Lullabies of Birdland - A Musical Autobiography

Lullabies of Birdland - A Musical Autobiography

by George Shearing
     
 

As versatile as he is virtuosic, pianist George Shearing is captured in a multitude of settings on this fine collection. By no means a complete career retrospective, Lullabies picks and chooses from Shearing's many Verve, Concord, and Telarc recordings. Among the artists that Shearing collaborates with are singers Mel Tormé, Carmen McRae, and Ernestine Andrews;See more details below

Overview

As versatile as he is virtuosic, pianist George Shearing is captured in a multitude of settings on this fine collection. By no means a complete career retrospective, Lullabies picks and chooses from Shearing's many Verve, Concord, and Telarc recordings. Among the artists that Shearing collaborates with are singers Mel Tormé, Carmen McRae, and Ernestine Andrews; guitarists Wes Montgomery and Jim Hall; and pianists Marian McPartland and Hank Jones. There are also choice examples of Shearing’s exquisite solo performances, as well as individual duets with the accomplished bassists Brian Torff and Neil Swainson. Highlights include Shearing’s first hit, “September in the Rain” (recorded in 1949) and the 1952 version of the pianist’s original composition “Lullaby of Birdland,” subsequently his signature song. (Two other versions of “Birdland” appear, a fascinating 1985 Latin reworking with Tito Puente and an understated 1987 collaboration with Swainson.) In all, a fine overview of a beloved performer.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ronnie D. Lankford
In 1979, after a number of years in semi-obscurity, pianist George Shearing made a comeback by signing to Concord. Over the next ten years he showed that he'd lost none of the subtlety that had won him accolades when recording with his quintet in the 1950s and 1960s. Lullabies of Birdland: A Musical Autobiography recaps Shearing's long career, starting with "September in the Rain" in 1949 and ending with "Fly Me to the Moon" -- recorded appropriately at Birdland -- in 2000. The pianist's most famous composition, the title cut, appears in three different settings over the course of two discs: the first with the George Shearing Quintet in 1952, the second with Tito Puente in 1985, and the final one, featuring a stripped-down setting, in 1987. There are many surprises on these discs, including the startling arrangement and performance on a nearly ten-minute version of "Love for Sale." There are also a number of equal billings with partners like guitarist Jim Hall, pianist Marian McPartland, and singer Mel Tormé. The only small complaint is that much of the content of Lullabies of Birdland is comprised of material recorded between 1979 and 1989 (the years he spent with Concord). Only five cuts represent his work between 1949 and 1979, and only two represent his work in the '90s, meaning that these discs fail to give a full-fledged "autobiography" as promised in the album's subtitle. Lullabies of Birdland is nonetheless a fine collection, and an excellent introduction to Shearing's work at Concord.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/09/2004
Label:
Concord Records
UPC:
0013431221128
catalogNumber:
2211
Rank:
24749

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. September in the Rain
  2. Lullaby of Birdland
  3. Mambo Inn
  4. Darn That Dream
  5. Heart and Soul  - Joe Williams
  6. For Every Man There's a Woman
  7. Too Late Now
  8. Love for Sale
  9. Alone Together  - Marian McPartland
  10. Emily
  11. It Might as Well Be Spring  - Mel Tormé
  12. I Cover the Waterfront

Disc 2

  1. Easy to Love
  2. I've Got You Under My Skin
  3. Lullaby of Birdland
  4. My Silent Love
  5. There Is No Greater Love
  6. New York, New York Medley: For Me and My Gal/Mack the Knife/Birth ...  - Mel Tormé
  7. Lullaby of Birdland
  8. Lonely Moments
  9. Body and Soul
  10. Blue Monk
  11. You're My Everything
  12. How Beautiful Is Night
  13. Fly Me to the Moon

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

George Shearing   Primary Artist,Piano
Tito Puente   Percussion,Timbales
Kenny Davern   Clarinet
Jim Hall   Guitar
Hank Jones   Piano
Buddy Montgomery   Vibes
Wes Montgomery   Guitar
Ken Peplowski   Tenor Saxophone
Walter Perkins   Drums
Marvin "Smitty" Smith   Drums
Neil Swainson   Bass
Brian Torff   Bass
Mel Tormé   Vocals
Warren Vaché   Cornet
Joe Williams   Vocals
Dick Garcia   Guitar
George Masso   Trombone
Monk Montgomery   Bass
Armando Peraza   Bongos,Conga
Joe Roland   Vibes
Chuck Wayne   Guitar
John Leitham   Bass
McKibbon   Bass
Denzil Best   Drums
Ray Brown   Bass
Bill Clark   Drums
George Devens   Vibes
Robert Farnon   Conductor
Marquis Foster   Drums
Jimmy Frisaura   Valve Trombone
Ray Gonzalez   Trumpet
Stix Hooper   Drums
Margie Hyams   Vibes
Dennis Mackrel   Drums
Jose Madera   Conga
Carmen McRae   Vocals
Marian McPartland   Piano
Donny Osborne   Drums
Mario Rivera   Tenor Saxophone
Bobby Rodriguez   Bass
John "Dandy" Rodriguez   Bongos
Reg Schwager   Guitar
Andy Simpkins   Bass
Toots Thielemans   Guitar
Barry Tuckwell   French Horn
Don Thompson Quartet   Vibes
John Levy   Bass

Technical Credits

Marc Blitzstein   Composer
Kurt Weill   Composer
Tito Puente   Producer
Hoagy Carmichael   Composer
George Shearing   Composer
Edgar Sampson   Composer
Harold Arlen   Composer
Richard Rodgers   Composer
Mary Lou Williams   Composer
Bertolt Brecht   Composer
Frank Loesser   Composer
Mario Bauzá   Composer
Lew Brown   Composer
John Burk   Executive Producer
Eddie DeLange   Composer
Buddy DeSylva   Composer
Howard Dietz   Composer
Dubin   Composer
Robert Farnon   Arranger,Composer
Johnny Green   Composer
Oscar Hammerstein   Composer
Edward Heyman   Composer
Carl Jefferson   Producer
Isham Jones   Composer
Orrin Keepnews   Producer
Burton Lane   Composer
Alan Jay Lerner   Composer
Johnny Mandel   Composer
Johnny Mercer   Composer
Thelonious Monk   Composer
Cole Porter   Composer
Leo Robin   Composer
Arthur Schwartz   Composer
Marty Symes   Composer
Tom Morgan   Producer
James Van Heusen   Composer
Harry Warren   Composer
George David Weiss   Composer
Joseph Young   Composer
Abbey Anna   Art Direction
Bobby Woodlen   Composer
Glen Barros   Executive Producer
Dana Suesse   Composer
Alyn Shipton   Liner Notes
Dale Sheets   Management
Robert Sour   Composer
Frank Eyton   Composer
Mort Dixon   Composer
Edgar Leslie   Composer
Grace Sampson   Composer
Stephen Ballantine   Composer
George W. Meyer   Composer
Seth Presant   Mastering
Dave Cavanaugh   Producer
E. Ray Goetz   Composer
Bart Howard   Composer

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