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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Bert Thompson, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf

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The Great American Songbook

Not Now NOT2CD 221



CD 1
1. They Can't Take That Away From Me
2. Body And Soul
3. Polka Dots And Moonbeams
4. If I Knew Then (What I Know Now)
5. Lover Man
6. I Cried For You
7. Prelude To A Kiss
8. Deep Purple
9. Perdido
10. Summertime
11. Just Friends
12. Thinking Of You
13. Ain't Misbehavin'
14. Goodnight My Love
15. Can't Get Out Of This Mood
16. I'll Know
17. Street Of Dreams
18. I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter
19. Once In A While
20. Trouble Is A Man
21. Everything I Have Is Yours
22. I Get A Kick Out Of You
23. A Hundred Years From Today
24. It's Magic
25. It's You Or No One
CD 2
1. Give Me A Song With A Beautiful Melody
2. Nice Work If You Can Get It
3. My Funny Valentine
4. Come Rain Or Come Shine
5. It's Easy To Remember
6. Whatever Lola Wants
7. Mr. Wonderful
8. Embraceable You
9. You Hit The Spot
10. April In Paris
11. It Might As Well Be Spring
12. The Nearness Of You
13. Spring Will Be A Little Late This Year
14. Come Along With Me
15. East Of The Sun (And West Of the Moon)
16. My One And Only Love
17. September Song
18. He's My Guy
19. Black Coffee
20. Tenderly
21. Honey
22. Linger Awhile


Sarah Vaughan was renowned as one of the most technically proficient of all jazz vocalists. She sang confidently in tune and had a wide range which enabled her to reach notes that escaped other singers. And she was expert in phrasing, as you can hear right from the first track of this generous double disc. Notice how, in They Can't Take That Away From Me, she soars upwards on the line "The mem'ry of all that". And "The way you sing off key" is underlined by her deliberately singing off key. Yet she could be careless about lyrics, singing such a peculiar line as "The way you hold your hat".

Sarah had the skill to keep listeners' attention by being unpredictable, transforming songs by taking them to unexpected places. For instance, in Thinking Of You, she spreads the word "you" across at least ten different notes. At the beginning of the live recording of Everything I Have Is Yours, she holds the first note for several seconds before swooping downwards into the song.

The minimal sleeve-notes supply no personnel listings, although Sarah may be playing the piano on some tracks, as she was a good pianist. I particularly enjoy tracks like Ain't Misbehavin', where she is backed by a small jazz group including tenor sax, trombone and clarinet - or tracks 8 to 10 on the second CD, where she is joined simply by a piano trio.

Sarah Vaughan had two nicknames: "the divine one" and "Sassy". This compilation supplies proof that she sang divinely as well as with sassiness. And the unbelievably low price of this double album makes it an essential purchase for anyone starting their Sarah Vaughan collection.

Tony Augarde

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