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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



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JO STAFFORD

At the Supper Club, Part III

Sounds of Yester Year DSOY 851

 

 


1. All the Things You Are
2. It's Only a Paper Moon
3. Come Back to Sorrento
4. My Guys Come Back
5. Tampico
6. Give Me the Simple Life
7. Thou Swell
8. I'm Always Chasing Rainbows
9. Catfish, Take a Look at that Worm
10. Tumblin' Tumbleweeds
11. Storybook Romance
12. Ol' Man River
13. When Your Lover Has Gone
14. I May Be Wrong
15. I Don't Know Enough About You
16. You Always Hurt the One You Love
17. Sometimes I'm Happy
18. Love is So Terrific
19. Smoke Dreams
20. 'S Wonderful
21. Poor Butterfly
22. Girls Were Made to Take Care of Boys
23. Buttons and Bows
24. The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down
25. One Mornin'
26. Medley: Smoke Dreams/Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
27. Smoke Dreams
28. Always True to You in My Fashion
29. He's Gone Away
30. Medley: Sleepy Time Down South/Memphis Blues
31. Powder Your Face With Sunshine
32. Smoke Dreams

Jo Stafford - Vocals
The Starlighters
Woody Herman - Clarinet, vocals
Smiley Burnette - Vocals
Phil Moore Trio
Mills Brothers
Lloyd Shaffer & his Orchestra
Paul Weston & his Orchestra
Helen Carroll & the Satisfiers

 

Some of the other Sounds of Yester Year albums of 1940s material are marred by the intrusion of corny comedians or extrovert presenters. Thankfully, this CD offers few such distractions but gives us music most of the way. We even have the treat of Woody Herman singing as well as playing fine clarinet solos on Come Back to Sorrento and Tampico, and the Mills Brothers providing their unique blend of close-harmony vocals and voiced instruments in tracks 15 and 16.

But the main attraction is Jo Stafford, with that pure, clear voice and endearing delivery. It is hard to pick out highlights, as she sings every song to perfection, but one can mention It's Only a Paper Moon, which Stafford sings with jazz freedom; I'm Always Chasing Rainbows (which Jo introduces as "inspired by Chopin's Fantasie Impromptu"); the touching When Your Lover Has Gone; Sometimes I'm Happy (which Jo sings as a slow ballad); and the poignant folk song He's Gone Away. Track 30 is an attractive medley about the Mississippi and New Orleans. Smoke Dreams crops up several times on the album and Paul Weston introduces his band with the theme - once in a medley with Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (not These FoolishThings as it says on the sleeve).

I could have bypassed country singer Smiley Burnette's Catfish, Take a Look at that Worm but it leads Jo Stafford into performing the catchy Tumblin' Tumbleweeds. The Phil Moore Trio only appears on one track, but it's good to hear them on Ol' Man River for the jazzy trumpet and rhythm, despite a mannered vocal.

The recording quality is sometimes fuzzy or boxy but acceptable for the quality of most of the music.

Tony Augarde
www.augardebooks.co.uk



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