With all due respect to some other reviewers, this is not "an album" made by Ella and Louis: it's a sampler comprising three Ella and Louis albums. Normally I would not even consider, say, a Sinatra anthology mixing three masterworks like "Only the Lonely," "In the Wee Small Hours," and "Come Fly with Me": each is a unique and integrally whole project. But I have the Ella and Louis LPs, so I picked up this compressed anthology to take some pressure off of the vinyl.
Like most "best-of" collections, it suffers a bit from uneven textures (the lush orchestration of "Summertime" seems like an intrusion on the intimate rapport established in the preceding numbers) and audio quality (variances in mics, mixing and engineering can be hard to disguise). So unless some of the tunes on this anthology seem absolutely essential, go with "Ella and Louis," if only for its more coherent, unified feel--like two supreme musical storytellers having an irresistable conversation in real time...
Perhaps this is the collaboration of the two greatest singers in the history of Jazz. Louis is the fundamental jazz singer who changed it all once he put down that coronet and began to scat and sing. Louis's inflections and his rhythm, his ability to do what he could do on a trumpet with his voice started real Jazz singing. People forget but Fats Waller's "Ain't MisBehavin" was introduced by Louis in a Broadway show in the 1920s. When he sang and played the tune he would often get three or four encores, and people who had already seen the show several times would pay full price to come in and see that one song!
Norman Grantz of Verve put together these combination recordings on the fly, whoever was in town, no rehearsals, no real arrangement worth much, a set list drawn together on a piece of paper, the artists hustling to make time between gigs, not usually having their regular accompaniests.
Yet, all the Louis Armstrong collaborations are wonderful. None are...
What a musical odd couple! Ella Fitzgerald--and her smooth, elegant voice--and Louis Armstrong and his anything but elegant voice! But this CD works pretty well indeed. Two of the greatest performers of the 20th century play with a set of great songs--and pull it off well.
Let's take a look at some of the cuts on this CD.
"Let's Call the Whole Thing Off": A nice Gershwin tune! Potato versus potawto. What a strange combination of voices. But the two talented artists work well together. Her lustrous voice and his "used up" voice.
"They Can't Take That away from Me": Ella's smooth voice plays with this song so well. She wails "The way you sing off key." And then Armstrong's singing plays off well against that line. An odd duet, but it works.
"Summertime": Another Gershwin classic. Armstrong's instrumental work sets this up nicely. Fitzgerald's singing is rich and luminous. Armstrong's isn't. Again, though, the odd vocal...
The authorised South African distributor of this product is under no obligation to honour the manufacture's guarantees/warranties or to provide after-sales service.
Please note that this item is imported from the USA, and is designed to be used in the USA. In addition, if the unit is powered it will come with a US plug and an adapter/transformer may be required. Please click here for more information on power requirements, or check with us if you are unsure or need any assistance!
Please also note that certain items cannot be imported, these include Alcohol, Animals, Flammable Materials, Currency, Food, Furs, Chemicals, Explosives, Medications, Plants, Seeds, Supplements, Pressurized Cans, Tactical Equipment, Vitamins, Weaponry and Weaponry Accessories. In these cases, the item and information is displayed for reference purposes only. If you are not sure if we are permitted to bring an item, please send us an e-mail with a link to the item to confirm.
Please also ensure that you are ordering the correct item for your particular application as returns to the USA are costly. Product reviews are also provided for most of our items, which can give you a good idea for possible things to look out for and the quality of the item. By clicking Add to Cart, you are confirming that the item is correct and you accept the conditions listed here.