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Get Happy

11 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 30, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Jenny Lin's latest release on the Steinway & Sons label is a spectacular collection of show tunes arranged by Greg Anderson, Marc-Andre Hamelin, Stephen Hough, Dick Hyman, Stefan Malzew, Christopher O'Riley, Andre Previn, Stephen Prutsman, David Saperton, Cy Walter, Alexis Weissenberg and Earl Wild. Jenny Lin's previous release on the Steinway & Sons label, Silent Music, was chosen as one of the best albums of the year by the New York Times in 2011. Get Happy includes brand-new arrangements by Marc-Andre Hamelin (David Raskin's 'Laura'), Stefan Malzew ('Eliza in Ascot' from My Fair Lady) and Greg Anderson (Cole Porter's 'So In Love'). This is the first release to include all four of Stephen Hough's arrangements of the music of Rodgers & Hammerstein. World premiere recordings include Christopher O'Riley's gorgeous arrangement of 'Johanna' from Sondheim's Sweeney Todd and Alexis Weissenberg's exquisite version of 'Lover' from the Rodgers & Hart musical film, Love Me Tonight. A very exciting release from Steinway!

Review

Artistic Quality & Sound Quality: 10/10.

Jenny Lin is one of those pianists who deserves a major career for the sheer intelligence and musicality of everything that she does. This collection of show tunes arranged by virtuoso pianists offers the perfect combination of the familiar (the melodies) and the new (the arrangements). The result is a tribute not just to Lin's clever programming and impeccable pianism, but also to the many arrangers she has chosen (or commissioned) for this project, including some very major colleagues such as Andre Previn, Stephen Hough, and Marc-Andre Hamelin.

The program, 18 numbers in all, is organized principally around the work of Stephen Hough (Carousel Waltz, March of the Siamese Children, My Favorite Things, and Hello, Young Lovers) and, naturally, Earl Wild (all Gershwin I Got Rhythm, Embraceable You, and Fascinatin' Rhythm); but who knew that Alexis Weissenberg transcribed Richard Rogers (Lover)? Dick Hyman's two Irving Berlin arrangements, Blue Skies and Cheek to Cheek, are delicious, while Stephen Prutsman (Get Happy) and Greg Anderson (So In Love) offered their contributions especially for this collection.

Some of the arrangements, aside from their virtuoso demeanor, are relatively straight transcriptions of the originals, but others are independent works conceived on a grander scale. These include Marc-Andre Hamelin's Meditation on 'Laura', not strictly a show tune, but taken from David Raksin's classic film score (note, please that it's not 'Raskin', as spelled in the booklet), and Stefan Malzew's Eliza in Ascot, a full-blown and brilliant set of variations on a theme from My Fair Lady. As you can hear from the sound sample, Lin plays this music 'con amore', with warmth, a generous tone, and a real romantic lilt that never turns tasteless; and she's got virtuosity to burn.

Steinway's sonics are magnificently natural, a tribute to their pianos, to the glorious legacy of the American musical theater, to a galaxy of great pianist/composers, but most of all to Jenny Lin for putting it all together and presenting it so stylishly. I've played this disc several times already in just a few days, and I have no doubt that you will too. --ClassicsToday.com, David Hurwitz

Here's Earl Wild's high-octane, sporty rewrite of 'I Got Rhythm'; here's jazz legend Dick Hyman riffing on Irving Berlin's 'Cheek to Cheek'; here's Stephen Hough's frankly fantastic transcription of the Carousel Waltz. Jenny Lin asked a few of her friends to contribute, too, and they provided still more riches. Stephen Prutsman is tasked with 'Get Happy'...Marc-Andre Hamelin supplies a wonderfully introspective Meditation on the main theme from Otto Preminger's classic film Laura.

In Jenny Lin's hands, the hour passes like a gift from the gods of happy. She's got it all: a voracious appetite for lesser-known music, total technical command of even the most difficult music, a keen emotional ear, and a spirit of adventure and good cheer. She sounds completely at ease in this idiom...More importantly, she has a great sense of fun, wit, and, oh, what's the word? Happiness. That's the word.

Borrowing the Sono Luminus label's studio, the Steinway recording engineers have brought a flattering sound to their piano...it really is an outright joy. It's something every piano collection should have. For sixty-four minutes, you'll really believe it's nothing but blue skies from now on. --MusicWeb-International, Brian Reinhart

The Best Classical Recordings of 2012: Jenny Lin presents some of the most indelible melodies in American music refracted through a kaleidoscope of keyboard virtuosity. Lin says: 'What sets these arrangements apart is that they are all by performing pianists. I have always admired pianists who can play and compose, and I wanted to pay tribute to them with this album.' --WFMT Radio, Chicago, Lisa Flynn


Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
  1. The Jazz Singer: Blue Skies (arr. D. Hyman) 1:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. Girl Crazy, Act I: I got rhythm (arr. E. Wild) 2:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. My Fair Lady: Ascot Gavotte (arr. S. Malzew) 4:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Love me Tonight: Lover (arr. A. Weissenberg) 3:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Jubilee: Begin the Beguine (arr. C. Walter) 3:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Sweeney Todd: Johanna (arr. C. O'Riley) 2:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Carousel: Carousel Waltz (arr. S. Hough) 6:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. The King and I: March of the Siamese Children (arr. S. Hough) 3:57$0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Blue Moon (arr. A. Previn) 2:16$0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Top Hat: Cheek to Cheek (arr. D. Hyman) 2:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Girl Crazy, Act I: Embraceable You (arr. E. Wild) 3:13$0.99  Buy MP3 
12. Laura (arr. M.-A. Hamelin): Laura: Meditation on Laura (arr. M.-A. Hamelin) 5:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
13. Porgy and Bess, Act II: Bess, you is my woman now (arr. D. Saperton) 5:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
14. Lady, be Good!: Fascinating Rhythm (arr. E. Wild) 1:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
15. Kiss Me, Kate: So in Love (arr. G. Anderson) 4:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
16. The Sound of Music: My Favorite Things (arr. S. Hough) 3:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
17. The King and I: Hello, young lovers (arr. S. Hough) 2:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
18. 9:15 Revue: Get Happy (arr. S. Prutsman) 4:51$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Conductor: --
  • Composer: Greg Anderson, Marc-Andre Hamelin, Stephen Hough, Dick Hyman, Stefan Malzew, et al.
  • Audio CD (October 30, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Steinway & Sons
  • ASIN: B00925T9BK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #26,074 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Warren Harris on November 18, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This CD consists of various pieces performed by Jenny Lin that are, as the title implies, happy feel-good pieces. That does not detract from the fact that the arrangements she is performing are, in some cases, extremely difficult. The second track, "I Got Rhythm", certainly fits this description -- that's just a rollicking good time. "Begin the Beguine" is also just a treat to listen to -- and definitely challenging for a pianist with only 10 fingers!

There are also various works that require a delicate emphasis on the syncopation, and "Eliza in Ascot" is one of these. It does, of course, require adept pianistic skills at the end of the piece, and Ms. Lin is definitely up to the task.

While I tend to gravitate toward the more traditional music CDs of classical material, I really enjoyed this recording. It's okay to have a little fun every now and then, and this recording will leave you feeling good if you like the musical material being presented. Highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Bret Grey on May 12, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
A very showy pianist playing some excellent arrangements of Broadway standards. After listening to the CD we purchased two additional copies of it for gifts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Pearson on April 2, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Miss Lin knows her way around a piano keyboard. Great playing. Fresh arrangements. Like this one a lot. Find I keep including it in rotation for relaxed listening.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sour Persimmons on January 29, 2013
Format: Audio CD
Jenny Lin's "Get Happy" is a brilliantly-played virtuosic tribute to the great American songbook. After a subdued take on "Blue Skies," the album quickly becomes rather impressionistic ("I Got Rhythm," "Lover," "Laura") though many of the other tracks ("Carousel Waltz," "Cheek to Cheek," etc.) maintain a more easily-recognized grounding in the original material. Lin's performances offer a full range of color and expression, and she successfully bridges the gap between the intense technical classical demands of the arrangements (which generally sound like elaborate improvisations) and the popular idiom from which they derive. The recorded piano sound is excellent, with an ideal perspective on the instrument. In short, this is a fantastic jazz/classical piano album for those interested in sophisticated takes on classic show tunes.
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By James C. Thorsby on January 14, 2013
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
The interpetation of these pieces by Ms. Linn is great. This CD provides a different view of well known pieces.
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By Lorraine Litterski on January 12, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Get Happy was a gift for my grandosn who is a pianist in Austin, Tx. He has it in his car cd player and plays it on the way to gigs...an inspiration he tells me.
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