The Still of the Night
Angel 724352362325v Vocals
hearing The Still of the Night, we had almost no opinion
of Tom Wopat. We knew he was the star of a TV show called The
Dukes of Hazzard that aired during a period of our life when
we were watching virtually no television. We also know that we weren't
the intended market for the free-wheelin', fun-lovin' good times
dramatized on this popular program. We also knew that he starred
in the revival of Irving Berlin's Annie Get Your Gun, as
did Susan Lucci, Reba MacIntyre and a number of other "stars"
that held no interest for us. So it comes as a huge surprise that
The Still of the Night is such a wonderful album that has
parked itself near our stereo and has refused to budge.
potentially has the kind of voice we hate. It's very modern, sincere
and seemingly untouched by the influence of Crosby or Sinatra. Lesser
male singers with similar pipes that sing contemporary music do
nothing for us, especially if they're sincere and sweet and have
nothing to say. Wopat is sincere and sweet but he also injects a
sense of intimacy that cuts right to the core and delivers his message
in a direct, unaffected way. Combining this with simple, gorgeous
arrangements makes The Still of the Night a completely pleasant
songs are mostly an intelligent mix of classics and strong contemporary
songs. Right off the bat we fell for Anyone Can Whistle, For
All We Know, Ruby, Where or When and In the Still of the
Night. A jazzy trio pushes tasteful strings and Wopat's easy-going
voice along. The only duds are I Get Along Without Very Well,
which isn't bad but it's been done better too many times before,
and Makin' Whoopee, which is a song no one should record
again. Ever. Wopat goes a little country on two Jimmy Webb numbers,
The Moon's a Harsh Mistress and If These Walls Could Talk.
He adds a raspy strain to his voice that is perfectly acceptable
among the kids today but we'd prefer it if he'd just sing it straight,
especially knowing that he can. The nice thing is, you never get
the feeling that he likes the country better than the classics or
that he's just recording Broadway in order to cash in on his recent
success. It seems apparent that he likes it all.
album is truly music for grown-ups and we recommend it.
Keely Sings Sinatra
Concord Jazz CCD-4943-2 Vocals
several years floating around as an "unofficial" CD, Keely
Sings Sinatra finally has found a home on the Concord Jazz label.
It hasn't been hard to find a copy of this famous never-released
disc, but the sound was third-generation and the lack of liner notes
frustrating. After Keely's mostly self-imposed exile, and last year's
trite Swing, Swing, Swing, it really feels like Spring when
you play a copy of this CD.
new fidelity re-emphazises how great the Frankie Capp Orchestra
plays and how utterly weird it is that Keely's voice is still so
fine. On this new, clean release, her vocals seem a little more
"up front" than they were on the pirate recording. This
is fine except that the new clarity also reveals the tiniest shrillness
in Keely's voice now and again. It's not horrible and it's better
than anything anyone else is doing these days, but it's not Keely
could nit pick or we could praise it to the high heavens, but we
still have the same impression of this album that we did when we
reviewed it as the best album never released. Keely is nothing short
of amazing and you'd be wise to add this recording to your collection.
We originally discussed this CD when we gave Keely our 21 gun salute.
Read the review.