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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Don Mather, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf, Glyn Pursglove



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PEGGY LEE

Diva

Delta Leisure 26596

 

 




1. The Man I Love
2. Please Be Kind
3. Happiness is a Thing Called Joe
4. (Just One Way to Say) I Love You
5. Thatís All
6. Something Wonderful
7. Heís My Guy
8. Then Iíll Be Tired of You
9. My Heart Stood Still
10. There is No Greater Love
11. If I Should Lose You
12. The Folks Who Live on the Hill
13. Oh, Didnít He Ramble
14. Iím Gonnaí Meet My Sweetie Now
15. Somebody Loves Me
16. Sugar
17. Bye Bye Blackbird
18. He Needs Me
19. I Never Knew
20. What Can I Say After I Say Iím Sorry
21. Sing a Rainbow
 

Like most of the great singers of the past, Peggy Lee served her time as a Big Band vocalist, particularly her time with the Benny Goodman Orchestra. Goodman was a perfectionist and nothing less would do from his musicians, his singers or for that matter himself. Born in the USA of Scandinavian parents, Peggy Lee did not enjoy a very happy childhood, but maybe this helped her resolve to make it to the top. The features of her performance were perfect diction, perfect pitching and a voice which is immediately recognisable. Equally at home with a small group or big band, she made some excellent records. The ones she recorded with George Shearingís Quintet were perfection, unfortunately none of those tracks are in this recording. 

These recordings made with a large orchestra, including strings, contain some great tunes: a glance down the list of titles confirms this. I enjoyed hearing again Then Iíll Be Tired of You, There is No Greater Love and The Folks Who Live on the Hill, each a classic example of the standard tune. 

The backing changes to a Dixieland combo for the tracks from the film Pete Kellyís Blues. She used her superb acting talents as well in the film. These tracks start at track 14; unfortunately no personnel details are given in the sleeve notes. These are very difficult to read, being printed in small red letters on a black background! Personally I prefer Peggy in this more jazz-influenced background, but I have never heard a poor Peggy Lee record and I donít expect I ever will! What Can I Say After I Say Iím Sorry has a nice tenor solo in the middle and has a great musical feel and conviction about it. 

Sing Me a Rainbow is a Peggy Lee classic that sounds just as fresh as when it was released. 

Peggy Lee was a high-quality vocalist and later in her life a composer and actress. This record celebrates a significant singer in the jazz world. Even though she did not go in for scat singing or straying too far from the tune, she always delivered quality in everything she did. 

Don Mather



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