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The Best of the Nat King Cole Trio: The Vocal Classics (1942-46)

Nat King ColeAudio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Price: $44.22 & FREE Shipping. Details
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The Best of the Nat King Cole Trio: The Vocal Classics (1942-46) + Nat King Cole Trio: Instrumental Classics + Complete After Midnight Sessions
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 31, 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • ASIN: B000005H11
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,942 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. All For You
2. Straighten Up And Fly Right
3. Gee Baby, Ain't I Good To You
4. If You Can't Smile And Say Yes
5. Sweet Lorraine
6. Embraceable You
7. It's Only A Paper Moon
8. I Realize Now
9. I'm A Shy Guy
10. You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You
11. What Can I Say After I Say I'm Sorry
12. I'm Thru With Love
13. Come To Baby, Do
14. The Frim Fram Sauce
15. How Does It Feel
16. (Get Your Kicks On) Route 66
17. Baby, Baby All The Time
18. But She's My Buddy's Chick
19. You Call It Madness (But I Call It Love)
20. The Best Man
See all 22 tracks on this disc

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Silky Smooth November 27, 2001
Format:Audio CD
This is smooth jazz at its finest--not the contemporary non-jazz that usurped that name-- but the light, feathery, and unmistakably jazz work of early Nat Cole. Smooth as silk, really, he has a warm, easy-going, and mellifluous voice (yet it's never bland). While some of the songs are strictly for fun (the great "The Frim Fram Sauce" and the less memorable "But She's My Buddy's Chick") he adds a bit more gravitas to such ballads as "Sweet Lorraine" and lays blue shadings onto "Embraceable You."
The comping is wonderful, a classic trio sound with Johnny Miller's beautifully articulated bass, and Oscar Moore's versatile guitar. At times, Moore coaxes a ukulele sound out of his instrument; other times he has an incandescent sound that recalls Django Reinhardt. The trio also sings together: "Straighten Up and Fly Right " is like a Do-Wop jazz song. Cole's piano is the height of insouciance, a soft but always swinging style that gets the most out of the minimum. Other highlights include the signature "Route 66," "I'm Thru with Love," "Come to Baby, Do", and "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons."
This is not the "popular" (and over-produced, in my opinion) Cole of latter years ("Lazy Hazy Days of Summer," "Ramblin' Rose," etc.) but a man firmly rooted in jazz. It's been said by many that his later vocal success overshadows the innovations and influence he showed as a young pianist. (For instrumentals only, I recommend his "Penthouse Serenade"). This album gives you both Cole's voice and piano in the great Cole sans-drummer trio; an excellent selection of songs played by a master, backed with empathy and basking in warmth.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Music to neck and drink Martinis by October 9, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Everything else has been said about this music that needs to be said - hard to be nostalgic for something you weren't around for (I'm only 26, for cryin' out loud) but good grief! The idea that this was some of the pop music enjoyed by millions - this elegant, sophisticated, intimate music - only underscores the aridity of all of the stuff that makes Billboard nowadays. Cole's
art was above all an art of subtely, of small touches that add up to a distinct and unmistakeable whole - much as the small, decisive brushstrokes of Monet yielded those iconic, idyllic rivers and bridges. Listen to how Cole phrases the penultimate line of "I'm Thru With Love" , that fractional hesitation, that delicate caesura between "For I must have you" and "or no one",
and you'll see what I mean. For a romantic evening indoors on a cold winter night, look no further than the Trio for exactly the right mood. (The instrumental stuff is equally fine too, by the way - he was an amazing piano player. Red Garland didn't come out of nowhere, you know.)
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Smooth as silk... September 18, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Everyone knows of Nat King Cole's "pop" recordings - "Mona Lisa", "Too Young", "The Christmas Song" but to me the real treasure lies in these recordings (and those on the companion CD covering 1947 - 1950).
Cole is an incredible jazz pianist with a light and gently swinging style. Add to that Oscar Moore on guitar and Johnny Miller on bass and you've got a tight ensemble delivering 22 wonderful performances. The tracks range from classic ballads ("Embraceable You", "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons") to fun novelty numbers ("The Frim Fram Sauce", "But She's My Buddy's Chick"). Of course you add Cole's smooth vocals to these wonderful backing arrangements and you've got a great collection.
Considering the age of these recording and the quiet nature of the material - even when the trio swings they swing "softly" - there is some hiss noticeable throughout but in general these recordings have been nicely "cleaned up" and restored.
(In addition to the two vocal collections there is a third strictly instrumental disc which is also very good but when you put on Nat King Cole don't you want to hear that voice?)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars King Cole Trio, No Greater Small Jazz Band March 3, 2006
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
"Vocal Classics, Volume 1" by the King Cole Trio documents along with "Instrumental Classics" that the Trio was always at its best. It is the equivalent of Ted Williams hitting .406 in 1941, Jim Brown gaining 6 yards a carry every time he touched the ball, Wilt Chamberlain averaging 50.4 points and 25.4 rebounds in 1961-1962 and Wayne Gretzky scoring over 200 points in four out of five seasons.

Most of these songs are great art. "All For You" could have been left off this CD album since it was recorded for Excelsior Records in 1942 before the Trio recorded for Capitol Records as well as "How Does It Feel" since it was never released commercially until 1991 when it was part of Mosaic Records box set entitled "The Complete Capitol Recordings of the King Cole Trio." Also the other version of "Embraceable You", which was released in 1944 on the first King Cole Trio album should have been included in lieu of the V-Disc version. A better version of "What Can I Say After I Say I'm Sorry" was the Trio's 1946 master that was actually commercially released in 1946 on "King Cole Trio, Volume 2" album. The 1945 version was not released the first time until 1955. Capitol Records would have served the fan better by issuing in this package 1946 recording rather the 1945. In my opinion "I Can't See For Lookin' " is more of a classic than "All For You," this version of "What Can I Say After I Say I'm Sorry" and "How Does It Feel" and should have been included instead. And certainly "The Christmas Song" by Robert Wells and Mel Torme recorded by the Trio in 1946 with a string choir is more of a classic than these three songs and should have been part of the release.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Early Capitol years
This collection contains tracks plucked from most of the trio's recording sessions for Capitol. By the time these were made the original bassist, Wesley Prince, was replaced by... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mike Tarrani
5.0 out of 5 stars The Real Nat King Cole!
Nat King Cole will always be my favorite.To me He is the father of trio jazz.
These capitol recordings 1942-46 and 1947-50 are simply the best cds of Nat Cole material. Read more
Published 22 months ago by REDFIRE66
5.0 out of 5 stars Still a great sound
The price is right; the technical quality is first-rate; that honey voice and great jazz trio are still the best. What's not to like?
Published on October 30, 2008 by Alexander Kogan
5.0 out of 5 stars You will like it
If you are thinking of purchasing a Nat Cole cd you already know how wonderfully mellow and relaxing his vocals are. Rip vol. Read more
Published on February 17, 2008 by v
5.0 out of 5 stars fine early classics from The Nat King Cole Trio...
This CD gives us a fine assortment of hits by The Nat King Cole Trio recorded between 1942 and 1946. Read more
Published on August 1, 2007 by Matthew G. Sherwin
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Nat King Cole Trio Volums 1&2
This is a mello, jazzy wonderful reminder of the muscial time period in which it originated and also a testament to the

enduring legacy of Nat Cole. Read more
Published on September 1, 2005 by K. L. Edwards
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Music!
This album, and one by Sarah Vaughan, are what brought me into jazz. This is wonderful, simple, warm jazz. And it's fun! Read more
Published on January 4, 2001
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