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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 II

SOUNDS OF YESTERYEAR DSOY841

 

 

  1. All The Things You Are
  2. What A Deal!
  3. I Can't Begin To Tell You (vocal: Bob Eberly)
  4. Love Letters (vocal: Bob Eberly)
  5. Yesterdays
  6. Patience And Fortitude
  7. Down Honeymoon Lane (I'll Be Walking With My Honey)
  8. I Didn't Mean A Word I Said
  9. Aren't You Glad You're You?
  10. I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Baby - with Benny Goodman (cl), Mel Powell (p) and Cozy Cole (d)
  11. Sweet Georgia Brown - with Benny Goodman (cl), Mel Powell (p) and Cozy Cole (d)
  12. If I Had A Dozen Hearts
  13. It's A Grand night For Singing
  14. Old Man Harlem
  15. Falling In Love With Love
  16. A Little Consideration
  17. Oye Negra (Xavier Cugat conducting The Lloyd Shafer Orchestra)
  18. Day By Day
  19. I'll Remember April
  20. My Romance
  21. Doctor, Lawyer, Indian Chief
  22. They Say Its Wonderful
  23. Closing Theme: All The Things You Are.
Collective Personnel: Lloyd Shafer and his Orchestra, Carl Kress and his orchestra, Xavier Cugat, Helen Carroll and the Satisfiers
rec. February-April 1946 [57:20]

 

Jo Stafford made a number of broadcasts in wartime or the immediate post-war period. She made 'Melody Hour' for the Armed Forces Radio Service programme, and she shared the 'Supper Club' broadcasts with the young Perry Como. She had long since left behind membership of the Pied Pipers, and was busily making her way as a single.

In volume 2 of this series we have songs from seven such broadcasts. The notes don't help one here, but these are clearly not the complete broadcasts, just numbers from them with some introduction, and chat (but not all chat) retained. For a dyed in the wool jazz fan this near hour long disc will sound very anodyne. But then Stafford was not, and never pretended to be, a jazz singer. She was a fine and very popular singer, who may often have been backed by swing or show bands, but never moved in the jazz direction.

The scripted introductions, where they have been included, are predictably horrible. And we must note that Stafford doesn't sing on every tack, by any means. In fact Bob Eberly croons a couple of songs in the very first show, and does so in pleasing enough, sub-Crosby fashion. Yesterdays gets a standout arrangement, which is quite voluptuous, with strings and a harp, but the recording quality is unfortunately cloudy for 1946. Helen Carroll and the Satisfiers assist in the second programme, where we only hear from Stafford once. A welcome guest is Benny Goodman, who turns up with pianist Mel Powell and drummer Cozy Cole to inject a much needed sense of vitality. Powell is especially praiseworthy.

There are no opportunities for the orchestral bandsmen to take any solos, as they're there to provide punch for the intros and outros rather than reveal any deep seated jazz affiliations. Xavier Cugat's bold personality comes across the years and his patter with Stafford sounds nicely done. It's not with Cugar, but with Carl Kress and his orchestra, that we get the single best singing of the disc-My Romance, which is beautifully done.

This is one for aficionados of preserved broadcasts and ballad singers of the 40s and 50s.

Jonathan Woolf





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