Monday, March 5, 2018

From my dad’s CDs

I’m still making my way through my dad’s CDs: Julian “Cannonball” Adderley, Ivie Anderson, Louis Armstrong, Fred Astaire, Mildred Bailey, Count Basie, Tony Bennett, Art Blakey, Ruby Braff and Ellis Larkins, Clifford Brown, Dave Brubeck, Joe Bushkin, Hoagy Carmichael, Betty Carter, Ray Charles, Charlie Christian, Rosemary Clooney, Nat “King” Cole, John Coltrane, Bing Crosby, Miles Davis, Matt Dennis, Doris Day, Blossom Dearie, Paul Desmond, Tommy Dorsey, Billy Eckstine, Duke Ellington, Bill Evans, Gil Evans, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, Erroll Garner, Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Stéphane Grappelli, Bobby Hackett, Coleman Hawkins, Woody Herman, Earl Hines, Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, Dick Hyman, Harry James, Hank Jones, Louis Jordan, Stan Kenton, Barney Kessel, Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross, Peggy Lee, Mary Ann McCall, Susannah McCorkle, Dave McKenna, Ray McKinley, Marian McPartland, Johnny Mercer, Helen Merrill, Glenn Miller, the Modern Jazz Quartet, Thelonious Monk, Wes Montgomery, Gerry Mulligan, Red Norvo, Anita O’Day, Charlie Parker, Joe Pass, Art Pepper, Oscar Peterson, Bud Powell, Boyd Raeburn, Django Reinhardt, Marcus Roberts, Sonny Rollins, Jimmy Rushing, Catherine Russell, the Sauter-Finegan Orchestra, Artie Shaw, George Shearing, Horace Silver, and now, Frank Sinatra, about two days’ worth of Sinatra.

Here, via YouTube, from Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely (1958), are two of what Sinatra called “saloon songs.” My dad never smoked, never drank, and almost certainly never set foot in a saloon. These songs are just great music, saloon or no saloon:

“Angel Eyes” (Matt Dennis–Earl Brent)
“One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)” (Harold Arlen–Johnny Mercer)
The arrangements are by Nelson Riddle. Bill Miller, Sinatra’s longtime pianist, is prominent on “One for My Baby.” Both songs resist embedding. Which reminds of the Irving Gordon song: “Unembeddable, that’s what you are.”

With Sinatra behind me, four smaller mountain ranges have come into view: Jo Stafford, Art Tatum, Mel Tormé, and Lee Wiley.

Also from my dad’s CDs
Mildred Bailey : Tony Bennett : Charlie Christian : Blossom Dearie : Duke Ellington : Coleman Hawkins : Billie Holiday : Louis Jordan : Charlie Parker : Jimmy Rushing : Artie Shaw

[Once in a great while, I played this recording of “One for My Baby” at the end of a semester. Perfect for a class that let out at 2:50.]

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