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Vol. 17-American Legends

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Audio CD, March 4, 1996
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Editorial Reviews

G. Gershwin ~ American Legend: George Gershwi

1. Somebody Loves Me - Harry James
2. Embraceable You - Jo Stafford
3. Lady Be Good - Bing Crosby
4. The Man I Love - Lee Wiley
5. An American In Paris - Ray Heindorf
6. Nice Work If You Can Get It - Dinah Shore
7. Variations On I Got Rhythm - Oscar Levant
8. They Can't Take That Away From Me - Peggy Lee
9. Three Preludes - George Gershwin
10. Rhapsody In Blue - George Gershwin
11. Our Love Is Here To Stay - Rod McKuen
12. Swanee - Al Jolson

Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 4, 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Laserlight
  • ASIN: B000001VCO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #669,216 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Annie Van Auken TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 21, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
DELTA LASERLIGHT's American Legends series was produced in 1996 by Rod McKuen. Cover art is of US commemorative stamps issued ten years earlier.

My favorite recording on the Gershwin edition of this series, Al Jolson's late-40s DECCA remake of "Swanee" has added echo and seems a bit congested. Paul Whiteman's "Rhapsody in Blue" is the famous 1920s waxing with Gershwin at the keyboard. This LP dub is easy to adjust to despite limited frequency range. It's the historic highlight of the collection, along with Gershwin's equally-limited-in-tone solo "Three Preludes."

Sorry Mr. McKuen, but you should stick to reciting poetry set to music. Your vocal on "Our Love Is Here To Stay" is pretty dire!

Jo Stafford's "Embraceable You" has the tinny blurriness of a multi-generation copy of a broadcast soundcheck, and Crosby/Dorsey's "Lady Be Good" isn't any better. AM radio frequency range here.

The absolute finest track however easily makes up for any above inadequacies. A marvelous 16.5 minute stereo recording by the Warner Bros. orchestra brings "An American In Paris" to full brassy life! It's an album saver, actually.

Equally interesting, although not full range or stereo are Oscar Levant's 9 minute "Variations on I Got Rhythm."

The balance are monaural album tracks (probably from the '50s) of decent audio quality.

That Warner piece and the oldest sides make this set a worthwhile addition for any Gershwin fan.

TOTAL PLAYING TIME: 61:57
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