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Maybe it's amusing. Maybe I should go to sleep. This, scanned… - Blather, Rinse, Repeat
September 18th, 2004
11:21 pm

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Maybe it's amusing. Maybe I should go to sleep.


This, scanned in, without editing (because I'm sleepy) from the back of a record entitled "Great Songs of the 60's". Which was, if you look carefully on the front "created exclusively for SAFEWAY". That, in itself, is a bit of a culture shock - albums proudly saying that they're going straight-to-grocery-store distribution.

Nothing too laugh-out-loud funny here, just a time capsule of stuff that was new once.


We all know what makes a song-words set to music or, in some cases, music composed to fit words. But what makes a song great? A catchy, unforgettable melody? Some would say so. Others would hold that it is the sentiment, the "story" that its words have to tell, that lifts a song above the ordinary. Never mind; the important matter is that although many songs capture the public's ear, only a handful of songs capture and hold the public's heart.

GREAT SONGS OF THE 60's come from the musical stage, the movies, that legendary mid-Manhattan area we affectionately call Tin Pan Alley, the folk tradition of America, even from as far away as Brazil. These twelve songs are heard in vocal arrangements for solo singers or chorus, dance bands, a folk-singing group and large symphonic orchestra. A variety of songs, a variety of presentations, but all have that indefinable quality making them hits that people the world over have listened to, enjoyed, and listened to again and again.

To open, vocalist Jerry Vale takes us to Camelot, the mythical kingdom of old King Arthur, via Lerner and Loewe's recent Broad- way show. After the Ray Conniff Singers sing the lilting title tune from the film "Never on Sunday," Eydie Gorme lends her special sparkle and verve to Moon River, Academy Award-winning song from "Breakfast at Tiffany's." From Brazil comes a captivating rhythm that some have described as a sort of jazz samba. Portu- guese-speaking Brazilians call it bossa nova ("something new"), and here is Andre Kostelanetz's full-orchestra treatment of one of the best bossa nova tunes, Desafinado. Vic Damone returns us to "Camelot" with his singing of an impassioned song from the show, If Ever I Would Leave You. From another hit Broadway musical comes I Believe in You, from "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying." The music is played by Lester Lanin's celebrated makes-you-want-to-dance orchestra.

To begin Side Two, The New Christy Minstrels, as happy-go-lucky and talented a group of ten singers and instrumentalists as you could want, sing and play 'Green, Green, a folk song of ramblin' and wanderin'. Then, after a singing rage named Patti Page offers the haunting Fly M~ to the Moon, smooth-voiced Steve Lawrence tells us all about Ramblin' Rose. One of the songs of the 60's which swept the country as soon as it appeared is the plaintive, nostalgic (I Left My Heart) In San Francisco. Buddy Greco makes it clear why this song is such a favorite with vocalists and audiences. After Ernie Heckscher and his orchestra give I Wanna Be Around an infectious dance treatment, Tony Bennett tops off the album with his fine version of This Is All I Ask.

Memorable songs-exciting performances--GREAT SONGS OF THE 60's!


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