Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Astrud Gilberto - The Astrud Gilberto Album (1965)

This is one of my favorites. I absolutely love the way Astrud Gilberto sings - so easy and effortlessly! Like most folks, the first song I ever heard her sing was "The Girl from Ipanema" - well, I was immediately smitten with her singing! (I used to be able to play that song on the sax.) Also, thanks to her, I was introduced to the bossa nova sound, which I also love. Another good thing about this album is that Antonio Carlos Jobim (another favorite) is featured playing guitar (did I mention that I'm taking guitar lessons now?), and he wrote several of the songs. All in all, you just can't go wrong with this awesome record!

A few months ago, I was watching a movie on cable TV called "Get Yourself a College Girl" - one of those beach party type movies, but instead taking place at a ski resort. Frankie and Annette were not in it, but instead it starred Mary Ann Mobley, Chad Everett, Nancy Sinatra, and several others. Anyway, there's this one scene in the ski lodge where a band starts to play and I immediately recognized the song as "The Girl from Ipanema". It sounded exactly like the recording so I paid special attention. Then who walks in singing the song but Astrud Gilberto! As you see the band, it's Stan Getz playing sax! I was very excited (it's the simple things in life that make me happy!). Anyway, I've posted the video of that scene below the track listing for the album. Enjoy!

Track listing for Astrud Gilberto - The Astrud Gilberto Album:

Side 1:
1. Once I Loved
2. Agua De Beber - with Antonio Carlos Jobim
3. Meditation
4. And Roses And Roses
5. O Morro (Nao Tem Vez)
6. How Insensitive

Side 2:
1. Dindi
2. Photograph
3. Dreamer
4. So Finha De Ser Com Voce
5. All That's Left is to Say Goodbye

Astrud Gilberto & Stan Getz performing "The Girl from Ipanema" in the motion picture "Get Yourself a College Girl":

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Ferrante & Teicher - Holiday for Pianos (1963)

Here's a gem by the world's best known duo piano team - Ferrante and Teicher! This is a pretty fun album, especially since all the songs are familiar to me. I've enjoyed other albums by these two, so decided to buy this one when I saw it in the dollar bin at HPB. I think my favorite song here is "Mexican Hat Dance". I remember dancing to that tune when I was in kindergarten, but I don't think I ever heard it played the way F&T play it. Their version reminds me of a Tom & Jerry cartoon. I mean, can't you just see Tom playing the piano and Jerry dancing on the keys? Love it! So, take a trip around the world tonight and give a listen to this album!

Track listing for Ferrante & Teicher - Holiday for Pianos:

Side 1:
1. Far Away Places
2. Mexican Hat Dance
3. A Foggy Day (In London Town)
4. Arrivederci Roma
5. Japanese Garden
6. April in Portugal

Side 2:
1. Lady of Spain
2. Loch Lomond
3. Calcutta
4. Wonderful Copenhagen
5. Paris Joy Ride
6. Aloha Oe

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Duane Eddy - Twangin' the Golden Hits (1965)

Okay, so like I'm taking guitar lessons and lately I've been listening a lot to albums that feature the guitar. I even went out and bought a brand new guitar - a Fender acoustic guitar. It's just the basic kind that's good for beginners. (I already play piano, alto sax, and ukelele.) Maybe some day I'll get good enough that I can buy a really cool guitar like the one in the picture or even branch out into electric guitars! I've got a long list of songs I want to play (I've only just learned how to play "Amazing Grace" - the first song we learned in class.), most of which are ballads. Maybe in the far-off future, I'll even record myself playing a tune and post it!

Anyway, going through my albums, this one stuck out. I like the style of Duane Eddy, although I will probably never be able to play that way. I think I just like the way these songs sound - so 1950s! Most of these are quite familiar, but I think my favorites are "Rebel Rouser" (his big hit in 1958) and "Honky Tonk".

Track listing for Duane Eddy - Twangin' the Golden Hits:

Side 1:
1. Rebel Rouser
2. Raunchy
3. Shangri-La
4. Last Date
5. Honky Tonk
6. Theme from "A Summer Place"

Side 2:
1. Tequila
2. Stranger on the Shore
3. More (Theme from "Mondo Cane")
4. The River Kwai March
5. Swingin' Shepherd Blues
6. Rumble

And here's Duane Eddy playing "Rebel Rouser" on the show "Hullabaloo":

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Peggy Lipton - Peggy Lipton (1968)

This was one of the records that I had been searching for for quite some time, and I finally got it on eBay a couple of weeks ago! Woo hoo! Okay, so Peggy Lipton isn't the greatest singer, but who cares??? She was HOT as "Julie Barnes" on the television series "The Mod Squad", which aired from 1968 to 1973 (I remember I had a crush on her when I was a little girl and watched the show), was still hot when she starred as "Norma Jennings" on the TV series "Twin Peaks", and is still hot today!
Peggy married Quincy Jones shortly after the end of "The Mod Squad", and gave up acting to be a wife and mother. One of her daughters, Rashida Jones (who looks a LOT like her!) is now starring in "The Office". Peggy has also penned her memoir "Breathing Out". Oh, she wrote a couple of the songs on this album, too - not bad for a 20-year-old at the time!
So, this post is for any Peggy Lipton fans out there! Enjoy the songs, and enjoy looking at her picture - sigh. (Peggy - if you ever come across this blog - you are still HOT!)

Track listing for Peggy Lipton - Peggy Lipton:

Side 1:
1. Let Me Pass By - written by Peggy
2. Natural Woman
3. Memories of a Golden Weekend (or How I Got the Acapulco Blues) - written by Peggy
4. San Francisco Glide - written by Peggy (has a skip)
5. Stoney End
6. Who Needs It

Side 2:
1. Hands Off the Man (Flim Flam Man)
2. It Might as Well Rain Until September
3. Wasn't It You?
4. Lady of the Lake
5. Honey Won't Let Me - written by Peggy

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

James Darren - Album No. 1 (1959)

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

For Valentine's Day, I decided to share this James Darren album with you because it has some good "love" songs, and because I think he's a pretty dreamy guy. I'm sure y'all are familiar with him - he starred as "Moondoggie" in the "Gidget" movies, starred in the television series "The Time Tunnel" and "T.J. Hooker", and had a recurring role as "Vic Fontaine" on "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine", where he was a Frank Sinatra-like character and got to sing. He's still a very fine looking man! So, I hope y'all have a special someone with whom to share this Valentine's Day and can cuddle to the tunes of James Darren! I've also included a Scopitone video of James Darren singing "Because You're Mine" (LOVE the lovely ladies in the video!).

Track listing for James Darren - Album No. 1:

Side 1:
1. Let's Fall in Love
2. Sophisticated Lady
3. Let There Be Love
4. The One I Love Belongs to Somebody Else
5. Sweet Lorraine
6. There's No Such Thing

Side 2:
1. Love Among the Young
2. Emaline
3. Gidget
4. Does Your Heart Beat for Me?
5. Mighty Pretty Territory
6. Walkin' My Baby Back Home

Scopitone of James Darren singing "Because You're Mine":

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Ace Cannon - The Moanin' Sax of Ace Cannon (1963)

"Are you facing a jail sentence? Or was there no letter today from your loved one? Are you a prisoner of love, a victim of unrequited love or singing the blues? Have you had a last date with that certain one and sadly concluded it's all in the game? Have you left your heart in San Francisco, or are you sad for any reason?

If so, this album is for you."
What better way to introduce this album than by the lines above from the liner notes? They say it all. Ace Cannon is indeed one of the best alto sax players ever - he is "The Godfather of Sax"! I love sax music - I think the sax is the sexiest sounding instrument around! (That's one reason I started playing it myself about 20 years ago.) So, I hope you like this album as much as I do. Enjoy!

Track listing for Ace Cannon - The Moanin' Sax of Ace Cannon:

Side 1:
1. Moanin' the Blues
2. Trouble in Mind
3. Prisoner's Song
4. I Love You Because
5. Last Date
6. Singing the Blues

Side 2:
1. It's All in the Game
2. No Letter Today
3. I Left My Heart in San Francisco
4. I Can't Get Started with You
5. Prisoner of Love
6. Moanin'

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Frankie Laine - Hell Bent for Leather! (1961)

I was saddened to hear that Frankie Laine died yesterday at the age of 93. One of the most popular entertainers of the 1950s, he had hits with songs such as "That's My Desire", "Mule Train", "Jezebel", "I Believe", and "That Lucky Old Sun". He's also remembered for singing the theme to the television series "Rawhide" and the theme to the movie "Blazing Saddles". So, in fond memory of Frankie Laine, I share with you the album "Hell Bent for Leather!", which contains some of his most memorable western hits. (For an alternative version of "Mule Train" as played on the Hammond organ, go to my previous post.) You ride 'em, cowboy - R.I.P. - Frankie Laine (1913 - 2007).

Track listing for Frankie Laine - Hell Bent for Leather!:

Side 1:
1. Wanted Man
2. High Noon
3. Gunfight at O.K. Corral
4. Bowie Knife
5. Along the Navajo Trail
6. The Cry of the Wild Goose

Side 2:
1. Rawhide
2. City Boy
3. Cool Water
4. The 3:10 to Yuma
5. The Hanging Tree
6. Mule Train

And here's Frankie singing one of his other hits, "The Rock of Gibralter":

Sunday, February 04, 2007

The Don Baker Trio - Hammond for Dancing

What a fun album to listen to! I have to admit that I am one of those people that finds organ music pretty darn groovy - especially when played like this! You can really get down and dancin' with tunes played on the Hammond organ! I love it! I remember when I was in college in San Antonio, my friends and I would sometimes go eat dinner at this Mexican food restaurant and they would have this guy playing the organ for entertainment. He'd play tunes like "New York, New York" and "Mack the Knife" - it was great! That's what this album reminds me of - only much better. And, you haven't heard anything until you've heard "Mule Train" played on the Hammond! I don't know what year this was produced, but it's Capitol T1357, if that helps. So, here I share with you "Hammond for Dancing" - "a fine and unusual blend of Hammond organ, piano, celeste, and rhythm by the Don Baker Trio."

Track listing for Don Baker Trio - Hammond for Dancing:

Side 1:
1. I Won't Dance
2. Dansero
3. Moritat
4. Jungle Drums
5. When Day is Done
6. Frasquita Serenade

Side 2:
1. I Could Have Danced All Night
2. Carinoso
3. The Old Refrain
4. Cherokee
5. Taboo
6. Mule Train