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Sings Fred Astaire Original recording remastered

4.9 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, July 18, 2000
$9.35

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Mel Torme was at an early peak when he recorded this superb session with Marty Paich's 10-piece band in 1956, bringing a personal flair to a program of great Gershwin, Kern, and Berlin songs associated with Fred Astaire. While Astaire brought primarily charm to his vocals on this material, Torme is a superb vocal technician, bounding through the uptempo numbers with an absolute mastery of diction, pitch, and phrasing. There's a mix of enthusiasm and sophisticated ease here that makes this one of Torme's finest recordings. He's aided by Paich's lively, brassy arrangements and an excellent studio band with trumpeter Pete Condoli and saxophonists Herb Geller and Jack Montrose. --Stuart Broomer

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Nice Work If You Can Get It
  2. Something's Gotta Give
  3. A Foggy Day
  4. A Fine Romance
  5. Let's Call The Whole Thing Off
  6. Top Hat, White Tie And Tails
  7. The Way You Look Tonight
  8. The Piccolino
  9. They Can't Take That Away From Me
  10. Cheek To Cheek
  11. Let's Face The Music And Dance
  12. They All Laughed


Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 18, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B00004U02F
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #133,893 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I'm a big Mel Torme fan and respect how he never strayed too far from his jazz roots over an entire career. And while I enjoyed him live and recorded in his "sunset" years, my favorite Mel period - by a long shot - is the 50's, especially his collaborations with Marty Paitch. Will Friedwald says that "Swings the Shubert Alley" is the pinnacle of Mel's career and I agree. So if you're a 50's Mel fan, here's more to love. On this disc Mel works his way through the songbook that made Fred Astaire famous and does it with style, technique and inventiveness. And of course....it swings! Highly recommended.
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By A Customer on May 30, 2001
Format: Audio CD
This is Torme at his best. Paiche and Torme is another one of those musical collaborations that was perfect.(like Sinatra and Riddle) Marty Paich is a genius arranger. The musicianship on this album is hard to beat. This album swings hard, the band really cooks . Check out "The way you look tonight", turn it up a little and dig the solos - it will have you jumping! The bass line will bring a tear to your eye! . "Cheek to cheek" is another hard swinging number. Paiche subtely quotes "jeepers creepers" in the middle of the unusual arrangement..it's great stuff. Torme effortlessly delivers amazing vocals throughout. This album is a must for anyone into jazz, vocals, arranging.. Buy it!
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Format: Audio CD
Anybody looking for a Mel Torme CD or any Jazz Vocal CDs from the 50's absolutely positively 100% must have this CD and its predecessor, "Lulu's Back in Town". These have some of the finest singing and arranging ever to be found on any Jazz CD, period. I'd pick either of these over "Swings Shubert Alley" in a heartbeat. If I had to pick one Mel Torme CD to take on the desert island, this would be the one.
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Format: Audio CD
Mel Tormé has provided us with many exceptional recordings -- including "Mel Tormé Swings Shubert Alley," "Best of the Concord Years," and "Lulu's Back in Town," to name just a few -- and "Mel Tormé Sings Fred Astaire" ranks among them, among his best. Featuring classics from the Gershwins, Mercer, and Berlin, the arrangements are inspired and inspiring. The sound quality is outstanding. And most importantly, Tormé's singing is stunning. His voice is crisp, clean, and multi-dimensional. And there's absolutely none of the I've-fallen-in-love-with-my-voice affectations that have plagued him now and then in his later years. (Of course, if I sang like him, I'd have the same affectations... even more so; but then, I can't -- and no one else can either.)
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Format: Audio CD
When I started collecting Mel Torme CDs late in 2004, this CD "Sings Fred Astaire" was way down on my list. Why? I guess because I had never seen a Fred Astaire movie and figured it would just be a batch of crooner songs, and jazz was what I wanted most from Mel. Boy was I ever wrong! This album is fabulous from start to finish, so good in fact that since I've heard it most of my vast collection newly acquired Mel Torme CDs has been put on the back burner for months. First of all, it may have been recorded at Mel's vocal peak, not in terms of the complexity of his singing (for that I go with Mel Torme At The Red Hill), but in terms of the flawlessness of his vocal cords. Secondly, the horn arrangements (by a ten piece "Dek-tette" orchestrated by Marty Paich) are superb and complex, and a big improvement over the big band style in my honest opinion. Before I had heard the dek-tette, I preferred Mel with just a trio over the big bands, but this album has made me reconsider. Listen to that incredible instrumental break in "The Piccolino," the jazz assault on "The Way You Look Tonight," or the two sax solos on "A Fine Romance." And that's just the instrumental highlights! You add Mel's voice just floating on top of these flawless arrangements, with not just good but great songs by the Gershwins, Fields/Kern, Mercer, and Berlin, and you have one of those obvious moments in pop history where a perfect merger of talents just peaks before your eyes, er, ears. It's almost impossible to pick favorites, but some titles that come to mind along with the above are "They All Laughed," "Top Hat, White Ties and Tails," "Nice Work If You Can Get It," and "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off' (probably the only familiar melody to me before hearing the CD).

Let me reemphasize-- this is a classic album.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I didn't know I had bought an extra copy of this cd. So since the first copy was a gift for my cousin, I decided I keep this copy for myself. Since I never had any music collection of Fred Astaire Songs.
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Format: Audio CD
THIS IS ABSOLUTELY A SUPERB ALBUM MADE ALL THE MORE SPECIAL VIA THE EXCELLENT JAPANESE REMASTERING ON THIS DISC. THIS RECORDING IS ONE OF MEL'S BEST EVER SESSIONS AND IT FINALLY SOUNDS THE WAY IT WAS ORIGINALLY RECORDED. GET IT IF YOU WANT TO HEAR MEL AND THE MARTY PAICH ENSEMBLE AT THEIR BEST MUSICALLY AND SONICALLY.
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