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Go ahead, cry me a river.


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A lot of "pop" hits in the mid '50's came from much earlier sources.  to whit:

ETTA JAMES had a big hit with "At Last" in 1960, but as you know, the Harry Warren/Mack Gordon tune was from 1942's movie ORCHESTRA WIVES.

THE MOONGLOWS made "I Only Have Eyes For You" a popular hit in 1959, but that Warren/Dubin  tune came from the 1934 flick DAMES.

SLAUGHTER ON 10th AVENUE from the Broadway show ON YOUR TOES(1936) was a big hit for THE VENTURES when they did their version in 1964.

There's more, but I'm running out of time.

Sepiatone

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7 hours ago, Sepiatone said:

A lot of "pop" hits in the mid '50's came from much earlier sources.  to whit:

ETTA JAMES had a big hit with "At Last" in 1960, but as you know, the Harry Warren/Mack Gordon tune was from 1942's movie ORCHESTRA WIVES.

THE MOONGLOWS made "I Only Have Eyes For You" a popular hit in 1959, but that Warren/Dubin  tune came from the 1934 flick DAMES.

SLAUGHTER ON 10th AVENUE from the Broadway show ON YOUR TOES(1936) was a big hit for THE VENTURES when they did their version in 1964.

There's more, but I'm running out of time.

Sepiatone

Sepiatone, The Flamingos recorded and had a big hit with I Only Have Eyes For You, not The Moonglows. It has always been my favorite recording of the song and that group deserves to be remembered correctly for that great song. 

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2 hours ago, lavenderblue19 said:

Sepiatone, The Flamingos recorded and had a big hit with I Only Have Eyes For You, not The Moonglows. It has always been my favorite recording of the song and that group deserves to be remembered correctly for that great song. 

Thanks, Lav--

I Only Have Eyes For You is one of my favorite songs and I always like to keep track of who records it.

Art Garfunkel had a beautiful arrangement of it and a hit record with it in the mid-70s.

Ironically, the first time I ever heard that song in a movie, it was not Dick Powell in the Busby Berkeley movie, but Al Jolson  singing it in Jolson Sings Again , by way of Larry Parks.

And more irony here, when Dick Powell first sang it in the movie Dames, he sang it to Al Jolson's current wife at the time, Ruby Keeler.

Harry Warren and Al Dubin wrote a lot of great songs, but that had to be, just about,  the most beautiful one of the lot.

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I played all the versions of "Cry Me A River" on this thread (except Justin Timberlake) and I liked Julie London's version the best, Sam Cooke at #2.  The instrumentals are soft and don't get in the way of the vocals.  It is a torch song and I think Julie did the best to convey this.

I like Barbra Streisand overall but she does sing this as a show tune and the instrumentals interfere.  Sorry; just my opinion.

I'm also going to contradict myself somewhat and say I like the Joe Cocker's interpretation, too, but this may be part nostalgia as I recall fondly his performances with his passionate voice backed by Leon Russell with his flowing hair and tall hat. 

Overall, Julie London's version is #1 for my taste.  Plus, as a little kid, I remember Julie as the great singer before she did the EMERGENCY TV show.

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16 hours ago, lavenderblue19 said:

Sepiatone, The Flamingos recorded and had a big hit with I Only Have Eyes For You, not The Moonglows. It has always been my favorite recording of the song and that group deserves to be remembered correctly for that great song. 

Yeah, I goofed.  And I apologize to both this August gathering here and to all remaining members of The Flamingos. :huh:

Sepiatone

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1 hour ago, Sepiatone said:

Yeah, I goofed.  And I apologize to both this August gathering here and to all remaining members of The Flamingos. :huh:

Sepiatone

Terrific Rendition--when I think of this song, I first think of The Platters doing Smoke Gets In Your Eyes. I think they did it before the Flamingos did their pop standard. I just bought these songs on a couple of  CD 's--Top 40 hits of 1958 and 1959.

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1 hour ago, Princess of Tap said:

Terrific Rendition--when I think of this song, I first think of The Platters doing Smoke Gets In Your Eyes. I think they did it before the Flamingos did their pop standard. I just bought these songs on a couple of  CD 's--Top 40 hits of 1958 and 1959.

Both Smoke Gets in Your Eyes by the Platters and I Only Have Eyes for You by The Flamingos are 2 of my very favorites from that time period. Loved them as a child, love them now. Truly classic songs and my favorite versions. They were both great songs to slow dance to, so romantic. Both songs and those versions bring back a lot of great memories for me.

The Flamingos version of I Only Have Eyes for You was used many times in films. Just to name some, My Girl, The Right Stuff, American Graffiti, A Bronx Tale, Something To Talk About.

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7 hours ago, lavenderblue19 said:

Both Smoke Gets in Your Eyes by the Platters and I Only Have Eyes for You by The Flamingos are 2 of my very favorites from that time period. Loved them as a child, love them now. Truly classic songs and my favorite versions. They were both great songs to slow dance to, so romantic. Both songs and those versions bring back a lot of great memories for me.

The Flamingos version of I Only Have Eyes for You was used many times in films. Just to name some, My Girl, The Right Stuff, American Graffiti, A Bronx Tale, Something To Talk About.

Both songs are considered jazz standards but these two solid versions by 'pop' artist,  done decades after the songs were written,   are now the definitive (most popular),   version.    Just goes to show that a well written song can continue to be popular,  generation after generation,   with 'new' adaptations standing on their own.

 

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On 1/14/2018 at 5:58 PM, slaytonf said:

I just had a chance to listen to Bobby Darin's rendition of "Cry Me a River."  He does it in his usual masterful style.  It's unfortunate the band was so loud, it drowns him out.  

 

I assume so too.  It's the one on YouTube.  It's fine until the last minute, and then--oh, well.

Slay-- it's fascinating to me what you proposed in this thread on "Cry Me a River".

I used to do something similar in the 60s with current popular songs  and the album Renditions from pop singers who were on all different kinds of levels-- the Great and the good, along with tha average and mediocre. It was an interesting experiment.

For example, a very difficult song from " Stop the World I Want To Get Off"by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricasse was:

"What Kind of Fool Am I?" 

it's very unusual that a person who actually writes a show tune song would also record it competitively but, in this case, Newly was also starring in the show, so he made the rounds on television singing it. He starred in both the London and Broadway shows,  so he's featured prominently  in both of those original cast recordings, 1961 and 62 respectively.

Later Sammy Davis jr. Did the Revival on Broadway and continued singing the song throughout his career. Sammy's Broadway  cast recording  was in 1978, but he had a hit record with it 1962.

( Sammy performed that live in 62  on The Andy Williams Show, see YouTube.)

Obviously both Newly and Davis could handle the material up to specs, but it was interesting to see other  singers,  on various levels of ability, attempt this very difficult number because it was so popular at the time.

 

2 TV stars did just that - - Andy Williams recorded the number on his legendary Days of Wine and Roses album. Not surprisingly, he  came up to specs and then some. 

Another TV star George Maharis from Route 66 had become so popular at this time that he was selling well on the album side. His first album featured the song called "Get Your Kicks on Route 66"-- Julie London's long-time husband Bobby Troup wrote that one.

Anyway, George considered himself to be a pretty good singer and he handled some material fairly well, but when it came to this ballbusting number, he just didn't have it. But he entered the competitive arena, so it's fair to compare him to everyone else.

People like West Side Story Oscar winner George Chakiris and TV doctors, Richard Chamberlain and Vince Edwards, all had albums out, singing standards and the latest pop tunes trying to compete with the likes of Sinatra, Mathis, Williams and Jack Jones.

 But it was fun to listen to the different Arrangements to see how each artist would approach the same material.

 

And by the way, the only song that no other rendition could ever really compete with at that time was Tony Bennett singing:

"I Left My Heart in San Francisco". There was just something about the way he sang it. LOL

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And with the still gasping "trend" of artists from many other varying genres still putting out their versions of "The Great American Songbook" it only gets worse.  To whit( and IMHO):

Even played at low volume, ANY one of ROD STEWART'S four volumes of his attempts at these will give you tinnitus.

Sepiatone 

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5 hours ago, Sepiatone said:

And with the still gasping "trend" of artists from many other varying genres still putting out their versions of "The Great American Songbook" it only gets worse.  To whit( and IMHO):

Even played at low volume, ANY one of ROD STEWART'S four volumes of his attempts at these will give you tinnitus.

Sepiatone 

It's funny you should mention that. In the grocery store the other day they were playing Rod Stewart trying to sing one of those songs.

I was never the biggest fan of Rod Stewart, but I did enjoy some of his " Sexy " songs.

Now he's gotten too old to maintain a high Rock stance and he thinks he can go over to  American pop standards and still make a living.

No doubt, some of his big fans will stick with him but, he's not  qualified for that kind of music.

 

One rock star who is now dead really had an unbelievable versatile ability and could sing a number of those standards very well.

I Went to a concert once and saw Robert Palmer, just about the time when he was just hitting number one with Addicted To Love.

 He had an unbelievably beautiful crooners voice, in addition to his credibility as a Blues artist and his great Rock persona.

Robert Palmer was quite a unique artist.

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Music in the Air (1934) is an odd but enjoyable film, based on a 1932 Kern/Hammerstein Broadway show. Odd because, in hindsight, it's about a bunch of Bavarians cavorting around in lederhosen, singing and dancing just before the Nazis come to power.

Two songs from the show/film became standards: "I've Told Every Little Star," sung in the film by Douglass Montgomery and just about everyone else; and "The Song Is You." Linda Scott had a big hit with the former in 1961; Frank Sinatra and many others had huge hits with the latter. (Gloria Swanson sings in the movie, but not in those songs, as I recall.)

MV5BMTM2MjIwOTcwMV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNTM4

 

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21 hours ago, Princess of Tap said:

Slay-- it's fascinating to me what you proposed in this thread on "Cry Me a River".

I used to do something similar in the 60s with current popular songs  and the album Renditions from pop singers who were on all different kinds of levels-- the Great and the good, along with tha average and mediocre. It was an interesting experiment.

For example, a very difficult song from " Stop the World I Want To Get Off"by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricasse was:

"What Kind of Fool Am I?" 

it's very unusual that a person who actually writes a show tune song would also record it competitively but, in this case, Newly was also starring in the show, so he made the rounds on television singing it. He starred in both the London and Broadway shows,  so he's featured prominently  in both of those original cast recordings, 1961 and 62 respectively.

Later Sammy Davis jr. Did the Revival on Broadway and continued singing the song throughout his career. Sammy's Broadway  cast recording  was in 1978, but he had a hit record with it 1962.

( Sammy performed that live in 62  on The Andy Williams Show, see YouTube.)

Obviously both Newly and Davis could handle the material up to specs, but it was interesting to see other  singers,  on various levels of ability, attempt this very difficult number because it was so popular at the time.

 

2 TV stars did just that - - Andy Williams recorded the number on his legendary Days of Wine and Roses album. Not surprisingly, he  came up to specs and then some. 

Another TV star George Maharis from Route 66 had become so popular at this time that he was selling well on the album side. His first album featured the song called "Get Your Kicks on Route 66"-- Julie London's long-time husband Bobby Troup wrote that one.

Anyway, George considered himself to be a pretty good singer and he handled some material fairly well, but when it came to this ballbusting number, he just didn't have it. But he entered the competitive arena, so it's fair to compare him to everyone else.

People like West Side Story Oscar winner George Chakiris and TV doctors, Richard Chamberlain and Vince Edwards, all had albums out, singing standards and the latest pop tunes trying to compete with the likes of Sinatra, Mathis, Williams and Jack Jones.

 But it was fun to listen to the different Arrangements to see how each artist would approach the same material.

 

And by the way, the only song that no other rendition could ever really compete with at that time was Tony Bennett singing:

"I Left My Heart in San Francisco". There was just something about the way he sang it. LOL

It's natural for someone like me to think of comparing renditions.  I listen to jazz mostly.  A hallmark of it is different people doing their take on a song.  They take a slow standard and swing it, or give a tune a bossa nova beat.  Or they sing it the way it is commonly performed.  Then you can find out if the singer knows how to sing.  As you know from experience, someone who doesn't know how can take all the life out of a song, leaving you thinking "that song's not so good, wonder why I thought it was."  

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Know what you mean.  In another forum we're in one thread, going on about "Interesting covers".  And most joining in post YT clips of many.  Some are interesting, in that they do show another and creative approach to the original, some are even much BETTER than the original, and many just suck.  And that's basically personal opinion. 

That you listen to jazz, Slayton, I'm guessing you venture out into it's many guises.  Maybe even liking WEATHER REPORT.

If so, then let's get your take on this original and "cover" comparison:

 

Actually, I like them both.  But DO lean more towards W R's original.  As both are done by artists who've worked primarily in jazz, it's to be expected.  But when you take someone who's clearly out of their element( like Stewart doing the "songbook" ) the result can be ear-wrenching. 

Sepiatone

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12 hours ago, slaytonf said:

It's natural for someone like me to think of comparing renditions.  I listen to jazz mostly.  A hallmark of it is different people doing their take on a song.  They take a slow standard and swing it, or give a tune a bossa nova beat.  Or they sing it the way it is commonly performed.  Then you can find out if the singer knows how to sing.  As you know from experience, someone who doesn't know how can take all the life out of a song, leaving you thinking "that song's not so good, wonder why I thought it was."  

I think there is a different between playing a standard as an instrumental verses a non one (backing a singer).    With no lyrics one can made radical changes to the "style" since those changes will not clash with the lyrics.    Lyrics communicate a certain feeling and typically one doesn't wish to deviate radically from the feeling the song is trying to communicate with those lyrics  (the solid point you made before).

Of course sometimes one can combine the two;  E.g.  the way we (a piano player \ singer and I) do Over The Rainbow:  We start as a ballad,  with him singing with heartfelt feeling. 

Then we double time it and swing it for the solos and end it as a ballad with him singing.   

 

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23 hours ago, Swithin said:

Music in the Air (1934) is an odd but enjoyable film, based on a 1932 Kern/Hammerstein Broadway show. Odd because, in hindsight, it's about a bunch of Bavarians cavorting around in lederhosen, singing and dancing just before the Nazis come to power.

Two songs from the show/film became standards: "I've Told Every Little Star," sung in the film by Douglass Montgomery and just about everyone else; and "The Song Is You." Linda Scott had a big hit with the former in 1961; Frank Sinatra and many others had huge hits with the latter. (Gloria Swanson sings in the movie, but not in those songs, as I recall.)

MV5BMTM2MjIwOTcwMV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNTM4

 

Swith--

This is truly an interesting post. It seems like "Music in the Air" simply evaporates Into Thin Air-- you don't see many  accounts of anywhere and I've never seen it.

I always thought it was so bizarre that Swanson was in a musical.

I bought the Linda Scott 45, cute pop rendition, however, I was aware that it was done originally in an Operetta.

But "The Song Is You" is one of the most beautiful songs ever written that simply isn't performed very often anymore.

I know I've heard Frank Sinatra singing it and it seems like it was back when he was with Tommy Dorsey.

And the lyrics are so luscious: " I hear music when I look at you...That Beautiful Rhapsody of love and youth  and spring... "

 Remembering those songs that Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein wrote, it seems like they are almost the Forgotten Team today-- despite the iconic position of "Showboat" in Broadway history. They aren't as talked about that much nor is their work performed  as much, as say Rodgers & Hart.

 

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Princess of Tap said:

 Remembering those songs that Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein wrote, it seems like they are almost the Forgotten Team today

Wow,  I hope people haven't forgotten about the contribution of Kern as a songwriter.    I know jazz musicians have a lot of respect for his songs since many are often done as instrumentals by 'younger' jazz musicians.   E.g. All The Things You Are,  Long Ago and Far Away,  Look for the Silver Lining  and The Way You Look Tonight are mandatory to know,  by heart (i.e. without sheet music) if one wishes to call themselves a jazz musician.   

Hammerstein was a fine lyricist who had many hits with both Kern and Rodgers.   

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1 hour ago, Princess of Tap said:

Swith--

This is truly an interesting post. It seems like "Music in the Air" simply evaporates Into Thin Air-- you don't see many  accounts of anywhere and I've never seen it.

I always thought it was so bizarre that Swanson was in a musical.

I bought the Linda Scott 45, cute pop rendition, however, I was aware that it was done originally in an Operetta.

But "The Song Is You" is one of the most beautiful songs ever written that simply isn't performed very often anymore.

I know I've heard Frank Sinatra singing it and it seems like it was back when he was with Tommy Dorsey.

And the lyrics are so luscious: " I hear music when I look at you...That Beautiful Rhapsody of love and youth  and spring... "

 Remembering those songs that Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein wrote, it seems like they are almost the Forgotten Team today-- despite the iconic position of "Showboat" in Broadway history. They aren't as talked about that much nor is their work performed  as much, as say Rodgers & Hart.

 

Adriana Marcovicci has a Kern CD which I like very much. It's called "Just Kern" and has about 17 songs, romantic, comic, etc., opening with "Once in a Blue Moon" and concluding with "Look for the Silver Lining."

Another Kern collaborator was Otto Harbach, with whom Kern wrote Roberta ("Smoke Gets in Your Eyes") etc. Harbach wrote with many composers, including Louis Hirsch, with whom he wrote this song, so well known to 1950s television viewers because it was George and Gracie's theme song, although it was originally from a 1920 show called Mary. Here's a jazz version.

 

 

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9 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

I think there is a different between playing a standard as an instrumental verses a non one (backing a singer).    With no lyrics one can made radical changes to the "style" since those changes will not clash with the lyrics.    Lyrics communicate a certain feeling and typically one doesn't wish to deviate radically from the feeling the song is trying to communicate with those lyrics  (the solid point you made before).

Of course sometimes one can combine the two;  E.g.  the way we (a piano player \ singer and I) do Over The Rainbow:  We start as a ballad,  with him singing with heartfelt feeling. 

Then we double time it and swing it for the solos and end it as a ballad with him singing.   

 

Fabulous!  Any way we can hear it?

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To say that Julie London's version of "Cry Me a River" is better than Dinah Washington's is like foolishly saying the Cooper Mini is better than the Austin Mini, or that the 2003 version of "The Italian Job" is better than the original 1969 version. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the younger the beholder, the more foolish and unwarranted are the statements.

Julie London's version is more dreamily, wistfully, and haltingly done, where Dinah's is gritty, forceful, gut-wrenching ... like a great Blueswoman's version is expected to be. London, while a great actress and performer in her own right, can in no way touch the Bluesy rendition given so aptly by Washington. I've heard a few, but very few White female Blues singers can obtain the same Blues performance of Dinah Washington (born Ruth Lee Jones), Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, etc. It's just not in the genes.

Suffice it to say that I disagree with you in the extreme. Take it from someone who has lived in New Orleans and spent considerable time there. It's where I discovered that all that Rock and Roll that I listened to as a kid was actually the Blues, reinterpreted.

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1 hour ago, NavyFlyer1325 said:

To say that Julie London's version of "Cry Me a River" is better than Dinah Washington's is like foolishly saying the Cooper Mini is better than the Austin Mini, or that the 2003 version of "The Italian Job" is better than the original 1969 version. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the younger the beholder, the more foolish and unwarranted are the statements.

Julie London's version is more dreamily, wistfully, and haltingly done, where Dinah's is gritty, forceful, gut-wrenching ... like a great Blueswoman's version is expected to be. London, while a great actress and performer in her own right, can in no way touch the Bluesy rendition given so aptly by Washington. I've heard a few, but very few White female Blues singers can obtain the same Blues performance of Dinah Washington (born Ruth Lee Jones), Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, etc. It's just not in the genes.

Suffice it to say that I disagree with you in the extreme. Take it from someone who has lived in New Orleans and spent considerable time there. It's where I discovered that all that Rock and Roll that I listened to as a kid was actually the Blues, reinterpreted.

Saying anything as subjective as music is 'better' is total folly.    But I don't believe most people really mean 'better' but instead that they favor X over Y. 

Anyhow,  you start off by implying it is folly to say 'better' ("beauty is in the eye of the beholder"),  but then you say what is better.     I disagree with you in the extreme as it relates to your view that your opinion of what is better is more valid than anyone (and it appears everyone) at this forum  (as well as the POV that younger folks opinions are inherently bogus.  

 

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To shorten a very long story, I'll just say that while fooling around with the tuning dial on my brother's crystal radio when I was VERY young, I hit upon a radio station from Chicago( I lived and still live in the Metro Detroit area) I stopped and listened because the music sounded like the "rock'n'roll" I'd hear ordinarily throughout the day on the "family" radio we had in the kitchen.  Yep, turned out it WAS a "blues" station, and I was hooked.

Blues reinterpreted?  Well, blues with a lot of different elements added to it, sure.  More of an amalgam of many genres than just a reinterpretation of just one. ;)

I'd too, go with the Dinah Washington version as I was a fan of hers from about 6 or 7 years old.  But somewhere earlier I stated a good song will survive regardless, and which version is "best" is only so to whomever is listening and likes it BETTER than another.  And that too, depends on it's presentation.  Give a listen to these two and tell me which one YOU think is "best".( hint:  I like them both equally) ;)

Sorry, but couldn't find a clip with just the studio version by Dylan, but try to find it somewhere and compare it to THIS "cover"---

See what I mean?

Sepiatone

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28 minutes ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

(as well as the POV that younger folks opinions are inherently bogus.

Neither is the automatic assumption that young folks opinions are more meaningful or should be taken more notice of or thought more important just becasue they are younger and somehow closer to what's going on in today's world. Just look at the sheer idiocy of the following of the ridiculous Kardashian family. All they really are, are "famous for being famous".

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