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The Golden Age of Light Music – Light and Easy
Track-listing below
rec. 1947-60


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The Golden Age of Light Music – Light and Easy
Track-listing below
rec. 1947-60
We’ve had ‘Bright and Breezy’, and now it’s time for ‘Light and Easy’. It’s just a convenient handle on which to hang more tracks from the genre in recordings made between 1947 and 1960. The orchestras and associated maestri are very well known by now and for those versed in the genre there will be nothing but pleasure.
You couldn’t open with much more of a stunner than Leroy Anderson’s Pyramid Dance, a dazzling piece of bravura originally heard in the musical Goldilocks. It’s from a rip-roaring 1960 Brunswick. It’s followed by The Clebanoff Strings and Orchestra essaying Mack the Knife. They remove it wholly from its Weimar milieu and transplant it to the sunny West Coast with considerable alacrity. The result is more David Hockney than Otto Dix, but there you go. There’s an unusually brooding I Love Paris from the Paris Theatre Orchestra and a well recorded 1957 Paxton from Dolf van der Linden of Cyril Watters’ On A Cheerful Note. On the subject of record labels, one of the consistent features of this long series has been the way it has mixed and matched from the big companies and the smaller fry – all have valuable recordings to offer. So RCA and Mercury share space with Urania and Somerset and we profit thereby.
Bruce Campbell gives us one of the best things here, an alluringly ardent Main Line, though Sidney Torch’s recording of Philip Green’s Pan American Panorama offers richly orchestrated vistas. Part of this Guild disc is programmed to present a ‘holiday’ theme, a typically droll piece of work from a company that does this kind of thing with tongue firmly attached to cheek – sometimes, at least. The Las Vegas Lady has been around a bit, geographically speaking, but don’t confuse her with plain Las Vegas which, in this Laurie Johnson-Group-Forty Orchestra recording, became widely known as the theme song for BBC TV’s Animal Magic.
Kermit Leslie provides outstanding work on Bermuda Holiday – taut sectional contributions and interjections make this one really fly. I think I know what Bernie Wayne was trying to do in Blues on the Rocks on a 1957 ABC LP. It’s just that this Gershwin-and-Bourbon number falls between the stools in attempting mini-piano concerto status. Tune in, instead, to the echo chamber strings swinging hard on David Rose’s 4.20 AM. The elite Pittsburgh Strings shine on Stella by Starlight – a beautifully performed piece. For instrumental fans Ronnie Chamberlain takes the soprano sax solo for Frank Cordell on There’s A Lull in My Life.
Once again there’s plenty of romance, vitality and verve in this well transferred selection, complete with typically fine booklet notes.
Jonathan Woolf
Plenty of romance, vitality and verve.
Pyramid Dance (also known as "Heart of Stone" from the musical "Goldilo 3:16
Leroy Anderson and his orchestra
Mack The Knife (also known as "Moritat" from "The Threepenny Opera") 2:18
The Clebanoff Strings and Orchestra
I Love Paris (from "Can Can") 4:20
Paris Theatre Orchestra
Light And Easy 2:56
The Symphonia Orchestra/Curt Andersen
On A Cheerful Note 2:27
Dolf van der Linden and his orchestra
Wind-Bells 2:05
Mahlon Merrick and his orchestra
A Cup Of Coffee, A Sandwich And You 2:12
John Clegg and his orchestra
Main Line 2:53
Bruce Campbell and his orchestra
Fashion Show 2:40
Telecast Orchestra/Angela Morley
Pan American Panorama 2:40
Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra/Sidney Torch
Las Vegas Lady 2:51
New Century Orchestra/Erich Börschel
Hilltop Holiday 2:29
Cosmopolitan Orchestra/Phillipo Andez
Bermuda Holiday 2:09
Kermit Leslie and his orchestra
Las Vegas 2:26
Group-Forty Orchestra/Laurie Johnson
Gay Time 2:04
New Century Orchestra/Erich Börschel
Blues On the Rocks, Concerto 6:49
Bernie Wayne and his orchestra
4:20 AM 2:50
David Rose and his orchestra
Lazy Day 2:54
Leslie Jones and his Orchestra of London
I'll Be Seeing You 2:50
Glenn Osser and his orchestra
Now I Know (from the film "Up in Arms") 2:51
Reg Owen and his orchestra
This Might Be Love 3:20
Acquaviva and his orchestra
Stella By Starlight 3:07
Pittsburgh Strings/Richard Jones
More Than You Know (from the musical "Great Day") 3:12
Robert Farnon and his orchestra
There's A Lull In My Life (from the film "Wake Up and Live") 3:16
Frank Cordell and his orchestra featuring Ronnie Chamberlain (soprano saxophone)
Waitin' For The Dawn 3:31
Cyril Stapleton and his orchestra
That's All 3:06
Henry Mancini and his orchestra

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