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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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TEX BENEKE

Here's to the Ladies (Who Sang with the Band)

Sounds of Yester Year DSOY 829

 

 


1. Passé - Lillian Lane
2. Come Rain or Come Shine - Lillian Lane
3. Can't Help Lovin' That Man - Claire Chatwin
4. A Wonderful Guy - Claire Chatwin
5. Until - Mary Mayo
6. Again - Mary Mayo
7. The Tunnel of Love - Helen Lee & Tex Beneke
8. Dreamin' is my Business - Helen Lee
9. Orange Coloured Sky - Eydie Gormé
10. Too Young - Eydie Gormé
11. Would I Love You - Shirley Wilson
12. Too Marvellous for Words - Shirley Wilson
13. This Can't be Love - Joan Cavanaugh
14. I Talk to the Trees - Joan Cavanaugh
15. The Man I Love - Shirley Jones
16. The Breeze - Shirley Jones
17. Three Coins in the Fountain - Lois Lane
18. The Man I Love - Lois Lane
19. Try a Little Tenderness - Barbara Edwards
20. Love Me or Leave Me - Barbara Edwards
21. Ballad of the Alamo - Tex Beneke
22. The Green Leaves of Summer - Tex Beneke
23. The Green Leaves of Summer - Tex Beneke
24. Tennessee Babe - Tex Beneke
25. Tennessee Babe - Tex Beneke
26. Here's to the Ladies - Tex Beneke

Tracks 1 to 8: Tex Beneke and the Glenn Miller Orchestra.
Tracks 9 to 20: Tex Beneke and his Orchestra
Tracks 21 to 26: Tex Beneke with arranger Ray Martin & Orchestra

 

Tenor-saxophonist Tex Beneke was a long-time corner man in the Glenn Miller Band and after Glenn's demise he took over the leadership. The music of Glenn Miller is still extremely popular today, which proves just what a good judge of taste Glenn was. Tex was not of course the only person to front the Miller band, it had many different leaders as the years went by, one of the more famous being clarinettist Buddy DeFranco.

Tex formed his own band and tracks 9 to 20 feature that outfit, but the Miller influence flows through the whole of his career. The arrangements played by Tex's band are a little bit more adventurous than those used by Glenn, but my guess is that, had Glenn lived, his music would have continued to develop anyway.

This record however is devoted to the various ladies who sang with the band, apart from the last 5 tracks where Tex does the vocal honours. Every one of them is a class act and it would be interesting to know what became of them. Only the names of Eydie Gormé and Lois Lane rang a bell with me. The musicianship of the backings was top class, as you would expect from bands playing all the top spots in the USA and at that time there were a lot of them!

The final tracks feature Tex on tenor sax and vocals and they come from Tex's "Alamo" album. He sings on four of the five tracks and his Texas drawl suits the songs, but he was not one of the star vocalists of the era! The two versions of Green Leaves of Summer are one vocal and one instrumental; strangely the saxophone sounds like an alto to me! Here's to the Ladies is a jolly play-on or play-off tune.

This record is a wonderful piece of nostalgia which I thoroughly enjoyed. Well done Sounds of Yester Year for putting it together.

Don Mather



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