (73:36) 17 tracks

‘THE PALEFACE’ 1948 DSOY 898 (77:36) 20 tracks

Three more in this series that recreated radio versions of the films, augmented with popular songs of the year. Each sleeve note is a history lesson in miniature, and the tunes are carefully picked and well performed by various bands and singers. PC

LOU STERN and his Jazz Sextet ‘That Was Yesterday’ DSOY 908 (54:07). 20 tracks featuring Billy Butterfield, Peanuts Hucko, Tony Mottola, Bob Carter and Cliff Leeman. PC

JOHNNY MERCER’S ‘Music Shop III’ DSOY 900 (70:49) 28 tracks featuring Jo Stafford, The Pied Pipers with June Hutton, Paul Weston and his orchestra, Wendel Myles, Roberta Lee, Beaulah and Arthur Treacher. PC

JOHNNY MERCER’S ‘Music Shop IV’ DSOY 906 (73:39) 32 tracks featuring Jo Stafford, The Pied Pipers with June Hutton, Paul Weston and his orchestra, guests Roy Rogers and Diana Lynn. PC

PERRY COMO ‘At The Supper Club Part IV’ DSOY 897 (76:10) Twenty eight tracks featuring The Satisfiers, The Modernaires, The Fontane sisters, The Starlighters and guests Connie Haynes, Vivian Blane, Spike Jones, Jerry Colonna and Charles Boyer. PC

BING CROSBY ‘Love Is’ DSOY 903 (72:42) 26 tracks with the Orchestras of VIC Shoen, John Scott Trotter, Victor Young, Joseph Lilley, Morris Stoloff and Lyn Murray. Featured: The Andrews Sisters, The Rhythmaires, Ken Derby Choir, Burl Ives, Al Jolson, Judy Garland, Diana Shore, Peggy Lee and Evelyn Knight. PC

DUKE ELLINGTON ‘Black, Brown & Beige’ Sal Andolina (alto sax) Tony DiLorenzo (trumpet) Amy Licata (violin) Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra / JoAnn Falletta Harlem; Black, Brown, & Beige Suite; Three Black Kings (King of the Magi, King Solomon, Martin Luther King); The River Suite (The Spring, The Meander, The Giggling Rapids, The Lake, The River); Take the A-Train Naxos American Classics 8.559737 (78.30) The best description for this unusual CD is "Symphonic Jazz" with tones of Ferde Grofe discernible, yet all the tracks are quite different. The River in particular is almost straight symphonic music while Harlem is more mainstream jazz. If you like a broad interpretation of a theme with clarinet, alto sax and trumpet solos weaving their melodies backed by a fine brassy orchestra then you will certainly enjoy this. EW

TED HEATH AND HIS BAND ‘Listen To My Music’ 3 CDs 69 tracks. [187:13] Memory Lane GLM/Y-56 Many of us already have Ted Heath’s records in our collections, but the joy of new compilations is that you get the chance to hear the music in a different sequence which – depending upon the expertise of the compiler – can sometimes be a revelation. The first of these 3 CDs is entitled ‘Showcase’, and features well-known Heath favourites such as Dragnet, Take the ‘A’ Train, Hot Toddy, The Faithful Hussar, Swingin’ Shepherd Blues, Tom Hark, Bakerloo Non-Stop etc. On CD 2 we are offered ‘The Pleasure Of Their Company’ in which the Band accompanies the great singers in Heath’s stable, including Lita Roza (Blacksmith Blues, Allentown Jail); Dennis Lotis (Hit And Run Affair, Sam’s Song); Dickie Valentine (You Belong To Me, Mona Lisa); Joan Regan (Heartaches); Paul Carpenter (Try A Little Tenderness); Anne Shelton (Wonderful One); and even Mel Tormé (Walkin’ Shoes). It’s back to the great familiar Heath repertoire for ‘All-Time Favourites’ featuring Tuxedo Junction, Cherokee, I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm, etc. Great sound, great booklet, great collection! DA

PAUL ASARO & THE FAT BABIES ‘What A Heavenly Dream’ 14 tracks incl. Truckin'; Your Feet's Too Big; I Wish I Were Twins; Sweet and Slow; I'll Dance at Your Wedding; Blue, Turning Grey Over You; Don't Let It Bother You … Rivermont BSW-2222 (54:28) Fats Waller & his Rhythm was a small swing group whose recordings have added greatly to the gaiety of the human race. Fats himself was a sensational pianist with a great sense of fun and an enormous personality, and anyone wanting to follow in his footsteps faces a daunting task. Hats off then to Paul Asaro, whose group the Fat Babies has succeeded spectacularly in capturing the essence of Fats’ playing and singing. Paul’s liner note sets out the approach they adopted, which aimed to recapture the spirit of Fats’ recordings whilst deliberately avoiding a note-for-note approach. Recording quality is exemplary, and I recommend this CD unreservedly. BMC

‘COME DANCING’ …’In the 1930s’ 22 tracks incl. The Continental (Lew Stone); Pick Yourself Up(Harry Roy); It’s Just The Time For Dancing (Henry Hall); South Of The Border (Joe Loss) … ‘In the 1940s’ 22 tracks incl. I’ve Got a Gal in Kalamazoo (Glenn Miller); Yes My Darling Daughter(Geraldo); Don’t Sit Under The Apple Tree (The Andrews Sisters); Stardust (Tommy Dorsey) …’In the 1950s’ 22 tracks incl. La Ronde (Mantovani); Blue Tango (Ray Martin); Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White (Eddie Calvert); The Creep (Ken Mackintosh); The Wedding Samba (Edmundo Ros) 3 CDs [194:51] Memory Lane/ Yesteryear GLM/Y-28. When I first picked up this collection and saw the cover I expected to be in for a non-stop session of Victor Silvester. How wrong I was! Much as I admire Silvester, over 60 tracks of his music might be just a shade too much (he appears on just two). What we have here is an inspired compilation of popular recordings that are also admirably suited to dancing. Each of the decades featured was notable for some great popular records, and you’ll discover many familiar friends, plus a few pleasant surprises. The tracks have been well remastered, and nicely sequenced. Simply 3 CDs of some of the most enjoyable popular music of many of our lifetimes … what more could you ask? DA

HARRY GOLD AND HIS PIECES OF EIGHT ‘Parade of the Pieces’ 28 tracks incl.   The Darktown Strutters Ball; An Eight - Piece Band (on a Nine Day Cruise); Blue Ribbon Gal; Long John Stomp; Tin Pan Alley Rag; Ory's Creole Trombone; Rhythm Rag; There'll be Some Changes Made; Davenport Blues; Dixie; Black and Blue; Clarinet Blues …. Dutton Vocalion CDEA 6210  (76.39) Harry Gold formed his band in the late 1940's and modelled his outfit on Tommy Dorsey's Clambake Seven and Bob Crosby's Bobcats but his style was very much his own built around Harry fronting on bass-sax and his brother Laurie on tenor-sax. They enjoyed about 50 years  of playing with regular billing on radio and TV and overcoming the trauma of Rock ‘n' Roll in the mid 1950's – even appearing on the teenage show ‘Six-five Special’ on BBC-TV Saturday nights … remember? The album concentrates on the early days of the band, 1949-52, when the band also included the exciting sounds of Cyril Ellis on trumpet supported by the Norrie Paramor on piano, Bert Weedon on guitar and Geoff Love on trombone before they became national "musical treasures". The material recorded was a mixture of jazz standards and original compositions by Harry, Norrie and Geoff. My personal favourites instrumentally are a rollicking performance of the jazzed-up rendition of National Emblemand Geoff Love's Parade of the Pieces. What makes the CD special are some of the vocal contributions. Before the days of "Manuel" Geoff Love was no mean trad-jazz singer as witnessed onI Love a MysteryDid You Ever Try Frying Snowballs and The Ghost of Old Man Mose (a Love/Paramor original) with his characteristic rolling "r"s. Harry & Laurie bring their vocals to the fore in an hilarious performance of Old MacDonald resplendent with farmyard noises. In what must be her recording debut, mention must be made of Georgia Brown with her two numbers Sweet Georgia Brown and Don't Bring Me Posies, long before she graced the West End stage as the original Nancy in Lionel Bart's ‘Oliver’. The last nine tracks are from a series of Jazz Club releases which, apart from Harry, Laurie and Geoff, have Sid Phillips, Jack Jackson, Freddy Gardner and Max Abrams in the line-up – bonus treasures indeed. The presentation is first class, with a personal liner note from Harry's son Dave accompanied by photographs from the Gold archive. In the re-mastering department Mike Dutton has again performed miracles. Overall a fabulous album … buy it … enjoy it. BMC

CARROLL GIBBONS & HIS BOYFRIENDS Volume 4 ‘Living In Dreams’ 25 tracks incl. Cabin the Cotton; Give Me a Ring (selection); Tony’s Wife; Ain’t She Dainty; Who do You Think You Are?; Not Bad … Vocalion CDEA 6204 (72:40)

Volume 5 ‘Wake Up And Live’ 24 tracks incl. He’s not Dressing (sel); Sing Baby sing (sel); I Double Dare You; Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (selection) … Vocalion CDEA 6209 (73:32)

HENRY HALL & THE BBC DANCE ORCHESTRA Volume 4 ‘What A Perfect Combination’ 26 tracks incl. Balloons; In the Moonlight; Moonstruck; Experiment; After You, Who?; I Don’t Want to go to Bed … Vocalion CDEA 6207 (78:13)

JACK PAYNE & HIS ORCHESTRA Volume 7 ‘Coffee In The Morning’ 24 tracks incl. Over on the Sunny Side; Moon Country; Ill Wind; Who Made Little Boy Blue?; The Moon was Yellow; I Think I Can … Vocalion CDEA 6208 (74:41)

Volume 4 of The Boyfriends spans mid-1932 to mid-1934, three early tracks feature both the American violinist Matt Malneck and vocals by Cecile Petrie, and the selection from Give Me a Ring is a piano solo by Carroll. Fourteen of the tracks include Johnny Green, and the two pianists use On the Air and Not Bad as an opportunity to trade friendly insults. Apart from two May 1934 sides, Volume 5 covers the period from spring 1936 to late 1938, and presents fifteen selections (against the earlier compilation’s four) plus two medleys, so it covers a lot of tunes.

Henry Hall was recruited by the BBC in January 1932, not 1928, as shown in the liner note (mea culpa!) and this compilation covers a year from November 1932. The band was in superlative form, as witness the bouncing rhythm of Balloons, or the drive of What a Perfect Combination, both sung by Les Allen. He provides all but three of the vocals; Bud Flanagan & Chesney Allen duet onDreaming, and Phyllis Robins does the honours on Snowball.

The CD of Henry’s predecessor Jack Payne also offers a 12-month selection, beginning in February 1934, when his recordings began to be issued on the Rex label. He shares vocal honours with Billy Scott-Comber, and Ronnie Genarder gets a look in with True. The band had a very full punchy sound, which could be throttled back for ballads, or let rip on hotter numbers.

All of these compilations offer a great selection of songs, for many of which this is the first reissue, and Mike Dutton’s remastering leaves nothing to be desired. Liner notes are by yours truly. BMC

THE SAVOY ORPHEANS, SAVOY HAVANA BAND & THE SYLVIANS 1923-1927 ’Everybody Stomp’ 24 tracks inclRaggedy Ann; Everybody Loves My Baby; When My Sugar Walks Down the Street: Stomp Off, Let’s Go; Static Strut; Mississippi Mud ... Retrieval RTR 79070 (73:43) The previous compilation of the early Savoy bands was the World Record Club double-LP, and it's hardly surprising that a dozen of the titles from that selection reappear here. The earliest, Sister Kate, dates from April 1923, and Nick Dellow's liner note refers to its Dixieland feel, although its rhythmic impulse carries strong ragtime echoes. There's a novelty element about this side, most obviously in Bert Ralton's ragged clarinet solo, and this aspect also infuses the next two numbers; the muted trumpet sounding tearful on Farewell Blues, and clucking on Henpecked Blues (not forgetting the Swanee whistle on Any Way the Wind Blows). Initially this may distract from appreciation of the solid musicianship involved, but as the CD progresses the high calibre of sidemen chosen for these recording sessions becomes increasingly evident. Outstanding amongst the early acoustic tracks is a bouncing version of Eccentric that bears comparison with the classic New Orleans Rhythm Kings version, and a Copenhagen which is notable for a doubling-up of the rhythm for the ride-out. Some of the arrangements involve tricky syncopated rhythms, which is where the rock-steady rhythm section pays dividends. Whether playing popular songs of the day, or outright jazz, the various personnel acquit themselves with distinction, and no serious collector of the golden age of British dance bands – or those interested in the development of hot dance music outside of the USA – should be without this splendid reissue, lovingly restored from the original 78s, half of which were recorded acoustically. BMC

‘THEN...THE ROARING TWENTIES’ 80 tracks incl. Gene Austin My Blue Heaven; Fletcher Henderson St. Louis Shuffle; Cliff Edwards Singing in the Rain; Lee Morse Moanin’ Low; Jack HyltonMaybe it’s Me … AUPCD123 (63:05, 61:53, 62:30, 64:41)

‘THEN…THE SWINGING THIRTIES’ 80 tracks incl. Chick Webb Heebie Jeebies; Libby Holman Love for Sale; Douglas Byng Miss Otis Regrets; Andre Kostelanetz Chant of the Weed; Lale Anderson Lilli Marlene; Fats Waller Sextette from Lucia di Lammemoor … AUPCD126 (75:48, 79:44, 78:48, 77:32)

AP Music has produced a series of decade-based 4-CD sets, of which I’ve chosen the first two. They present a cornucopia of jazz, dance bands and personalities from stage, and later screen, drawn mainly from the USA. The net has been cast wider than usual to include some less obvious choices. Sound quality is variable but generally acceptable, and the tracklists are minimal, but at around £7 per set this has to be a gift horse. BMC

AL BOWLLY ‘…. Remembers’ 24 tracks inclHappy Go Lucky You; Night and Day; Fancy Our Meeting; The Little Dutch Mill; Isle of Capri; Judy; If I had a Million Dollars; Goodnight Angel …Vocalion CDEA 6203 (75:31) Most of Al Bowlly’s recordings have been reissued on CD, and in this case, both Volumes 1 & 2 of the Memory Lane series "Al Bowlly in his Own Right", together with Sunflower and Rex have covered much the same ground. That said, this is a winning selection in which, as Ray Pallett points out in his excellent liner note, Al also sings the verse on the majority of titles, and is featured in a more intimate setting than usual. My favourite track is the very first, which combines a superior reprise of Al’s 1933 recording of Lover Come Back to Me with the evocativeDancing in the Dark. BMC

SOUSA ‘Music For Wind Band • 11’ The Royal Swedish Navy Band / Keith Brion 14 tracks incl. Keeping Step With the Union March; Wolverine March; Globe and Eagle March; On Parade March; Tally Ho Overture; We Are Coming March; National Fencibles March; Guide Right March; You’re the Flower of My Heart – Sweet Adeline Fantasy Naxos 8.559690 (68:06) With the latest instalment in this long running series comes another change of band with Naxos swapping one Scandinavian navy band for another having crossed the frontier between Norway and Sweden to engage the services of The Royal Swedish Navy Band which, according to the informative booklet note, has been going continuously since the 1680’s and comprises 30 full-time professional musicians. Furthermore it is Sweden’s only professional military band and has played a key role in the development of the country’s wind band music. Even for a seasoned Sousa enthusiast most if not all the titles included on this CD will be largely unfamiliar. But fear not, gentle reader, since many of the tunes here will be familiar to you. As an opener the Mother Hubbard March makes effective use of no less than seven nursery tunes, whilst the 18-minute In Parlour and Street Fantasy makes use of popular melodies from the world of opera and operetta including the famous Anvil Chorus. Another Fantasy, In Pulpit and Pew, features well-known hymn tunes commencing with Onward Christian Soldiers and proceeding via others such as Abide With Me to conclude with Adeste Fideles. The final march deploys to good effect what Sousa considered the most beautiful of all folk songs – Annie Laurie. Another march worthy of note is the 1917 Liberty Loan, which commemorates US government bonds sold in support of WW1, with chimes simulating the celebrated Liberty Bell. Production standards are very high indeed with both recording and performances by this superlative band in the demonstration class. So do get on board before you have too big a back log to catch up with! RH 

‘THE ROAD TO HONG KONG’ & ‘SAY ONE FOR ME’ 28 tracks incl. The Road To Hong Kong’ Overture*; Let’s Not Be Sensible; Moon Over Hong Kong**; Team Work; The Only Way To Travel*; The Chase**; The Road To Hong Kong; Let’s Not Be Sensible Blues*; Reluctant Astronauts**; Warmer Than A Whisper; Lamasery Chant** / Say One For Me; You Can’t Love ‘Em All; The Girl Most Likely To Succeed; The Night That Rock And Roll Died (Almost\); I Couldn’t Care Less; Chico’s Choo-Choo; The Secret Of Christmas (* Robert Farnon & Orchestra; ** composed by Robert Farnon)Sepia 1216 (75:23) These two Bing Crosby original soundtrack albums appear on CD for the first time so are quite historical aural documents. This was the seventh "Road" movie, words by Sammy Cahn and music by Jimmy Van Heusen, filmed in 1962 at Shepperton Studios in Middlesex, England starring Bing, Bob Hope, Joan Collins and Dorothy Lamour. But the main interest to JIM readers will probably be that Robert Farnon was the musical director and wrote four of the seven non-singing tracks played by his orchestra. ‘Say One For Me’ is a 20th Century-Fox film from four years earlier and starred Bing, Robert Wagner, Debbie Reynolds and Ray Walston. Words and music are again by Cahn and Van Heusen, conducted this time by Academy Award winner Lionel Newman, who was an Oscar nominee for this score but lost out to André Previn and Ken Darby’s ‘Porgy and Bess’. Pianist Buddy Cole accompanies Bing on I couldn’t care, and Judy Harriett’s voice on The Night Rock and Roll is dubbed by Rosemary June. The CD is completed by three bonus tracks of what are called "Pop Versions" of three Crosby numbers from the film: two with Frank De Vol and his Orchestra, and one with the Percy Faith Orchestra (a track originally rejected!) reminding us that "The Secret of Christmas is not the things you do at Christmastime but the Christmas things you do all year through." The fine sound restoration by Robin Cherry and Malcolm Macfarlane’s mine of information booklet notes are what we have come to expect from this label. I enjoyed it a lot. RP

RICHARD ARNELL ‘The Unnumbered Symphonies’ Royal Scottish National Orchestra / Martin Yates Overture ‘1940’; Sinfonia; Dagenham Symphony - Suite from the film ‘Opus 65’; Landscapes and Figures Dutton Epoch CDLX 7299 (78:20) Richard Arnell died a forlorn figure in 2009 and could not bear to look at his vast repertoire of unplayed and unrecorded music. In 1939 he found himself trapped in America with no return passage so stayed put and made a name there instead. He later returned home and was championed by a number of people including Sir Thomas Beecham. He also composed several film scores, including some for Alfred Hitchcock in Hollywood. The Sinfonia has unmistakable tones of Sibelius with a dash of Walton while the Dagenham Symphony was composed for a Ford car making documentary with the film shot to fit the music!Overture ‘1940’ and Landscapes and Figures are well worth hearing, the latter consisting of eight contrasting pieces. These world premiere recordings would have put a smile on the face of a composer who thought he had been forgotten … not any more! EW

‘BALLROOM CLASSICS’ Waltzes, Polkas & Galops by The Strauss Family • Lanner • Lehȧr • Suppé • Waldteufel • Vienna Johann Strauss Orchestra / Willi Boskovsky EMI 5099995657127 This jumbo sized 11|CD box set usefully collects together virtually all the recordings of the above repertoire that the inimitable Willi Boskovsky made for EMI throughout the 1970s and 1980s. He did not normally step outside the Viennese dance tradition but what considerably makes this release the more attractive is the inclusion for the first time complete on CD of the two LP recordings (originally on the HMV Greensleeve label) that he made in the 1970s, with the Monte Carlo Opera and the London Philharmonic Orchestras, of an excellent selection of waltzes and polkas by the Parisian "waltz king" Emile Waldteuful. Good though the Marco Polo series devoted to this composer was, I think Boskovsky brings just a little extra sparkle to this music. The box can be acquired for less than £2 a disc. Given generous playing time, consistently good sound and thoroughly idiomatic playing, anyone interested in the dance music of this period should lose no time in grabbing this treasure trove while they can. RH

‘BRITISH OPERA OVERTURES’ Victorian Opera Orchestra / Richard Bonynge 10 tracks containing music by Benedict, Barnett, Balfe, Loder, Wallace, Macfarren, & Goring Thomas SOMMCD 0123 (74:36)

In the latter years of the 19th century it became somewhat fashionable for some of our European cousins to label the British Isles "The Land Without Music". This was not only unfair, it was decidedly untrue. We had music colleges, concert halls, orchestras, conductors and composers aplenty! This new release from SOMM is collaboration with Victorian Opera Northwestwhose Musical Director is the internationally renowned conductor Richard Bonynge. VON was established to promote the many excellent, but largely forgotten, operas of the era by British and Irish composers, whose work used to be extremely popular but has been unjustly neglected in more recent times. The names of the operas, and indeed the composers, will be largely unfamiliar. The only two of the latter which immediately spring to my mind are Julius Benedict (whose Piano Concerto is presently enjoying a bit of a revival, thanks to Classic fM) and Michael William Balfe, whose opera ‘The Bohemian Girl’ (not represented here) includes the well-known aria I Dreamt I Dwelt In Marble Halls. The tracks on this release feature overtures from ten operas by seven composers, the productions spanning the years between 1834 and 1893. The well-illustrated booklet features comprehensive notes describing the works and the composers, and also about the English Opera movement, all of which helps to place the music in context. Whilst none of this will be at all familiar to most listeners, it is very accessible and enjoyable, and much credit is due to SOMM and VON for their initiative in producing this CD, which I’m sure will appeal to those who are on the lookout for something a "bit out of the ordinary".TC

ELGAR ‘The Longed-For Light – Elgar’s Music In Wartime’ BBC Concert Orchestra / John Wilson • Simon Callow (speaker) • Susan Gritton (soprano) Tracks incl. Carillon; Sospiri; Carissima; Le Drapeau Belge; Rosemary; Sursum Corda SOMMCD 247 (75:10) The incredibly versatile BBC house band fronted by our starriest younger conductor in his debut on this label brings us an interesting compilation of music from arguably our foremost composer. Apart from the last item listed above –composed in 1894 – the works here were written from shortly before the beginning of the Great War in 1914 until 1917 and are expressions of Elgar’s patriotism and his sorrowfulness at the events unfolding in Europe. The three longest works (none more than 18 minutes) are Polonia, written for the Polish Victims’ Relief Fund Concert in July 1915; Une Voix dans le Désert featuring both speaker (also heard on Carillon and Le Drapeau) and soloist; and The Sanguine Fan, a single-act ballet written as another of the pieces composed to raise money for wartime charities. Neil Varley produced the recording at Watford Colosseum in February 2012. There is a 30-page booklet of background information in English and French. Probably this album is not normal KT fare although, being Elgar, there are some good tunes. So, if the programme appeals, with these artistes and SOMM’s production values a highly satisfying listen is assured. ET 

ELGAR ‘Starlight Express’ Simon Callow (narrator) • Roderick Williams (baritone) • Elin Manahan Thomas (soprano) • Scottish Chamber Orchestra / Sir Andrew Davis Chandos CHSA 5111/2 (138.08) A wonderful complete version of this lovely fairy tale set to the background of Elgar’s Wand of Youth Suites in a totally different guise. In addition there are three extra songs and a lengthy suite arranged by Andrew Davis himself. Highly recommended for the music alone but you are sure to enjoy the story too. PW

RICHARD EILENBERG ‘Waltzes Marches & Polkas’ Cologne WDR Radio Orchestra / Christian Simonis CPO 77734212 15 tracks (68:52) The German born Gottlob Richard Eilenberg (1848-1927)) was nothing if not prolific with his opus numbers extending to around 350, encompassing marches, dances, salon music, chamber pieces, a ballet and several operettas. His two most popular works St Petersburg Sleigh Ride and The Mill in the Black Forest are both included on this enterprising new release, the latter a charming piece with simulated bird trills. There are too many delights on this disc to cover all of them in detail, so suffice to say you will discover an archetypal salon piece to enchant the ear, described as a "Love idyll", The Hearts First Beat, a lovely spacious waltz Under Italy’s Blue Sky that would not disgrace any member of the Strauss family, aMandolin Serenade in which the plucked strings of the violin imitate the sound of the aforesaid instrument, and the attractive character study In the Smithy in the Woods – apparently a favourite of Kaiser William! For a composer with such a generous melodic facility his neglect for many years is baffling, as is his continued absence from the New Year’s Day concerts in Vienna. Hopefully this disc will help to make some amends and stimulate an increasing interest in his music. Both recording and performances by one of Germany’s fine radio orchestras are uniformly fine, and this fascinating and appealing disc can be heartily recommended – in fact it was a real tonic to play for the first time on a grey, dismal day. Now let’s hope that CPO get round to producing a CD of the dance music of the Hungarian Joseph Gung’l whose waltzes in particular were regularly played by many light music ensembles during the golden days of BBC radio. RH

RODERICK ELMS ‘Moody Moves’ The Aurora Ensemble Moody Moves - Sextet for Piano and Winds; Il Cygnet; Cygnopations; Twelve Astrological Preludes; Fandango Frivolo; Carillon Festiva; Fandango Fantastico; Carillon da Festa Herald HAVPCD 320 (75:43) We are all familiar with the name of Roderick Elms through his work as a distinguished pianist and organist on many recordings and of course appearances over the years on the BBC paricularly with the BBC Concert Orchestra on programmes such as "Friday Night is Music Night". His music covers many styles and ranges in diversity from solo instrumental to symphonic compositions. I am always reluctant to categorise music but would say his music sits very happily in the company of Richard Rodney Bennett or Philip Lane, his light music is just that: light with a bit extra! Readers will no doubt have heard his very entertaining Christmas disc entitled ‘Festive Frolic’ with the RPO on the Naxos label, or ‘A Little Fall-ish’, recordings of some of his instrumental music from the Dutton stable. It is Roderick Elms’ instrumental music we are concerned with here with this latest disc from the enterprising Herald label. Moody Moves, the title piece, is a six-movement sextet for piano and winds and is for me an enchanting work with such titles as Amorous Antiphon, Retro Romance, Funky Fugato, and the piece ends with a Saucy Saltarello. Think of Britten’s Simple Symphony and you will get the idea. The pianist is Joanna Smith, with the excellent Aurora Ensemble, a young, gifted group formed in 1996, whom our local music society had the pleasure of hearing a couple of years ago. The distinguished saxophonist Kyle Horch appears in two pieces for saxophone and piano again with Joanna Smith, these being originally written for cor anglais but translate superbly to the sax as transcribed by Kyle. Roderick Elms himself appears at the piano for the other main work on the CD here appearing complete for the first time – Twelve Astrological Preludes for piano. Interestingly the work started life as just one short piece Aquarius, but at the suggestion of a BBC producer Roderick wrote the other eleven to create a suite albeit over a period of two years! The character and style of each prelude alludes to certain traits of its birth sign and even more interesting is that the composer adopts an Elgarian mode by adding to that sign the initials of a friend born under the same. This must lead to interesting discussions within the Elms household. There are as you might expect works for organ on the record played on the organ of Brentwood Cathedral by Stuart Nicholson, what you would not expect is that Iwo of the pieces also feature the guitar, played by Victoria Green. Such an unlikely combination you might think – a large organ and guitar? Yet such is the skill of the writing and performing they are quite simply amazing, delightful music; Fandango Frivolo and Fandango Fantastico are the pieces and the solo organ pieces are Carillon de Festa and Carillon Festivo. It is a long time since I heard such an entertaining and varied programme with many pleasant surprises along the way. Warmly recommended. DD

HOWARD GOODALL ‘Inspired’ The Essential Collection Laura Wright (soprano) • Noah Stewart (tenor) • Enchanted Voices • Craig Ogden • Howard Goodall Chamber Orchestra ClassicfM CFMD28 19 tracks (77:25) At the time of writing the personable Mr Goodall is almost as ubiquitous on radio and TV as Clare Balding. His album released earlier this year is a toothsome mix of new and re-arranged works. The title track is one of the former featuring both the renowned guitarist Craig Ogden and the solo violin of the 31-piece orchestra leader John Mills. Listeners will recognize the themes from Mr Bean (Ecco Homo) and The Vicar of Dibley (Psalm 23). The composer is the solo pianist on Piano Fantasy: Tongue-Tied (from Red Dwarf)Shackleton’s CrossNocturnes(from the musical Love Story) and Blackadder Went Forth. Laura Wright sings Agnes Dei (fromEternal Light: A Requiem) and Pro Alios Curantibus (For Those Who Care for Others). The major work is a new 10-part oratorio Every Purpose Under the Heaven inspired by the beautiful poetry of the King James Bible to celebrate its 400th anniversary. As well as the noted soloists the 22 Enchanted Voices are joined here by the 25-strong Chamber Choir of Lincoln Minster School. Not perhaps "a modern-day ‘Messiah’" (as I read somewhere) but 46 minutes of music to warm the heart. PB

MICHAEL HURD ‘Orchestral Music & Pop Cantatas’ New London Orchestra & New London Children’s Choir / Ronald Corp Orchestral Music - Overture To An Unwritten Comedy; Sinfonia Concertante; Dance Diversions; Concerto da Camera; Little Suite; Plaine and Fancie; Harlequin Suite. Pop Cantatas - Charms and Ceremonies; Hip Hip Horatio; Nine Of Anon; A New Nowell 2 CDs Dutton Epoch CDLX7297 (135:01) The Michael Hurd Estate has generously provided support for this latest CD of his works, which will help to make his music available to a wide audience. Many of the recordings are world premieres, and it seems such a pity that Hurd (he died in 2006 aged 77) did not live to hear his music performed by such talented musicians. I wonder if he ever came into contact with Sir Vivian Dunn, because the booklet notes tell us that Michael Hurd spent six years on the staff of the Royal Marines School of Music at Deal. Before that he had studied composition with Lennox Berkeley and read music at Pembroke College, Oxford. He has written extensively about music, and today is chiefly known for his vocal and choral works, often with an appeal for young people. The first CD is devoted to orchestral music, and it is all new to me. My main impression is that it is tuneful and accessible, and I will certainly enjoy getting to know it better. The second CD comprising ‘Pop Cantatas’ also has some delightful moments, and the enthusiasm of the soloists and choir is beyond question. If, like me, you are unfamiliar with the music of Michael Hurd, then my advice would be to give strong consideration to adding this collection to your music library. These days it is possible to hear snippets of CD tracks on various internet music sites, and I would recommend that you make use of this helpful facility. Dutton/Epoch are offering these 2 CDs at the usual price for just one, so this is a bargain. It is worth quoting from Epoch’s own publicity: "In this attractive programme, issued as a 2-CD set, Dutton Epoch presents two sides of English composer Michael Hurd's (1928-2006) musical persona. The first disc is devoted to various charming orchestral compositions spanning the late 1960s to the early 1990s, and is effectively another entry in Dutton Epoch's British Light Music series. Lorraine McAslan is the persuasive soloist in Hurd's Sinfonia Concertante, one of Hurd's first substantial orchestral works. Oboist Nicholas Daniel is featured in the Concerto da Camera. Dating from the late 1970s, the composer remarked that it formed a ‘tribute to the genius of Francis Poulenc, and like his work seeks simply to ‘give delight and hurt not' in a world where obfuscation and gloom are too often the order of the day." Over on disc two we have four compositions for large children's choir with orchestral accompaniment and, in some cases, more modest forces. With flair and panache, Ronald Corp leads the New London Orchestra and New London Children's Choir, aided and abetted by various soloists, through this delightful programme, giving us a valuable insight into the colourful musical world of Michael Hurd. DA

MENDELSSOHN ‘Violin Concertos’ Tianwa Yang Sinfonia Finlandia Jyväsklä / Patrick Gallois Naxos 8.55937 (66:41) Those who responded to the review of Tianwa Yang’s Sarasate album in JIM 193 will need no further recommendation to buy her latest release. The 26-year-old Chinese violinist resident in Germany has been called "an unquestionable master of the violin" who "rises above her competition". Here the very popular E Minor Concerto is coupled, not as it invariably is with the Tchaikovsky or Bruch concerti, but with an attractive much lesser known Concerto in DMinor written when Mendelssohn was only 14-years-old. The album is completed by the Violin Sonata in F Minor, another fresh sounding early work, where Miss Yang is accompanied by pianist Romain Descharmes. With outstanding playing throughout, this release is very hard to resist however many other versions of the E minor one already has. ET

‘NEW YEAR’S CONCERT 2013’ Vienna Philharmonic / Franz Welser-Mӧst 2-CDs Sony 88765411632 Alongside the customary pieces by the Strauss Family et al, this world-famous event from Vienna included works by Suppé, Verdi and Wagner. It was a first performance at one of these concerts for 11 of the 20 tracks. No further recommendation needed! PB

PARRY ‘Works For Chorus and Orchestra’ Amanda Roocroft (soprano) BBC National Chorus of Wales BBC National Orchestra of Wales / Neeme Järvi Chandos CHAN 10740(75:15) This is a very desirable release of melodic music from the somewhat neglected English composer Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry (1848-1918). Four of the six pieces are premiere recordings: the opening Te Deum, written for the coronation of King George V in 1911, the 19-minute suite The Birds of Aristophanes, James Shirley’s funeral ode The Glories of Our Blood and State, andMagnificat, first performed at the 1897 Hereford Three Choirs Festival. England is a musical setting of Shakespeare’s famous speech from Richard II, "This royal throne of Kings, this sceptered island, this earth of majesty, this seat of Mars." Jerusalem is in the original version with the soprano singing the first verse. All those taking part in the recording are on top form, none more so than the Estonian conductor. Jeremy Dibble’s booklet notes are enhanced by an introduction from that champion of Parry’s music HRH The Prince of Wales. Wholeheartedly recommended. ET

‘SOUND THE TRUMPET – Royal Music of Purcell & Handel’

Alison Balsom (natural trumpets) The English Concert / Trevor Pinnock (director, harpsichord and organ) 26 tracks EMI 4403292 (66:19) The booklet notes tell us that "trumpeters were the true heroes of the Baroque: the best-paid musicians of their day and the stars that the courts of Europe fought over." For this album the UK’s lovely leading exponent of the instrument switches to the glorious sounding valve-less baroque version to bring us nine works including duets on Handel’s Eternal Source of Light Divine and Purcell’s title piece with countertenor Iestyn Davies; and Purcell’s The Fairy Queen – The Plaint with soprano Lucy Crowe. Here we are transported to another Age, and jolly good it sounds too. ET

LEOPOLD STOKOWSI ‘The Columbia Stereo Recordings’ 10 CDs Sony 88691971152 An outstanding box set from the musical magician of Disney’s ‘Fantasia’ fame with many approachable items including Beethoven’s "Emperor" Piano Concerto (with Glenn Gould); Bizet’s Carmen andL’Arlésienne Suites Nos 1 & 2Flight of the Bumble Bee, Clair de lune, Perpetuum mobile,Humoresque and six other Stokowski transcriptions; Tchaikovsky’s Aurora’s Wedding (music fromThe Sleeping Beauty); and Bizet’s youthful Symphony in C – this being "Stoky’s" very last recording made shortly before his death, aged 95, in 1977. The first four albums from the 1960s are with the renowned Philadelphia Orchestra (Stokowski was conductor from 1912 to 1938, making it into the world’s plushiest symphony orchestra) and the rest from the late 1970s – four made in West Ham Central Mission, two at the EMI Studios – with the National Philharmonic Orchestra, a specially made up ensemble of top British musicians engaged for recording sessions. Each CD is a miniature copy of the original LP even down to the grooves. You will need a magnifying glass to read the sleeve notes although not for Edward Johnson’s booklet notes. With good sound, this is fantastic value at over eight hours of music for under £16 on the net. ET

SIGMUND GROVEN (harmonica) with Ivar Anton Waagaard (piano) ‘Classical Harmonica’The Sally Gardens (Trad. Arr. Britten); Clair De Lune (Debussy); Fjellvind (E. Groven); Broomy Hill (James Moody); Capricious (Tommy Reilly); Der Var Ein Gong (Sigmund Groven); Bavarian Woodpecker (Tommy Reilly/James Moody) etc… 33 tracks (Norway) Grappa GRCD4393. [75:19] Our good friend (and RFS member) Sigmund Groven continues to produce impressive collections featuring his chosen instrument. For many years he worked closely with Tommy Reilly, so it is hardly surprising that he has become one of the foremost players of the harmonica. As the booklet notes remind us, Sir George Martin has described him as follows: "In the right hands the harmonica can be an instrument of great beauty and sophistication. Sigmund Groven, like Tommy Reilly and Larry Adler before him, makes full use of the wide range and tonal expressions that the harmonica is capable of. His musicianship is superb, and he now unquestionably reigns supreme as one of the finest exponents of the harmonica in the world." Sigmund’s notes in the booklet are in English as well as Norwegian. Collectors who avidly purchase all the CDs featuring Sigmund will already have more than 20 on their shelves. They should not hesitate to add this latest one as well. DA 

‘ORGAN SPECTACULAR’ featuring famous organists such as Reginald Dixon, Sidney Torch, Bobby Pagan, Ken Griffin, Ethel Smith, Robin Richmond, Klaus Wunderlich, George Wright, Jesse Crawford, Quentin Maclean, Sandy MacPherson, Lloyd Thomas … 3 CDsMemory Lane/ Yesterday GLM/Y-30. [196:29] Here’s another treat for organ fans, although this differs from the Reginald Dixon collection mentioned above because there is only one medley. The first two CDs contain what can be described as the "usual" theatre organ repertoire. But the third CD is certainly different, and most welcome! All of the 16 pieces on this are classical works, starting with the famous Toccata from Widor’s Symphony No. 5 (played by Virgil Fox), and ending with the Finale from Saint-Saens’Symphony No. 3 played by Marcel Dupré with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra conducted by Paul Paray. Other featured organists playing the classics include Karl Richter, Eric Chadwick and Reginald Foort. As usual with releases from this company the CD booklet is well researched and informative.DA

RICHARD TAUBER ‘The Golden Voice’ You Are My Heart’s Delight; Girls Were Made To Love And Kiss; Vienna City Of My Dreams; My Heart And I; Lover Come Back To Me; etc – 3-CDs 66 tracks [208:31] Memory Lane GLM/Y-57 There’s no need for a long list of the contents of this collection, because admirers of this hugely popular tenor will know exactly what to expect. He made an astounding number of records, as anyone with an old Parlophone catalogue will readily confirm. He was forced to leave his native Austria in 1938 to escape Nazi persecution, and settled in England, where he eventually gained British nationality. Austria’s loss was certainly Britain’s gain, because he became a much-loved entertainer, and this is a wonderful souvenir to remind us all of his great talent. The booklet (with informative notes by Martin Moritz) also lists all the tracks, with full information regarding the recording date, matrix number and the catalogue number. Unfortunately the orchestras do not get a mention, but well done Memory Lane! DA

More recent releases recommended by Wilfred Askew

LES BAXTER "The Comedy of Terrors" Original Film Soundtrack (1966) Intrada Special Collection : Vol. 218 (41:53)

CHARLIE BYRD ‘Brazilian Byrd’ / ‘Hollywood Byrd’ 22 tracks incl. Corcovado; Jazz ‘’N’ Samba; The Girl From Ipanema; Dindi; A Time For Love; Georgy Girl; Alfie; Born Free; Any Wednesday; Moment to Moment BGOCD 1059 (62:48) Original CBS albums from 1966/67.

DAVID CARROLL & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Percussion Orientale’/ ‘Percussion Parisienne’ 26 tracks incl. In a Persian Market; Ballet Egyptian; Twilight In Turkey; Shish-Kebab; Mimi; Alouette; My Uncle; Valentine; The Petite Waltz; Dites-Moi SEPIA 1204 (70:43) Original Mercury recordings from 1960/61.

MATT DENNIS ‘Welcome Matt’ Four complete albums: ‘Plays & Sings’; ‘Songs Of Rodgers & Hart’; ‘Dennis, Anyone?; ‘Welcome Matt Dennis’ 48 tracks Junior & Julie; Angel Eyes; That Tired Old Routine; Mimi; Blue Moon; Mountain Greenery; Where Do We Go From Here?; Old Uncle Fud; Enchanted Memory; Show Me the Way to Go Home; By the Fireside; My Blue Heaven JASMINE JASCD 697 – 2-CD set (143:23)

HUGO FRIEDHOFER "The Rains Of Ranchipur"; "Seven Cities Of Gold"; "The Blue Angel" Kritzerland KR 20024-1 – 2-CD set (139:22)

BERT KAEMPFERT & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Let’s Go Bowling’ (1964) 14 tracks incl. Holiday For Bells; Holiday in Scotland; Toy Parade; The Bass Walks; Sunday in Madrid; Love After Midnight; Danke Schoen Polydor 278648-2 (37:24)

CARMEN McRAE ‘The Complete Kapp Recordings’ 3 LPs on 2 CDs

‘Book of Ballads’ arr./cond. by Frank Hunter 12 tracks incl. By Myself; My Romance; Isn’t it Romantic; Please be Kind; ‘When You’re Away’ arr./cond. by Frank Hunter* & Luther Henderson 12 tracks incl. The More I See You; Willingly*; I’ll Be Seeing You; I Concentrate on You; ‘Something To Swing About’ arr./cond. Ernie Wilkins 12 tracks incl. Three Little Words; That’s For Me; A Sleepin’ Bee; Alone Together Fresh Sound FSR-CD 677 (11:05)

DAVID RASKIN "What’s The Matter with Helen?" Original Film Soundtrack (1971) Quartet Records SCE 049 (31:34)

RICARDO SANTOS & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Song Of The Pearlfisher’ The cascading strings of Werner Műller 50 tracks from 1954-59 on 2 CDs incl. Ole Guapa; La Cumparsita; Tango Americano; Armen’s Theme; Guagliione; Adios Pampa Mia; Serenata; O Sole Mio; Elephant’s Tango; La Seine; Buona Sera; Donkey Serenade Koch 8061981 (141:01)

LEITH STEVENS "The War Of The Worlds" (1953) 2-CD set Intrada Special Collection : Vol. 202 (64:12 & 77:48)

FRANZ WAXMAN "Career" Music from the 1959 Motion Picture Kritzerland KR 20024-5 (49:33)

VICTOR YOUNG "Shane" Music from the 1952 Motion Picture La-La Land LLLCD 1224 (66:03)

"Run Of The Arrow" (1957) & "The Brave One" (1956) OSTs originally issued on LP by US DeccaDisques Cinémusique DCM 136 (73:31)

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Reviewers in this issue: David Ades, Peter Burt, Paul Clatworthy, Mike Crowther, Roger Hyslop, Barry McCanna, Edward Trub, Edmund Whitehouse, Anthony Wills, and Peter Worsley

The KT Editor’s Choice for this issue

NIGEL HESS ‘New London Pictures’ The Central Band of The Royal Air Force / Nigel Hess Chandos CHAN 10767 (63:30) A new release from our fellow RFS member and friend is always welcome and this is a terrific album. Nigel is the composer of many TV scores such as award-winning themes for ‘Testament’, ‘Summer’s Lease’ and ’Hetty Wainthrop Investigates’ Here there are two premiere recordings: the title piece is a descriptive three-movement work (Millennium Bridge,London Eye and Congestion Charge), and The Lochnagar Suite, also in three movements, takes its inspiration from The Old Man of Lochnagar, a children’s book written for his two younger brothers by HRH The Prince of Wales. Then there are three premiere recordings in new arrangements: the lovelyLadies in Lavender theme from the film, Shakespeare Pictures (portraying ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, ‘The Winter’s Tale’: The Statue and ‘Julius Caesar: The Entry to the Senate’) and A Christmas Overture, which always gets a lot of airplay on Classic FM. The album is completed by the oldest piece, the evocative Monck’s March, a concert overture commissioned by the Band of the Coldstream Guards in 2002, telling the story of General Monck’s historic journey in 1660 from Coldstream on the Scottish border to London with a force of 5,000 foot and 2,000 horse. There is not a dull moment on this disc, with the playing of the 50-strong band – the first outside the USA to receive the John Philip Sousa Citation for Musical Excellence – and the recording both outstanding. PB 

A descendant of the late Dame Myra Hess, Nigel Hess has much to be pleased about as a composer of accessible and tuneful music. New London Pictures was commissioned in 2003 and begins with a walk on the new pedestrian bridge across the River Thames near the Tate Modern, then enjoys a bird’s eye view over London from the nearby giant ferris wheel and ends with a London traffic jam with undertones of Gershwin’s An American in Paris. While the delightful Pictures will appeal to everyone, even if they don’t care for the bard. A Christmas Overture deserves to be heard every time the Christian festive season comes round. An excellent CD. PW 

LEROY HOLMES ‘The Sophisticated Strings and Arrangements of …’ 2-CD set: 60 tracks incl. There’s a Small Hotel; At Last; The Hour of Prayer; Smoke Gets in Your Eyes; Humoresque; Sophisticated Lady; Lamento (Song of the Wind); Andalucia (The Breeze and I); Dolce Far Niente; Dansera; The Rain in Spain; Vaya Con Dios; Flying Home; Ciribiribin; Cherokee; Let’s Dance; Take the "A" Train; I’m Getting Sentimental Over You; Lucy’s Theme from "Parrish"; Where the Boys Are; The Parent Trap; April Love; Theme from "A Summer Place"; (Love is) The Tender Trap; Unchain My Heart; Hit the Road Jack; Hallelujah, I Love Her So; Georgia on My Mind; Just For a Thrill; RubyJasmine JASCD 734 (78:53 & 79:33) Once again this label has a winning compilation with this exceptionally well-filled release from another lesser known light music conductor and his orchestra. Named Alvin at birth, Holmes (1913-1986) was an American songwriter, composer, arranger and conductor who studied, among other places, at the famous Juilliard School in New York. He worked for a number of bandleaders during the 1930s and early ‘40s, including Ernest Toch, Vincent Lopez and Harry James. After serving as a lieutenant in the US Navy during WWII he moved to Hollywood, where he was hired by MGM Music Studios as a house arranger and conductor, before moving to United Artists. During his time at MGM he backed numerous vocalists including Judy Garland, and in 1954 made arguably the best-known recording of the theme to the film "The High and the Mighty"with its distinctive whistling. The tracks here are taken from five varied original stereo LPs featuring lush ballads, a Spanish selection, big band and movie themes, and a tribute to Ray Charles. I find it hard to understand how Holmes did not become a much bigger name in our kind of music. You get what it says on the tin, not all the arrangements involving strings, and this will make a most worthwhile addition to any CD collection. PB 

MICHEL LEGRAND / JACQUES DEMY The Complete Edition Universal France 534 215 9 The French composer Michel Legrand’s output is prodigious: music has poured out of him for the last 60 years. This 11-CD box set (issued to coincide with a retrospective running at the Cinematheque in Paris until 4th August) is devoted to the nine movies he made with cult director Jacques Demy, beginning with Lola in 1960 and ending with Trois Places Pour Le 26 in 1988. Of particular interest are the ground-breaking "sung-through" films The Umbrellas Of Cherbourg (1964) and The Young Girls Of Rochefort (1968), both starring Catherine Deneuve, whose singing voice was dubbed by various artists. Umbrellas is an intimate romantic drama very much of its time whereas Rochefort is Demy’s big budget homage to the Hollywood musical (Gene Kelly makes a cameo appearance). Their soundtracks have been digitally restored and are presented here in their entirety with, in the case ofRochefort, a never before released English language version featuring skilfully translated lyrics by Julian More. In addition there are the orchestral backings on their own, giving us an opportunity to appreciate Legrand’s dazzling arranging skills on, for example, The Girl I’ve Never Met. A further bonus comes in the shape of transcribed cassette tapes featuring Legrand working on ideas at the keyboard with Jacques Demy. As a welcome addition there are symphonic suites of the scores and a CD devoted to interpretations of their most famous songs by the likes of Tony Bennett, Astrud Gilberto, Stephane Grappelli, Sergio Mendes and Bill Evans. The accompanying booklet includes some Sixties studio and location shots and a lengthy interview with Michel Legrand, helpfully translated into English. For lovers of Legrand’s work and French cinema this collection is an absolute must. AW

GEOFF LOVE & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Waltzes With Love’ & ‘More Waltzes With Love’ Falling in Love with Love; Ramona; Anniversary Song; Always; Beautiful Dreamer; I’ll See You Again; Fascination; Wonderful One; Charmaine; Love’s Last Word is Spoken; The Last Waltz; Now is the Hour; Love’s Roundabout; The Desert Song; Around the World; When I Grow Too Old to Dream; Vaya con Dios; One Night of Love; Lover; Edelweiss; The Song from "Moulin Rouge"Try to Remember; Ask Me Why I Love You; Waltz of My Heart Vocalion CDLK 4493 (60:15) After his venture into disco/funk reviewed in our last issue, Geoff returns to the music we know and love for this release of two more albums from the extensive number he made for EMI’s Music for Pleasure label, this time from 1975 and 1979. Here we can wallow in 23 of the 20th century’s best waltzes, plus the 19th century’s Stephen Foster title, played in stylish arrangements with no gimmicks. In his original sleeve note for the first album the noted Gramophone magazine critic, W A Chislett, refers to Geoff’s "sensitive and expert treatment and handling" of the music. So just sit back, listen and enjoy; or maybe roll back the carpet and dance! PB 

MANTOVANI & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Favourite Melodies From The Operas’ 12 tracks incl. Celeste Aida; One Fine Day; Caro Nome; Softly Awakes My Heart; M’appari; Musetta’s Waltz Song; O My Beloved Father … ‘The Immortal Classics’ 12 tracks incl. Prelude in C sharp major(Rachmaninov); Minuet from Divertimento in D (Mozart); Romance (Rubenstein); Simple Aveu(Thomé); On Wings of Song (Mendelssohn); Largo (Handel); Barcarolle (Offenbach) … Vocalion CDLK 4500 (40:17 & 43.30) Many light orchestral music lovers around the world would consider that the Venice born maestro and his orchestra were (are) incomparable. There have been imitators but no-one has matched, let alone surpassed, the unique and very special Mantovani sound. From the mid-Fifties to the mid-Seventies this inimitable quality made him a global household name. The unmistakeable hallmarks: the overall radiance, the shimmering and cascading strings (albeit used sparingly here), the skilfully orchestrated woodwind and brass – in short, all the original sounds so characteristic of Monty and Monty alone – are evident on these two mono albums from 1956 and 1954. All the arrangements are by Mantovani except for five on the first disc by Cecil Milner. I wonder how many people, like me, cut their classical music teeth on the original LPs alongside ‘An Album of Strauss Waltzes’ and ‘An Album of Ballet Memories’PB 

‘An Album of Ballet Melodies’ 10 tracks incl. Valse des Fleurs (Tchaikovsky); Invitation to the Waltz (Weber); Pas de Deux from "Giselle" (Adam); Le Cygne (The Swan) (Saint-Saëns); Dance of the Comedians (Smetana) … ‘The World’s Favourite Love Songs’ 14 tracks incl. And this is My Beloved; At Dawning; Drink to Me only with Thine Eyes; I Give My Heart; Night and Day; Ich Liebe Dich (I Love You); Parlez-moi d’Amour (Speak to Me of Love) … Vocalion CDLK 4503 No sooner had the above been written and along comes more of the same as this 2-CD set was announced for release shortly before we went to print. Ponchielli’s Dance of the Hours - Finale is in a Ronald Binge arrangement. My Old Dutch is a quirky choice for the second album. The original Decca mono LPs are from 1956 and 1957 respectively. We may well return to these albums in our final issue. PB 

MANUEL & THE MUSIC OF THE MOUNTAINS ‘Viva Manuel!’ Viva!; Chiquitita; Tijuana Taxi; On the Night of a Thousand Stars; Cumana; Los Hombres; Mambo Jambo; Copacabana (At the Copa); Mexican Magic; One Note Samba; Can You Read My Mind?; Mambo No.5; Chante; Zorba’s DanceThe Music of Manuel’ Princess Leia’’s Theme (from Star Wars); Il Cielo in Una Stanza; When I Need You; My Thanks to You; The Ways of Love; Noche de Ronda; Scheherazade; Mi Sono Innamorato de Te; Poldark (theme from the TV series); You Light Up My Life; Fantasy; Cuanto le Gusta Vocalion CDLK 4499 (42:49 & 43:15) Manuel is, of course, Geoff Love’s alter ego and you get the same quality music-making as you do from the albums made under his own name. EMI started issuing this series of albums in the early 1960s and these two are from the late 1970s. The Studio 2 Stereo recordings offer a wide soundstage with a rich string sound, Latin influenced orchestrations and the very occasional use of a wordless chorus. The opening track is a Love original composition. An all-round enjoyable listen. PB

BERNARD MONSHIN & HIS RIO TANGO BAND 32 tracks incl. Crepuscule; Mexican Carnival; Under the Bridges of Paris; Tango Caballero; Windows of Paris; Alcantara; Mountain Carnival; Lady of Spain; Red Sombrero; Lavoona.... Cottage Industry Records FBCD 364 (79.21) Brian Reynolds tells us in his superbly knowledgeable liner note that Bernard Monshin formed his original band in the 1930s but during the 1950s he was a regular broadcaster on the BBC Light Programme featuring on ‘Music While You Work’ 146 times together with his own programmes notably ‘Tango Time’. BM has already been featured in Guild's Golden Age of Light Music series but this is the first CD devoted to his music with recordings taken from three editions of ‘MWYW’ from Brian's library lovingly restored by Alan Bunting. The album includes a variety of Latin-American Rhythms such as the tango, rumba, beguine, paso doble and samba, etc. However many of the pieces are home grown: El Novillero(Edward Rubach),  Josita (Philip Green), Tiptoe Tango (Eric Jupp); not forgetting Louis Voss (composing as Stefan Rogez) and Gerald Crossman, who both played in the band and contributeMasquerade in Madrid, Antonella and Poverino Mio. Our European friends are not forgotten either: the Dutch tango king Malando provides Primero and Helmut Zacharias Spanish Violins. We must remind ourselves that Maestro Monshin composed a wealth of Latin-American compositions and his joropo Caracas (composing as Antonio Alma) and Fascinatin' Tango are also included. My personal favourites are the lovely beguine treatment of I Talk to the Trees (from ‘Paint Your Wagon’), the Italian melody Luna Rosa (played as a tango) and George Scott-Wood's superb tango Revenge. The presentation is first class with photographs of many of the composers featured on the CD – an original touch together with photographs of the band taken from Brian's book Music While You Work - An Era in Broadcasting and a British Pathé short taken in the 1930's (including singer Monte Rey – that’s nostalgia for you). To quote from Brian's liner note this CD will bring back happy memories to people of a certain age but hopefully will introduce this fine orchestra to younger listeners. I played this album all the way through – that’s recommendation enough. MC

[Available from Frank Bristow, 2 Cross Street, Brighton 3186, Victoria Australia (price via Paypal Aust $26.35/ UK £16.00. A limited quantity also available from Brian Reynolds (contact details on inside cover) @ £12 including p&p]. 

HUGO MONTENEGRO & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Loves Of My Life’ & ‘Ellington Fantasy’ 24 tracks incl. Girl of My Dreams; The Lady is a Tramp; Little Girl Blue; Jeannie I Dream of Lilac Time; Sophisticated Lady; My Old Flame … Black and Tan Fantasy; Sophisticated Lady (Alt Version); Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me; Solitude; Azure; Mood Indigo … Jasmine JASCD 217 (66:04) Montenegro (1925-81) was staff manager to Andre Kostelanetz at Columbia in his home city of New York, most notably conducting/arranging for Harry Belafonte, before fronting his own orchestra. Later on in his career, in the 1960s, he was primarily known for his movie work, largely of the Spaghetti Western variety. In 1968 he had a big hit with the single The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, reaching No.1 in the UK for four weeks, No.2 in the US, No.3 in Canada and selling more than 1,250,000 copies worldwide. He was also known for his work with electronic music. The two attractive mono albums on this release are from 1957. Using an orchestra of approximately 32 musicians and including a two-octave portable electric organ, the first dozen tracks focus on the ladies, including three superior tracks from the pen of Richard Rodgers. The accent is on sweeping strings with four sax and three flute solos. In his original sleeve notes Sam Hick calls Montenegro’s arrangements "deft and ingenious scores". The last dozen tracks are in tribute to probably the greatest jazz band leader ever. All are Ellington compositions and, again, are given the full-bodied string sound but this time with jazz-tinged solos from violin, trombone (Urbie Green), alto and tenor sax, and French horn (Caravan being a standout track). I feel sure "The Duke" would have approved. PB

REG OWEN & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Obsession’ 28 tracks incl. ‘Coffee Break’ (1958) Oh But I Do; Ask Anyone Who Knows; Was That the Human Thing to Do; Every Day; Please Don’t Talk About Me; Twenty Four Hours of Sunshine … ‘Cuddle Up a Little Closer’ (1959) Title tune; What is This Thing Called Love; You Oughta Be in Pictures; It’s Only a Paper Moon; Pretty Baby; Thou Swell … ’Bonus Hits’ Manhattan Spiritual; Ritual Blues; Down By the Riverside; Obsession Jasmine JASCD 263(77:03) After playing saxophone in the RAF’s Bomber Command Band during World War II, on demob George Owen Smith arranged for Ted Heath and Cyril Stapleton. He changed his name to Reginald Owen in 1954, and began writing film scores in 1957. He became well-known two years later when he had a No.10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and a No.20 in the UK Singles Chart withManhattan Spiritual. The single after which this album is named reached No.43 in the UK in 1960. Both are included on this release of two stereo albums originally recorded for RCA Victor, which make for good listening with some attention-catching arrangements. Moving to Brussels in 1971, Reg continued to work as composer, conductor and arranger (remember the Knightsbridge Strings?) but sadly died in 1978 at the early age of 57. PB

IAIN SUTHERLAND CONCERT ORCHESTRA    ‘Manhattan Playboys – American Light Classics’ 20 tracks incl.  I'm a Brass Band; Folks Who Live on the Hill; Marching Thro' Georgia (arr. Hope); Walking the Dog; Tiny Ballerina; Kentucky Love Song (arr. Hope); March of the Toys; On Golden Pond ... alto ALC 1206  (77: 30)   Iain Sutherland's latest album takes us across the Atlantic for an attractive selection that includes light music specials along with music from the movies, Broadway and the Great American Songbook written by either American born composers or by composers who worked extensively in the States.  The performances are excellent with lovely warm string playing blending with beautiful sounds from woodwind and brass. The album commences in stirring fashion with the Overture from Erich Korngold's score to Captain Blood evoking swashbuckling memories of Errol Flynn. It's followed by delightful performances of Robert Farnon'sManhattan Playboy and later on in the album his nocturne How Beautiful is Night in Bob's own original score. A selection of American music couldn’t be without the music of Leroy Anderson or Morton Gould and superb performances of the former's Forgotten Dreams and Trumpeter's Lullaby – admirable solo work in both pieces – with the latter's Pavanne and his raucious confection American Salute included. Richard Rodgers comes to the fore with his Song of the High Seas from his score of the NBC-TV series ‘Victory at Sea’ and we arrive on Broadway with the Carousel Waltz.  Outstanding among the American standards featured is an especially lovely arrangement of Cole Porter's Night & Day by Reg Tilsley.  We remain on Broadway when the album concludes in exciting style with Maurice Peress' concert arrangement of the Overture to Leonard Bernstein's West Side Story.  However my personal favourite is the exhilarating performance of Jerry Herman's Mack & Mabel Overture – this is Maestro Sutherland on particularly superb form with memories of the "silent screen" and also reminding us of a wonderful Broadway show. At bargain price this album is a "must".  MC 

It is beginning to seem like Iain Sutherland has an almost endless supply of excellent recordings of Light Music, waiting to be packaged and offered to his many fans in attractive collections such as this one. What is particularly clever is that there are some unexpected – and very welcome – surprises among the familiar titles that you would expect to find when you see the name of the CD. As the above tracklisting shows, the British composer Peter Hope is represented by two of his memorable arrangements of American folk melodies. Reg Tilsley was a talented, yet often unfairly neglected, British musician. The "American" theme is, perhaps, stretched to the limit with the two Farnon pieces (!), although Manhattan Playboy is certainly firmly rooted in the New York of the immediate post-war years. It’s a great CD, with some outstanding performances from a conductor whose passion lies firmly in Light Music fields. Paul Arden-Taylor (Dinmore Records) has produced the fine restorations from these recordings dating from 1983-8, and the booklet notes by Iain himself are the icing on the cake. DA 

BALALAIKA FAVOURITES! Osipov State Russian Folk Orchestra / Vitaly Gnutov & The Russian Balalaika Orchestra At Sunrise; The Linden Tree; Kamarinskaya; Midnight in Moscow; Snow Maiden; Evening Bells; Waltz of the Faun … Stepdastep: Steppe All Around; Semyonovna; Kalinka & more … alto Take:2 ALN 1936 (75:53) This is an album of mainly classsic Russian folk tunes that is a joy from start to finish. The first 14 tracks are a reissue of an historic album I’ve long prized, it being among the first recordings ever made in the old Soviet Union (Moscow, 13th and 16thJune 1962) by American technical and musical staff and equipment. It was put onto 35mm magnetic film for Mercury Living Presence and was a best-seller, especially with stereophiles, on vinyl, The principal instrument in the Osipov orchestra is the domra, a small stringed instrument with a rounded soundboard with a sound not unlike that of a mandolin. Among other instruments used are the balalaika (no surprise there!), Vladimir shepherd’s horns and goosli. I particularly enjoyed Tchaikovsky’s Dance of the Buffoons and the final track is a brilliant 1’11" version of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumble Bee, but every piece is a winner. Equally delightful are the eight tracks that complete the album. Very informative liner notes by James Murray give added value. Production and mastering of the CD was in the capable hands of Paul Arden-Taylor. A more entertaining release it would be difficult to find. PB 

EDDIE HEYWOOD ‘The Magic Touch of …..’ 2-CD set 47 tracks incl. Summertime; Cherry; The Man I Love; I Cover the Waterfront; Sitting on a Moonbeam*; All of You … Lies*; I’m Saving Myself for You*; Subway Serenade*; Rendezvous for Two*; Blues in a Happy Mood*; Heywood’s Beguine* … Winds in Autumn*; With the Wind and Rain in Your Hair; The Breeze and I; Whispering Wind*; Begin the Beguine; High on a Windy Hill … St Louis Blues; Hurricane*; Witchcraft; Virgin Isle Vamp*; All the Way; Rendezvous … Jasmine JASCD 736 (70:00 & 61.12) Eddie Heywood Jr (1915-89) was a pianist, arranger and composer. In the Thirties he worked with the orchestras of Wayne Carver, Clarence Love and Benny Carter before striking out on his own in 1940. Partial paralysis of his hands caused him to twice quit playing. Here are four of his stereo albums made after his first comeback:‘The Touch Of Eddie Heywood’ (RCA 1957), ‘Canadian Sunset’ (RCA 1958), ‘Breezin’ Along With The Breeze’ (Mercury 1959) and The Keys And I’ (RCA 1958). On the first he is joined by Al Lucas (bass) and Bobby Donaldson (drums), on the second possibly by the above for half the tracks with orchestral accompaniment conducted by Sid Ramin on the remainder, on the third by Al and Bobby with orchestra conducted by Frank Hunter and on the last with Joe Reisman and his Orchestra. All the tracks asterisked above are Heywood compositions. Another is the well-known title track, one of a dozen such on the second album. On album four there are a couple of particularly "play it again" arrangements of pieces called Caravan in the Night and Madeira. Although you’ll probably find this release listed under "Jazz" it is, unlike Eddie’s earlier albums, more leaning towards light music – that’s why it is reviewed here and not further on. Definitely well worth a hearing. PB 

EDDIE LAYTON ‘Great Organ Hits From …’ 2-CD set 48 tracks incl. Pretty as the Moon; All of Me; I Love Paris; Ida (Sweet As Apple Cider); Vienna, My City of Dreams; Nola; Winter Wonderland; Summertime; Over the Waves; Bright Lights of Brussels; Tenderly; Hawaiian War Chant (Ta Hu Wa Hu Wa!) … The Happy Organ; My Lucky; Ain’t Misbehavin’; Tico Tico; You Can’t be True Dear; Granada; Patricia; Twilight Time; The Dipsy Doodle; The Perfect Song; When The Organ Played at Twilight; By the Waters of the Minnetonka … Jasmine JASCD 737 (60:31 & 65:19) Edward M. Layton (1925–2004) played the organ at Yankee Stadium for 31 seasons, earning him membership in the New York Sports Hall of Fame. He was a native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and graduated majoring in meteorology with a minor in music. He began playing the organ when he was 12-years-old. While serving in the United States Navy during World War II, he learned to play the Hammond organ. After the war, he began a career as a professional organist writing scores for soap operas on CBS. In the liner notes absence of any such information, I think that the four original stereo albums here were probably recorded in the early Sixties on the Mercury label. Recommended as a nice memento of a very gifted musician whose work may be unfamiliar to JIM readers. PB 

DIAHANN CARROLL ‘Easy to Love’ 46 tracks incl. I May be Wrong; You’re an Old Smoothie; Goody Goody; Heat Wave; But Not for Me; I Should Care; Runnin’ Wild; The Boys in the Back Room … Jasmine JASCD 720 (68:40 & 64:13) This reissue of four of Diahann’s first six LPs charts her early career as a singer. ‘Best Foot Forward’ was recorded in 1958 with orchestras conducted by Sid Bass, Marion Evans, and George Siravo, who take four tracks apiece. These are punchy big band arrangements, which Diahann clearly relishes, and the result is a great fusion. ‘The Persian Room Presents’ was recorded in 1960 with accompaniment provided by Peter Matz, and has the spontaneity and excitement of a live recording. The third album, with the Andre Previn Trio, dates from 1960; Diahann throttled back to produce a more subtle and distinctive vocal sound. Finally, it’s a return to the big band accompaniment of Peter Matz for the 1961 Atlantic album ‘Fun Life’. Sound quality is excellent throughout, and although not specified I think all but the first album are stereo. BMC 

LENA HORNE ‘Unforgettable’ 44 tracks incl. Summertime; I’ll be Around; Mood Indigo; New Fangled Tango; The Man I Love; Some People; Don’t Commit the Crime; I Concentrate on You; I Want to be Happy … Jasmine JASCD 249 (73:58 & 77:22) This contains four RCA Victor albums, namely ‘Stormy Weather’ and ‘LH at the Waldorf Astoria’ (both 1957), ‘Lena at The Sands’ (1961 stereo) and ‘Lena Lovely and Alive’ (1962). On the first she was accompanied by a studio orchestra that included a number of famous jazzmen, including Charlie Shavers, Doc Severinsen and Shorty Baker on trumpet, Kenny Burrell on guitar, George Duvivier on bass and Shelley Manne on drums. All four albums present standards from the Great American Songbook, including Cole Porter, Jules Styne, Rodgers, and Hammerstein and Yip Harburg medleys. As with the two live albums, her husband Lennie Hayton conducted the orchestra. At the Waldorf Astoria she was accompanied by Nat Brandwynne’s Orchestra, and the resident orchestra of Anthony Morrelli provided the accompaniment at The Sands. The final album was arranged and conducted by Marty Paich, earned a Grammy nomination, and is noteworthy for the fact that all the songs begin with the personal pronoun. This is an exemplary reissue of one of the great female singers, but its appeal may be diminished somewhat if you bought the 2010 Avid set, which included the first two albums. BMC

AL MARTINO ‘Take My Heart’ 58 tracks incl. I’m Shooting High; I Still Believe; Close to Me; They Didn’t Believe Me; Three Little Words; Makin’ Whoopee … Jasmine JASCD 730 (78:15 & 79:52) Al Martino had a powerful tenor voice, and could belt a song with the best of them, but he could also throttle back for a tender ballad, and this mono compilation displays ample evidence of both approaches. It’s made up of singles recorded between 1952 and 1960, a significant number of which charted on both sides of the Atlantic, augmented by an early studio album, the 1960 ‘Swing Along’, arranged and conducted by Stanley Appelbaum. BMC 

THE MODERNAIRES ‘So it Goes!’ 58 tracks incl. Only You; The Dipsy Doodle; Put Some Money in the Juke Box; The Great Pretender; Alice in Wonderland; Alright, Okay, You Win; As Long as I Have You; East of the Sun…. Jasmine JASCD 727 (79:03 & 78:02) This is sub-titled ‘Singles of the ‘50s’, a time when the group was recording for Coral Records. Having come into being in the early Thirties, their style was ideally suited to the big band sound, which led via recordings with Charlie Barnet and Paul Whiteman to their best-known association, with the Glenn Miller Orchestra. The group we hear on this compilation was a quintet, made up of Hal Dickinson, Ralph Brewster, Fran Scott, Johnny Drake and Paula Kelly. They are accompanied variously by the orchestras of George Cates, Neal Hefti, Alan Freed & his Rock ‘n’ Roll Band, Fran Scott, Les Brown & his Band of Renown, Bob Crosby’s Bob Cats, Sonny Burke, Charles Bud Dant, and Milton DeLugg. Four tracks include Georgie Auld on tenor sax, and on two the group is joined by Martha Tilton. The second CD includes a Let’s DanceMedley, a Salute to Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. This delightful compilation showcases The Modernaires’ versatility and embraces swing, Dixieland, ballads, rock ‘n’ roll, and popular songs. Sound quality is excellent, and this should appeal across the board. BMC

FRANK SINATRA ‘Swings the Great American Songbook’ 48 tracks incl. A Foggy Day; Stardust; In the Still of the Night; Without a Song; Misty; A Fine Romance; All or Nothing at All; Prisoner of Love; Learnin’ the Blues … Delta 38364 (73:46 & 73:27) The latest in this series is culled from his early Sixties recordings with Capitol Records. Not every song is a swinger, but every one merits its inclusion. Frank’s wayward approach to the song as written tended to mar his later renditions, but at this stage such lapses were relatively minor. Accompaniments are unspecified, but both Nelson Riddle and Gordon Jenkins would have featured large. If I had to pick out one song which encapsulated Sinatra’s talent it would be The Tender Trap, the title song of the 1955 film in which Frank starred opposite Debbie Reynolds. The compilation also includes the theme tune of Frank’s former boss Tommy Dorsey. There’s no background information on the songs, but sound quality is excellent, and this is a superb salute not only to a great vocalist, but also to some of the greatest songwriters. BMC


The Cosmic Eye Suite; Urbanissimo; Voyage To Next; Harlem Wednesday; People People, People; Adventures Of An *; Of Men And Demons Lightyear Entertainment 54168-2 (52:04) Few members of our Society are out and out jazz fans but they should not let this gem of intriguing film music pass them by. Segments of scores written by Benny Carter, Dizzy Gillespie and Quincy Jones from four animated cartoons have been carefully collated into a package to please most music lovers. To get your taste buds working I’ll mention some of the veritable Who’s Who of the music scene involved, such as Toni Scott, Pete Chrislieb, Ernie Watts, Lew Solon, Frank Wess, Maynard Ferguson, Dee Dee Bridgwater, Hank Jones and Lawrence Brown. Recorded between 1956 and 1985 this selection deserves a wide audience. PC 

MARK de CLIVE-LOWE & THE ROTTERDAM JAZZ ORCHESTRA ‘Take the Space Trane’Relax..Unwind; Blues For Six; Filthy Fingers; Caravan; Money (Don’t Let It Catch Ya) El Dia Perfecto; Heaven; Take The Space Trane Tru-Thoughts TRU267 (47:34) Mark’s usual output is fusion jazz, here he delves into the big band sound on some tracks without straying too far from his usual territory. Caravan has been covered by so many it took a brave arranger to write a new setting. John Plomp gives it a shot but listeners used to the Duke Ellington version will probably steer clear – very discordant ending. Blues for Six is closer to what big band devotees expect; Filthy Fingers is a little wild. El Dia Perlecto is a climatic wall of sound written by Mark with his keyboard fleshing out an intriguing tune. Standout track for me is Heaven; the trumpet solo by Rik Mol is endlessly rich, a ballad sound to revel in. PC 

LOUIS ARMSTRONG ‘Satchmo: A Musical Autobiography’ 100 tracks (alternate speech) incl. High Society; Cornet Chop Suey; Hotter Than That; When You’re Smiling; Body and Soul; That’s My Home … plus ‘Satchmo Plays King Oliver’ 18 tracks (6 alt. takes) incl. Dr. Jazz; Panama; Chimes Blues … plus ‘Louis and The Good Book’ 12 tracks incl. Go Down, Moses; Swing Low, Sweet Chariot; Jonah and the Whale … Avid AMSC 1082 & 1083 (78:44: 77:34: 79:03 & 79:26) This project may have been inspired by Bing Crosby’s earlier ‘Musical Autobiography’, but it’s closer in spirit to Jelly Roll Morton’s Library of Congress recordings. It was an opportunity for Louis to revisit his formative years and he grasped it with both hands. His enjoyment is palpable, in both his spoken introductions and the zest with which he tore into numbers he’d participated in (as a member of King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band, the Red Onion Jazz Babies, and Clarence Williams Blue Five), acted as accompanist (most famously with Bessie Smith, whose vocals were taken by Velma Middleton) or fronted as soloist. He was supported by his All Stars line-up of the time, augmented as required, mainly by saxes and guitar. They laid down a total of 43 new performances, and five earlier recordings were interpolated. The result is a triumph, with Louis in his mid-fifties proving that he was playing and singing with as much conviction as ever. There are relatively few tracks that fail to hit the spot, and they’re mainly confined to the twenties material. Velma Middleton’s vocals suffer from lack of a blues flavour, and the rendition of Potato Head Blues fails to capture the majesty of the original. The one surprising omission is West End Blues which recording is regarded as Louis’ crowning achievement. That said, what’s here is an unmitigated delight, and the two additional albums serve as the icing on the cake. BMC

ACKER BILK ‘Mr Acker Bilk Requests’ 2-CD set 50 tacks incl. Travelling Blues; Delia Gone; Gladiola Rag; Willy the Weeper; Dardanella; Franklin Street Blues; Easter Parade; Marching Through Georgia; In a Persian Market; I’m Going Home; Ory’s Creole Trombone; Let the Light From the Lighthouse Shine … Stranger On the Shore; Lullaby; Mean To Me; Grreensleeves; Take My Lips; Sentimental Journey; Nobody Knows; Is This The Blues?; Cielto Lindo; Deep Purple; I Can’t Get Started; Carolina Moon … Jasmine JASCD 739 (78:56 & 75:15) Somerset-born clarinettist, vocalist and bandleader, Bernard Stanley "Acker" Bilk, MBE, MA, began his jazz career working with Ken Colyer. He formed his own band in the mid-1950s and was highly successful in the trad boom years playing what has been described as "a polished sort of Dixieland shuffle-beat jazz featuring his skilful and individual playing." Acker, who is still performing in his 85th year, has been called "Great Master of the Clarinet" and spoken of in the same breath as Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw. The tracks here are from 1958 and 1959 (Disc 1) and 1961 (Disc 2). On the first 12 toothsome tracks of Disc 2 (all listed above) Acker is accompanied by the Leon Young String Chorale. His two biggest hits, which he co-wrote, are here: Summer Set reached No.5 in the British chart, the first of 11 top 50 singles;Stranger on the Shore stayed on the UK charts for 55 weeks, peaking at No.2, and was the UK’s top-selling single of 1962 – the biggest selling instrumental single of all time – and has sold 1.16 million copies as of November 2012.   With this piece Acker became the first British artist to have a single at No.1 on the US Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. This set is a lively listen and Mr Bilk’s idiosyncratic singing on a number of tracks has not spoiled my enjoyment. PB 

TAL FARLOW ‘Three Classic Albums Plus’ Avid AMSC 1086 (80.00 & 78.22)  presents four Verve albums of this guitarist in small-group settings, namely ‘Autumn in New York’ (1954), ‘The Swinging Guitar of Tal Farlow’ (1956), ‘This is Tal Farlow’ (1958) and ‘Music of Harold Arlen’ (1959). Tal Farlow deserves to be better-known, and this reissue of four of his best albums should help win a new legion of admirers.  BMC 

AL HIRT ‘Swinging Dixie’ 2-CD set: ‘Swingin’ Dixie!’ (1958) 12 tracks incl. Caravan; Tiger Rag; And the Angels Sing; Fidgety Feet; Tailgate Ramble; Hindustan … ‘Swingin’ Dixie! Vol.2’ (1959) 12 tracks incl. Darktown Strutters Ball; Wabash Blues; Stumblin’; Feet Draggin’ Blues; Wang, Wang Blues; Battle Hymn of the Republic … ‘Swingin’ Dixie! Vol.3’ (1960) 12 tracks incl. Dixieland One Step; Bill Bailey; When My Sugar Walks Down the Street; High Society; Sweet Georgia Brown Up a Lazy River … Jasmine JASCD 728 (74:55 & 64:59) One of the 20th century’s top popular music trumpeters, Alois Maxwell Hirt saw the light of day in Louisiana in 1922 and started playing the instrument when he was aged six. He studied classical trumpet and was influenced by Harry James’ playing. He was a bugler with several Army bands during WWII and afterwards free-lanced in swing bands including those of Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Ray McKinley and Benny Goodman. In 1950 he returned to New Orleans and formed his own group. These are three early albums made for Audio Fidelity Records with Hirt being joined by clarinet, double bass, drums, piano and trombone. The recordings are reckoned to be among the most rewarding of his career. It certainly sounds that a good time was had by all; and no lover of Dixieland need hesitate in acquiring this release. The Penguin Encyclopedia of Popular Music opines that "Hirt’s combo tantalised music lovers because they were obviously capable of more but he settled for a comfortable niche and made plenty of fans happy." He went on to have 22 albums on the Billboard charts in the 1950s and 1960s. ‘Honey in the Horn’ and ‘Cotton Candy’ were both in the Top 10 best sellers for 1964, the same year he scored a hit single with his cover of Allen Toussaint’s tune Java (Billboard No. 4), and later won a Grammy Award for the same recording. Both ‘Honey in the Horn’ and Java sold over one million copies, and were awarded Gold Discs. He was inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame ten years after his death in 1999. If this release proves popular, maybe Jasmine will re-issue some of his later work. PB 

DAVE PELL ‘Four Classic Albums’ Avid AMSC 1084 (76:23 & 74.25) is the second Avid reissue of his Octet, which was drawn initially from the ranks of the Les Brown band. The first CD features two early albums, featuring compositions by Rodgers & Hart (1953) and Irving Berlin (1954). The second CD features two Capitol albums, both from 1961. ‘The Old South Wails’ presents numbers from the Dixieland repertoire, and ‘I Remember John Kirby’ (which includes Benny Carter on alto sax) is a fitting tribute to what used to be called "The Biggest Little Band in the Land", and rounds off an exemplary reissue.  BMC 

CHARLIE SHAVERS ‘Four Classic Albums Plus featuring Maxine Saunders’ Avid AMSC 1085(76:28 & 789.49) is something of a mixed bag.  ‘Horn o’ Plenty’ (1954) comprises just four tracks, the longest being Story of the Jazz Trumpet, in which Shavers produced impressions of other trumpeters. It’s something of a tour de force, but the vocal interjections detract from the music. ‘The Most Intimate Charlie Shavers’ (1955) features songs written by Harold Arlen and Johnny Green, backed by a string orchestra. ’Flow Gently, Sweet Rhythm’ (?1959) features Maxine Sullivan accompanied by former members of the John Kirby band. In August 1956 she recorded ’Tribute to Andy Razaf’, with Charlie Shavers leading a very similar studio group. ‘Blue Stompin’ (1959) features Charlie Shavers with tenor saxophonist Hal Singer.  BMC 

JACK PAYNE Vol.8 The Rex Recordings ‘Lazy Rhythm’ 24 tracks incl. Maybe I’m Wrong Again; My Heart is an Open Book; East of the Sun; The Rose in Her Hair; Lazy Rhythm … Vocalion CDEA 6212 (73:50)

JACK HARRIS At Grosvenor House ‘The Free and Easy’ 24 tracks incl. The Free and Easy; You are My Heart’s Delight; The Flat Foot Floogie; Jeepers Creepers; Swing Band; Little Drummer Boy …Vocalion CDEA 6213 (71:36)

ROY FOX Vol.10 At the Café Anglais ‘Roy Fox Chooses …’ 24 tracks incl. We’re a Couple of Soldiers, My Baby and Me; Big Ben’s Saying Goodnight; Sweet and Hot; A Million Dreams; Isn’t it Romantic? … Vocalion CDEA 6214 (74:30)

JACK HYLTON Vol.11 The Decca Years ‘This Is The Rhythm For Me’ 24 tracks incl. Can’t We Meet Again?; Moon Song; Little Miss Muffett; Hylton Stomp; The Clouds Will Soon Roll By … Vocalion 6216 (74:10) I need to declare an interest, having written the liner notes. That said, I rate all four very highly as prime examples of music from the thirties. Jack Hylton’s recordings date mainly from 1933 and Pat O’Malley took the lion’s share of the vocals; most of Jack Payne’s come from 1935 with Ronnie Scott Coomber sharing vocal hours with Ronnie Genarder and others. Both led show bands that could fill large venues with both capacity audiences and popular music. In contrast, the dance bands led by Fox and Harris played in more intimate settings, and their arrangements were more transparent. The Roy Fox CD covers the last three months of 1932, which he spent at the Café Anglais, with vocalist Jack Plant. Jack Harris spent the early Thirties at the Grosvenor House Hotel, and five previously unissued recordings are included; the remaining seventeen tracks come from the late Thirties, most but not all recorded while the band was playing at Ciro’s Club. Needless to say, the audio restoration is uniformly excellent. BMC

THE ANDREWS SISTERS ‘The Best of … Featuring Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy’ 25 tracks incl. Pennsylvania 6-5000; Rum & Coca Cola; Beat Me Daddy (Eight to the Bar); One Meat Ball; Strip Polka; Yes, My Darling Daughter … Delta 26700 (71:45) This features their Decca records, mainly from the early 1940s. The earliest is Bei Mir Bist du Schoen which dates from 1937 and their third recording session, and the latest is I Can Dream, Can’t I? from 1949, but the first track is Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy from the 1941 film ‘Buck Privates’ which became their signature song. There are a couple of gender-benders, namely Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree and I’ll be with You in Apple Blossom Time, and the lyrics of the calypso-based Rum and Coca Cola do not stand up to close scrutiny, but that did not prevent them from being hits. Their close harmonies were well supported by the accompaniments, most if not all of which were supplied by Vic Schoen & his Orchestra. The sound is clear and bright, and although the tracklist lacks detail this is an excellent reissue. BMC

JOHN PHILIP SOUSA ‘Music For Wind Band, Vol. 12’ Royal Swedish Navy Band / Keith Brion 17 tracks incl. Transit of Venus March; Marquette University March; Right Forward March; Right-Left March … Naxos 8.559691 (56:06) This long established series goes as far back as the beginning of 2001. The latest is the second to employ the services of the highly accomplished RSNB. Again, with the possible exception of the 1885 Sound Off March, all may be considered rarities and there is added interest here since this compilation includes some of the American March King’s earliest contributions to the genre. Two of them date from 1876 when Sousa was a mere stripling of 22: The Honored Dead was subsequently performed nine years later at the funeral of President Ulysses S Grant whilst the Revival March embraces the popular hymn tune "In the Sweet By and By." Of the others there is an effective treatment of the popular 1865 Civil War song Marching Through Georgia, and the Mikado March manages to incorporate virtually all the popular tunes from the famous Gilbert and Sullivan operetta during its brief span of under two-and-a-half minutes. We find Sousa in relaxed, carefree mood penning the attractive concert suites Maidens Three and Leaves from My Notebook but with the operetta Chris and the Wonderful Lamp, of which the Overture is included here, commercial success eluded him and it achieved only a short run in 1899. Sousa resourceful as ever wasn’t going to let good material go to waste and simply redeployed some of the music in other scores. Always keeping a keen and alert eye on changing musical fashions prompted him into producing in 1924 his charming Peaches and Cream foxtrot apparently after watching his granddaughter at a dance. So music to both gladden and stir the heart and, since both performances and sound quality are both in the premier league, this disc earns an automatic commendation. In a word simply unmissable! RH

‘AMERICAN BRASS!’ London Symphony Brass / Crees Copland: Fanfare for the Common Man;El Salón Mexico; Ceremonial Fanfare; Bernstein: Suite from "West Side Story"; Prelude Fugue & Riffs;Cowell: Fanfare for the Latin American Allies; Barber: Mutations from Bach; Ives: Variations on "America" alto ALC 1209 (63:37) "The very best in brass playing, brass-arranging, and brass-recording", wrote the Gramophone reviewer on the original release of this Collins full-price label album made at the Barbican in 1991. The London Symphony Brass comprises 29 of Britain’s finest brass and percussion players with clarinet, piano and double bass, all from the ranks of the London Symphony Orchestra. The works are well suited to arrangements for brass, five of which are by the conductor. Although I have most of the pieces in full orchestral form on individual CDs it is good to have them together on a single disc, especially one of this quality. Buy with confidence. ET

ATTERBERG Orchestral Works, Vol.1 Sara Trobӧback Hesselink (violin); Per Hӧgbeg (viola); Gothenberg Symphony Orchestra / Neeme Järvi Chandos CHSA 5116 (70:14) Having brought us from Norway two highly acclaimed recorded series of works by Halvorsen and Svendsen, Chandos now turn to Sweden and Kurt Attterberg (1887-1974), conductor and music critic, and one of his country’s leading 20th century composers. We are promised music that is "tuneful, accessible and charmingly folkoristic, even impressionistic in nature" – and so it is. This time the Estonian maestro conducts "The National Orchestra of Sweden" of which, after being in charge from 1982 to 2004, he is now Principal Conductor Emeritus. The story behind the opening and longest work, Symphony No.6 "Dollar Symphony", is a fascinating one. In 1928 it was the winner in a competition – attracting 500 entries from 26 countries – to mark the centenary of the death of Schubert that called for "original symphonic works in one of more movements presented as an apotheosis of the lyrical genius of Schubert and dedicated to his memory on the occasion of the centennial." The prize was $10,000 (a fortune back then), hence the nickname. Atterberg promptly bought a new Ford Model A! The great Sir Thomas Beecham was allowed by Columbia to record the symphony – the first work ever to be recorded before it had received a public performance. It is joined on this disc by Symphony No.4 "Sinfonia piccolo"En värmlandsrapsodi and Suite No.3, which only received its world premiѐre recording release in 2012. All are superbly played and recorded, and there are highly informative booklet notes by Stig Jacobsson to complement an engaging release of works by a composer who deserves to be better known. ET

HAVERGAL BRIAN New Russia State Symphony Orchestra / Alexander Walker English Suite No. 1; Symphonies 22, 23 and 24 Naxos 8.572833 (65:27) Three symphonies on one CD? Yes, but their average length is only around 12 minutes, thus leaving room for the splendidly atmospheric six movement English Suite No. 1 based on the Staffordshire and Shropshire countryside. Brian wrote 32 symphonies, most of which defy categorisation, and almost all composed late in life. These three date from the 1960s and are similar in sound to dramatic film music of the time. EW

CHABRIER Orchestre de la Suisse Romande / Neeme Järvi Joyeuse marche; Overture to "Gwendoline"; Habanera; España; Lamento; Bourrée fantasque; Suite pastorale & more … Chandos CHSA 5122 (78:42) In JIM 193 I recommended a mono compilation of Emmanuel Chabrier’s works. Here we have nine compositions, with some duplication, but in digital state-of-the-art sound. The Orchestra of French-speaking Switzerland is in fine form under the baton of its indefatigable artistic and musical director – Maestro Järvi certainly gets around. In 1879, after hearing a Wagner opera, Chabrier (1841-94) resigned his desk job at the French Ministry of the Interior to become a full-time composer. The spectacular success of España proved him to be a master orchestrator. As well as orchestral works, songs and piano works he composed two successful comic operas, L’etoile (‘The Star’) and Le roi malgré lui (‘King in Spite of Himself’), both represented on this disc. All Chabrier’s music has great melodic allure and relish and, as with the earlier disc, there’s a lot of joie de vivrehere. ET

ELGAR London Philharmonic Orchestra / Sir Georg Solti ‘Symphony No.1; In the South ("Alassio")’ Decca Virtuoso 4785155 (68:36) A wonderful re-issue from 1980 considered by many to be the best recording of the symphony extant and likened to that of the composer’s own. Whatever other versions you may have, don’t miss out on this one. ET

MOZART European Union Chamber Orchestra / Hans-Peter Hofmann (Director) Symphony No.29; Kassation K.63; Divertimento K.251 Barn Cottage Records bcro11 (79:02) Of Mozart’s 41 symphonies the last four are undoubtedly his finest but I have a soft spot for the earlier No. 29, as it was the first work by the composer that I came to know and love. This is Mozart at his happiest and is often regarded as his first really great work. It is very well-played here by the 18 musicians directed by Herr Hofmann on violin. The release comes from a relatively new small independent label based in Surrey, founded by the harpsichordist Robin Bigwood, which deserves our support as it is responsible for a gem of a disc. PB

RESPIGHI Philharmonia Orchestra / Geoffrey Simon & Jan Pascal Tortelier Church Windows; Brazilian Impressions; Belkis, Queen of Sheba; Metamorphosen; Pines of Rome; Fountains of Rome; Festivals of Rome Chandos CHAN 241 & 245 (77:12 & 80:14) Respighi was an unusual composer who managed to dovetail ancient airs with contemporary sound pictures of Rome which are truly superb. These LP transfers are most welcome and if you don’t know the composer’s music you should indulge yourself. Buy this double CD and you will be transported into a new world of colourful sound. Great value! EW

‘LATIN AMERICAN CLASSICS’ Orquesta Sinfónica de Venezuela / Theodore KucharHuapango; Danzón No.2; Tocata Bachiana y Pajarillo Aldermaroso; Janitzio; Four Dances from Estancia: Los Trabajadores agricolas, Danza del trigo, Los peoness de hacienda, Danza final (malambo); Kanaima; Batuque Brilliant Classics 9762 (55:43) This is a humdinger of a disc featuring works by Moncayo, Márquez, Romero, Revueltas, Ginastera, Hung and Fernández. The oldest musical ensemble in Latin America, founded in 1930, under the baton of its American conductor, who has appeared on over 100 CDs, is more than a match for the famous Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra. The playing is spirited, the conducting idiomatical, the recording good, and the price low (under £5 online). It is such an exciting release, a pity there’s not more of it. PB

JOHN IRELAND ‘Church Music’ Lincoln Cathedral Choir • Charles Harrison (Organ) / Aric Prentice Te Deum in F; Benedictus; Communion Service in C; My Song is Love Unknown; Elegiac Romance, Capriccio (Organ Solos); Evening Service in C; Christ The Lord is Risen Today; Four Unaccompanied Carols; Greater Love Hath No Man; I Am Trusting; Ex Ore Innocentium; Island Praise; Evening Service in F Naxos 8.573014 (77:05) If you are at all interested in church music and/or choral singing, and want a "taster" CD of the genre, look no further than this value-for-money release, well recorded in the cathedral last year to mark the 50th anniversary of the English composer’s death. ET

More recent releases recommended by Wilfred Askew

DEE BARTON ‘High Plains Drifter’ (1973) 27 tracks Intrada Special Collection, vol.217(54:27)

LES BAXTER ‘Jewels Of The Sea’ 12 tracks incl. Sunken City; Sea Nymph; Singing the Shells; The Enchanted Sea; Coral Castle; Dancing Diamonds; plus selections from: ‘The Sacred Idol’ (7 tracks);‘Ports of Pleasure’ (3); and ‘Tamboo’(3)

Cherry Red ACMEM 232 CD (79:25). Original Capitol album (1960)

TOMMY EDWARDS ‘The Hits and More’ For Young Lovers’‘You Started Me Dreaming’& ‘Step Out Singing’ 53 tracks incl. It’s All in the Game; Please, Mr Sun; Morning Side of the Mountain; My Melancholy Baby; Always; You’re a Sweetheart … Jasmine JASCD 196 2-CD set (136:36). Three original M-G-M albums (1959/60)

RUSS GARCIA AND HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Play the Music of Johnny Green’ 16 tracks incl. Body and Soul; Living in Dreams; Out of Nowhere; Easy Come, Easy Go; I Cover the Waterfront; Coquette; There’s a Ring Around the Moon; I’m Yours … Montpellier MONTCD084 (48:02)

BEVERLY KENNY ‘Complete Decca (US) Recordings’ ‘Sings for Playboys’ (1958) acc. by Ellis Larking & Joe Benjamin 16 tracks incl. It’s Magic; Time Was; Sing a Rainbow; Brooklyn Love Story … ‘Born to Be Blue’ (1958) w. Hal Mooney/Charlie Albertine cond. 13 tracks incl. Again; Beyond the Next Hill; You Couldn’t be Cuter; Somewhere Along the Way … ‘Like Yesterday’ (1959) arr./cond. Stan Freeman 12 tracks incl. Undecided; A Sunday Kind of Love; Tampico; Any Old Time … plusDecca single Your Love is My Love; ‘The Sesac Sessions’ (10 tracks); ‘Playboy’s Penthouse TV Show’ (6 tracks) Fresh Sound FSR-CD 721 2-CD set (154:41)

HENRY MANCINI ‘Condorman’ 28 tracks Intrada Special Collection, vol. 219 (60:28) Original Film Soundtrack (1981)

‘MOON RIVER AND ME’ Including More Music from ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ 29 tracks: Soundtrack (17*), Barney Kessel (5); Eddie Harris (3); Moon River by Danny Williams, Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers, Jerry Butler, Al Caiola, and *Audrey Hepburn Cherry Red ACMEM227CD (79:56)

LALO SCHIFRIN ‘Coogan’s Bluff’ 24 tracks plus 8 extras Intrada Special Collection, vol. 223(56:48) Original Film Soundtrack (1968)

ZOOT SIMS ‘ New Beat Bossa Nova, vols 1 & 2’ Original Coxpix recordings (1962) arr. Manny Albam and Al Cohn 23 tracks incl. Recardo Bossa Nova; Cano Canoe; Tickle toe; Lonesome Road; They Call the Wind Maria … American Jazz Classics AJC 99063 (78:01)

BILLY VAUGHAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA ‘’Chapel By The Sea’ (1962) & ‘Greatest String Band Hits’ (1961) Original DOT recordings 24 tracks incl. Petite Fleur; Exodus; Mon River; Midnight in Moscow; Route 66; Bonanza; Wonderland by Night; Carolina in the Morning; Japanese Sandman; Smiles; Baby Face; Happy Days Are Here Again; I’m Looking Over a Four-leaf Clover; In a Shanty in Old Shanty Town; plus 4 bonus tracks: Blues Stay Away From Me; All Nite Long; Whispering & Goodnight Sweetheart Sepia 1206 (64:51)

LAWRENCE WELK AND HIS ORCHESTRA ‘ Baby Elephant Walk’ & ‘Young World’ Original DOT recordings (1962) 24 tracks incl. Are You Lonesome Tonight?; Love Me Tender; Gigi; It’s All in the Game; The Brothers Grimm – Theme; Three Coins in the Fountain; Mona Lisa; Vaya Con Dios … Love Letters; Secret Love; April Love; Young at Heart; Young Love; Good Luck Charm; Too Young; plus 4 bonus tracks: Theme from My Three Sons; Out of a Clear Blue Sky; Night Theme; Zero-Zero Sepia 1207 (67:14)

BERT KAEMPFERT & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Let’s Go Bowling’ (1964) 14 tracks incl. Holiday For Bells; Holiday in Scotland; Toy Parade; The Bass Walks; Sunday in Madrid; Love After Midnight; Danke Schoen Polydor 278648-2 (37:24) 

CARMEN McRAE ‘The Complete Kapp Recordings’ 3 LPs on 2 CDs

‘Book of Ballads’ arr./cond. by Frank Hunter 12 tracks incl. By Myself; My Romance; Isn’t it Romantic; Please be Kind; ‘When You’re Away’ arr./cond. by Frank Hunter* & Luther Henderson 12 tracks incl. The More I See You; Willingly*; I’ll Be Seeing You; I Concentrate on You; ‘Something To Swing About’ arr./cond. Ernie Wilkins 12 tracks incl. Three Little Words; That’s For Me; A Sleepin’ Bee; Alone Together Fresh Sound FSR-CD 677 (11:05) 

DAVID RASKIN "What’s The Matter with Helen?" Original Film Soundtrack (1971) Quartet Records SCE 049 (31:34) 

RICARDO SANTOS & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘Song Of The Pearlfisher’ The cascading strings of Werner Műller 50 tracks from 1954-59 on 2 CDs incl. Ole Guapa; La Cumparsita; Tango Americano; Armen’s Theme; Guagliione; Adios Pampa Mia; Serenata; O Sole Mio; Elephant’s Tango; La Seine; Buona Sera; Donkey Serenade Koch 8061981 (141:01) 

LEITH STEVENS "The War Of The Worlds" (1953) 2-CD set Intrada Special Collection : Vol. 202 (64:12 & 77:48)

FRANZ WAXMAN "Career" Music from the 1959 Motion Picture Kritzerland KR 20024-5 (49:33) 

VICTOR YOUNG "Shane" Music from the 1952 Motion Picture La-La Land LLLCD 1224 (66:03) 

"Run Of The Arrow" (1957) & "The Brave One" (1956) OSTs originally issued on LP by US DeccaDisques Cinémusique DCM 136 (73:31) 

Corrections to KT in our last issue

HARRY GOLD ‘Parade of the Pieces’ My apologies for wrongly crediting Mike Crowther’s review to Barry McCanna, and for omitting him from the list of contributors. - KT Ed.

ANDRE KOSTELANETZ The correct details for this review are: ‘Andre Kostelanetz and His Orchestra On The Air with Perry Como and Gladys Swartholt’ DSOY 904

‘The Very Best of NEIL DIAMOND’ catalogue number is 8765405872

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Reviewers in this issue: Peter Burt, Mike Crowther, Roger Hyslop, Ray Pavene, Edward Trub, Ken Wilkins and Peter Worsley

The KT Editor’s CD Choice

PAUL WESTON & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘The Great Hit Sounds of Paul Weston : Morningside Of The Mountain’ 52 tracks incl. Gone with the Wind; Dutch Treat; Shane; These Foolish Things; Ruby; A Streetcar Named Desire; Don’t Worry ‘bout Me; Memories of You; Across the Wide Missouri; The Glory of Love; Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen … Nevertheless; The Song from "Desiree"; So Long (It’s Been Good to Know You); Bimbo; Skylark; King’s Row Theme; Gigi; I Went Out of My Way; Autumn in Rome; Wonderful Copenhagen; Charmaine; My Funny Valentine … Jasmine JASCD 243 mono (79:46 & 79:34) Yet another winning two-disc compilation – possibly the longest yet – from this label, only on this occasion by one of the greatest names in the history of American light music. First there was Kostelanetz, then Faith, Rose and Weston. Born Paul Wetstein in 1912, he was not lost to us until 1996. He became the first MD for the new Capitol label in 1943 and was with Columbia Records (CBS) from ’50 to ’58. He built his success on arrangements with instrumental solos and countermelodies; the framework of a dance band but with added strings. One of his arranger’s tricks was to have the rest of the band play softly while using strings instead of amplifying the strings; the result was a chamber-music quality that went right to the heart of his (and our) kind of music. This release is the first time his hit singles of the 1950s and select album tracks have been combined on one set. Listening to these tracks has been an enjoyable journey of discovery for me, although readers of even more mature years will no doubt be familiar with a lot more of the recordings than I am. Nearly half the tracks contain vocals: the highly-accomplished Norman Luboff Choir is featured on 18 of them – Don’t’ Worry About Me and Easy Come, Easy Go with Jo Stafford – and the stellar songstress is on her own for Little Man with a Candy CigarI’m Always Chasing RainbowsDancing on the Ceiling, and Mountain High - Valley Low. Other performers with one or two tracks each are: Barney Kessel (guitar), Ted Nash (tenor sax), Clyde Hurley and Zeke Zarchy (trumpets), Thurl Ravenscroft and The Mellowmen (vocals). There are a couple of lively Rodgers and Hammerstein numbers, Where is Cinderella? and Ten Minutes Ago, from a CBS TV production of "Cinderella" that featured Julie Andrews. Weston is probably best known in the UK for his collaboration with Jo Stafford (remember the Jonathan and Darlene Edwards spoof albums?) and co-wrote her biggest hit, Shrimp Boats, also Day by Day and her favourite, I Should Care. They married in 1952 and as well as musically were active for many years in charities helping the developmentally disabled, giving more of their time to these groups after their retirement.  PB

XAVIER CUGAT & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Cugat Plays Continental & Popular Movie Hits' featuring Abbe Lane  30 tracks incl. Petite Fleur; Volare; The Poor People of Paris; Love is a Many Splendored Thing; The Guns of Navarone; The Green Leaves of Summer; Over the Rainbow…  Sepia 1233 (75.00)  Xavier Cugat brings his own sophisticated brand of Latin-American sunshine to this selection of instrumentals and songs mainly from the 1950s and the early ‘60s. Whether it be Apache, The Green Leaves of Summer or Al di La (the San Remo Song Festival winner of 1960 and sung by Emilio Pericoli in the Warner Bros film 'Rome Adventure’) as a rumba, the cha-cha-cha treatment of Never on Sunday, The Third Man, Come Prima and Wonderland By Night  or the samba rhythm to Calcutta, Guaglione  and  High Noon.  My personal favourites among the instrumentals are Moon River in bossa-nova time and Sucu-Sucu (remember Laurie Johnson's version used for the ITV series 'Top Secret'?) played as a bajon. What makes this album special is the inclusion of vocals by Mrs Cugat – the glamorous Abbe Lane in superb form whether singing in Spanish or Italian. Her contribution includes Bob Azzam's French hit Mustapha, the Italian song  Quando vien la Sera (another San Remo success from 1961) and the gorgeous rumba stylings of Historia de un Amour (a hit for Chilean star Lucho Gatica & French songstress Dalida) and on the closing track of Malaguena Salerosa (a huge hit for both French singing star Gloria Lasso and instrumentally by Franck Pourcel). Altogether a happy album ideal for BBQ time (this review being written on a sunny August afternoon) or warming up the lounge on a cold winter's night (when you are probably reading this last printed edition of JIM). These excellent Mercury stereo recordings have been lovingly restored by Robin Cherry. The presentation, as usual from this source, is first class. Recommended!MC

LES & LARRY ELGART ‘Elgart Au Go-Go’ & ‘Sound Of The Times’ 23 tracks incl. Thunder Shake; Downtown; Meditation; Come Rain or Come Shine; King of the Road; Jerkin’ Around; St James’ Infirmary … I’m Comin’ Home, Cindy; A Sign of the Times; Spanish Flea; A Taste of Honey; Michelle; Batman … Vocalion CDLK 4501 (55:06) Here are two quality albums of music designed for dancing but at the same time eminently listenable from the comfort of your armchair. Dance band leaders Les (1918-95) played lead trumpet; brother Larry (born 1922) lead alto later lead soprano sax. Theirs was a smooth sound with the emphasis on ensemble, sometimes featuring jazz musicians as they do on the second album. They recorded for Decca and MGM but mainly (mid-50s and after ‘63) on Columbia. The albums here, as on all Vocalion releases reviewed expertly remastered by Mike Dutton, are from 1965/66. The arranger on the first album is Charlie Albertine except for one track by Marty Manning. With no strings attached I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this release, so definitely worth a spin. PB

JACKIE GLEASON ‘Opiate d’Amour’ & ‘Rebound’ Orchestra conducted by Jackie Gleason 39 tracks Caress; When Your Lover Has Gone; Casa d’Amor; The Song is Ended; Pale Blues; You’re Changed; Melancholy Serenade; Yesterdays; Pink Lace; She’s Funny That Way; The Girl ("Tawny"); It’s All Right with Me / Do Nothin’ Till You Hear from Me; Satin Doll; Ain’t Misbehavin’; Nevertheless (I’m in Love with You); You Oughta be in Pictures; I’m Making Believe; All the Things You Are …Vocalion CDNJT 5215 (67:33) "Mood" music par excellence, the first dozen tracks from 1960 (all listed above) are played by either the celebrated Gleason strings or a brass orchestra featuring 24 trumpets ("large in size – subdued in sound", as the liner note says), with soloists including the former Ellington trombonist Lawrence Brown, and guitarist Al Caiola (more of whom further on). Starting with the opening number, alternate tracks are Gleason’s own compositions. The second album from a year earlier has those strings again throughout and features Bernie Leighton’s characteristic piano and the oboe d’amore of Romeo Penque. There’s nothing to get listeners overly excited here – just good tunes well played, well recorded and well remastered. PB

JAMES LAST ‘The Essential Collection’ CD1 17 tracks incl. Mamma Mia; My Heart Will Go On; Medley: Besame Mucho/A Gay Ranchero/Volare; Jigs and Reels; Candle in the Wind; Carmina Burana; Roses from the South; Don’t Cry for Me Argentina; CD2 18 tracks incl. Mambo No.5; Nature Boy; Beatles Medley: Can’t Buy Me Love/A Hard Days Might/Ob La Di Ob La Da; Over the Rainbow; Czardas Von Monti; My Way; Fanfare; Reach Out; DVD 26 tracks incl. Pulstar; The Way We Were; Tequila; Hero; G’schnichten Aus Dem Wienerwald; Greensleeves; Medley: Love is in the Air/Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps/Ave Maria No Moro; Downtown; Reel Express; Orange Blossom Special; Games That Lovers Play Metro Sound & Vision METRSV009 (72:59 & 77:53 + DVD) Once I came to terms with the audience participation throughout the two CDs – strange as only six tracks are listed as "live" – this proved to be quite an enjoyable package (and at under £5 online who can complain?) although the title still does not convince. The best tracks for me involve the strings but you have to admire the musicianship of all the members of the Last orchestra. Morning at Seven and Alle Vogelare good examples of Hansi (his birth name was Hans) the composer. The enthusiasm on the DVD of the 2007 Royal Albert Hall Concert is infectious. Hansi’s is such happy music in our often depressing times, it is surprising he has featured so infrequently in these pages. PB

ENOCH LIGHT & HIS ORCHESTRA  'Big Band Bossa Nova’ & ‘Let's Dance the Bossa Nova'   24 tracks incl. One Note Samba; Perdido; Galanura; Lullaby of Birdland; Sem Saudades de Voce; Take the "A" Train; Meditation; Tonight; Nola; Big Ben Bossa Nova; I Could Have Danced All Night; Fly Me to the Moon; What Kind of Fool Am  I?; O Barquinho (Little Boat) … Sepia 1213 (70.00)  Enoch Light was a prolific recording artist from the early days of LP onwards but came into his own in the late 1950s and early 1960s with the advent of stereo. This 2-on-1 release is from the early ‘60s and embraces the popularity of the bossa nova at that time. The album includes authentic bossa nova and Brazilian songs with mainly American standards together with four Enoch Light originals. The orchestra consists of the cream of US West Coast session men with Doc Severinsen leading the trumpets, Walter Levinsky the woodwinds, the percussion led by Don Lamond on drums superbly supported by guitarist Tony Mottola (remember The Perry Como TV Show of the 1950s and 1960s?) who contributes trademark solos throughout. The first album commences appropriately with Antonio Carlos Jobim's Desafinado, the tune that started the craze, and an album of this kind would not be without the compositions of Ary Barroso whose Brazil and  E Luxo So are included. My personal highlights are the classy arrangements of Besame Mucho, and Henry Mancini's Days of Wine and Roses and Moon River. Also worth mentioning are two of Enoch Light's compositions, Rio Junction and Mi Adorado, together with Doc Severinsen's  La Puerta del  Sol  – "The Doc" providing characteristic solos on the latter two pieces. The album concludes "tongue in cheek" with Eydie Gorme's hit  Blame It on the Bossa Nova.   The presentation is first class with original LP liner notes used and, what is refreshing, a list of the musicians included. The remastering of these excellent stereo recordings was in the hands of Robin Cherry who, as usual, has done a remarkable job. Warmly recommended to all lovers of Latin-American sounds and to those who love excellent big band albums – enjoy! MC

HENRY MANCINI & HIS ORCHESTRA ‘The Mancini Generation’ & ‘Hangin’ Out With Henry Mancini’ 21 tracks incl. The title tune; Joy (Jesus, Joy of Man’’s Desiring); The Swingin’ Shepherd Blues; Charade; A Bluish Bag; Amazing Grace … Medley: Love’s Theme, TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia); The Entertainer; Song for Anna; The Thief Who Came to Dinner; The Stripper …Vocalion CDSML 8499 (64:31) The musical versatility of "Hank" Mancini (1924-94) is demonstrated on this release as conductor, composer, arranger (all except Joy, which is by Brit keyboardist Tom Parker), pianist, synthesizer player, and siffleur with the Mouldy Seven on Hangin’ Out. It is a mixed bag compilation with a big band sound on the first album (all the personnel are listed) and strings added on the second. Both were produced by Joe Reisman and recorded at RCA’s Music Centre of the World, Hollywood, California in 1972 and 1974. In his extremely well-researched five-page booklet notes, Oliver Lomax points out that on both albums a prominent feature is the sound of the Arp synthesizer. Although all the tracks have their attractions, a standout for me is the theme tune to the US TV series Masterpiece Theatre by the French composer Jean-Joseph Mouret with its organ solo. Also particularly worthy of note is a refined treatment of Stan Kenton’s Eager Beaver, and the A Girl from Petrovka theme, a memorable Mancini melody from an unmemorable movie. This is the last of many high quality releases from this label I have had the pleasure of reviewing for our printed issues over the years. PB

EDMUNDO ROS ‘Rhythms of the South’ 2 CD set 48 tracks incl. ‘Ros on Broadway’: I Could Have Danced All Night; Some Enchanted Evening; Bewitched; Stranger in Paradise; June is Bursting Out All Over; I Whistle a Happy Tune; ‘Rhythms of the South’: Spanish Gypsy Dance; The Blue Danube; Barcarolle; La Maxixe; Capullito de Alexi; Siboney … ‘Ros at the Opera’: Toreador’s Song; The Quartet; Intermezzo; Caro Nome; Flower Song; Drinking Song; ‘Sing ‘N Clap Along with Ros Orchestra & Chorus’: There’s No Business Like Show Business; People Will Say We Are in Love; Heart; I Could Have Danced All Night; Get Me to the Church on Time; There’s Nothing Like a Dame …Jasmine JASCD 763 It is good to have a new collection of four reissued albums from a musician incapable of making a dull recording, who has not been featured enough in KT of late. Born in Trinidad in 1910 (he died just before his 101st birthday), Ros came to London in 1937 to study at the Royal Academy of Music, and the next year became known as the drummer on some Fats Waller recording sessions. He formed a rumba band in 1940, which was renamed Edmundo Ros and His Orchestra in 1946. His was a popular recording group with Decca for 30 years from 1944, and many of the LPs – 55 listed in Wikipedia – were best-sellers. Included here, the 1958 album ‘Rhythms of the South’ was one of the first stereo releases and sold a million copies. The "sing-along" tracks may be something of a surprise. Unfortunately my review copy had not arrived before we went to press, so I have only been able to listen to extracts from two of the original albums online; hence no timings. There is no doubt in my mind that the set will be well up to Jasmine’s usual high standard.PB

SAUTER–FINEGAN ORCHESTRA ‘Golden Memories of Sauter–Finegan’ 22 tracks incl. ‘Straight Down The Middle’ Surrey With the Fringe on Top; Paradise; Sunshine Girl; Have You Met Miss Jones?; Aren’t You Glad You’re You?; When a Woman Loves a Man; These Foolish Things … ‘Memories of Goodman and Miller’ Little Brown Jug; Sunrise Serenade; Swing Low, Sweet Chariot; Moonlight Sonata; Soft as Spring; Ramona … Jasmine JASCD 459 (77:59) An admired aggregation I don’t remember ever being reviewed before during my stretch as KT Editor. At some time during their careers Eddie Sauter (1914-81) was an arranger for Benny Goodman and Bill Finegan (1917-2008) for Glenn Miller, so it is appropriate that half the tracks on these albums should be some of those two giants’ biggest hits, but in new arrangements (six by Bill, five by Eddie) to suit the Sauter-Finegan sound. Whirlpool, Scotch and SauterBenny Rides AgainClarinet á la King and Superman are Sauter originals, with Finegan composing Alright Already and the title tune of the first album. The line-up in 1958, when the two albums were made, was five saxes, three trumpets, three trombones, tuba, harp, piano, bass, guitar, drums and percussion. All told another release from this label to be applauded. PB

‘BRIGHT LIGHTS’ Full tracklisting details on page xxGuild GLCD5212 (74:33) The idea behind this new Guild Light Music selection is to showcase those talented composers who have made it big in the light music world and in Library Music in particular. The album title is also the title of the first track by Den Berry and Stuart Crombie played in a bright optimistic manner by the Brussels New Concert Orchestra. As you would expect there are a number of well-known titles such as Beachcomber by Clive Richardson and Twentieth Century Express (Making Tracks) by Trevor Duncan but there are also some lesser known pieces and one in particular as far as I’m concerned, Main Event by Hubert Clifford, a real corker of a number played with great gusto by the Danish State Radio Orchestra conducted by Robert Farnon, which I think I might have opened the CD with. Another piece, by Charles Williams this time, is Hydro Project, not exactly new to me but great all the same. Cecil Milner is in there with a charming number he called Trysting Place on the Harmonic label followed by Bruce Campbell’s Tempo for Strings played by the Stuttgart Radio Orchestra, reminding me to ask, have these continental radio orchestras gone the same way as the BBC house orchestras or are they still playing light music? Two more cracking pieces that I have but pleased to see included are March Heroique by Walter Collins played by the London Promenade Orchestra and conducted by him with the added bonus of Levy Sound Studios unique sound, and Race Day by Roger Roger. Another jolly but powerful number is Jack Beaver’s Holiday Camp March played by the New Century Orchestra under the baton of Sidney Torch, who by the way is represented by My Waltz For You with him conducting the Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra. Vivian Ellis, always associated with Coronation Scot, has a really catchy number to his name, Procession played by the Danish State Radio Orchestra conducted by Hubert Clifford, as does King Palmer and Richard Mullan writing as Peter Kane with Walter Collins on the podium again and the Levy sound enhancing the very catchy Rhythm of the Clock. Jack Strachey, Ernest Tomlinson, Frederic Curzon and a host more light music backroom boys all make appearances on this fine release, and so they should. KW

AL CAIOLA ’The Caiola Bonanza : Great Western Themes and Extra Bounties’ 2 CD set 64(!) tracks incl. Bonanza; Laramie; The Ballad of Paladin; Bat Masterson; Law Man; The Deputy; Theme from "The Rebel"; Wagons Ho!; Maverick; Rawhide; Gunslinger; Theme from "A Summer Place"; Taste of Honey; Wheels; Tumbling Tumbleweeds … The Magnificent Seven; Two Guitars; Guns of Navarone; I Walk the Line; Take Me Home; Undecided; Martin Kane Theme; You Don’t Know Me; Apache; Ramblin’ Rose; Love is Like Champagne; Moon River; Jezebel; Big Guitar; Your Cheatin’ Heart … Jasmine JASCD 743 mono/stereo (78:40 & 77:55) Al Caiola (born 1920) is one of the USA’s finest guitarists. As well as being a session player in some of the best light music orchestras, he made over 50 albums of his own and accompanied an astonishing number of the biggest names of 20th century popular music. I would imagine that most RFS members will have examples of his work on their CD shelves – Paul Anka’s Diana, Petula Clark’s Don’t Sleep in the Subway, Rosemary Clooney’s Come on-a My House, Perry Como’s Don’t Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes, Percy Faith’sTheme from "A Summer Place", Andy Williams’s Butterfly, Johnnie Ray’s Just Walking in the Rain,and Hugo Winterhalter’s Blue Tango to name but a few. Having served his country in WWII, during which he was in the month-long Battle of Iwo Jima as a stretcher bearer, he was with United Artists Records in the late '40s and early '50s. After leaving UA he signed with RCA. In the early '60s, he went back to UA, which is where he scored his first hit with the theme to the film The Magnificent Seven followed in the charts by Bonanza. Three of the tracks here are Caiola compositions: Aegean Love SongStraight Ahead and On the Merry Go Round. Several of the arrangements are by Don Costa with others by Al himself.  Robert Nickora’s admirable liner notes tell us that Mancini’s Theme from "Experiments in Terror" and Billy May’s Sergeants Three March are particularly rare. Ear-catching tracks for me include Esquivel’s "Tall Man" Theme from the ‘Great Western’ album and Grieg’s souped-up Asia Minor but, although you possibly may not want to play both albums at one sitting, dip in anywhere and you won’t be disappointed. PB

CARLOS MONTOYA ‘Flamenco Fury’ 2 CD set 38 tracks incl. Rain on the Roof; Blues in the Night (My Mama Done Tol’ Me); Improvisation*; Que Sera, Sera; Zambrilla*; Tarantas*; Tango de los Ojos Negros (Tanguillo De Cadiz)*; La Cancion del Ole; Malaga … / Zambrilla*; Seguiriya*; La Virgende la Macarena ; Andalucia; Malaguena; Jerez*; Café de Chinitas*; Zapateo*; Alorno Y Verdial*; St Louis Blues … Jasmine JASCD753 (77:07 & 77:36) Nephew of Ramon Montoya, Carlos (1913-93) popularized the flamenco guitar in the USA. Born in Madrid of gypsy stock, he married an American and later acquired citizenship despite mistakenly answering "No" to the question. "Do you like the American form of government?" His peak of fame was in the 1950s – there is no indication when the two albums on the first disc were recorded. 18 of the 20 tracks on the second disc, however, are a combination of two live concerts from the early ‘60s. Many of the tracks (asterisked above) are Montoya compositions. A lot of flamenco guitar may not be for everyone but there is no denying the excitement in the performances throughout this set. PB

ROY SMECK ‘The Wizard Of The Strings’ 31 tracks incl. Twelfth Street Rag; Music Box Waltz; Melody in F (Mendelssohn); I Ain’t Got Nobody; Ain’t She Sweet; Uke Said It; June Night; Chinatown, My Chinatown;; Say It With Music; Toot, Toot, Tootsie!; Bye, Bye Blues; Begin the Beguine; Waltz Italiano; Blue’ N The Blues; Summer Shadow … Jasmine JASCD 270 (79:56) Here’s a release to put a smile on your face. Roy Smeck (1900-94) is a new name to me but is obviously a very fine instrumentalist. He is considered by many to be one of the truly great American popular musicians of the 20th century, whose name would be more recognizable if he hadn't specialized in a "minor" instrument, the ukulele. On the first 11 tracks here he plays his instrument of choice backed by four guitars (one played by Tony Mottola), bass and drums. The next 12 tracks feature him on banjo accompanied by His Dixie Syncopaters, and on the final eight tracks, playing the Spanish variety, he is part of a guitar trio again with bass and drums. Self-penned tracks include Honolulu Shuffle,Escape Tango and Happy Polka. Playing, recording and timing are all to be commended. Not normally my kind of strings but listening to this over the summer has given me a lot of pleasure. I feel sure it will do the same for you during the winter months and beyond. PB  

RED PRYSOCK "Handclapppin’ Footstompin’ Rock ‘N’ Roll" 30 tracks incl. Happy Feet; Blow Your Horn; Little Jamie; Rock n’ Roll; Zonked; Shoe String; Jumbo; Zip; Rock & Roll Party; Pacuino Walk; Headsnappin’; Rooster Walk; 2 Point 8; What’s the Word? Thunderbird!; Ruffin’ with Red …Jasmine JASCD 274 mono (79:22) Wilburt "Red" Prysock (1926-93) was a R&B tenor saxophonist whose biggest hit was Hand Clappin’ in 1955 (track 7). You certainly get what it says on the tin: "30 Booting Platters from the King of the Honking Tenor Sax." All the tracks were recorded for Mercury between 1954 and 1957 when (Bob Fisher’s notes tell us) Red "was without doubt the greatest exponent of rock and roll sax playing." Although quite tuneful, it’s all far too unrelentingly raucous for this gentle reviewer. PB

DON GIBSON ‘Oh Lonesome Me’ Singles Collection 1956-1962 2 CD set 46 tracks incl. Run Boy; I Must Forget You; Sweet Dreams; The Road of Life Alone; I Ain’t Gonna Waste My Time; Ah-Ha; I Believed in You; Blue Blue Day; Give Myself a Party; Look Who’s Blue; Who Cares; A Stranger to Me ... / Lonesome Old House; Don’t Tell Me Your Troubles; Heartbreak Avenue; I’m Movin On; Big Hearted Me; Just One Time; Far, Far Away; A Legend in My Time; Sea of Heartbreak; Lonesome Number One; I Can Mend Your Broken Heart … Jasmine JASMCD 3642/3 mono/stereo (57:37 & 52:24) Don Gibson (1928-2003) American born country-pop singer and songwriter, writing hits I Can’t Stop Loving You (for Kitty Wells) and Sweet Dreams (for Faron Young). His own first smash hit was Oh Lonesome Me / I Can’t Stop Loving You (a two-sided hit – No.1 country, No.7 pop in 1958). All three are on this compilation. Gibson had 14 entries in the pop Hot 100 ’58-‘61 and 37 top 40 hits in the country chart ’58-‘71. The first dozen tracks here were on the MGM label (’56-‘57); all the rest were made for RCA, where from ’57 onwards Chet Atkins was a big influence on Don’s career direction. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973, and in 2001 into theCountry Music Hall of Fame. With a few exceptions all the titles in this set are Don’s own compositions. A thoroughly agreeable listen and a great antidote to that honkin’ sax! PB

MARIO LANZA ‘Very Best Of …’ 24 tracks incl. Golden Days; If I Loved You; Serenade; Drink, Drink, Drink; Because; Ave Maria; One Alone; Londonderry Air: Danny Boy; You’ll Never Walk Alone; Flower song (Carmen); Vesti la giubba; Song of India; Santa Lucia … alto ALC 1231 (78:11) Reckoned to be one of the greatest voices of the 20th century and an inspiration to "The Three Tenors", this is an attractive compilation. The earliest recordings, Granada and O sole mio’, date from 1949 – two of several with the RCA Victor Orchestra conducted by Ray Sinatra. The latest isOnly a Rose from 1956. Lanza’s three million-sellers are here: Be My LoveThe Loveliest Night of the Year and Because You’re Mine Around half the tracks are from films, notably ‘The Great Caruso’ (1950) with Constantine Callinicos wielding the baton. I notice that the "Final (and fine) Master" is by our friend Paul Arden-Taylor. If you are without a Lanza album in your collection, here is an opportunity to acquire an excellent one for around five pounds. PB

BRYN TERFEL ‘Homeward Bound’ Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Orchestra at Temple Square / Mack Wilberg 18 tracks incl. What a Wonderful World; Bound for the Promised Land; Faith’s Call; How Great Thou Art; Guide Us, O Thou Great Jehovah; Blow the Wind Southerly; Shenandoah; The Dying Soldier; Battle Hymn of the Republic … DG 4791073 (78:10) An album of eclectic items from the celebrated Welsh bass-baritone. With the 360-strong choir, 150 orchestral musicians, two guest singers, conductor and soloists, it employs the largest forces DG has ever brought together for a studio album. The Norwegian soprano Sissel joins Bryn on Shall We Gather at the River, and Give Me My Song by Benny Anderson of Abba; and by up-and-coming American mezzo Tamara Mumford on Karl Jenkins’ lovely Ave Verum Corpus. The title song is by Marta Keen, not Simon and Garfunkel. There are two classical pieces: Libera Me from Fauré’s ‘Requiem’ and Lascia Ch’io Pianga (you will probably recognise the tune) from Handel’s opera ‘Rinaldo’. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is a Grammy and Emmy award winning all-volunteer ensemble. Bryn has said how moved spiritually he was to hear the choir sing. The majority of the arrangements are by the conductor. For me a couple of tracks could have been a little livelier, but anyone with catholic musical tastes should love this release. PB

‘SHOW–STOPPERS Big Hits for the Musicals’ Top Stars with Hits from Hit Musicals! 23 tracks from ‘West Side Story’ (6), ‘Oliver!’ (4), ‘My Fair Lady’ (5), ‘Oklahoma’ (4), ‘Camelot’ (1), ‘Flower Drum Song’ (1), ‘Kismet’ (2) alto Take:2 ALN 1944 (79:20) I have not had anything to review for some time, so this is a terrific release to go out on. All the tracks are either from film soundtracks or original casts and there are some real classics here with names like Gordon MacRae, Shirley Jones, Ron Moody, Georgia Brown, Julie Andrews, Stanley Holloway, Rex Harrison, Pat Suzuki, Howard Keel, Ann Blyth and Vic Damone. My favourite track is Richard Burton sing-speaking the Loewe-Lerner How to Handle a Woman. On the Bernstein soundtrack we hear the voice of Marni Nixon (not Natalie Wood who acted the part of Maria) singing I Feel Pretty, Tonight and Somewhere (the last two with Jimmy Bryant). James Murray’s booklet notes give an excellent synopsis of each show. Project co-ordinator is Robin Vaughan and mastering is by Paul Arden-Taylor. This is a good value souvenir of some of the best performances in some of the greatest musicals ever. RP 

‘CLASSIC BRITISH MARCHES’ British Imperial Military Band / Lieut-Colonel (Retired) Graham Jones MBE Jacob: March (Music For a Festival); March (An Original Suite(); The Earle of Oxford’s March (William Byrd Suite); Holst: March (Suite No.1); March (Moorside Suite); March Suite No.2; Lovell: Triumph of Right; Elgar: March of the Mogul Emperors (Crown of India Suite); Pomp & Circumstance March No.4; Imperial March; Ellerby: Blue, Red, Blue; Vaughan Williams: Sea Songs; Seventeen Come Sunday (English Folksong Suite); Fletcher: Heroic March; Bliss: March (Things to Come); Coates: Knightsbridge March (London Suite); Chandler: Imperial Britain Bandleader BNA 5207 (69:22) This band is a comparatively recent formation being created in 2009 primarily to provide additional employment for musicians who have served in Army, Marine and RAF Bands of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces; although having studied the personnel details in the accompanying booklet, one of the horn players hails from the US Marine Corps! Graham Jones retired from the Army in 2011 having attained the prestigious post of Senior Director of Music, Household Division. This debut disc offers a good and interesting selection off British marches, many well-known but others that may not be familiar to the general listener. It’s pleasing to have RVW’s salty Sea Songsinvoking distant memories for some of us as this music was indelibly associated with BBC TV’s ‘Billy Bunter’ series. All the items on this release are expertly played by the 31-piece band and are captured in detailed, well-balanced and vivid sound – recording venue not disclosed. One quibble I have is the complete absence of any programme notes concerning the music. Who, for example, would have heard of the likes of Hubert Benjamin Lovell or Thomas A Chandler other than those aficionados possessed of a detailed knowledge of military band repertoire? The latter gentleman provides the concluding march in a style suggestive of the early 20th century and not too far removed from a certain American "March King". Heartily recommended but could someone please step forward smartly next time with information on the music being played. RH

‘THE DEFINITIVE ERIC COATES’ Eric Coates conducts all of his commercial recordings 7 CD set Nimbus NI 6231 (8:50:0)  For lovers of light music this has to be the most important CD release in years and an absolute bargain at only £29.99 (less online). A huge vote of thanks to Alan Bunting for his mammoth restoration task, which included locating all the records – no easy matter.  Several of them were provided by other well-known names in the field of light music, including David Ades, Alan Heinecke, David Lennick, Forest Patten, Michael Thomas, Nathan Brown, John Govier and the late lamented Stuart Upton and Peter Dempsey. The music, almost entirely orchestral, covers 1923 to 1957 and comes with a detailed analysis of every piece by Michael Payne whose PhD thesis on Coates was expanded into a book published by the Ashgate Press. His liner notes also include everything else you need to know about the "Uncrowned King of Light Music". Everyone has their own favourite piece, or rather pieces (plural), because Ethel Smyth got it absolutely right when she described Coates as "the man who writes tunes". It would be a matter of choice to pick out even one of his many suites but to know that they are all here is simply fantastic. Coates did not record everything he wrote of course, especially his many songs, so Disc 7 covers contemporary recordings of other important orchestral pieces conducted by, among others, Ole Jensen (Robert Farnon), Charles Williams, Sidney Torch, Clarence Raybould, Jack Leon, Joseph Lewis, Jack Hylton, and Wing Commanders Sims and O’Donnell. A real bonus. This release is a winner and if you buy nothing else this year then you must acquire it. Brilliant! PW

DVOŘÁK: ‘Slavonic Dances’ᵅ • MASSENET ‘Le Cid’ᵇ • MEYERBEER ‘Les Patineurs’ᵇ ᵅLondon Symphony Orchestra & ᵇIsrael Philharmonic Orchestra / Jean Martinon Decca Eloquence 4762742 (78:08) Absolutely chock-full of tunes from beginning to end, both orchestras respond well to the conductor’s French flair. The second and third works are ballet music written for operas, the last orchestrated by Constant Lambert. For original recordings from 1958 and 1959 the CD sound is superb. The recording producer on the ballet tracks was the legendary John Culshaw. An outstanding album guaranteed to lift the spirits on the dullest of days, now at a low price. ET

GRIEG ‘Three Concerti for Violin and Chamber Orchestra’ Henning Kraggerud (violin) •Tromsø Chamber Orchestra Naxos 8.573137 (66:40) Following his ‘Nordic Violin Favourites’ ("a release to be savoured" - JIM 194) the internationally acclaimed Norwegian violinist turns his attention to another of his fellow countrymen. Edvard Grieg never actually wrote a violin concerto so Kraggerud, together with Bernt Simen Lund, has cleverly created three new concertos from his trio ofViolin Sonatas, evidently among the composer’s favourite works. The playing is outstanding as is the recording – one of the very best I’ve heard from this label. ET

HOLST Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra & Vienna State Opera Chorus / Karajan; London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestras / Boult Major Classics M2CD019 (108:26) With glittering playing, top-class recording and the German conductor at the peak of his powers, the 1961 version of The Planets on the first CD here is still considered to be among the best. Indeed, the Penguin Guide said on its release: "This is a disc not to be missed on any account." The second CD contains other similar vintage classic Decca recordings of The Perfect FoolEgdon Heath and The Hymn of Jesus under Sir Adrian, and from 1959 the Oriental Suite Beni Mora under Sir Malcolm Sargent with the RPO. At the time of writing this set from a newish label is available online for around an irresistible £4 (check ET

MASCAGNI ‘In Concert’ Luciano Ganci (tenor), Fiilharmonica ‘900 Teatro Regio Torino / Gianandrea Noseda Chandos CHAN 10789 (61:44) Splendid! Pietro Mascagni (1863-1945) was an Italian opera composer who studied law before becoming a conductor – Karajan is reported as remembering him as one of the best he had seen or heard – and piano teacher. Mascagni devoted his earliest efforts at composition to sacred works but in 1890 he shot into the limelight with his prize-winning one-act opera Cavalleria rusticana, which received an unprecedented 60 curtain calls at its premiere. On this disc, Ave Maria is a vocal adaptation of the famous Intermezzo – one of three vocal items with a total duration of 11 minutes. These and the final track, Suite from "The Eternal City", are all premiere recordings. The six non-vocal items, none of them from operas, are not wanting for good tunes. The opening track, the quite dramatic L’apoteosi della cicogna, written in 1930 for a ballet, was his final orchestral work; there is some fine flute playing on the delightfulDanza esotica; and Mein erster Walzer, a rustic Strauss waltz sound-alike piece, is particularly attractive. With Chandos’ customary production values this release is something of a discovery and a delightful one at that. Confidently buy on disc or as a download. ET

SIBELIUS 2 CD set Tossy Spivakovsky (violin), Sinfonia of London, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Stockholm Radio Symphony Orchestra / Hannikainen / Collins / Ehrling Magdalen METCD 8024 (77:29 & 75:19) Back in 1959 theSymphony No.5 and Karelia Suite from World Record Club was one of the first LPs (possibly the first) I ever bought, and it’s still in my collection. The conductor was Tauno Hannikainen, who was approved by the composer himself and conducted at his funeral. It was at the express wish of Sibelius that in 1951 he left his post in Chicago to return home as conductor of the Helsinki Symphony Orchestra. He also conducts Symphony No.2, which received a rave review in The Stereo Record Guide. The Guide was not quite so enthusiastic about Symphony No.5 but opined that theKarelia Suite could "heartily be recommended on all counts." All are with the Sinfonia of London. TheViolin Concerto and Tapiola are played by the LSO; the original Everest LP from 1960 being described as a splendid bargain. Six years earlier the soloist, Nathan "Tossy" Spivakovsky, had been written of as "one of the most brilliant violinists alive." Anthony Collins and the RPO contribute two mono tracks: Romance in C Major, and Swan of Tuonela with the cor anglais of Leonard Brain. The set is completed by another mono track, Lemminkainen’s Return, from the Stockholm RSO conducted by Sixten Ehrling. With 7½ pages of James Murray’s booklet notes and Paul Arden-Taylor’s mastering, this is treasurable nostalgic release. PB

SIR ADRIAN BOULT ‘The Complete Conductor : From Tchaikovsky to Gershwin’ 10 CD setWarner Classics 0192702 A quite incredible bargain – surely it must be the year’s best – found for £16.99! Sir Adrian (1889-1983) was one of the finest British conductors ever, yet somewhat overshadowed by his flamboyant contemporary Sir Thomas Beecham. ("Boult came in, reeking of Horlicks," Beecham once allegedly said of his notoriously abstemious fellow musician).  But his repertoire was exceptionally broad, as this box set attests. The Tchaikovsky include the 1812 OvertureCapriccio ItalienMarche SlaveRomeo and Juliet – Fantasy Overture and The Nutcracker Suite; and Gershwin is represented by his Cuban Overture. As well as some "heavier" works – although there’s nothing unapproachable – by such as Parry and Holst (The Planets: three of his five versions from 1945, ’66 and ’78), also included are plenty of other pieces that will appeal to light music enthusiasts, e.g. Trumpet VoluntaryRitual Fire DanceRuslan & Ludmila OvertureDance of the HoursProcession of the NoblesDanse MacabreThe Bartered Bride Overture & Three DancesCircus Polka, and The Jewels of the Madonna excerpts. There are also 14 tracks devoted to famous marches including Crown ImperialBritish GrenadiersRoyal Air Force March Past, Lilliburlero, Colonel Bogey, The Dambusters, Under the Double EagleThe Stars and Stripes ForeverLiberty BellAnchors Aweigh and Victory at Sea. On these, as on most of the tracks throughout the set, Sir Adrian is conducting the London Philharmonic Orchestra. He was their Chief Conductor for seven years in the Fifties, and continued to work with them in concerts and recordings until 1978. There are hours of pleasurable listening here and would make an ideal Christmas present for someone wanting to discover the joys of classical music. PB

DANCES FROM HUNGARY Danubia Orchestra Obuda / Domonkos Héja 16 tracks by Listz, Erkel, Weiner, Dohnányi, Kodály & Bartók Apex 2564 64443-4 (62:14) A compilation of largely lively pieces beautifully played, and another disc to make you feel good. The opening track is probably the tune most people are likely to recognise: Intermezzo from Zoltán Kodály’s Háry János Suite. The longest track is Franz Liszt’s Mephisto Waltz (10:18). The Danubia Symphony Orchestra was only established 20 years ago; this was its first CD, a 2003 Warner Classics album excellently recorded in Budapest. In 1998, aged 24, Héja took his diploma in percussion instruments and conducting with honours, and was awarded first prize in Hungarian TV’s 9th International Conductors Competition. This is yet again a highly attractive buy at a bargain price. If you like this you may like to try an equally enticing companion volume by the same forces of ‘Brahms: Hungarian Dances Nos.1-21’ on Apex 2564 6443-1. ET

GYPSY BALLAD Eleftheria Kotzia, guitar 19 tracks Somm Céleste SOMMCD 0130 (67:00) What an interesting release! Ms Kotzia has been described as doing for the Greek soul what flamenco does for the Spanish. Born in Alexandroupolis, she finished the studies of her instrument at the Guildhall School of Music in London, where she was taught by Julian Bream among others. She herself now teaches at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff. As well as the title piece by Czech-born Syvie Bodorová, and Frederico Moreno Torroba’s Suite Castellana – the first work ever written for guitar by a non-guitarist – this compilation includes pieces by two well-known composers for the instrument in Rodrigo and Villa-Lobos, and two famous tangos: La Cumparsita and El Choclo. The remaining nine composers and their works, not all from Spain or Latin America, will be less familiar but Graham Wade’s booklet notes are very informative. First-rate recording made in Holy Trinity Church, Weston, Herts, some tracks as recently as February this year. ET

PIERS LANE ‘Piers Lane Goes To Town’ 20 tracks incl. Down Longford Way; Toccata for Piers Lane; Marigold; Naila Waltz; Dizzy Fingers; A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square; Bach Goes to Town "Prelude and Fugue in swing"; Jamaican Rumba; The Tiger Tango; Irish Tune from County Derry … Hyperion CDA 67976 (76:08) Back in March 2012 (JIM 191) ET reviewed with approbation a budget-price reissue by this pianist. Here we have a brand new full-price release that is every bit as recommendable. As will be seen from the titles listed above, the programme is varied. There are a number of works by Australian composers written for Lane, and pieces by his father Alan and the actor Anthony Hopkins. The opening work is an attractive piece by Katherine (Kitty) Parker, and other particularly noteworthy tracks are Dame Myra Hess’s famous arrangement of Bach’s Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring and Dudley Moore’s Beethoven Parody "And the same to you". Nil points for the front cover of the booklet but included inside are nine pages of very informative notes by the soloist. Sparkling piano playing perfectly captured in Hyperion’s best sound should help us to smile through our tears at the demise of the printed JIM. PB

More recommended releases from Wilfred Askew

LAURINDO ALMEIDA & BUD SHANK QUARTET ‘The Brazilliance of .… Volumes 1 & 2’ Vol.1 (1953) 14 tracks incl. Atabaque; Stairway to the Stars; Noctambulism; Speak Low; Blue Baiao ...;Vol.2 (aka ‘Holiday in Brazil’ 1958) 10 tracks incl. Simpatico; Little Blue; Mood Antigua; Carioca Hills … Jasmine JASCD 271 (77:31) World Pacific albums.

THE ANDREWS SISTERS ‘Greatest Hits In Stereo’ (1961) & ‘Great Golden Hits’ (1962) arr. & cond. by Billy Vaughan / Vic Schoen 28 tracks incl. I Can Dream, Can’t I?; Pennsylvania Polka; Down in the Valley; The Shrine of St Cecilia; Rhumboogie; Rum and Coca Cola … Ti-Pi-Tin; Near You; Pistol Packin’ Mama; Don’t Fence Me In; Aurora; Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy … (Bonus tracks) I’ve Got to Pass Your House to Get to My House; One, Two, Three, Four; Sailor; Good Dreaming Sepia 1219(71:15) Original Dot recordings.

BROOK BENTON ‘Let Me Sing and I’m Happy’ Four Original Albums plus Bonus Singles 59 tracks incl. ‘I Love You So Many Ways’ (1960) Hold My Hand; May I ; Someone to Watch Over Me; So Close; In a Dream … ; ‘The Boll Weevil Song & 11 Other Great Hits’ (1961) Careless Love; My Last Dollar; Frankie and Johnny; Four Thousand Years Ago … ; ‘There Goes that Song Again’ (1962) When I Grow Too Old to Dream; All of Me; I Love Paris; Breezin’ Along with the Breeze; Lie to Me … ;‘Brook Benton Sings the Blues’ (1962) Chains of Love; Valley of Tears; My True Confession; Send for Mme; Looking Back … Jasmine JASCD 744 (156:43)

BING CROSBY ‘A Southern Memoir’ (1975) Orchestra cond. by Paul Smith 12 tracks incl. On The Alamo; Alabamy Bound; Caroline in the Morning; Georgia On My Mind; Sleepy Time Down South; Sailing Down The Chesapeake Bay; plus six alternative versions and Bing’s South Texas Quail Hunting Medley: Galway Bay; Mack The Knife; Surrey With the Fringe on Top; The Pleasure of Your Company Universal 372 489-5 (56:40) OriginalIy issued on LP in the UK by Decca.

EILEEN FARRELL ‘This Fling Called Love’ (1961) w. Percy Faith & His Orchestra 12 tracks incl. Hello, Young Lovers; Out of This World; Where or When; The April Age; The Party’s Over; The Faraway Part of Town …; Bonus tracks from ‘Together With Love’ (1962) w. André Previn, His piano and Orchestra 9 tracks incl. But Not For Me; Spring is Here; By My Self; Where I Wonder; Love is Here to Stay … Sepia 1222 (77:41) Original US Columbia recordings.

FERRANTE AND TEICHER ‘In A Soulful Mood’ (1974) & ‘Killing Me Softly‘ (1973) 24 tracks incl. Love’s Theme; Ain’t No Mountain High Enough; I’m Stone in Love With You; My Cherie Amour; Midnight Train to Georgia … Send in the Clowns; Ben; "Lady Sings the Blues" – Love Theme; Seesaw; Living Together, Growing Together; Don’t Ask Me Why … Vocalion CDLK 4491 (79:27)

FRED KATZ (Cello) & HIS MUSIC ‘Soul Cello’ + ‘4-5-6 Trio’ + ‘And His Jammers’ 2CDs 32 tracks incl. Country Gardens; Wayfaring Stranger; Time After Time; I’m Glad There Is You; Intermezzo; Come With Me … Sophisticated Lady; Isn’t It Romantic; Delia; Perdido; I’m Getting Sentimental Over You … Imagination; Old Folks; Sometimes I’m Happy; Ruby, My Dear; Dexterity …Fresh Sound FSR-CD 744 (122:58) Three US Decca albums.

ORIGINAL FILM SOUNDTRACK … PLUS ‘The Hustler’ (composed by Kenyon Hopkins) (1961)15 tracks; ‘Paris Blues’ (composed by Duke Ellington) (1961) 14 tracks; ‘The Long, Hot Summer’ (composed by Alex North) (1958) 7 highlight tracks Cherry Red ACMEM 224 CD (79:51)

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WILLIAM ALWYN 'Film Music' (arr. for wind band) Royal Northern College of Music Wind Orchestra / Clark Rundell / Mark Heron The Crimson Pirate Overture; The History of Mr. Polly Suite; The Way Ahead March; State Secret Suite; The Million Pound Note Waltz; Swiss Family Robinson Suite; The True Glory March; Geordie Suite; In Search of the Castaways Suite; Desert Victory Suite Naxos Wind Band Classics 8.572747 (69.46)  Surprisingly, because he was the re-creator and orchestrator of all these original film transcripts  from half a century ago (except for Mr. Polly), no credit is given to Philip Lane.  However, as all the new arrangements for wind band by Martin Ellerby have such an excellent pedigree it is not surprising they sound good. Varying in style from pp to ff and from eerie to theatrical, they recreate the picture palaces of the past when audiences flocked in to see the latest drama set against a musical backdrop later discarded by the film company. Edmund Whitehouse

THE FILM MUSIC OF ARTHUR BENJAMIN AND LEIGHTON LUCAS   BBC National Orchestra of Wales / Ruman Gamba Benjamin: Conquest of Everest; The Man Who Knew Too Much; An Ideal Husband; Lucas: Yangtse Incident; Portrait of Clare; Dam Busters; Stage Fright; Ice Cold in Alex; This Is York; Target For Tonight Chandos CHAN 10713 (67:58)  Many of these scores only exist in a fairly fragmentary state and it's thanks largely to the efforts of the indefatigable Philip Lane, who reconstructed much of the music here and also provided the fascinating and interesting booklet notes, that has made all this possible and to whom we are much indebted. One of the longest single tracks at 7:44 in Benjamin's The Storm Clouds Cantata from the 1934 film 'The Man Who Knew Too Much' scored for mezzo-soprano, chorus, organ and orchestra. When Hitchcock came to remake the film in 1956 it was subsequently redeployed. 'An Ideal Husband', from which we have Waltz and Hyde Park Galop, boasted the famous Alexander Korda as director. What commends this issue for me is the inclusion of Lucas's score for the 1957 film 'Yangtse Incident'. This includes The Amethyst March, a stirring, heart-warming piece and a worthy musical tribute to all those unfortunate "hearts of oak" caught up in 'The Incident'. Lucas also composed music for the British Transport film documentaryThis Is York, and Philip Lane makes the point that this is the only full film score of him to have surfaced to date. Having served in the RAF during WWII it is not surprising that Lucas was called upon to write a suitable march for the classic 1941 RAF documentary 'Target For Tonight' (currently available on DVD) and was perhaps a natural choice for making a major contribution towards 'The Dam Busters' – Eric Coates, of course, being responsible only for the perennially popular Dambusters March. This is a superbly played and engineered disc and will surely be wanted by anyone with an interest and fascination in quality vintage British film music. Roger Hyslop

Philip Lane strikes again, this time with a superb reconstruction of several old film scores which sound terrific, including  'Yangtse Incident' in which the official but false version of the remarkable escape was retold on celluloid. Against orders, HMS Concord secretly went upstream under cover of darkness to assist HMS Amethyst and the two escaped together, a secret which has been covered up ever since so as not to offend Communist China; the British government of the time having backed the wrong political horse. While HMS Amethyst took all the plaudits, the crew of HMS Concord was sworn to secrecy, something which has festered with them for decades! This is a great CD. Edmund Whitehouse

HOWARD BLAKE 'The Avengers' Music composed & conducted by Howard Blake 50 tracksSilva Screen SILCD1363 (57:56 & 36.06) Of all the television scores I hoped would become available on CD, Howard Blake's magnificent scores from 'The Avengers' 1968-69 Tara King Season, are the ones I least expected to see emerge. Thoughtfully released during the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the series, this collection was released during the autumn of 2011. This 2-CD set, but with different artwork, was previously released privately, and is now a collector's item.  These scores represent the ten films for which Howard Blake was composer, by the request of Laurie Johnson, who at the time, was busy composing for films such as 'Hot Millions'.  Howard succeeds magnificently in maintaining the Avengers style, although for those who are familiar with his later film scores, there are tell-tale signs of things to come.  As the keyboard player on previous soundtracks for 'The Avengers', Howard knew exactly what was required, and he knew the other musicians involved, and many of them therefore, such as trumpeter Stan Roderick (who also provided the inimitable solo trumpet counter melody in this season's titles music), are heard here.  The sound reproduction is quite superb. Included in this set are, of course, Laurie Johnson's second arrangements of the main and end titles theme, as well as his Tag Scene – an exquisite '60s bossa nova, which accompanied most of the humorous closing sequences with John Steed, and Tara King.  At the time, 'The Avengers' was shown in 90 different countries.  Today it is seen everywhere, and it remains the world's most famous television series, having opened the way for all other Cold War characters, such as James Bond, Napoleon Solo, and others.   I would recommend buying this now, before you regret not doing so, as television soundtracks soon tend to soar in scarcity value. I would add that the booklet and backing insert for 'The Avengers' are produced very much for genuine fans of the series in mind, with beautiful colour photographs which I have not seen in publications before, and the notes include all recording dates, and a list of the musicians who took part. Howard had obviously had this project in mind for a long time.

Laurie Johnson's own soundtracks from 'The Avengers', 'The New Avengers', and 'The Professionals' are already starting to disappear, so look for these on Amazon.  Hopefully, Howard Blake's scores might elicit a more complete set of Laurie Johnson's own 'Avengers' scores, and it would be wonderful to at last own his original colour series' main and end titles themes on CD.  For those who remember the series from its inception, Johnny Dankworth's two separate versions of his ownAvengers Theme are still available on CD: 'The Best Of Johnny Dankworth' (Redial 546 135-2), and'Johnny Dankworth - Let's Slip Away' (Lost Tunes UMC 0-06007 - 5317621 - 4), and an excellent cover version of the Dankworth theme by John Gregory is included on 'John Gregory & His Orchestra – Mission Impossible' (Mercury 532 986-2). Franck Leprince

'BRITISH LIGHT MUSIC PREMIERES Vol. 6'  Royal Ballet Sinfonia / Gavin SutherlandSaturday Market (Anthony Hedges); Welsh Nursery Tunes (Lullaby & Shoeing Song) (Alun Hoddinott); Five Lyric Dances (Philip Lane), Cinque Port Suite and El Tango Ultimo (Carey Blyton), Portrait of Diana (John Fox), Music for Children (Out for a Stroll, Pony Trap, Sweet Dreams, Rustic Dance) (David Morgan),  Breton Suite (Little Dress, Clogmaker, Rosary) and Six Welsh Dances (Four Clogs, Red Cloak, Shepherd of Hafod, Hornpipe, Good Cheer, Shepherd’s Dance) (Mansel Thomas), André Charlot Show of 1926 (Addinsell/Gay) Dutton Epoch CDLX7283 (65:00)  Working backwards, the  André Charlot (pronounced Sharlow) extended piece transports us back to a different age of show business with jolly music from the pit orchestra back in the '20s. Mansel Thomas’s Six Welsh Dances simply fizz; John Fox pays homage to Princess Diana; David Morgan gives us four delightful children’s miniatures; Carey Blyton posts a musical portrait of a south coast port down the centuries; Philip Lane produces yet more splendid well rounded tuneful dances; Alun Hoddinott provides some Welsh culture; and Anthony Hedges shows us what Beverley Market was like on a Saturday morning 35 years ago. Another fine disc for Messrs. Lane and Sutherland. Long may they flourish! Edmund Whitehouse

As its name implies, this CD joins its five companions to comprise what has become a sizeable collection of music which, hitherto, has never made it onto any recording format. I suspect that this is probably the result of quite a lot of "midnight oil-burning" on the part of Philip Lane, aided and abetted by Lewis Forman. We have here a collection of very pleasant if at times somewhat unremarkable music which, inter alia, introduces us to composers David Morgan and Mansel Thomas.  It should be noted that the last track is an "extra" by the BBC CO, conducted by Barry Wordsworth, whereas all others are by Gavin Sutherland and the Royal Ballet Sinfonia. A well-put-together programme, which certainly should appeal to those who like to try something new and a little "off the beaten track". Tony Clayden

CLEBANOFF & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Strings Afire' & 'Exciting Sounds' Millionaire's Hoe-Down*; You Do Something to Me; Nigrita*; Oye Negra; Blue Theme*; Bobsled*; Strings Afire*; Like Paganini*; Harlem Nocturne; Cherokee; Brazilian Polka*; Blue Mountain*Cumaná; Orchids in the Moonlight; Hava Nagila (arr. Clebanoff); Cha Cha Cha Flamenco; My Shawl; What is this Thing Called Love; Golden Earrings; Quiet Village; Turkish Harem Dance*; Barranquilia*; Yours (*written, wholly or in part, by Clebanoff) Vocalion CDLK 4474 (66:35) A return appearance on this label for Herman Clebanoff with, arguably, his two best albums – both from 1961 in Mercury's famed Perfect Presence Sound Series that produced so many wonderful classical LPs. Son of Russian emigrants, Clebanoff grew up in Chicago and by the age of 20 was already the youngest member of that city's symphony orchestra. He was signed up by Mercury and moved to Hollywood around 1960. It is likely he was regarded by his record company as its answer to Decca's Mantovani. To boost Clebanoff's splendid string sound his arrangers Wayne Robinson and Caesar Giovannini engaged some stellar West Coast session percussionists. With its touches of Latin, I enjoyed this CD a lot. Peter Burt

RAY CONNIFF ‘All Or Nothing At All’ 56 tracks incl. Remember; Harbour Lights; Moon Song; Buttons and Bows; Besame Mucho; Summertime; Brazil; Tammy… Highnote REXX 344 (77:53 & 77:47) This generous package offers four Ray Conniff albums: ‘Young at Heart’ and ‘Somebody Loves Me’ (with the RC Singers & Orchestra), and ‘Say it with Music’ (sub-titled ‘A Touch of Latin’) and ‘Memories are Made of This’ (both with the RC Orchestra & Chorus). If that were not enough, there are eight bonus tracks, including five from the album ‘It’s the Talk of the Town’. As you might expect from these CBS stereo recordings, sound quality is excellent. Barry McCanna

FRANK CORDELL & HIS ORCHESTRA 'The Best Of Everything' & 'Hear This' Guantanamera; Alfie; A Man and a Woman; The Gentle Rain; Music to Watch Girls By; The Shining Sea; Somethin' Stupid; Once Upon a Summertime; Berimbau; And We Were Lovers; London Life (Cordell); Never on Sunday: So in Love; I Didn't Know What Time it Was; June is Bustin' Out All Over; My Funny Valentine; Kee-Mo, Ky-Mo (The Magic Song); My Heart Stood Still; Quiet Drive (Cordell);; I'm Old Fashioned; Caravan; Come Rain or Come Shine Vocalion CDLK 4469 (73:39) Frank Cordell (1918-80) was a composer, arranger and conductor who is sadly under-represented in the current CD listings. So congratulations to Michael Dutton for bringing two of his albums back into circulation. Let us hope that 'Sweet and Dry' and 'The Melody Lingers On' (my favourite) will follow. Frank first came to prominence with his arrangements on numerous HMV vocal singles in the 1950s. Later he was to write soundtrack music for films such as 'The Captain's Table', 'Cromwell', 'Khartoum', 'Mosquito Squadron' and 'Ring of Bright Water'. 'The Best of Everything' from 1967 is a nice compilation of film themes, Brazilian originating melodies, and pop chart pieces in Frank's fine arrangements, all very well played by star sounding musicians. The Stereo Record Guide for 1963 opined that 'Hear This'was "musically brilliant, but in spite of the dilution of style by the use of orchestrations derived from serious (sic) music (and the American musical) most is highly sophisticated written Jazz." The soloists are Eddie Blair (trumpet), Jack La Rock (violin), Don Lusher (trombone), Tommy Whittle (tenor sax) and Roy Willox (alto sax). Expect Tony Clayden to be revisiting this release next time. Peter Burt

'THE FINCK ALBUM' Orchestra of the Theatre Bel-Etage (Tallinn) / Mart Sander : Pirjo Levandi & Kelli Uustani (sopranos), Mart Sander (baritone) 13 pieces – 18 tracks incl. Cheerio!; Hullo, Girls!; Jocoso; Dear Old Fighting Boys; The K-Nuts Medley… Divine Art Diversions DDV 62402 (67:54) The light music revival seems to have largely bypassed Herman Finck (1872-1939), Dutch by extraction but a Londoner from birth; it has needed this disc from Estonia – a small but very musical country – to show us what a good tunesmith he was. He worked much of his adult life in London's Palace Theatre, as conductor and composer of operettas and ballets. His dance music is particularly delightful, as can be heard here in the My Lady Dragonfly Ballet Suite and single movements like Moonlight DancePirouette, dedicated to Anna Pavlova, and the waltz songs Venetia(from the operetta 'Decameron Nights', also given a lengthy orchestral selection), My Waltz Queen, and Queen of the Flowers. Finck's best remembered tunes, In the Shadows and Gilbert the Filbert are here, too, both in vocal versions, of which there are six on the disc. The singing comes over well, perhaps a little too well as the singers are rather too forwardly balanced, but the clarity of the delivery and English diction are excellent. The orchestra, while not as polished as, say, the BBC Concert Orchestra or the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, put in some fine work, and I have no hesitation in recommending the CD, which hopefully may encourage a Finck revival. Philip L Scowcroft

EDWARD GERMAN   BBC Concert Orchestra / John Wilson Dutton Epoch CDLX7285 (76:26)  The conductor is on record as saying he has no nostalgia for light music because he is not old enough to remember it but he knows what he likes. Not many of us is actually old enough to remember Edward German (he died in 1936) but his delightful music lives on in recorded form, and none better than this fine CD. 'Much Ado About Nothing' – Incidental music is terrific while 'The Tempter' – Incidental music has a charming Berceuse followed by a lively Bacchanalian DanceMarche Solennelle (Funeral March) is having only its fourth performance while  'Henry VIII'  – Incidental music is offered in the form of a slightly longer overture and two preludes followed by three short famous dances (Morris Shepherd's and Torch), which later resurfaced in 'Merrie England'.  'Romeo and Juliet' – Incidental music is a Dramatic Interlude while the Coronation March and Hymn was composed for King George V. Great music, great composer, great value. Edmund Whitehouse

German Edward Jones (some accounts suggest his name was sounded with a hard "G", as in "got") was born into a musical family in 1862, and was always destined for a musical career. At the age of 18, he enrolled at the RAM, studying with the famous Ebenezer Prout, and becoming "Edward German" to avoid clashing with a fellow pupil also called Jones. By the age of 26 he had been appointed to the prestigious post of MD at London’s Globe Theatre. Many regarded him as the natural heir to Sir Arthur Sullivan and when it is considered that he wrote a fairly sizable canon of music, including three symphonies, it is both strange and unfortunate that most of his output, together with his very name, has become largely forgotten.  German’s compositions have recently found a champion in the shape of the ever-enterprising Michael Dutton; this new release joins two previously issued Dutton Epoch CDs, also featuring John Wilson and the BBC Concert Orchestra, containing the aforementioned symphonies and various other orchestral works. The programme on this latest offering includes a number of World Premiere and First Digital recordings, so it is likely that much of the material will be unfamiliar. However, as with much of German’s work, it is immediately accessible and enjoyable, whilst   John and the Orchestra deliver their usual superlative performances.  Warmly recommended! Tony Clayden

'THE GREAT STARS OF LIGHT ORCHESTRAL MUSIC' ('Les Grandes Etoiles du Divertissement’) 147 tracks on 6 CDs featuring the orchestras of Ray Martin, Helmut Zacharias, Teddy Petersen, Werner Müller (Ricardo Santos), David Rose and Cedric Dumont Marianne Melodie (France) 480624 When you discover the names of RFS friends such as Serge Elhaik, Ralph Harvey and the legendary Pierre-Marcel Ondher in the credits, you can be assured that this is a collection worthy of the attention of all light music fans. Unlike some earlier French compilations, this time the spotlight falls upon just six major light orchestras, with each CD in the set specially themed – such as 'Characteristic Pieces''All the Colours of the World', 'International Successes', etc… Of course keen collectors are bound to possess many of the tracks already in other collections, but there are some pleasant surprises and there is a 44-page booklet crammed with information (mostly in French, of course). Great collections like this don’t turn up every day, and the restorations have been in the capable hands of Lionel Risler and his team Sofreson. Despite its title, this collection does not pretend to be an exhaustive study of the world of Light Music. You sense that care has been taken to avoid duplicating those orchestras who are already well represented elsewhere. It is very satisfying to know that various record companies are still prepared to make light music of this quality available on commercial discs. They all deserve our support to keep this niche in the world of music alive. David Ades

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ENOCH LIGHT & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Stereo 35/MM' & 'Far Away Places' 24 tracks incl. Heat Wave; The Man I Love; I've Got a Crush on You; All the Way; My Romance; You Do Something to Me; Zing Went the Strings of My Heart; Someone to Watch Over Me … Waltzing Matilda; Banana Boat Song; The Third Man Theme; Sunrise Over Sumatra; Bali Ha'I; Mimi; Calcutta … Sepia 1191 (71:16) Enoch Light (1907-78) was an American bandleader and record entrepreneur. He started the Command label and was always interested in the technical side of producing records, so stereo was made for him. He went on to be one of the first to record on 35mm movie film instead of tape, an advance at the time. The first album on this release was recorded in summer 1961 at Carnegie Hall with its natural acoustics as "the greatest sound chamber in the world." I expected something ultra gimmicky but it is all very classily done. The LP was U.S. No.1 for seven weeks and remained in the charts for 57 weeks – says it all, really! For his orchestra Light brought together more than 60 of the best musicians in New York (trumpeter Doc Severinsen and guitarist Tony Mottola were among those who regularly played for him) and it is apparent that great care was taken both before and during the recording. The second album, "Featuring Harpsichord and Exotic Percussion", was recorded earlier in the same year. It is an entertaining compilation of a dozen more Lew Davies arrangements, although I am not enthusiastic about the five singers' wordless contributions. Richard Tay's estimable label maintains its high standards with Robin Cherry's remastering and nine pages of detailed booklet notes. Well worth considering adding to your CD shelves. Peter Burt

GEOFF LOVE & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Big War Movie Themes' & 'Big Concerto Movie Themes' 21 tracks incl. Colonel Bogey - excerpt from The River Kwai March; Lawrence of Arabia; The Guns of Navarone; Battle of Britain; The Longest Day; Where Eagles Dare … Warsaw Concerto; Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Spellbound Concerto; Theme from Concerto in B flat minor (Tchaikovsky); Cornish Rhapsody … Vocalion CDLK 4468 (74:10) Another 2-on-1 from EMI's hugely popular Music for Pleasure series – both albums from the early 1970s. The "usual suspects" are in the first album's track choice, although Rózsa's The Green Berets and Jarre's Is Paris Burning are here. The final item is Addison's Reach for the Sky. The second album covers the films 'The Bridge on the River Kwai', 'Dangerous Moonlight', 'The Story of Three Loves', 'Spellbound', 'the Music Lovers', 'Love Story', 'While I Live', 'The Glass Mountain' and 'Song of Norway'. As well as Oliver Lomax's highly informative three-and-a-bit pages of liner notes we have extracts from the original LP sleeve notes. But I am still no wiser as to who the pianist is and something about the other musicians involved.Peter Burt

Among Vocalion's April releases are also albums from Chico Arnez, Martin Denny (2), Jackie Gleason (2), Syd Lawrence (2), Woot Steenhuis, and Si Zentner.

'NATURE’S REALM' For tracklisting please see page XX. Guild GLCD5194 (77:58). When I received this latest Guild CD I wasn’t sure if it was up my street or not because, although it includes several library pieces which I consider "my territory", the titles seemed to have a rather lethargic sound to them. However the first track is just the opposite, a rousing send-off courtesy of Sidney Torch and his Orchestra, Thunder and Lightning Polka. According to David‘s booklet notes Stormy Weather was reckoned to have been written in 1933 by Harold Arlen and Ted Koehler …. I always thought it came from the 1943 film musical of the same name, lightly based on the career of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. However, whatever its origins there‘s a very good arrangement on this CD by Morton Gould and played by his Orchestra. From inclement weather to more of the stuff with a catchy number played by Ray Martin and his Orchestra, Tango in The Rain by, according to David, the prolific German composer Lotar Leonard Olias. Sorry David, I’ve never heard of him but somebody whose music I am very familiar with is Frederic Curzon and his tuneful Over the Hills and Far Awayplayed by the New Concert Orchestra sits comfortably with Malcolm Arnold’s theme music for the 1961 British film 'Whistle Down the Wind' …. one star from Leslie Halliwell but the music’s nice. Another Halliwellism describes 'Whirlpool' (1959) as "a modestly attractive travelogue with the burden of a very boring melodrama" but again the theme by Ron Goodwin is rather good as played by his Concert Orchestra, and so is Clive Richardson’s mood music piece written for the Charles Brull/Harmonic Library, Saga Of the Seven Seas. Wandering The King’s Highway by Leslie Coward is more likely to be remembered as a Peter Dawson or Oscar Natzka rendition but here it’s played by the Melodi Light Orchestra from a Chappell disc and a fine tune it is too. Trouble is I can’t find out anything about the composer, even Google doesn’t help. Fireflies by Peter Yorke and Eric Spear’sWhirlwind, both played by the Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra, are very catchy indeed as is Bruce Campbell’s Trotting Class on a Paxton 78 played by Dolf Van Der Linden and his Orchestra. Gerard Calvi’s Thunder in Louisiana has a slightly hypnotic drum beat throughout – beginning quite quietly, which made me think the title was a bit of a misnomer, but it gradually gets louder and so fulfills its title. I mentioned not knowing anything really about Leslie Coward and almost the same thing can be said about George Trevare whose composition The Mad Mountain Ride is played by the Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra conducted by Sidney Torch. Mr. Trevare is mentioned on Google as having connections to the Australian ABC Network and there’s a recording of I’m Looking Over A Four Leaf Clover sung by Johnny Wade accompanied by George Trevare and his Southern Seven on Columbia DO 3241. However, I’m sure readers will come up with more information in both cases. Ken Wilkins

THE NEW FOXTROT SERENADERS with Simon Gledhill 'Say it with Music' Say it with Music,Paddlin' Madelin' Home (vocal, Graham Wright), Isn't this a Lovely Day, When you're Smiling (vocal Graham Wright and band members), Side by Side, Singing in the Bathtub (vocal Graham Wright), Look for the Silver Lining, Paddlin' Madelin' Home (non-vocal version) NFSCD05 (26.45) The idea of a band or orchestra performing with a theatre organist is by no means a new one. Many of the theatre orchestras of the thirties made records with the addition of a cinema organ and, of course, there was Billy Thorburn's The Organ, The Dance Band and Me. From the inlay notes, it is apparent that it was the latter combination that inspired the New Foxtrot Serenaders to team up with virtuoso organist Simon Gledhill, not just on this CD, but on some of the band's many concerts around the country. If you enjoy bouncy, tuneful music from the past, you are really going to love this CD. The performances are immaculate and the tight ensemble as good as you could wish to hear. The band's precision is probably due to the fact that some of the players have been members of top service bands. Trumpeter, Graham Wright (an ex-guardsman) adds a pleasing vocal touch to some numbers. My only criticism is that this is a rather short CD, but every number is a joy to listen to and I highly recommend it, as indeed I recommend you to go and listen to the band if it performs near you. You will be able to find this out from their very comprehensive You can also purchase the CD (£7+£1.50 p&p) through this website or by sending a cheque to Graham Wright, 7, Grosvenor Gardens, Carshalton, Surrey SM5 3EJ. Brian Reynolds

'STEREO INTO THE SIXTIES' For tracklisting please see page XX. Guild GLCD5192 (74:30). It says what it is on the CD case and that’s exactly what it delivers, so if stereo is your forte you’re in for a treat, beginning in "big picture" mode with Cole Porter’s Night and Day from the Astaire/Rogers 1934 musical 'The Gay Divorcee', originally titled 'Divorcee'. This particular recording is played in fine style by The Starlight Symphony conducted by Cyril Ornadel and arranged by Brian Fahey, followed by George Gershwin’s Bidin’ My Time with Frederick Fennell and his Orchestra. Quite a change from his usual band of musicians, namely the Eastman-Rochester Pops, but quite possibly the same players as they turn up on track 12 with Jaime Texidor’s rousing and well known Amparito Roca. The listener will quickly realise the strings are very much to the fore on this collection as they were all recorded when stereo was considered the way ahead and with speakers placed well apart. I suppose it was thought it enhanced the listening experience with the strings coming out of one speaker and, say, the brass emanating from the other. Did it? Anyway, that’s my rant over, back to the disc in hand .... Mantovani and his Orchestra make an appearance with a very pleasing composition of his own, Italia Mia, and this is followed by Ron Goodwin and his Orchestra playing his own sprightlyLondon Serenade, which could have come from any mood music publisher’s catalogue. Did it by any chance? Australian composer Don Banks paints a lively picture of Coney Island with "brush strokes" by The Sinfonia of London conducted by Douglas Gamley while Jack Shaindlin and his Orchestra playThe Carioca featured in a lengthy sequence from 'Flying Down to Rio', another Astaire/Rogers film but they weren’t the featured stars; it was their first pairing and they rated below Dolores del Rio and Gene Raymond. I have the soundtrack of this film issued in 1978 on the Sandy Hook label and on the reverse is the soundtrack of 'Carefree'. The strange bit about the LP from which Carioca has been taken is it’s called '50 Years Of Movie Music' which tries to replicate film music of that period yet it’s been recorded in stereo …. which rather defeats the object I would have thought. Luckily I’ve got the monaural issue. When I saw Jockey on the Carousel in the tracks listing I was reminded of Bob Farnon’s composition but this one is by Jerome Kern; it is a more gentler melody but none the less tuneful for that. Pedro The Fisherman is given a rousing performance by Johnny Douglas and The Living Strings …. very different from the Richard Tauber version which is usually played – if it’s played at all these days. The music was written by Harry Parr-Davies for the 1943 show 'The Lisbon Story' at the London Hippodrome and ran for 492 performances. Ferrante and Teicher make a very good job at two pianos with an unnamed orchestra of the Love Theme from One Eyed Jacks. The Living Strings make a second appearance, this time conducted by William Hill Bowen with a quirky arrangement of On the Beach At Waikiki by the conductor; but the next track was a big surprise although on reflection I don’t know why because he was an excellent pianist: Russ Conway and Michael Collins and his Orchestra play Charles Williams’ Dream of Olwen on a Columbia recording. I’m sure Charles Williams would have been highly delighted. A piece more up my street is on track 20, Walberg’s Fete Circassienne played by his own orchestra. I don’t know much about him apart from the info in David’s booklet notes but his name appears several times in the Harmonic/Charles Brull catalogue and I’ve got an LP of his with a Russian theme. A smashing performance of Eric Coates’ gentle waltz Mayfair from his 'London Again Suite' is played by an orchestra conducted by somebody I’d never heard of, Eric Johnson, on a Westminster LP. But this Guild CD is brought to a fine conclusion with another big picture theme, Away Out West from 'Around the World in Eighty Days' by the unusually named Victor Popular Young played in fine style by Robert Farnon and his Orchestra from an MGM LP of 1960. Another collection of superb light concert music just waiting to be ignored by Britain’s national broadcasting organisation. Ken Wilkins

KT Editor's CD Choice

FLOYD CRAMER 'Countrypolitan Piano' Four Original Albums 48 tracks incl. I'll Never Be Free; The Swingin' Shepherd Blues; Midnight; Have I Stayed Away Too Long?; Stormy Weather; Trouble In Mind … Last Date; I Need You Now; Moments To Remember; Tennessee Waltz; Too Young; Mood Indigo … On The Rebound; Wonderland By Night;; I Can Just Imagine; Faded Love; Let It Be Me; Two Of A Kind …Your Last Goodbye; Unchained Melody;; You Win Again; Someone Else, Not Me; Lonely Again; The Waltz You Saved For Me … Jasmine JASCD 694 (56:54 & 56:24) This 2-CD set has been in my player a lot lately – good cheery music for these troubled times. Tastefully melodic all the way, Cramer (1933-97) described his distinctive piano style as "whole-tone slur" or "slip note". He was a RCA session man from 1955 and, as well as hits with the likes of Elvis Presley and Jim Reeves, had his own big chart entries including Last Date (No.2 in the US), On the Rebound (No.1 in the UK, No.4 in the US) – both his own compositions – and San Antonio Rose (No.8 in US), all heard here. These are four albums from the very many he made for RCA, all produced by Chet Atkins: 'Hello Blues' and 'Last Date' (1960), 'On The Rebound' and 'America's Biggest Selling Pianist' (1961). A pity that the accompanying musicians are not acknowledged, even if the largely wordless girly singers add little to the proceedings. Nevertheless a very pleasant memento of one of the leading architects of the famed "Nashville sound." Peter Burt 

HARRY FARMER : HAMMOND ORGAN 'Get Happy' 54 tracks inc South Rampart Street Parade, Muskrat Ramble, In The Night, Saturday Rag, An Apple For The Teacher, Mean To Me, Because, If I Had A Talking Picture Of You, Bach Goes To Town, Tip Toe Through The Tulips, I’ve Got A Pocketful Of Dreams REXX 338 (73:54 &71:05). Harry Farmer was part of the Jimmy Leach Organola team playing organ whilst Jimmy Leach played the piano and they made quite a number of 78’s which sold well. This double CD set is a bargain with 27 tracks per disc almost filling the capacity of the discs. Seven or eight tracks per side are utilised in bringing us Chris Hamalton and his Hammond organ….a pseudonym of Harry Farmer. Generally these tend to be the hotter numbers such as South Rampart Street Parade, Muskrat Ramble, In the Night, Saturday Rag. The Harry Farmer Rhythm Ensemble occupies the remainder of the discs. This ensemble comprises Harry on the organ, Harry Engleman on piano, Barry Fox on guitar and Pete Thomas on drums. Sometimes they are joined by Norman Parker on marimba. They make a very pleasant sounding ensemble with most of the tracks performed in a danceable style. Other tracks include Goodnight Sweetheart, Beyond the Blue Horizon, I’ve Got You Under My SkinMoonlight Serenade and I Only Have Eyes for You. This is a bargain indeed and a programme of very listenable music. Restorations are outstanding so no problems there. The hand of Colin Brown is behind this issue; he has served the music industry well over the years. Get the CD whilst you can. Brian Stringer

BERT WEEDON 'The King of Strings' 25 tracks incl. Guitar Boogie Shuffle; Bongo Rock, Apache; Big Beat Boogie; Lonely Guitar; Jolly Gigolo; Stranger Than Fiction; Rippling Tango; Petite Fleur; The $64,000 Dollar Question; Sorry Robbie, Flannel Foot; Easy Beat Pegasus PEG CD 734 (58:31) This very popular British guitarist of the '50s and '60s was lost to us, aged 91, earlier this year. Here is a 2011 cheap-as-chips compilation of remarkably well-recorded numbers including two tracks with George Chisholm – Honky Tonk and D R Rock – that form a fitting memento of his work. Peter Burt

BING CROSBY 'Through The Years Volume Ten' 30 tracks incl. Love in a Home; Trust Your Destiny to a Star; Gigi; Church Bells; Rain; Someday Sweetheart; There's No Business Like Show Business; Go West, Young Man; Lullaby Land Sepia 1192 (76:53) With this release Sepia complete a project that has been running for over 25 years. It covers the years that Bing spent recording for Decca. However, as 19 of the tracks are from his 1956 'Á Christmas Sing with Bing Around the World'album and there are two other seasonal tracks, I shall return to this album later in the year. Meanwhile I would like to know how Bing came to have Dedham Choral Society from near my home town of Colchester singing God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen on his CBS radio special? Peter Burt

THE KING SISTERS ‘Imagination’ 71 tracks inclDeep Purple; Memories of You; The Hawaiian War Chant; I’ll Get By; Pagan Love Song; Ebb Tide… Jasmine JASCD 183 (79:05 & 79:14) Unlike most sister groups, the King Sisters was a quartet, which used close harmonies rather than counter-point to achieve their effect. That approach chimed with the homogenous music of the swing era, and Alvino Rey’s band supplied the backing. They first recorded together in November 1940, but this compilation comes from a decade later, by which time they had recorded four albums for Capitol. Some tracks have been selected from the first three, augmented by a number of singles, but the 1960 album ‘Baby, They’re Singing Our Song’ that was recorded as a continuous medley, appears in its entirety. Barry McCanna

MILITARY WIVES Presented by Gareth Malone 'In My Dreams' Make you Feel My Love; In My Dreams; With Or Without You; Up Where We Belong (Love Lifts Us Up); True Love Ways; You've Got A Friend;; Eternal Father; Fix You; The Silver Tassie; On My Own; Wherever You Are Decca 2796665 (39:42) This is the first time – and, probably, the last – that I have reviewed a popular chart-topping album. The BBC2 series featuring the Chivenor Choir was a joy and here they are recorded alongside similar groups from Plymouth, Portsmouth, Lympstone, and Catterick Garrison. The harmony of all the choirs is remarkable. The title and final tracks are from the pen of the royal wedding composer Paul Mealor. The latter was No.1 single in the UK last Christmas and No.5 in this year's Classsic fM Hall of Fame, and features the beautiful voice of Sam Stevenson, as does Robert Burns' traditional Silver Tassie. Although the album has Decca's not unexpected short measure for their TV-advertised releases, at least £1 of each full-price sale will go directly to the Military Wives Choirs Foundation to help other military communities establish their own choirs … wherever they are. Most enjoyable! Peter Burt

GEORGE BEVERLY SHEA 'I'd Rather Have Jesus' 50 tracks incl. Amazing Grace; The Old Rugged Cross; What A Friend We Have In Jesus; It Is No Secret; How Great Thou Art; Be Still My Soul; Take My Hand, Precious Lord; Saviour, Again To Thy Dear Name Jasmine 701 (71.08 & 71.48) According to the Guinness Book of Records, this Canadian-born bass-baritone, affectionately known as "America's beloved gospel singer", holds the world record for singing in person to the most people ever with an estimated cumulative live audience of 220 million people. He won a Grammy in 1956 and at the age of 102 received the 2010 Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award alongside the likes of Julie Andrews and Dolly Parton. He was associated with the great evangelical preacher Billy Graham from 1947 until comparatively recently. He recorded over 70 albums, some with orchestras conducted by, among others, Hugo Winterhalter and Ralph Carmichael. Unfortunately the musicians on the four mono LPs here – Evening Vespers''Inspirational Songs''Sacred Songs' and 'An Evening Prayer' – are not identified. Tenderly He Watches and Sunrise are two bonus tracks. Truly inspirational. Peter Burt

'STAND BY FOR ADVERTS' : Rare Jazz, Jingles and Advertising Electronics by Barry Gray81 tracks Trunk Records JBH039CD (57:26) This is a beautifully produced, and excellently restored compendium of advertising jingles composed by Barry Gray, better known for his themes and scores for most of Gerry Anderson's television Sci-Fi series, such as 'The Thunderbirds', 'Supercar', and 'Stingray'.  Stylistically, these short pieces vary as much as the products they advertised.  They are all from the early days of British Television, and were composed for such brands as Sunsilk, Shell, Esso, Tide, Horlicks, Gillette, Hoover, BOAC, Aspro, and a host of other products that I have either forgotten about, or were not aware of when I was a toddler. Anyone fortunate enough to have collected the entire Silva Screen series of Barry Gray's soundtracks, will want to add this to their collection. The booklet notes by Ralph Titterton are well-produced, well-written, and fascinating.  All of the tracks are expertly remastered, sounding better than any television set of the time could have made them do. Many are preceded by a spoken introduction, but this does not detract from the overall enjoyment of auditioning them. A thoroughly delightful excursion into the realms of nostalgia. One wonders how many other tapes survive by other composers of jingles, such as John Barry, Cliff Adams, Tony Osborne, Robert Sharples, and others.Franck Leprince

BENNY CARTER 'Four Classic Albums Plus' 46 tracks inclI’m Coming Virginia; Thou Swell; A Monday Date; And the Angels Sing; Moon of Mannakoora; I’ll Remember April; September Song…Avid AMSC1048 (79:58 & 79:58) This comprises four albums, namely ‘Jazz Giant’ which dates from 1957/8, ‘Swingin’ the ‘20s’ from November 1958, the 1960 ‘Sax a la Carter’ and the slightly earlier‘Aspects’. The first three are small group settings, but the last-named was recorded with a big band. Scott Yanow wrote of the first album "This timeless music is beyond the simple categories of "swing" or "bop" and should just be called "classic’." That comment could equally well be applied also to the three other albums included here. It’s a superlative reissue, in brilliantly remastered sound. Barry McCanna

QUINCY JONES ‘Strike Up The Band’ 41 tracks incl. Tuxedo Junction; Caravan; Cherokee; Love is Here to Stay; Under Paris Skies; Mack the Knife; Come Back to Sorrento Jasmine JASCD 696(69:22 & 66:20) This is a straight reissue of four Mercury albums recorded in stereo between February 1959 and February 1961, namely 'The Birth of a Band' (Mercury SR 60129), 'The Great Wide World of Quincy Jones' (Mercury SR 60221), 'I Dig Dancers' (Mercury SR 60612), all with 10 tracks apiece, and 'Around the World' (Mercury PPS 6014) which runs to eleven tracks. The first two albums are superbly played big band jazz, and feature amongst the soloists Zoot Sims, Clark Terry, Joe Newman, Harry Edison, Art Farmer, and Lee Morgan. The arrangements on the second album were by Ernie Wilkins, Bill Potts, Ralph Burns, and Al Cohn, and a number of standards are included. The third album begins well enough, and the standards are given a facelift by the arrangements, although not always to their advantage. In particular Moonglow which was written as a slow ballad suffers from being taken too fast and finally becomes incandescent, and the treatment of Chinese Checkers is irritating. The best track is Jones’ own composition The Midnight Sun Will Never Set. Finally, the "world tour" album, which relies on the gimmicky nature of the material, is something of an anti-climax. The liner contains a very full discography of the varying personnel and the session involved, and identifies the soloists on the first disc. Sound quality and stereo separation is excellent, and despite my reservations it is a real bargain. Barry McCanna

MAŘEK WEBER, HIS VIOLIN & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Café in Vienna – His 23 finest (1925/35)'Café in Vienna (JH); Valencia; Da Draussen in der Wachau; Estudiantina; Schoner Gigolo (MW); Japanischer Laternentanz; Rosen aus dem Suden; Fruhlingslust; Oh, Donna Clara (MW); Gold und Silber; Die Blume von Hawaii sel. (CH); Viennese Singing Birds; Spanish Gypsy Dance; I Want Nothing but Your Love; Rosa Mia (JP); Tonight Give Me an Hour of Love (JP); The Merry Widow Waltz; Her First Dance; The Music Comes; Dream of Love; Marie Louise (JH); Love’s Last Word is Spoken, Cherie; Song of Paradise. Key: CH – Comedian Harmonists; JH – John Hendrik; JP – Jack Plant; MW – Marcel Wittrisch Retrospective RTR 4196 (79:06) Marek Weber was born in Austria in 1888 and, as leader of a salon orchestra, established his reputation both on the Continent and in England well before arriving in London in late 1932. He was extremely well-served by his recordings, which won critical acclaim, and this selection of the popular foxtrots and tangos of the time, seasoned with Viennese waltzes and novelty numbers, has been lovingly remastered by Alan Bunting. Many of the tunes will be familiar, indeed Estudiantina must have served as the basis for Home, James and Don’t Spare the Horses. Peter Dempsey’s liner note mentions the phrase "a rare treat for three shillings" from a contemporary Gramophone review, and the same holds true in today’s money. Barry McCanna

'THIS IS LONDON' 25 tracks inclThe ‘Ampstead Way; Carry on London; Down the Mall; Bow Bells; London Melody Delta 26675 (71:16) This reissue includes a number of British dance band tracks, some of which don’t appear to have been reissued elsewhere. Personality recordings also feature, and although it lacks a liner note the result is a good old wallow. Barry McCanna 

ELSIE CARLISLE 'With a Different Style' 23 tracks inclMeadowlark; He’s a Good Man to Have Around; Cavalcade Pts.1&2; My Man of War; You’ve Got Me Crying Again; Smoke Gets in Your Eyes; One Little Kiss; Change Partners Memory Lane MLMCD 023 (72:46) This is a jewel of a reissue, which begins with an early rather tentative recording, and displays her transition to the assured singer she’d become by the late twenties. Two songs come from cardboard-based World Echo 78s, and two from plastic Filmophones, and I can only marvel at the fullness of sound that Alan Bunting has been able to coax out of them. Such recordings are rarities, as are others in this compilation, and most have not been reissued previously. Elsie Carlisle had a fresh, innocent voice, which transcended the limitations of contemporary recordings. Thanks to Memory Lane, her voice now shines more brightly than ever. You can find full details, and order this and others in the series, Barry McCanna

The Bygone Days label has produced six more CDs aimed at the nostalgia market, all of which are well remastered with informative liner notes by Peter Dempsey. They are reviewed by Barry McCanna:

'BIG BAND DIVAS OF THE 1940s' 24 tracks inclThree Little Words; Elmer’s Tune; My Guy’s Come Back; Alabama Bound; Trouble is a Man BYD77074 (73:05) Two dozen American songbirds are featured with 18 different bands. Many will be familiar but some, like Peggy Mann with Teddy Powell, Jane Harvey with Benny Goodman, Bea Booze with Andy Kirk and Delores Hawkins with Gene Krupa, have been somewhat neglected. What all have in common is the voice beautiful, and in some cases the tune most associated with a particular artiste has been bypassed in favour of a less well-known example.

FRANK CRUMIT ‘A Gay Caballero’ 24 tracks inclThe Girl Friend; And Then He Took Up Golf; The Prune Song BYD77076 (72:36) Like de Leath, Frank Crumit recorded extensively, and this concentrates on the period between 1926 and 1938. His style was often that of a raconteur, and it’s probable that this derived from his early start in a minstrel show, and his later progress in vaudeville. Highlights are his setting of Kipling’s poem I Learned About Women from Her and his hits Abdul Abulbul Amir and There’s No-one with Endurance (Like the Man Who Sells Insurance).

VAUGHN DE LEATH ‘The First Lady of Radio’ 24 tracks inclUkulele Lady; Kentucky Babe; Sometimes I’m Happy; I Must Have That Man; Button Up Your Overcoat BYD77075 (75:54) Thiscontains a selection of her recordings from between 1925 and 1929, including the Whiteman concert arrangement of The Man I Love. She began singing on the radio around the turn of 1919/1920, which made her one of the first female broadcasters, and began recording very soon after. Her voice was sweet, with a pronounced vibrato, and I suspect that her practice of gliding up (or down) to a note influenced Ruth Etting’s style.

'LAMBETH WALK – THE MUSIC OF NOEL GAY' 26 tracks incl. The Sun Has Got His Hat On; Happy; Meet the Navy; Let’s Have a Tiddley at the Milk Bar; Lonely: Run, Rabbit, Run; Hey, Little Hen! …BYD26668 (76:59) This is an eclectic selection of compositions by Noel Gay, whose pseudonym matched his cheery style. It features both dance bands and personalities, and the liner note places the songs in the context of the films and shows for which many were written.

'FAVOURITE MELODIES OF IVOR NOVELLO' Various Artists 22 tracks inclKeep the Home Fires Burning; Music in May; My Dearest Dear; Waltz of My Heart; We’ll Gather Lilacs… BYD77073 (73:10)This compilation is sub-titled "Original Recordings 1935-1959" but only around half of the numbers are from the original productions, plus three contemporaneous recordings by other artists, and two from later film versions. With two exceptions the remainder date from the fifties. That said, it offers a well-remastered selection of songs from the eight shows he wrote between 1935 and 1951, the year of his death. They feature such artists as Dorothy Dickson, Richard Tauber, Elizabeth Welch, Mary Ellis, Vanessa Lee, Lizbeth Webb and Cicely Courtneidge. The CD has been made to look like a miniature 78, and the result is a treat for lovers of the musical theatre.

'VINTAGE CHARLESTON 1924-29' 25 tracks inclDon’t Bring Lulu; Sweet Child; Fascinating Rhythm; The Chant; Blue Room; Miss Annabelle Lee … BYD77072 (74:58) Of all the various dances from the Roaring Twenties, it’s the Charleston which has come to of which epitomise the era, being played at a fast pace, in syncopated 4/4 time. This compilation favours American recordings (one isBlack Bottom, which was a different dance) and largely avoids duplication with other similar-based reissues. I’m not convinced that everything comes within the ambit of the title, but no matter, there are some splendid numbers here, from some of the top bands of the period. As regards the British dance bands, a couple of them are rarities, namely Chili Bom Bom by Nat Star, and My Cutie’s Due at Two-to-Two Today by Don Parker.

SOUSA 'Music for Wind Band Vol. 10' The Royal Norwegian Navy Band / Keith Brion 15 tracks incl. The Free Lance March; The Quilting Party March; When The Boys Come Sailing Home!; Myrrha Gavotte; Vautour Overture; The Beau Ideal March; Anchor and Star … Naxos 8.5559397(59:58) Anyone who thought that Sousa penned only military marches – though he did produce something like 136 examples of those – will be somewhat confounded by this release that clearly demonstrates his varied and diverse musical output. Included on this disc of almost exclusively rarities are the seldom heard Jazz America, which despite its title is not strictly jazz but more emblematic of the Jazz Age and comes complete with harp and simulated train whistles. The 12-minute People Who Live in Glass Houses Suite replicates in musical terms various alcoholic beverages from around the world, whilst the somewhat outrageous Humoresque on Kern's Look for the Silver Lining features the sound of a Model T Ford careering along the road with its complement of Keystone Cops and wheezy sounding trombone intoning There is a Tavern in the TownThe Salvation Army March dates from 1930 and is a result of a request from Cmdr Evangeline Booth, daughter of William Booth, the Salvation Army's founder; the whimsical sounding Who's Who in Navy Blue was composed at the request of a US Naval Academy graduating class in 1920. Recording and production standards are up to the usual high standard of this series and anyone collecting it will not be disappointed. If this music doesn't coax at least an occasional smile to your lips then nothing will!Roger Hyslop

VERDI 'Complete Ballet Music from the Operas' Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra / José Serebrier Naxos 8.572818-19 (01:55:24) The great Italian composer's "light" music from his opera ballets is appealing, melodious and lively. (It is also said he cooked a great risotto Milanese!) This 2-CD compilation is unique in that it is the first time all the ballet music from Giuseppe Verdi’s operas has been brought together in a singe recording.  It is well-recorded and played con brio by the BSO under their distinguished conductor, who also wrote the booklet notes. A fine bargain available online in the UK for under a tenner. Edward Trub

'THE MUSIC OF CHARLES DICKENS AND HIS TIME' The Seven Dials Band 20 tracks incl. The College Hornpipe; Some Folks Who Have Grown Old; The Ratcatcher's Daughter; Home, Sweet Home; Begone, Dull Care; The Young Jolly Waterman; The Soldier's Tear; The David Copperfield Polkas;; Shiver and Shakery – The Man That Couldn't Get Warm; Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms … Warner Classics 2564661451 (66:09) This is an imaginative and entertaining album – a spirited and diverting compilation of Victorian songs and tunes ranging from polite parlour ballades to cockney ditties. Particularly interesting are several of Dickens' own songs: The Village Coquettes, The Ivy GreenMr Wardle's Carol. and The Fine Old English Gentleman (New Version). The instruments played by the 11-strong band are concertina, clarinet, trombone, serpent, harp, fiddle, oboe, tuba, cello, piano and bass drum. Only five of the tracks are purely instrumental. The St Clements Chorus directed by Paul Sartin is also involved. All but five of the tracks are arranged by the MD Dave Townsend, who is also half of the "rough chorus." At a price that definitely won't break the bank, well worth investigating. Peter Burt

'RULE BRITANNIA' 18 tracks incl. Nimrod; Fantasia on Greensleeves; Abide with Me; Anchor’s Aweigh; Jerusalem Delta 26675 (73:30) Classical compositions, choral works, and military bands are mixed to good effect in this patriotic reissue. There is insufficient information about the recordings, and lack of space between tracks, but remastering is excellent, and some of the recordings are in stereo. Delta CDs obtainable for £4 online. Barry McCanna

'EVENING SONGS' Delius and Ireland songs arranged for cello and piano by Julian Lloyd Webber 21 tracks Naxos 8.572902 (63:28) The UK's leading cellist (Andrew's kid brother, of course) is joined by the highly praised pianist John Lenehan, who has recorded John Ireland works for Naxos with John Wilson conducting (see JIM 190). Both the composers (1862-1934 and 1879-1962 respectively) knew how to write a good melody. Birds in the High Hall Garden by Delius, and Ireland's Evening Song and In Summer Woods, on which Julian is also joined by his cellist wife Jiaxin Cheng, are all world première recordings. The arrangements are ideal for listening to at the end of the day but can be appreciated at any time. Edward Trub

Wilfred Askew reminds us of some other recently received releases, unavoidably held over from our last issue

LIBERACE 'I'll Be Seeing You – The Piano Stylings of …' 51 titles incl. Fascination; Gigi; All the way; Bless this house; Smile; Mack the Knife; To each his own; Over the rainbow; Buttons and bows … Jasmine JASCD 174 (154:58) Four original Coral albums on two CDs.

DAVE PELL 'I Remember John Kirby' 11 tracks incl. Rose room; Royal Garden Blues; Undecided; Blue skies … 'The Big Small Bands' 12 tracks incl. Then I'll be happy; Summit Ridge Drive; At the codfish ball; Viva Zapata; Mountain greenery … Fresh Sound FSR 2259 (70:47) Two original Capitol albums (1959/60)

DAVE PELL OCTET 'Swingin' In The Ol' Corral' 12 tracks incl. I'm an old cowhand; Gal in calico; Empty saddles; Wagon wheels; Oklahoma hills; Cool water; Across the alley from the Alamo …Fresh Sound FSR 1655 (40:50) Original RCA album of 1956.

TERRY SNYDER & THE ALL-STARS 'Persuasive Percussion, vols 1 & 2' 24 tracks incl. Whatever Lola wants; My heart belongs to Daddy; Aloha oe; Japanese Sandman; In a Persian market; Blue Tango; Lady of Spain; Brazil … Sepia 1170 (66:08) Originally issued on Enoch Light's Command label (1959/60).

BOB THOMPSON, HIS ORCHESTRA & CHORUS 'Just For Kicks' 14 tracks incl. On the street where you live; Diga Diga Doo; Look for the silver lining; It might as well be Spring … 'Mmm Nice!' 13 tracks incl. Hello, young lovers; Do it again; Joie de vivre; While we're young ... 'On The Rocks' 12 tracks incl. Happy talk; All the things you are; Breezin' along with the breeze; I'll see you again … Blue Moon BMCD 819 (98:53) Three RCA albums (1958-59) on two CDs.

ED TOWNSEND 'New In Town' & 'Glad To Be Here' 24 tracks incl. The more I see you, Rockin' chair; Mam'selle; Symphony; Prisoner of love … When my dreamboat comes home; Golden earrings; Brazil, Dinah; On the street where you live … Blue Moon BMCD 1632 (77:12) Two Capitol albums from 1958, arranged/conducted by Nelson Riddle.

AL VIOLA 'Guitars' 24 tracks incl. When you're smiling; Moonlight in Vermont; And the angels sing; Route 66; Lover … Lonesome Road; All star; Lemon Twist; Makin' whoopee; I'll remember April …Fresh Sound FSR-CD 633 (60:34) Two Liberty albums of 1959.

FRANZ WAXMAN 'Sunset Boulevard' (Soundtrack) 22 tracks with bonus: The Paramount-don't-want-me-Blues (2:24) Counterpoint CPT-1001 (52:40) Also contains two booklets: The Making of Sunset Boulevard (28pp); Franz Waxman and the Road to Sunset Boulevard (40pp).

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Reviewers in this issue: David Ades, Peter Burt, Roger Hyslop, Barry McCanna, Edward Trub and Edmund Whitehouse

KT Editor's CD Choice

HENRY JEROME & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Brazen Brass' 2-CDs 48 tracks incl. 'Brazen Brass' Stompin' at the Savoy; Glow Worm; Dance of the Hours Cha Cha Cha; Blue Moon; Bugle Call Waltz; The Saints Go Marching In … 'Brazen Brass Goes to Hollywood' Around the World; Moonglow; Three Coins in the Fountain; High Noon; Gigi; The Third Man Theme … 'Brazen Brass Plays Songs Everybody Knows'Alexander's Ragtime Band; You Were Meant for Me; I Can't Give You Anything But Love; Margie; Near You; On the Sunny Side of the Street … 'Brazen Brass Brings Back The Bands' In the MoodYou Made Me Love You; Song of India; Sentimental Journey; Dipsy Doodle; Sing Sing Sing (With a Swing) … Jasmine JASCD 704 (55:30 & 64:37) Henry Jerome, born 1917, started as a bandleader in high school. From the mid-1930s until the end of the 1940s his was a "sweet" band, specialising in light ballads and moderate tempos. After breaking up the band Jerome went into record producing, and ended up forming a new studio band to release a series of LPs for Decca under the name of "Brazen Brass", inspired by the success of Enoch Light's "Percussion" albums and sound (see review in JIM 192 or online at The trademark "brazen" sound was enhanced through stereo by recording an equal number of trumpets on each channel. According to Jerome, the technique was "To have my open brass section on left speaker talk musically to the muted brass section on the right speaker in musical phrases and be able to reverse them, which was unheard of in those days." He produced and conducted nine Brazen Brass albums for Decca (four of them, including the second album here, making the American Top 10) as well as several more sweet albums, until he left to become an A&R man for Coral in 1959. He released one more "brazen" style album in the late 1960s for United Artists. With good transfers and digital processing this first CD release is swing accented easy listening and, though apart from the rhythm section there is nary a string to be heard, I loved it. PB

MANUEL AND THE MUSIC OF THE MOUNTAINS 'Mountain Fire' & 'Beyond The Mountains' 24 tracks incl. Sailing; Evergreen from 'A Star is Born'; El Porompompero; Forever and Ever; Dancing in the Dark; Cachita … El Rancho Grande; Shangri-La; The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (I will wait for you); Stranger in Paradise'; Dancers of El Paso; Over the Rainbow … Vocalion CDLK 4476 (77:02)Readers who are enjoying the Music for Pleasure LP re-issues from Geoff Love and his Orchestra on this label will also want this release. Geoff used his "Manuel" moniker on 30 albums from 1960 to 1981. The first one here comes from 1977, the second from ten years earlier and they were originally on EMI's Studio 2 Stereo label. The album titles are both Love compositions. PB

EDMUNDO ROS 'Cuban Love Song' 28 tracks incl. Cuban Love Song; Los Hijos de Buda; Maria Elena; No Can Do Calypso; Tico-Tico; Come Closer to Me; The Coffee Song; A Rainy Night in Rio; The Wedding Samba; April in Portugal; Delicado; I Talk to the Trees; Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White; Spanish Gypsy Dance Retrospective RTR 4200 (79:20) This is a timely tribute to the highly popular Latin-American bandleader, who died last year just short of his 101st birthday! During his 36 years as a bandleader he did much to popularise such exotic rhythms as the bolero, the rumba, the mambo and the paso doblé, all of which rhythms and more are represented here. The compilation takes in his early forties recordings whilst resident at the Coconut Grove in Regent Street, his mid to late '40s recordings when at the Bagatelle, and those made in the early to mid-fifties with his expanded orchestra. It concludes with three tracks from his 1958 album 'Rhythm of the South', one of Decca’s early stereo LPs, and something of a trail-blazer in its day. The original recordings transported listeners to exotic sun-kissed locations; the splendidly remastered sound should have the same effect. BMC

'MERRYMAKERS – BRITISH LIGHT CLASSICS' Iain Sutherland Concert Orchestra Overture – The Merrymakers (Eric Coates); The Girl From Corsica (Trevor Duncan); Little Serenade (Ernest Tomlinson); Dance In The Twilight – from ‘Springtime’ Suite (Eric Coates); Sutherland’s Law Theme (Hamish McCunn); March – Things To Come (Arthur Bliss); The Watermill (Ronald Binge); Playful Scherzo (Peter Hope); Dusk – from ‘Fancy Dress’ Suite (Cecil Armstrong Gibbs); Seventeen Come Sunday (Ralph Vaughan Williams); Theme from ‘Limelight’ (Charles Chaplin, arr. Reg Tilsley); Overture – The Arcadians (Lionel Monckton, arr. Arthur Wood); The Dream of Olwen (Charles Williams); English Dance No. 6 (Malcolm Arnold); My Love Is Like a Red Red Rose (Trad. arr. Gordon Langford); Mexican Hat Dance (Trad. arr. Peter Hope); Suo Gan (Trad. arr. Adrian Staines); Dick’s Maggot – from ‘Suite of English Folk Dances’ (Ernest Tomlinson); Bells Across The Meadow (Albert William Ketèlbey); Overture – Tam o’Shanter (Malcolm Arnold) Alto ALC 1192 (78:29) CD collections like this make life so easy for the reviewer, because the contents automatically recommend themselves! We are blessed with a conductor who loves, and understands Light Music, and his passion shines through in every track. Whether he is dealing with the acknowledged "masters", such as Coates or Ketèlbey, or the slightly less familiar who were once heard frequently on the much-missed BBC Light Programme, the result is the same: polished performances that illustrate what a wonderful world of Light Music is out there for us all to enjoy. I don’t need to comment on the best known works, but I would draw your attention to the two tracks by Peter Hope. I well remember his Playful Scherzo from BBC broadcasts, but even more familiar is his brilliant arrangement of Mexican Hat Dance. It’s also nice to see our "own" new MBE – Ernest Tomlinson, with two of his most appealing numbers. Iain Sutherland has modestly restricted his own contribution to his arrangement of Land of the Mountain and Flood – perhaps he can be persuaded to delve deeper into his own archive next time; because there surely must be another CD like this. It is a pure joy from start to finish. The excellent remastering was in the hands of another of our RFS friends – Paul Arden-Taylor. DA

'CROSS-CHANNEL PACKET' Panorama Musical d’Outre Manche Marianne Melodie 635824 (2 CDs, total 157:29) What a delightful surprise, to discover a new box set of British music celebrating the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II – from a French record company! But when you look closely at the credits in the booklet you discover that our friend Ralph Harvey has had a big hand in it, and his wife Patricia has provided the striking cover picture. CD 1 focuses more on "pure" light music, with tracks such as Knightsbridge and other works by Eric Coates, Waltzes by Charles Ancliffe, and contributions from Albert William Ketèlbey and Edward German among others. Robert Farnon is well represented with his arrangements of traditional British airs: Strawberry Fair, Early One Morning, Drink To Me Only, Annie Laurie, All Through The Night and British Grenadiers. On CD 2 we begin with seven tracks by the great Jack Hylton Orchestra – surely one of the finest British dance bands from the 1920s onwards, although it had many fine outfits challenging its supremacy, such as Jack Payne, Henry Hall, Roy Fox, Geraldo, Carroll Gibbons and, finally, Ted Heath. In every respect this is an enjoyable and imaginative collection, cleanly remastered (some of the tracks from the 1930s are astonishing in their clarity), that will give hours of listening pleasure. The odd vocal has been removed by sympathetic editing – some purists may object, but I personally find it acceptable if the end result is a more satisfying listening experience. The bonus is the generous booklet, with notes in both French and English. Such fun! DA

MANTOVANI AND FRIENDS Memory Lane / Yesteryear GLM/Y-38-26a,b,c (3 CDs, total timing 179.18) This is a similar format to 'Yes, Milord!' [reviewed further on] except for the contents. This time the 60 tracks concentrate mainly on light orchestras, with the eponymous Annunzio Mantovani accompanied by Henry Mancini, Frank Chacksfield, George Melachrino, Leroy Anderson, Boston ‘Pops’, Ron Goodwin, Nelson Riddle, Ray Martin, Percy Faith, Edmundo Ros, Stanley Black, Ray Conniff, Bert Kaempfert, Helmut Zacharias, Norrie Paramor, MGM Studio Orchestra, 20thCentury Fox Studio Orchestra, Mitch Miller, Victor Silvester, Geoff Love and Robert Farnon – whose contributions are Westminster Waltz and Tea For Two. This is a vintage collection of top light orchestras that illustrates just how fortunate record buyers were in the 1950s. Great sound and a great choice of music, with the added bonus of a fine booklet. Just place any of these discs in the CD player, and sit back and wallow! DA

'THAMES DIAMOND JUBILEE PAGEANT – NEW WATER MUSIC' Ensemble H2Fast – Slow – Fast (Anne Dudley); Gigue (Debbie Wiseman); Bourree (John Lunn); Rigaudon (Howard Goodall); Air On The River (Stephen Warbeck); Passepied (Gavin Greenaway); Overture & Allegro (Julian Nott); Jubilee Gavotte-Rock (Christopher Gunning); Slowish (Graham Fitkin); Alla Hornpipe (Adrian Johnston); London Bells (Jocelyn Pook) Silva Screen SILCD1385 (54:31) These new works were commissioned by the Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation, and performed for the first time at the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant on Sunday 3rd June 2012 as part of the celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II’s 60 years on the throne. The background was explained in a special feature in the last issue of this magazine, when it was hoped that this New Water Music would be prominently featured during the celebrations. Unfortunately the BBC’s television coverage of this event left much to be desired, so it is good to have this CD as a permanent memento of this historic occasion. The music is inspired by the earlier event almost 300 years ago when Handel composed his famous (and still popular) Water Music. Today’s composers were encouraged to use the original titles as inspiration, but (as Debbie Wiseman says in the booklet) "not to take this too literally, and to use our own musical voice." As a result we have eleven new interesting and contrasting works, which certainly deserve to have a life of their own. Each has been conducted by the composer, and the 17 top musicians forming the appropriately named "Ensemble H20" are all given their due credit in the booklet. Also there are explanations of each work by all the composers. It was a wonderful idea, brilliantly executed, and it is good to have this souvenir to enjoy over and over again. DA

DORIS DAY 'A Sentimental Journey With Doris Day : Her 53 Finest 1944-1960' incl. Sentimental Journey Day By Day; It’s Magic; Canadian Capers; Lullaby of Broadway; Moonlight Bay; Mister Tap Toe; Secret Love; Ready, Willing and Able; Singin’ in the Rain; Three Coins in the Fountain; Que Será Será Retrospective RTS 4198 (77:28 & 77:49) It’s rare for me to listen to such a lengthy compilation at one sitting, but this is an exceptional release. RFS member Doris is a tonic, whose voice projects her joie-de-vivre, instantly lifting the listener’s spirits. Her dulcet tones pour forth without strain, whatever the register, she’s a peerless interpreter of the song, and she enunciates the lyrics clearly. This is a superb compilation, which includes nine mid-40s recordings with Les Brown and a number from her many screen appearances. There are several duets; two with Buddy Clark, and one apiece with Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine, Donald O’Connor, Johnnie Ray, and Paul Weston and Percy Faith figure prominently amongst her accompaniments. Remastering is excellent, and there’s a detailed discography and an informative liner note. BMC

SON YAMBU ‘La Maravilla’ 11 tracks inclBaila Con Mi Tumbao; Co Co Mai Mai; Mujer Majadera; Cangrejo; Le Sumba El Mango … Apollo Sound APSCD238 (51:08) It’s been some while since our friends at Apollo Sound announced a new release, but one has just arrived, and what a fascinating CD it is! Billed in the press release as the "First Ever Cuban Son Album Recorded in the UK", it features seven distinguished Cuban musicians who are members of London’s growing Latin American culture. Toby Herschmann (the son of Apollo Sound’s founder Heinz Herschmann) writes: "we can’t wait to prove that extraordinary Cuban musicians are not limited to the island and that the potential for a continuation of the Buena Vista legacy can be found on London’s very own doorstep". Upon hearing the music for the first time the words "Tijuana Brass" immediately spring to mind, but you quickly forget that this is not a commercially produced sound for western ears, but a group of dedicated musicians happily making music for their own – and your – enjoyment. A knowledge of Spanish would be an advantage to fully appreciate the vocals, but it is really the infectious rhythm that carries this music along. One can imagine it being played in London clubs on a warm summer evening, with the drink flowing and couples unable to resist taking to the dance floor! This is far from the usual kind of CD you find reviewed in this feature, but if you want something completely different – and are planning a Caribbean themed party – you could do far worse than have this happily playing away in the background creating the perfect ambience. DA

IAN WHITCOMB 'Songs Without Words'  48 tracks incl. The Dickens Waltz; My Blues; Wigwam Wigwalk; Der Pussycat Walk; Montmartre; Tango of the Bears … Rivermont BSW-3136 (70:07 & 77:58) Ian Whitcomb has been a great proselyte for the vanished age of popular music, and  this 2-CD retrospective provides a selection of his instrumental recordings from between 1964 and 2009. It features his piano, ukulele, orchestra and dance bands, and embraces ragtime, blues, tangos, waltzes, laments, and tone poems, and that doesn’t even begin to cover it. To paraphrase Ian’s engaging liner note, this is music to accompany activity, rather than for sitting passively listening. Music has charms, and they are captured here to perfection.  BMC

BILLY BUTTERFIELD 'What’s New?' 24 tracks incl. Stardust; Jazz Me Blues; Stormy Weather; Little White Lies; I’ll be a Friend with Pleasure … Retrospective RTR 4203 (78:42) Billy Butterfield came from that stable of trumpeters who, having been influenced by the playing of Bix Beiderbecke, saw purity of tune as an essential part of their armoury. He was born in 1917, the year of the first jazz recordings, and this fine compilation spans the first two decades of his recording career from the age of 21. It kicks off with one of his first solos with Bob Crosby’s Orchestra, followed by one from the Bob Cats, and thence to Artie Shaw. One of the four numbers he recorded with a studio group led by Mel Powell in February 1942 is included, as are three numbers he recorded with trombonist Brad Gowans & New York Nine in 1946. There are three vocal accompaniments, to Margaret Whiting, Frank Sinatra, and Lee Wiley, and the final two tracks feature him in a Ray Conniff setting. Much of the rest is devoted to recordings made with his own orchestra, and two leading his Jazz Band in a tribute to Bix. Every track is a delight, enjoyment of which is enhanced by Alan Bunting’s audio restoration. The reissue was inspired by trumpeter Digby Fairweather, whose liner note outlines his career, and gives an expert commentary on his playing. BMC

STAN GETZ 'Four Classic Albums' 28 tracks inclPan; To the Ends of the Earth; Night in Tunisia; Nature Boy …. Avid AMSC 1058 (78:37 & 76:14) This 2-CD set presents the original contents of four vinyl albums. 'West Coast Jazz' dates from August 1955 and features a quintet, the others being Conte Candoli on trumpet, Lou Levy on piano, Leroy Vinnegar on bass and Shelley Manne on drums.'The Soft Swing' was recorded two years later, with Mose Allison on piano, Addison Farmer on bass and Jerry Segal on drums. 'Cool Velvet' was recorded in West Germany in March 1960 with a string orchestra conducted by Russell Garcia. It may not be jazz, but with playing of such quality who cares? Finally, 'Focus'" comes from late 1961, and features Stan improvising against a string orchestra playing arrangements by Eddie Sauter. Of all his recordings, and there were many, this was Stan’s favourite. 'Cool Velvet' and 'Focus' were both recorded in stereo, and the sound quality is quite breathtaking. BMC

TEDDI KING 'Four Classic Albums Plus'  54 tracks incl. That Old Feeling; I Can't Get Started; You go to My Head; The Touch of Your Lips; Porgy; Temptation; Flamingo ... Avid AMSC 1059 (79:58 & 79:58)  This compilation features an undeservedly near-forgotten singer, who died in 1977, after a lengthy illness which kept her out of the limelight. 'All The King’s Songs' was recorded for Coral during 1953 with an orchestra directed by Lew Douglas & Johnny Richards. 'Storyville Presents Miss Teddi King' was  a 10" LP recorded in 1954 with the quartet of Ruby Braff, Jimmy Jones, Milt Hinton and Jo Jones, and six of the eight numbers are presented here, split three aside between the two CDs. The remainder is three RCA albums, namely 'Bidin’ My Time' with Al Cohn & his Orchestra from mid-1955, 'To You from Teddi King' from mid 1956, and 'A Girl and Her Songs' from March 1957, both accompanied by George Siravo & his Orchestra. Teddi King had a glorious bell-like voice, with a controlled vibrato, and the ability to project the lyrics in an understated fashion, relying on dynamics and intonation to convey her interpretation. It’s an exquisite reissue, which will commend itself to Miss King’s devotees, and should help to swell their number. BMC              

'BIG BROADCAST  VOLUME 7'  Various Artists 25 tracks incl. Tampeekoe; My Heart Stood Still; Happy Days & Lonely Nights; Nobody’s Sweetheart; Walkin’ My Baby Back Home; Smoke gets in Your Eyes; Lovely to Look at  Rivermont BSW-1156 (74:56) Every year Rich Conaty, the host of WFUV’s long-running radio programme "The Big Broadcast", draws on jazz and popular music of the twenties and thirties to produce a generous compilation, including curios and rarities. The lavishly-produced liner booklet provides illuminating background information. Just to take a few examples, Moxie was a soda drink, and Arthur Fields’ recording was an advertising jingle for the product. They Satisfy by Mills Music Masters was more subliminal, but the song put across the slogan of Chesterfield cigarettes. Nicotine features elsewhere, with Harold Arlen taking the vocal on Leo Reisman’s Smoke Rings. And a young David Rose joined forces with Louis Prima and Norman Gast (as "The Hotcha Trio") for Chinatown, My Chinatown. Remastering is exemplary, and this is a real gem that I can’t recommend too highly.  BMC

'BRITISH DANCE BANDS' 124 tracks incl. I Got Rhythm; The Swiss Bell-Ringer; The Chestnut Man; Rhythm Lullaby; My Idea of Heaven; Ride, Tenderfoot, Ride!; The Snake-Charmer; Zambezi; By the Lazy Lagoon; Harlem…… Delta 90522 (74:56; 75:42; 74:29; 73:35 & 74:53) On the face of it, a 5-CD set for £12.99 including p&p would seem too good to be true, but like Delta’s earlier 5-CD set'The Golden Age of Swing', the price is the only cheap thing about this compilation. Every CD is self-contained in a separate jewel case, with a comprehensive liner note and clearly annotated tracks, which are arranged in chronological order. Broadly speaking, it spans the thirties and forties, plus a handful of tracks from the fifties. One of the potential drawbacks with such compilations is duplication, so I’ve gone through all those that I can check with a fine-tooth comb. By my reckoning, 50 have never been reissued since their original appearance, and only 14 have been reissued on LP. Leaving aside about 20, only 40 are commercially available already, and you’d need to own a lot of CDs to cover all of them. Three tracks, namely Who Made Little Boy Blue? by Joe Loss, A Pretty Girl is Like a Melody by Tommy Kinsman, and Hands Across the Table by Eddie Wood, were issued on the extremely rare Octacros label. In addition, many groups have been overlooked by compilers, and included here are The Blue Mountaineers, Jack McCormick, Don Marino Barreto, Nat Star, Ben Frankel, The Four Bright Sparks, Syd Seymour & Joe Orlando. The remastering is crisp and clear, and I recommend this package whole-heartedly. BMC

CARROLL GIBBONS & THE SAVOY HOTEL ORPHEANS VOLUME 13 'Rustic Rhapsody' 24 tracks incl. The mood that I'm in; Goodnight, my lucky day; It's always you; Who am I?; Too romantic; The moon and the willow tree; Do I love you?; Journey's end … Vocalion CDEA 6200 (72:57)

ROY FOX AT THE CAFÉ DE PARIS VOLUME 9 'Spin A Little Web Of Dreams' 25 tracks incl. No more heartaches; no more tears; Midnight, the stars and you; You have taken my heart; Gee! Oh gosh! I'm grateful; Paddy; One morning in May; Aloha beloved … Vocalion CDEA 6201 (73:21)

THE NEW MAYFAIR DANCE ORCHESTRA DIRECTED BY CARROLL GIBBONS 'Encore' 25 tracks incl. All by yourself in the moonlight; You're in my heart; Shout Hallelujah! 'cause I'm home; Love me or leave me; One step to heaven; There's a blue ridge 'round my heart, Virginia; I'm a one-man girl; Anita … Vocalion CDEA 6202 (77:37)

These three CDs were issued the day before JIM’s deadline, which left little time to do other than concentrate on the highlights. The first spans 1937 to 1946, and features a number of vocalists, not least Anne Lenner, but also including Carroll himself. The second is set in 1934, March to May, and Denny Dennis is the vocalist on 18 of the tracks, Peggy Dell on all but one of the remainder. Finally, the NMDO compilation covers the twelve months from November 1928, and is weighted towards non-vocal recordings. I should declare an interest, having drafted the liner notes for all three. BMC

'ROARING 20s, CRAZY 30s: 200 Hot Tunes' incl. Rhythm KingBlack Bottom; Tailspin; Aristocratic Stomp; Magnolia; Amapola; Harlem Shout… Membran 233377 (approx.60 mins. per disc) This 10-CD set merits a full review, but the space required merely to list 200 tracks makes that impossible. 74 four tracks feature British dance bands, most of which have been reissued elsewhere; the remainder comprises jazz and American dance bands and some outright jazz, and a few rarities are included. A high proportion of the set features vocals. The set has been compiled in quite random fashion, with no attempt at chronology, and some tracks fail to measure up, particularly those from the 1940s. As with other Membran 10-CD boxed sets, the discs are housed in cardboard slipcases, and tracklist information is minimal, and less than accurate. Those drawbacks pale into insignificance against a current price of less than £1 per disc, and my advice would be to snap up a set whilst you can. BMC

'YES, MILORD!' Memory Lane GLM/Y-36a,b,c (3 CDs, total timing 212:20) The sub-heading of this collection is ‘Charming Souvenirs from the Age of Elegance’ and it is a good description of the contents of 65 tracks on these three CDs. The booklet confesses that this compilation has been inspired by the success of the TV series "Downton Abbey" and the revival of the earlier "Upstairs, Downstairs", and each CD has its own separate theme: ‘Enchanted Evenings’, ‘Carefree Times – Reflective Times’ and ‘An Age of Charm’. There is an attractive mix of vocal and purely instrumental tracks, and it is good to see that the temptation to use the best-known (and previously readily available) versions of some well-known numbers has been avoided. As examples we have the Alfredo Campoli 78 of Teddy Bears’ Picnic (not the ubiquitous Henry Hall), Troise and his Mandoliers playing The Grasshoppers’ Dance and the Serge Krish Sextet performing Nola. There isn’t space to list the tracks, but the following names should give an indication of the wide variety covered: Mantovani, Boston Promenade Orchestra, Norman Luboff Choir, Jay Wilbur & New Light Symphony Orchestra, Jeanette MacDonald, Anne Ziegler and Webster Booth, Deanna Durbin, Boyd Neel Orchestra, Joan Hammond, Debroy Somers, Charles Ancliffe Orchestra, D’Oyly Carte Opera Company, Orchestra Mascotte, New Symphony Orchestra, Peter Dawson, Noel Coward, Fred Astaire, Al Bowlly, Sidney Torch, Eric Coates … the list is almost endless! For more information you can visit the website: Martin Moritz has contributed some interesting booklet notes, but it is a pity that the catalogue numbers of each track have been omitted. I suspect that the music has been acquired from various sources, because there are a few slight variations in the (generally very good) sound quality. This is the kind of collection that you find in the shops at many tourist attractions, and it is ideal for collectors who may not already possess much of the music on offer, but wish to have examples of the kind of records that were once so popular with their ancestors over 50 years ago. You will have already learned more about the enterprise behind this collection in the article on page 14 of this issue . DA

'DIAMOND JUBILEE' The Band of HM Royal Marines, Portsmouth (The Royal Band) DOM Major A J Smallwood with The Medina Community Choir & The Senior Choir of St Catherine's School, Bromley 18 tracks incl. arr. Jacob: The National Anthem; Yates: Jubilee;Waterer: Royal Salute; McDermott: Salute to the Commonwealth; Purcell: Trumpet Tune; Koenig:Post Horn Galop; Boyce: Heart of Oak; Russell: A Life on the Ocean Wave Chevron CHVCD 34(62:02) This release is a celebration in music of the The Queen's Diamond Jubilee and is a well-chosen and deservedly familiar selection for such a significant and historical occasion, thus Walton's stirring Crown Imperial, composed for the 1937 Coronation of George VI, Holst's Jupiter from "The Planets" and Elgar's Nimrod so indelibly associated with the annual Remembrance Sunday at the Cenotaph. That two tracks, The Mountbatten March and Famous Songs of the British Isles – the latter cleverly woven into a march medley – carry the familiar name of Vivian Dunn who had a long and distinguished career as PDM of the Royal Marines and a champion of British light music, is particularly welcome. Robert Farnon's State Occasion, always very popular with military bands, finds a well-deserved place here; and also worthy of note is Douglas C Doble's (a former RNVR officer) Royal Occasion, music inbred with great natural dignity. The two choirs feature in Brian Knowles Diamond Jubilee Tribute; a re-working in rather more updated and modern idiom of The National Anthem andBritannic Salute: an amalgam of Rule Britannia and Land of Hope and Glory. You don't exactly expect to hear the skirl of the bagpipes on a Royal Marines recording but Highland Cathedral, written for the 1982 Highland Games in Germany, is absolutely captivating – almost worth the cost of the CD alone! – expertly played by Musician Hannah Wright, and earns a place here as it was often played on board HMY Britannia. One minor quibble: at just over a hour space could have been found for more music appropriate to a Royal theme but it's quality rather the quantity that counts and you get the former here in spades. Furthermore the Ferneham Hall at Fareham offers an excellent soundstage and any purchaser of this excellent disc will be helping to support an eminently worthwhile charity that will help all these musicians now and in the future. The booklet includes a message from Princess Anne, and all the technical side of this recording was impressively handled entirely "in house" by the RM Band Service. RH

(This album was "CD of the Jubilee Weekend" on Classic fM – KT Ed.)

Available for £12 (incl. p&p) through The Royal Navy & Royal Marine Charity at Building 29, HMS Excellent, Whale Island, Portsmouth PO2 8ER; or the charity website:

CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO Piano Concertos 1 & 2; Four Dances from 'Love's Labour's Lost' · Alessandro Marangoni (piano) Malmő Symphony Orchestra / Andrew Mogrelia Naxos 8.572823 (76:43) Unknown to me prior to discovering this disc, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco was born in Italy in 1895 (he died in 1968) and became one of the 20th century's foremost guitar composers with over 100 pieces to his credit, as well as writing for a number of other instruments and many other forms from opera to chamber music. He moved to the United States in 1939 – having been banned by Mussolini – where he composed for some 200 Hollywood movies, mainly MGM, and is said to have been an influence upon Messrs Mancini, Previn, Riddle and Williams. His music is melodious, sumptuously scored and immensely accessible, as the works here bear witness. The Four Dances (1953) are not just a first recording but a first performance. With excellent sound throughout I urge you to try this well-filled low-price album for yourself. PB

CHABRIER 'Favourite Orchestral Works' Gwendoline Overture; Espana; L'Étiole; Suite Pastorale Melodies & Piano Pieces; Ode À La Musique; Bourrée Fantasque; Joyeuse Marche; Le Roi Malgré Lui - Fête Polonaise Magdalen METCD 8015 (76:58) The music of French-born Emmanuel Chabrier (1841-94) has great melodic appeal and zest. The exciting Espana, a piece nearly everybody knows, shows him to be a masterly orchestrator. The mono recordings span the years 1936 to 1959. Sir Thomas Beecham and Sir John Barbirolli are among the maestros featured. The final item with Robert Irving conducting the Sinfonia of London appears on CD for the first time. This album should put a smile on your face. ET

GEORGE GERSHWIN Piano Concerto in F; Rhapsody In Blue; Second Rhapsody; Variations On "I Got Rhythm" · Freddy Kempf (piano) Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra / Andrew Littton BIS SACD-1940 (73:56) Arriving just in time for this issue of JIM, a superlative Super Audio CD of Gershwin's music for piano and orchestra from the Swedish label, The famous Rhapsody in Blue is in the original jazz band version orchestrated by Ferde Grofé for Paul Whiteman with three woodwind players (who play oboe, clarinet, bass clarinet and various sizes of saxophone), a pair of trumpets, horns and trombones, tuba (doubling string bass), accordion, banjo, celesta, orchestral piano, a variety of percussion and eight violins. Håkon Nilsen is the named clarinetist. The lesser known Second Rhapsody came about through the composer's involvement in one of the earliest Hollywood film musicals in late 1930, 'Delicious', starring Janet Gaynor. It is brilliantly played as are the Variations. In the Concerto Martin Winter is the fabulous featured trumpet player in the 2ndmovement. London born (1977) Freddy Kempf was in 1992 the youngest winner in the history of the BBC Young Musician of the Year Competition and, although he did not win first prize, was the "people's choice" in the 1998 Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition in Moscow. Andrew Littton knows all about his fellow countryman's music and the Norwegian orchestra play to the manner born. The recording, made in Bergen in August 2011, is supported by the Grieg Foundation. If these works are not in your collection, you can hardly better this release. And even if you already have them, with superb playing and top drawer sound, this is worth adding to your shelves. PB 

EDVARD GRIEG 'Grieg Favourites' Norwegian Dances; Holberg Suite; Peer Gynt Excerpts; Lyric Pieces Excerpts; Lyric Suite Magdalen METCD 8012 (77:49) Delighted to see the name of George Weldon on a new reissue (two of my great aunts were in service with his family in Bexhill) especially with a Gramophone quote that in the first item "[he] seems to fool the RPO that they are playing under Sir Thomas Beecham himself." The other conductors on these mono recordings are Karl Műnchinger, Nicolai Malko, Otto Dobrindt with soprano Emmy Bettendorf (Solveig's Song), and pianist Walter Gieseking (Lyric Pieces). A value-for-money release at under £10. PB

HALVORSEN 'Orchestral Works 4' Melina Mandozzi (violin) · Ilze Klava (viola) · Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra / Neeme Járvi Chandos CHAN 10710 (72:53) This, the last in the series devoted to the orchestral music of Johan Halvorsen, opens with the two Norwegian Rhapsodiesboth premiered by the composer in 1920 to enthusiastic acclaim. These make imaginative use of traditional Norwegian folk tunes, the outer lovely and more boisterous sections framing a more reflective middle portion. The following two pieces are not "pure" Halvorsen but take their inspiration from other composers, the Passacaglia for violin and viola – a somewhat curious choice that hardly comes within the province of orchestral music – being a reworking of a movement from a HandelHarpsichord Suite, whilst the preceding jaunty Norwegian Bridal Procession is merely an orchestration of a piano piece by fellow countryman Grieg. Incidental music to various theatre productions – a particular cachet of this composer – is much in evidence here featuring a Dance Scene from 'Queen Tamara' and the impressive and impassioned Symphonic Intermezzo from 'The King'. After the rousing Norwegian Festival Overture with its dazzling trumpet fanfares the disc concludes with the 18-minute Norwegian Fairy Tale Pictures, which contains some decidedly quirky music as befits the tale of a princess and a great troll. As to be expected from this series, production standards are uniformly high with an exemplary recording; and certainly in Neeme Jarvi is found a committed and doughty champion for Halvorsen's music. RH

HOLST Walt Whitman Overture; Symphony "The Cotswolds"; A Winter Idyll; Japanese Suite; Indra Symphonic Poem · Ulster Orchestra / JoAnn Falletta Naxos 8.572914(65:25) There is a great deal of early British music which is rarely played and this CD includes a substantial chunk of it. Each piece is a gem in its own right and worthy of repeated hearing. I have no hesitation in thoroughly recommending it to all lovers of good tuneful music as there is much more to Gustav Holst than The Planets. Splendid stuff! EW

RACHMANINOV Piano Concertos 1 – 3 ; 18 Preludes Dame Moura Lympany · Philharmonia Orch. / Nikolai Malko · New Symphony Orch. Of London / Anthony Collins Magdalen METCD 8016 (150:15) A 2-CD re-issue to cherish. "Rach 2" is No.1 in Classic fM's Hall of Fame and this fine 1953 recording is by the pianist born Mary Johnstone in Saltash, Cornwall in 1916. She was made a CBE in 1979 and a DBE in 1992, and died in France in 2005. Her agent once described her as "never late, not temperamental and with wonderful vitality. She never dropped her standards in any way." She herself said she played best after a good night's sleep and a good steak! The other two concertos were also recorded in the early '50s and are, rightly, highly regarded. Miss Lympany was the first Western artist to play in the Soviet Union after the war and in 1945 made the first complete recording of the Preludes. The splendid recording on this release was made by Decca six years later produced by that key figure in the world of the gramophone, John Culshaw. All recordings are in mono but it is the quality of the music making that matters here. ET

SAINT-SAËNS 'Neeme Járvi Conducts Saint Saëns' Royal Scottish National Orchestra incl. Danse Bacchanale (from Samson et Dalila); Le Rouet d'Omphale; Phaëton; La Jeunesse d'Hercule; March Militaire Française Chandos CHSA 5104 (77'40") This well chosen selection of Camille Saint-Saëns orchestral oeuvre features all four symphonic poems including the popular Danse Macabre,and some fascinating rarities. In the latter category are the sparkling Overture to La Princesse Jaune(a comic opera), a delightful miniature – lasting all of a little over 3½ minutes – Une nuit ả Lisbonne,and the substantial and unpublished Spartacus overture recovered apparently in the 1990's. Even more extraordinary is the concluding March du Couronnement written for the coronation of Edward VIII in 1902, which was accepted for the occasion and presumably played during the ceremony. With generous playing time, vivid recording in multi-channel stereo format and intensely likeable music that makes no great demands on the listener, this is well worth seeking out. RH

(This album was BBC Music Magazine's "Orchestral Choice" for August – KT Ed.)

SARASATE 'Music for Violin and Piano - 3' Tianwa Yang (violin) · Markus Hadulla (piano)15 tracks including Boléro; Sérénade andalouse; Introduction et fandango; Prière et berceuse; Airs ecossaise … Naxos 8.570893 (78:55) Do not be put off by the titles, the renowned Spanish violinist Pablo Sarasate was a great melodist. Among his best known works are Zigeunerweisen (Gypsy Airs) and Spanish Dances. The charismatic compositions on this disc are sensationally played by one of the most notable young violinists of today, critically acclaimed as an unquestioned master of her instrument. She is ably accompanied by another accomplished artist; the result a delightful disc. ET

'SCANDINAVIAN SMÖRGÅSBORD' Vienna S O / Øivin Fjeldstad · Danish State Radio S O / John Frandsen · Copenhagen S O / Lavard Friisholm · Halle Orchestra / Sir John Barbirolli 16 tracks incl. Entry of the Boyars; Norwegian Bridal Procession; Festival Polonaise; Herdgirl's Sunday; Midsummer Vigil; Last Spring … Magdalen METCD 8017 (78:34) With its enticing title this is a flavoursome compilation of superior lighter classical music from the pens of Halvorsen, Bull, Grieg, Svendsen, Kuhlau, Nielsen, Alfvén and Lumbye. The last named, of course, wrote The Copenhagen Steam Railway Galop, which is included here together with his equally appealingChampagne Galop and Britta Polka. Alongside some less familiar pieces there is the very well-known Alfvén Vigil, aka Swedish Rhapsody. The original recordings, mostly mono, date from 1955-61 and it is the first time on CD for the five Kuhlau pieces. As with all the recent releases on this label the disc is very well mastered by RFS member Paul Arden-Taylor, and James Murray's booklet notes are exemplary. PB

TCHAIKOVSKY : MENDELSSOHN Violin Concertos Ray Chen · Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra / Daniel Harding Sony 8697984102 (63:55) 23-year-old Taiwan born, Australian raised Chen is a winner twice over: of both the Menuhin (2008) and Queen Elisabeth (2009) Violin Competitions, respectively playing the two popular works here. Recordings of these abound, several in this coupling, but this is up there among the best. ET

LESLEY GARRETT 'A North Country Lass' The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra · Crouch End Festival Chorus / Paul Bateman 16 tracks incl. The Bold Grenadier; Once I Had a Sweetheart; Blow the Wind Souherly; He Moved Through the Fair; Suo Gan (Lullaby); The Raggle Taggle Gypsies; The Cuckoo; The Collier Lad; Dance to Your Daddy … Music Infinity INS500(64:20) Opera meets folk on this thoroughly enjoyable album. Although as Louis Armstrong once said: "It's all folk singing; I ain't never heard a horse sing!" Interesting arrangements (not all for the purists, maybe) are well played by an orchestra that knows a thing or two about folk music. My favourite track is All Around My Hat accompanied by the solo violin of Concert Master Lucie Svehlova, accordion, acoustic guitar, bodhran, washboard and Crouch End F.C. Recorders, a madrigal choir, harp, bamboo flute, kato, santur, shamisen, cimbaloms, lute, pipes and bagpipes give support on other tracks. (Did Henry VIII really write Pastime With Good Company?) The final "bonus track" is a conductor arranged On Ilkley Moor Baht'at, with a touch of Rossini, featuring the famous Black Dyke Band. As for the "Doncaster diva", the crystal clarity of her words is once again a hallmark of her performance. PB

'THIS IS THE DAY Music on Royal Occasions' The Cambridge Singers · Elin Manahan Thomas (soprano) Aurora Orchestra · Andrew Lucas (organ) / John Rutter This is the Day (Rutter); Laudate Dominum  (Mozart); Psalm 23  (Schubert); How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place(Brahms); The Spirit of the Lord (Elgar); We Wait for Thy Loving Kindness (McKie); Ubi Caritas(Mealor); Ubi Caritas (Duruflé); Holy is the True Light  (Harris); Song for Athene  (Tavener); These Three (Bennett); Set Me as a Seal (Walton); God Be in My Head (Walford Davies); I Would BeTrue (Arr. Rutter); Touch Her Soft Lips and Part (Walton); Choral Dances from "Gloriana" (Britten);Let The Bright Seraphim (Handel); Let Their Celestial Concerts All Unite (Handel) Collegium COLCD 136 (75:21) This is a treasurable album that includes music sung at the Queen's marriage to Prince Philip in 1947, the Queen Mother's funeral, the wedding of Charles and Diana, the funeral of the Princess of Wales, the Queen's diamond wedding in 2007, and the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. The pieces are glowingly sung throughout by the 28-strong choir with the very best left to the last two pieces by Handel featuring the gorgeous voice of Manahan Thomas (she also singsLaudate Dominum), the brilliant trumpet of Simon Cox and the unnamed percussionist. Sound quality – the recordings were only made in January this year – and documentation are both very good. I challenge anyone not to be moved by some part of this album, which I am likely to return to in our next issue as one of the CDs of 2012. PB

Some more recent releases recommended by Wilfred Askew

ERROLL GARNER with Orchestra conduced by Mitch Miller 'Other Voices' (1957) 10 tracks incl. Misty*; Dreamy*; On the street where you live; Solitaire*; It might as well be Spring*; The very thought of you … (*Repeated as six bonus tracks in solo and/or trio versions). Essential Jazz Classics EJC 55466 (62.48)

RON GOODWIN 'Sir Gawain And The Green Knight' Original Motion Picture Soundtrack(1973) CD1 12 tracks (46:33); CD2 11 tracks (40:16) Intrada Special Collection Volume 196

HOLLYWOOD SAXOPHONE QUARTET arr. by Garcia, Paich, Montrose & Niehaus 24 tracks incl. 'Sax Appeal' Wait till you see her; But not for me; Polka Dots & Moonbeams; Yesterday's gardinias; Four at liberty … 'Hollywood Saxophone Quartet' Nightcap; All the tings you are; You brought a new kind of love to me; Autumn in New York; Ghost of a chance … 2 Liberty LPs from 1955. Fresh Sound FSR 2253 (66:57)

ANITA KERR & The Little Dippers 'Forever' 'Velvet Voices' (1959) incl. Strange little melody; Greensleeves; Pop goes the weasel; Blue interlude … 'Voices In Hi-Fi' (1968) incl. You're my everything; Rockin' chair; Once in a while; Comes love; My love is a kitten … 2 US Decca LPs from 1960. Cherry Red ACMEM 219 CD (79:33)

JAYE P MORGAN 'Up North, Down South' 'Up North' 13 tracks incl. Yankee doodle Boy; Shine on harvest moon; The Whiffenpoof Song; Chicago … 'Down South' 12 tracks incl. The yellow rose of Texas; Kentucky babe; Old folks at home, Dixie … plus 6 bonus singles inclI walk the line & Brotherhood of Man. 2 MGM albums from 1960. Jasmine JASCD 194 (77:43)

MIKLOS R0ZSA 'Ben Hur' Complete Soundtrack Collection Discs I & II: The Film Score 64 tracks (139:55); Disc III: The Savina Album 32 tracks (73:55): Disc IV: The First Kloss Album 27 tracks (77:34): Disc V: The Second Kloss album 41 tracks 75:24) Film Score Monthly FSM Vol.15, No.1 Limited to 2,000 copies.

DIMITRI TIOMKIN 'The Alamo' Complete Film Score City of Prague P.O. / Nic Raine 3 CDs – 57 tracks Prometheus XPCD 168 (164:21)

FRANZ WAXMAN 'Taras Bulba' Complete Film Score City of Prague P.O. / Nic Raine Limited 2-CD Collectors' Edition 25 tracks13 bonus tracks Tadlow Music TADLOW 013 (128:06) 

LAWRENCE WELK & HIS ORCHESTRA 'Calcutta' (1960) 12 tracks incl. Sailor; Bombay; Ruby; Save the last dance for me …''Yellow Bird' (1961) 12 tracks incl. Runaway; Mockin' Bird Hill; Heartbreak Hotel; Harbour lights; Loch Lomond … plus 2 bonus tracks: Melodie d'Amour & MyGrandfather's clock. 2 original Dot albums. Sepia 1181 (60:01)

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About Geoff 123
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.
He also wrote liner notes for many soundtrack albums, including those by John Barry, Roy Budd, Ron Grainer, Maurice Jarre and Johnny Harris. He co-wrote two biographies of John Barry in 1998 and 2008, and is currently working on a biography of singer, actor, producer Adam Faith.
He joined the Internet Movie Data-base ( as a data-manager in 2001 and looked after biographies, composers and the music-department, amongst other tasks. He retired after nine years loyal service in order to continue writing.