That’s Light Musical Entertainment
GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5158
That’s Light Musical Entertainment
1 That’s Entertainment (from "The Band Wagon") (Arthur Schwartz, Howard Dietz – arr. Conrad Salinger)
CONRAD SALINGER ORCHESTRA Conducted by BUDDY BREGMAN
Verve MG VS-6012 1958
2 Westminster Waltz (Robert Farnon)
ANGELA MORLEY AND HER ORCHESTRA (as ‘Wally Stott’)
Philips SBBL 501 1958
3 Ruby (from the film "Ruby Gentry") (Mitchell Parish, Heinz Roemheld, arr. Percy Faith)
PERCY FAITH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CL 577 1954
4 Waltzes from "Count Of Luxembourg" (Franz Lehar)
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia 33SX 1004 1955
5 All My Life (Theme from film "Eight O’Clock Walk") (George Melachrino)
GERALDO AND HIS NEW CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Philips PB 215 1954
6 This Can’t Be Love (from the musical "The Boys From Syracuse") (Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart)
RICHARD HAYMAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MG 20184 1956
7 I’ll See You In My Dreams (featured in the film "I’ll See You in My Dreams") (Gus Kahn, Isham Jones, arr. Ronald Binge)
RONALD BINGE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPM 1458 1957
8 But Beautiful (from the film "The Road To Rio") (Johnny Burke, James Van Heusen)
GLENN OSSER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Kapp KL 1022 1955
9 "All About Eve" Film Music (Alfred Newman)
ALFRED NEWMAN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Mercury MPL 6500 1956
10 Blue Theme (featured in the film "True Lies") (Robert Farnon)
Chappell C 594 1957
11 Love (from the film "Ziegfeld Follies") (Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane)
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Philips BBL 7006 1954
12 "The Girl In Pink Tights" – Overture (Sigmund Romberg, arr. Robert Farnon)
ORCHESTRA CONDUCTED BY SYLVAN LEVIN
Columbia ML 4890 1954
13 This Heart Of Mine (from the film "Ziegfeld Follies") (Harry Warren)
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
RCA LPM 1006 1953
14 Time Was (original title Duerme) (M. Prado, B. Sancristobal – arr, Mario Ruiz Armengol)
MARIO RUIZ ARMENGOL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPM 1292 1956
15 Here In My Arms (from the musical "Dearest Enemy") (Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart, arr. Richard Jones)
THE PITTSBURGH STRINGS Conducted by RICHARD JONES
Capitol T 890 1957
16 Buckle Down, Winsocki (from the musical "Best Foot Forward") (Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane, arr. William Hill-Bowen)
HILL BOWEN AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA Camden CDN-101 1958
17 Body and Soul (from the revue "Three’s A Crowd") (Johnny Green)
MORTON GOULD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia ML 4361 1950
18 Make Believe (from the musical "Show Boat") (Jerome Kern)
GEOFF LOVE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia SX 1060 1957
19 Theme from the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 (arr. William Hill-Bowen) (featured in the film "Brief Encounter")
THE MELACHRINO ORCHESTRA Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO featuring ARTHUR SANDFORD, piano
HMV CSD 1276 1958
20 Waltz For My Lady (Frank Perkins)
FRANK PERKINS AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca DL 8395 1954
21 Inspiration Point (Frank De Vol)
FRANK DE VOL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol H 198 1950
22 Enchanted Night (Leroy Holmes)
LEROY HOLMES AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3288 1955
23 Come Rain Or Come Shine (from the musical "St Louis Woman") (Harold Arlen)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM C 754 1954
24 "Since You Went Away" Incidental Music from the film (Max Steiner)
MAX STEINER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Capitol LCT 6005 1954
Mono recordings, except tracks 1, 2 & 19 in stereo.
The copyright dates after the catalogue numbers state when the original recording was first released, according to printed catalogues and/or information on disc labels or sleeves.
This compilation is largely a collection of show and film music inspired by the wonderful tune That’s Entertainment, which reached a worldwide appreciative audience through the 1953 MGM musical "The Band Wagon" starring Fred Astaire, Nanette Fabray, Cyd Charisse and Jack Buchanan. It is probably second only to Irving Berlin’s There’s No Business Like Show Business (the Wally Stott/Angela Morley version is on GLCD 5149) as a show business anthem, and its enduring appeal is partly due to the original orchestration of Arthur Schwartz and Howard Dietz’s melody by the legendary Conrad Salinger (1901-1961). In 1957 he adapted it as a purely instrumental number which was included in a collection in his honour conducted by Buddy Bregman (b. 1930), at the time A&R Manager of Verve Records. In Guild Music’s "Strings And Things Go Stereo" collection (GLCD 5153) we took a first dip into this rare LP with TheTrolley Song, followed by The Boy Next Door on "Melodies For Romantics" (GLCD 5155).
In 1958 Angela Morley (1924-2009 - working as ‘Wally Stott’ until 1972) recorded an album of music associated with London, and Robert Farnon’s Westminster Waltz was a natural choice. It had been extremely popular ever since it was first heard in 1956, even making the best selling charts and winning a prestigious Ivor Novello Award. Among the many glowing obituaries to Angela Morley following her death on 14 January 2009 aged 84 was a comment from fellow arranger Tony Osborne (1922-2009): "Wally Stott was at the top of the range. We all looked up to him because we knew that he was second only to Robert Farnon, and it was a pretty close run thing at that!"
Percy Faith (1908-1976) was born in Toronto, Canada, and originally he expected that his musical career would be as a concert pianist. But he injured his hands in a fire, which forced him to turn to composing, arranging and conducting. During the 1930s his CBC programme "Music By Faith" was carried by the Mutual network in the USA, which prompted offers of work south of the border. He eventually succumbed in 1940, leaving Robert Farnon (previously his lead trumpeter) to conduct his Canadian orchestra. Initially Faith concentrated on broadcasting, and his occasional recording sessions during the 1940s were for several different companies. Things were to change when he signed a Columbia (CBS) contract in 1950, and he soon discovered that his singles sold well and the new long playing records needed the kind of popular instrumental sounds that had formed the basis of his broadcasts for so many years. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Faith arranged all his own material, and his exciting and vibrant scores made his work stand out among the rest. He accompanied many of Columbia’s contract singers, and even contributed the odd popular song, such as My Heart Cries For You for Guy Mitchell. But today it is his numerous albums that have created a resurgence of interest in his work, thanks to their reissue on CD. Faith was always busy, whether working in the recording studios, radio, television or films. Jennifer Jones, Charlton Heston and Karl Malden were the stars of the 1952 film "Ruby Gentry", and the theme music, usually just called Ruby, became a minor hit. Faith’s own extended arrangement not only reveals the melody in all its romantic glory, but he also touches upon the film’s rather tormented plot involving scandal in a small American town where love between a poor girl and a rich man was bound to cause social tensions.
Richard Attenborough was the star of a 1953 British film "Eight O’Clock Walk" (the title refers to the time of day when convicted murderers were hanged, before the death penalty was abolished in Britain in 1965). George Melachrino (1909-1965) provided his usual accomplished music score for the movie, from which the Geraldo orchestra performs the main theme All My Life. During his long career Geraldo (1904-1974) was a major figure on the British entertainment scene for four decades, having fronted just about every kind of ensemble and influenced the successful careers of numerous top singers. During World War 2 he was Head of Light Music for ENSA (Entertainments National Service Association) providing live shows for troops, who amusingly decided that the acronym stood for ‘Every Night Something Awful’! Post-war he ran a highly successful theatrical agency, in addition to all his other musical activities. In the early 1950s he formed a concert orchestra for the newly-launched Philips label, competing for a short while against the likes of Sidney Torch and Charles Williams on EMI. Although many reference books state that Geraldo’s real name was Gerald Bright, his birth on 19 August 1904 at 56 Royal Mint Street, Whitechapel, was actually registered as Gerald Walcanbright. His father, Isaac Walcanbright, was a jobbing tailor, and his twin brother Sidney Bright was a highly respected pianist, often performing in Geraldo’s orchestras (one example is Prelude to Peace on Guild GLCD 5119).
In 1953 Canadian-born Robert Farnon (1917-2005) sold his London home at Park Royal and left England with his family for the USA. It was announced that New York would be his new HQ, although he would divide his work between the two countries. An early commission involved assisting arrangers Don Walker and Red Ginzler who were working on the last Sigmund Romberg musical "The Girl In Pink Tights" which eventually opened on Broadway at the Mark Hellinger Theatre on 5 March 1954, starring the French ballet dancer Zizi Jeanmaire. Romberg died in 1951 before the show opened; it was not a success, achieving only 115 performances before closing on 12 June. Farnon’s work was uncredited, but a Broadway cast LP was issued and many years later he admitted that he had arranged the Overture and three of the songs – In Paris And In Love, When I Am Free To Love and My Heart Won’t Say Goodbye. Farnon returned to England soon afterwards, enticed back by Herbert Wilcox to work on a film musical. He bought a home in Gerrards Cross, where he remained until he moved to the British Channel Island of Guernsey in 1959, living happily there for the rest of his life. As mentioned above, Farnon is also represented in this collection as the composer of Westminster Waltz, and the atmospheric Blue Theme which was one of several similar pieces he scored for a small group for the Chappell Recorded Music Library. The musicians were never named, but they were clearly among the top session players at the time. It reached a world wide audience in the 1994 film "True Lies" where it was heard on the radio playing in the background when a sleazy car salesman tried to seduce Jamie Lee Curtis in his caravan.
The piano soloist on the theme from Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 is Arthur Sandford who won the coveted Mendelssohn Scholarship at London’s Royal Academy of Music. He played with the Debroy Somers Band for several years, and became a regular broadcaster on the BBC. As pianist in Charles Shadwell’s Orchestra he became known to the public through Tommy Handley’s "ITMA" radio show, contributing some of the arrangements of traditional airs which were a regular feature of the programme. Sandford made numerous recordings as soloist with top orchestras, such as Mantovani and Charles Williams in addition to Melachrino.
Maximillian Raoul Walter Steiner (1888-1971) was born in Vienna, but happily for millions of film fans he decided to make his career in America and, particularly, the Hollywood of the Golden Age of the Cinema. Having composed so many classic film scores, it is hardly surprising that some of his works have received less attention than others. The 1944 film "Since You Went Away" falls into this category, yet the various themes interwoven in this suite give clues to Max Steiner’s far-reaching influence on the art of composing for the screen. His first of three Oscars was for "The Informer" (1935) followed by "Now Voyager" (1942); "Since You Went Away" gained him the third, although he received nominations for 17 others, including his early involvement scoring and conducting some Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers musicals. "Since You Went Away" was largely World War 2 propaganda, although it suffered in comparison with the more popular "Mrs Minniver". The plot describes how a woman copes with looking after the home and family while her husband is away fighting. The finale at a railway station is often cited as a fine example of a typical Hollywood ‘tearjerker’ scene, and Steiner clearly expressed this in his score, which he conducts himself in this recording.
All the composers, arrangers and conductors featured in this collection deserve to have their careers profiled in considerable detail, but sadly lack of space prevents this each time that they appear in this series. Many have already been (or are likely to be in the future) given a fair share of the limelight, but on this occasion the following thumbnail sketches will have to suffice for some of those not mentioned above.
Andre Kostelanetz (1901-1980) was one of the biggest names in American light orchestral music during the middle years of the 20th Century. His broadcasts and recordings were enjoyed by millions.
Richard Hayman (b. 1920) was put under contract by Mercury Records in 1950, for whom he made many singles and albums. He also arranged for the Boston Pops, serving as back-up conductor for Arthur Fiedler.
Ronald Binge (1910-1979) is destined to remain forever remembered as the gifted arranger who designed the ‘cascading strings’ effect for Mantovani.
Glenn Osser (b. 1914) became a familiar name in the USA during the 1950s for his work on various television shows, notably the "Miss America" beauty pageants for many years.
Alfred Newman (1901-1970 – some references give his birth date as 1900) for much of his career was probably the most influential and respected Hollywood film composer, because from 1939 until 1959 he was the musical director at 20th Century Fox, reputed to have worked on around 225 films.
During the middle years of the last century Don Mario Ruiz Armengol (b. 1914) was regarded as Mexico’s foremost arranger and conductor of popular music, as well as one of its leading composers.
Capitol Records engaged Richard Jones to arrange and conduct The Pittsburgh Strings, formed from the complete string section of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, led by their famous concertmaster Samuel Thavin.
William Hill-Bowen (1918-1964) was George Melachrino’s right-hand man in the years immediately following World War 2, often appearing on piano but, perhaps, more importantly as a brilliant arranger who managed to recreate his master’s famous style to perfection. Later Hill-Bowen was to receive due recognition for his talents, partly thanks to a series of LPs commissioned by RCA from which comes his vibrant arrangement of Buckle Down, Winsocki.
Morton Gould (1913-1996) became one of the most highly respected American composers, and among his best-known works were the ballet Fall River Legend and American Symphonette No. 3,which became better known as Pavanne (the mis-spelling was deliberate). From 1986 to 1994 Gould was President of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).
Yorkshireman Geoff Love (1917-1991) succeeded in so many musical fields during his busy career. Internationally he achieved success as ‘Manuel and his Music of the Mountains’ although his identity was a secret for many years.
Frank Perkins (1908-1988) became noticed in 1934 following a successful collaboration with lyricist Mitchell Parrish which resulted in Stars Fell on Alabama and Emmaline. In 1937 he was engaged as an arranger by Warner Bros. in Hollywood, where he remained until the mid-1960s.
In the USA Frank De Vol (1911-1999) is known primarily as the composer for the radio and TV series "The Brady Bunch", but light music fans appreciate that his career has been far more substantial. It was not uncommon to see the credit ‘Music by De Vol’ on many films, and later Frank appeared as a character actor in several US television series, such as "I Dream of Jeannie", "Bonanza" and "Petticoat Junction".
Leroy Holmes (born Alvin Holmes, 1913-1986) scored Hollywood films and radio programmes during his early career, before becoming one of the mainstays of MGM’s conducting ‘team’, also arranging many of their recordings.
In 1943 David Rose(1910-1990) had a big hit with his own composition Holiday For Strings which firmly launched him as a light music composer and arranger.
If you have internet access you can read the full booklet notes for all previous releases on the Guild Music website: www.guildmusic.com
© David Ades 2009