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The Great American Songbook

4.2 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 1, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Aretha Franklin is one of the giants of soul music, and indeed of American pop as a whole. More than any other performer, she epitomized soul at its most gospel-charged. Her astonishing run of late-'60s hits earned her the title "Lady Soul," which she has worn uncontested ever since.

With these songs by America’s greatest composers, Aretha Franklin paved the path to her own greatness. From standards to bebop to gospel and blues, these recordings are indelible snapshots of a special time in the career of a musical legend; a portrait, if you will, of the artist as a young woman.

This stand-alone CD features classic American songs by such classic American composers and lyricists as Billy Strayhorn, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, the Gershwin Brothers, Oscar Hammerstein, Johnny Mercer, Jerome Kern and Hank Williams.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 1, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: February 1, 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Legacy
  • Run Time: 57 minutes
  • ASIN: B004EPYYG8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,441 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Aretha Franklin could sing the menu from your local Chinese takeaway and it would still be brilliant. This collection comprises 18 recordings from the 60s, interpretations of compositions by Hoagy Carmichael and Johnny Mercer, George and Ira Gershwin, and Irving Berlin to mention a few.

Sounding very young (she was in her twenties when these were recorded) with her vocals strong and expressive. Some of the songs have Jazzy arrangements (the bouncy "Love For Sale", the horn-driven "What A Diff'rence A Day Made"), some string-swathed Soul ("My Little Brown Book", "Try A Little Tenderness", the Gospel-tinged "Cold Cold Heart", the piano-sprinkled "God Bless The Child"), bouncy Jazz/Soul ("Rock-a-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody"), and Gospel ("Are You Sure"). Her vocals are top notch, but special mention must be made of her fiery performance in "That Lucky Old Sun".

Die-hard fans will probably already own these tracks (from the various albums they were culled). For others like me, this is a superb overview of some of Ms Franklin's overlooked gems.
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THIS was a great CD. First heard it being played at a club in NYC on a Saturday--couldn't wait, ordered it on Monday from Amazon. What a treat to hear Re-Re with her purely fabulous voice back in the day. This is a great, great addition to my music collection. Now if I could just get it back from my boyfriend's car! That would be something. Oh well, I guess we are both enjoying it.
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I thoroughly enjoyed this album,a lot of very early Aretha and some
tracks that I have not heard before.
It is a great album I would recommend to anybody.Not one of her best but good listening
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This collection is from an early time, before "Respect", which was my first contact with her. It shows off her vocal range and a great talent to interpret songs with style and class.
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WOW! Just a great, great CD, I am glad this was released, there were songs I never heard her sing and thought I had all of her music.

Thank You for that songbook.
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