Thursday, October 27, 2005

From Gershwin's Time

From Gershwin's Time

I’ve had a relaxed day listening to some of the music stored away in my computer under the iTune program. I took every disc we own and copied it onto the computer and then onto my iPod so I could take it with me while driving all over town. We’ve had a good week business wise and so I don’t mind when I have a chance to sit in my favorite chair and doze off while listening to my music.

Last night after watching the White Sox blow away the Astros in the 4th and final game of the World Series I stayed up and watched some old Twilight Zone re-runs. There was one about an old fellow who found an antique radio that would pick up tunes from a radio station long since defunct but none of his friends at the retirement home believed him. I was enjoying the Benny Goodman music along with Rod Serling’s black and white show.

I have a great collection of Gershwin music, some of it played by the man himself via the miracle of digital reconstruction. One of the discs we purchased several years ago is from the Sony Masterworks Heritage Series, “From Gershwin’s Time”. I looked it up on a Yahoo search and found that it’s still available if you’re looking for something different.

“Problem with listening to Gershwin tunes these days: all we ever hear is the new interpreters, the crooners who always boast a thick sheen of polish. Of course, there was a time--back before jazz became 'smooth' and airline commercials picked up on 'Rhapsody in Blue'--when Gershwin's tunes were pop music. You know, fun songs heard everywhere--in the concert halls, at the movies, on the radio--by young and old alike. These tunes comprise From Gershwin's Time, a collection of music recorded (mostly) while the composer was still alive, between 1920 and 1945 (George died in '37). Vintage Gershwin cuts by Al Jolson, Ukulele Ike, Fred Astaire, and Tom Patricola (from
the original George White's Sandals Broadway cast) are interspersed with more novel acts: the Singing Sophomores, the Ipana Troubadours, and Borah Minnevitch & His Harmonica Rascals. The second CD features several tracks of Gershwin's own piano work, but it's the oddballs that make this disc so special. Of all the Gershwin compilations out there, none are so varied in performers and scope--from Broadway tunes to Rhapsody--nor are any this fun. A must-have for
Gershwin fans. --Jason Verlinde”

I should get some kind of sales commission for plugging this CD. I had to agree with his comment, “It’s the oddballs that make this disc so special”. One of my favorite oddball cuts is a Novelty Abridgement of Rhapsody in Blue performed on harmonica; no, that’s for real, on harmonica. Take a chance on this one, just buy it, close your eyes and enjoy a trip in the time machine. I wouldn’t wait too long since it’s out of print and the only ones out there are collector’s items now. (link in title bar) Posted by Picasa

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