A unique release in the Collectors' Choice line-up of reissuing estimable Bing Crosby LPs to CD, Bing on Broadway has never been otherwise issued, being a gatherum of standards from venerated musicals Crosby took a pronounced shine to. With Rod Stewart having published a four disc almanac of The American Songbook not long ago, and with the proven popularity of similar such efforts over the last 20 years, the timing couldn't be better. This anthology of 19 cuts is culled from two different versions of the Bing Crosby Show radio programs of the mid-50s ('54 - '56), and, of course, when Bing tackles them, they gain that dimension of swing native to the singer's affinities.
Yep, El Señor Bing was noted for his highly Romantic "bubba-bubba-boo" crooning (parodied so omnipresently in cartoons of the time), but he was really a jazz singer at heart…not far from Chet Baker, really, when you take the time to consider it. The two were hopeless mooncalves and thank the Muses for that. Here, Buddy Cole & His Trio strip away the orchestral trappings and deliver a more Nat King Cole-ish atmosphere, Buddy's keyboards dominating. If you dug the classic versions rendered by Rod, Carly Simon, Toni Tenille, and others, then this is another disc that's a must, though from the era when the songs were much fresher and still being interpreted for their own posterity.
Bing was always Bing and, even when practically doing The Lindy during Crazy Rhythm, the listener received his trademark E-Z listening stylings with pepper and cream, alternating between midnight ballads and dance hall vigor in velvet tones and inflections. But Not for Me gives ample demonstration of the satin tones he could command at will while It's Only a Paper Moon jumps up the sass—though nicely, as a Boy Scout might convey it—and tempo a bit, wistful and bright…here with orchestral backing as the disc switches from Buddy Cole's embellishments to John Trotter & His Orchestra for a Nelson Riddle / Henry Mancini styled ambiance.
What's not to like?
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2010, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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