Melodies For Romantics
GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD5155
Melodies For Romantics
1 I Dream Too Much (Jerome Kern)
THE MELACHRINO STRINGS Conducted by GEORGE MELACHRINO
HMV DSD 1751 1958
2 The Boy Next Door (from "Meet Me In St. Louis") (Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane – arr. Conrad Salinger)
CONRAD SALINGER ORCHESTRA Conducted by BUDDY BREGMAN
Verve MG VS-6012 1958
3 You Stepped Out Of A Dream (Gus Kahn, Nacio Herb Brown, arr. Frank Cordell)
FRANK CORDELL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV CSD 1251 1958
4 Could It Be You (Cole Porter, arr. Robert Farnon)
ROBERT FARNON AND HIS ORCHESTRA [LP label credits ‘Jack Saunders Orchestra’] Everest SDBR 1011 1958
5 A Foggy Day (George Gershwin, arr. Angela Morley)
ANGELA MORLEY AND HER ORCHESTRA (as ‘WALLY STOTT’)
Philips SBBL 501 1958
6 Central Park Romance (J. George Johnson)
NEW WORLD THEATRE ORCHESTRA
Stereo Fidelity SF-3000 1957
7 The Man I Love (George Gershwin, arr. Morton Gould)
MORTON GOULD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA Victor LSP 1656 1958
8 Soft Lights And Sweet Music; They Say It’s Wonderful (Irving Berlin)
FRANK DE VOL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
CBS AFS 1010 1958
9 When I’m Not Near The Girl I Love (from "Finian’s Rainbow") (Burton Lane, E.Y. Harburg)
WARREN BARKER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Warner Bros. WB 1218 1958
10 Shipboard Romance (Joseph F. Kuhn)
THE RIO CARNIVAL ORCHESTRA
Stereo Fidelity SF-5900 1958
11 Enchantment (Otto Cesana)
OTTO CESANA AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia CL 631 1955
12 The Night Is Young And You’re So Beautiful (Billy Rose, Irving Kahal, Dana Suesse)
GLENN OSSER AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Kapp KL 1022 1956
13 Love Is Where You Find It (Nacio Herb Brown, Earl K. Brent)
MICHAEL FREEDMAN AND THE DEBUTANTES
Oriole MG 20018 1957
14 Temptation (Nacio Herb Brown)
FRANK CHACKSFIELD AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Decca LK 4151 1956
15 Jealousy (Jacob Gade, arr. Sidney Torch)
SIDNEY TORCH AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Parlophone R 3114 1948
16 It Can’t Be Wrong (Max Steiner, arr. Ron Goodwin)
RON GOODWIN AND HIS CONCERT ORCHESTRA
Parlophone PMD 1038 1956
17 Yours (Quiereme Mucho) (Gonzalo Roig, Agustin Rodriguez – arr. Mario Ruiz Armengol)
MARIO RUIZ ARMENGOL AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPM 1292 1956
18 Sur Ma Vie (In My Life) (Charles Aznavour)
BORIS SARBEK AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Epic LN 3317 1956
19 I’m In The Mood For Love (Dorothy Fields, Jimmy McHugh)
JACK PAYNE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
HMV CLP 1160 1958
20 All I Do Is Dream Of You (Arthur Freed, Nacio Herb Brown, arr. Ronald Binge)
RONALD BINGE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA LPM 1458 1957
21 The Kiss In Your Eyes (Richard Heuberger, arr. Eric Jupp)
ERIC JUPP AND HIS ORCHESTRA featuring BILL POVEY, alto sax
Columbia 33SX 1072 1958
22 Too Marvellous For Words (Richard Whiting, Johnny Mercer)
LEROY HOLMES AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3378 1956
23 Besame Mucho (Kiss Me A Lot) (Sunny Skylar, Consuelo Velazquez)
DON AMORE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
RCA Custom RAL 1006 1957
24 Why Do You Pass Me By (Vous Qui Passez Sans Me Voir) (Laurent Hess, Charles Trenet, Paul Misraki)
DAVID ROSE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
MGM E 3067 1953
25 People Will Say We’re In Love (Richard Rodgers)
GEOFF LOVE AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia SX 1060 1957
26 Wedding Day (Norrie Paramor)
NORRIE PARAMOR AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Columbia DB 3443 1954
Stereo: tracks 1-10
Mono: tracks 11-26
The copyright dates after the catalogue numbers state when the original recording was first released, according to printed catalogues and/or information on disc labels or sleeves.
When Long Playing records really caught the public’s attention as the 1950s wore on, many were collections of romantic music played by light orchestras. This era was recaptured by Guild Music in the CD "Amor Amor : Music for Romance" GLCD 5133, and the response from collectors has clearly indicated a desire for more. This time the selection is even more exciting, because it has been possible to include some recordings from the early days of stereo, which have now fallen into the public domain. But – as always – it is the music, not the technology, which is important, so this varied selection also includes some fine performances in glorious mono, which had achieved some amazing improvements in high fidelity during the ten years from the end of the Second World War.
George Miltiades Melachrino (1909-1965) was certainly among the masters of lush light orchestral music. His numerous recordings (especially LPs) sold in large numbers around the world and, in the post-war years, he built up a thriving entertainment organisation also involved in films, theatre and broadcasting. EMI used his talents extensively when stereo arrived, and our opening track I Dream Too Much (probably arranged by his right-hand man, William Hill-Bowen [1918-1964]) surely reveals his orchestra at its peak.
In Guild’s "Strings And Things Go Stereo" collection (GLCD 5153) we profiled one of Hollywood’s great arrangers, Conrad Salinger (1901-1961). Buddy Bregman (b. 1930) A&R Manager of the fledgling Verve Records label took his orchestra into Studio A at Capitol Records on 20 & 21 March 1957 and conducted an album honouring Salinger. Such was Bregman’s esteem for him that he retitled his orchestra ‘The Conrad Salinger Orchestra Conducted by Buddy Bregman’ for the LP "Conrad Salinger – A Lovely Afternoon". For these sessions Salinger recreated some of his memorable scores first heard in movies such as "Meet Me In St Louis", from which comes The Boy Next Door sung in the movie by a wistful Judy Garland.
Frank Cordell (1918-1980) was a fine British composer, arranger and conductor and a regular contributor to Guild Light Music CDs. His work first became noticed through the tuneful backings he often supplied to some contract singers on HMV singles in the 1950s. Occasionally he was allowed his own 78s, and he was also responsible for several fine LPs which quickly became collectors’ items.
Cole Porter’s Could It Be You is another track taken from the recording sessions at Walthamstow Town Hall in London, first featured in Guild’s "Strings And Things Go Stereo" collection (GLCD 5153). At the behest of Elizabeth Taylor, this involved an album of melodies associated with shows and films produced by her late husband, Mike Todd. Robert Farnon (1917-2005) was engaged to arrange and conduct his orchestra, although his name could not appear on the album for contractual reasons. At this time Canadian-born Farnon was much in demand for broadcasting, films and recording; his Decca albums of the 1950s were hailed as arranging masterpieces, and it was claimed that his ideas had influenced the top arrangers of his generation on both sides of the Atlantic.
When Philips Records launched in Britain in 1953, Angela Morley (1924-2009) was placed under contract to arrange and accompany many of their stars. At the time she was working as ‘Wally Stott’ and she was fortunate in being given the opportunity to record many orchestral numbers, both on singles and LPs. In 1958 an album of melodies associated with London (from which comes A Foggy Day) received numerous plaudits from critics and fans alike, and it is still regarded as one of the finest musical tributes to Britain’s capital city. Recorded at the behest of American Columbia as part of their series of LPs featuring capital cities, it was originally destined to be in mono. However, Angela insisted that, as it was for America, it really had to be in stereo, so it turned out to be the first Philips stereo recording made in Britain and they had to hire in the equipment to make it! Angela was also a frequent contributor to the Chappell Recorded Music Library, with several of her works already available for the first time on previous Guild CDs. In her later career she has been much in demand for film scores, and has also assisted leading composers on major projects – working with John Williams on "Star Wars" being a prime example. Her TV credits include "Dallas" and "Dynasty".
Our researches have suggested that it is highly likely that The New World Theatre Orchestra and The Rio Carnival Orchestra may have been the same players used by the American Miller International Company on their bargain basement priced Essex, Somerset and Stereo Fidelity labels. The recordings usually employed various European symphony and radio orchestras and were linked by the name of Joseph F. Kuhn who composed, arranged, scored or conducted most of the early ones. Doubtless there would have been many more had it not been for his untimely death in March 1962 at the age of 37. He was musical director for the Miller International Co., producer of Somerset and Stereo Fidelity record albums and was well known for his recording work in Hollywood, the US east coast and Germany. The composer of Central Park Romance, J. George Johnson, is listed as having written several pieces connected with New York, but so far his musical achievements seem to have escaped the usual reference works.
Morton Gould (1913-1996) became one of the most highly respected American composers, arrangers and conductors, and his distinguished career was crowned with a Pulitzer Prize (for his Stringmusic, commissioned by Mstislav Rostropovich for the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington) just a year before his death at the age of 82. Among his best-known works were the ballet Fall River Legend and American Symphonette No. 3,which became better known as Pavanne (the mis-spelling was deliberate) – a charming version by Jay Wilbur’s Serenaders can be heard on Guild GLCD 5139. From 1986 to 1994 Gould was President of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).
In the USA Frank De Vol (1911-1999) is known primarily as the composer for the radio and TV series "The Brady Bunch", but light music fans appreciate that his career has been far more substantial. It was not uncommon to see the credit ‘Music by De Vol’ on many films, and he started playing violin in cinema orchestras just as the silent films era was coming to an end. In the 1950s his own Hollywood orchestra, called "Music of the Century", played frequently at the Hollywood Palladium. His many motion picture scores included the following which were all nominated for Oscars: the Doris Day/Rock Hudson comedy "Pillow Talk" (1959), "Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte" (1964), "Cat Ballou" (1965), and "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" (1967). Frank also appeared as a character actor in several US television series, such as "I Dream of Jeannie", "Bonanza" and "Petticoat Junction".
Warren Barker (1923-2006) had a career firmly rooted in the film, radio and television studios around Hollywood, and in the 1950s he was a musical director at Warner Bros Records. He also worked on many popular TV series such as "Hawaiian Eye", "Bewitched" and "Daktari" although (like so many indispensable ‘backroom boys’ in the music business) his name didn’t always appear on the credits. Barker has also been associated with the 20th Century Fox, Columbia and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios as composer/conductor for motion pictures and television and in 1969 was on the arranging staff for the Oscar-winning film "Hello Dolly". The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences honoured him in 1970 for his original music in the award-winning series "My World And Welcome To It", based on the life of James Thurber.
All the composers, arrangers and conductors featured in this collection deserve to have their careers profiled in detail, but sadly lack of space prevents this. Many have already been (or are likely on a future occasion to be) given a fairer share of the limelight, but on this occasions the following thumbnail sketches will have to suffice.
Italian-born Otto Cesana (1899-1980) spent much of his career working in Hollywood radio and film studios.
Glenn (Abraham) Osser (b. 1914) was a familiar name in the USA during the 1950s for his work on various television shows, and he became closely associated with the "Miss America" beauty pageants for many years.
Michael Freedman (b. 1911) broadcast fairly regularly on the BBC with his orchestra during the 1950s, including the lady musicians heard on this CD. For many years he played viola in the Philharmonia Orchestra.
Frank Chacksfield (1914-1995) conducted one of the finest light orchestras in the world, and during his long recording career with Decca alone, it is estimated that his albums sold more than 20 million copies. In total he made more than 150 long-playing albums which were released in many countries, especially in Europe, Japan and Australia as well as Britain and America.
Sidney Torch MBE (birth surname Torchinsky, 1908-1990) was one of Britain’s finest theatre organists during the 1930s. Later he concentrated on composing, arranging and conducting light music, and was closely associated with the famous BBC Radio series "Friday Night Is Music Night" for many years.
Ron Goodwin(1925-2003) was a brilliant composer, arranger and conductor, much in demand for film scores and among his best-remembered are "633 Squadron", "Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines" and Alfred Hitchcock’s "Frenzy". In 1994 his talents were recognised when George Martin presented him with the Ivor Novello Award for Lifetime Achievement in Music. His big album sales also earned him gold and platinum discs.
Don Mario Ruiz Armengol (b. 1914) has been regarded as Mexico’s foremost arranger and conductor of popular music, as well as one of its leading composers.
Boris Sarbek (born Boris Saarbecoof, d. 1966) emigrated from Russia to live in France, where his orchestra performed a wide repertoire of popular music. When playing Latin American music he used the pseudonym ‘Oswaldo Berkas’ – the surname being an anagram of ‘Sarbek’. Charlie Chaplin commissioned him to record the music of his film "A King In New York".
Jack Payne (1899-1969) fronted one of Britain’s leading dance bands in the 1920s and 1930s. Later he worked as a disc jockey, although he returned to the conductor’s podium in 1958 for an HMV LP of lush orchestral music, arranged by Dick Barrell, Brian Fahey and Tony Osborne.
Ronald Binge (1910-1979) is destined to remain forever remembered as the gifted arranger who designed the ‘cascading strings’ effect for Mantovani, but his true achievements deserve far greater recognition. He was a prolific composer in his own right - Elizabethan Serenade, The Watermill, Miss Melanie and BBC Radio-4’s closing music Sailing By are just four favourites. He also ventured into more serious territory with his Saxophone Concerto in 1956, and his Saturday Symphony a decade later.
Eric Jupp (1922-2003) was well-known in Britain for his recordings and broadcasts, before emigrating to Australia in the 1960s where he was similarly successful – especially for his theme for the television series "Skippy The Bush Kangaroo".
Leroy Holmes (born Alvin Holmes, 1913-1986) scored Hollywood films and radio programmes during his early career, before becoming one of the mainstays of MGM’s conducting ‘team’, also arranging many of their recordings.
Don Amore is remembered for his ‘lounge music’ in the USA, but precise details of his career are elusive.
David Rose(1910-1990) was a brilliant composer and conductor, who will always be remembered for Holiday For Strings (1942) and the satirical number The Stripper (1962).
Yorkshireman Geoff Love (1917-1991) succeeded in so many musical fields during his busy career. Internationally he achieved success as ‘Manuel and his Music of the Mountains’ although his identity was a secret for many years.
Norman William (Norrie) Paramor (1914-1979) tended to be better known by the public for his work with pop stars on EMI’s Columbia label, but he also made numerous instrumental recordings and wrote several catchy numbers that greatly appealed – such as Wedding Day which appropriately completes this collection.
© David Ades 2009