Never Been Blue 1922-42

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
While this tribute album is historically informative and at times quite rewarding, maybe what this world really needs is a primal survey of the very earliest recordings made under the leadership of Ted Fiorito. The two sides recorded in 1922 by the Oriole Terrace Orchestra, for example, are delightfully weird vintage salon instrumentals. Nobody will ever be able to successfully re-create the magical sound qualities of these peculiar studies for pit orchestra. Acoustically recorded without the aid of electricity, the mysterious old platters resonate with neighing reeds, corroded brass, violin and accordion. This album, in presenting an overview of Fiorito's entire career, ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
While this tribute album is historically informative and at times quite rewarding, maybe what this world really needs is a primal survey of the very earliest recordings made under the leadership of Ted Fiorito. The two sides recorded in 1922 by the Oriole Terrace Orchestra, for example, are delightfully weird vintage salon instrumentals. Nobody will ever be able to successfully re-create the magical sound qualities of these peculiar studies for pit orchestra. Acoustically recorded without the aid of electricity, the mysterious old platters resonate with neighing reeds, corroded brass, violin and accordion. This album, in presenting an overview of Fiorito's entire career, skips over what were possibly his best recordings. Note that Brian Rust lists about eighteen "jazz-worthy" sides cut between 1922 and 1926 by Russo & Fiorito's Oriole Orchestra. The closest thing to an authentic jazz performance on this CD is "Copenhagen," recorded in October of 1924. It is a shameless emulation of the record of the same name made six months earlier by Bix Beiderbecke & the Wolverines. Fiorito's cover, though decorated with fiddle and squeezebox, is a passing nod to the trend of hot jazz, and stands oddly apart from the general pattern of this man's stylistic choices. By 1926 the band is in full hotel-orchestra mode, and sappy vocalists have begun to attach themselves like lampreys to each and every three-minute record. Not to dismiss vaudevillian Ted Lewis, who sounds magnificent while coughing up lyrics at the top of his lungs, or that soapy-sounding vocal group calling themselves the Mariners. After all, why not? And everyone should cherish the opportunity to hear an authentic 1930 "Hit of the Week" recording, pressed on to flimsy lacquered cardboard and stuffed between the pages of Liberty Magazine. What's creepy is the gradual realization that during the second-half of the 1920s, Ted Fiorito was perfecting the cottony sound of 1930s pop orchestration, a style destined to play such a vital role in Hollywood, second only to that of phenobarbital. Epiglottal boy wonder Dick Powell even shows up, trailing Busby Berkeley on a pair of sides dating from 1934. Flutes, cello and vibraphone appear as in aspic. Where's Harpo Marx when you need him? Muzzy Marcellino and the Debutantes are most tolerable least tiresome on two Hawaiian novelty numbers from 1934 and '38. Fiorito's 1940 "experiment" in popular big-band jazz arranging resulted in an imitation swing version of "Baby Won't You Please Come Home." Unfortunately, the Minnie Mouse and Bluto vocal duet makes this sound like a silly cartoon soundtrack. The Fiorito story wraps up with four sides waxed in 1942; Maureen OConnor positively protrudes from a rather smutty version of "Charlie, My Boy." Yet most of these singers inadvertently prove that Fiorito's legacy would be more enjoyable today had he avoided using them at all and concentrated instead on featuring his own attractive piano in addition to the talented instrumentalists who worked with him over the years.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/25/2003
  • Label: Transatlantic Radio
  • UPC: 820215002121
  • Catalog Number: 21

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Ted Fio Rito Primary Artist, Piano
Paul James Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Dick Johnson Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Ted Lewis Clarinet, Vocals
Nick Lucas Banjo
Victor Garber Clarinet, Flute, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Norman Botnick Violin, Vocals
Bob Carroll Vocals
Mark Fisher Banjo, Vocals
Frankie Quartell Trumpet
Dusty Rhodes Drums
Billy White Trombone
Dorothy Compton Vocals
Harold Matthews Trombone
Vito Mumolo Guitar
Dan Russo Violin
William Ross Piano
Frank Emilio Flynn Drums
Edwin "Eddie Ed" Ramos Trumpet
Roy Maxon Trombone
Muzzy Marcellino Guitar, Vocals
Randolph Walker Bowed Bass
Betty Noyes Vocals
Dick Powell Vocals
Paul McLarand Clarinet
Carroll Martin Trombone
Maureen O'Connor Vocals
Clayton Naset Clarinet, Soprano Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Martyn Campbell Trumpet
Cyril Bernard Vocals
Don Mangano Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Jim Bestick Trombone
Frank Brandt Trumpet
Marjorie Briggs Vocals
J.C. Caballero Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
John "Candy" Candido Vocals, Upright Bass
Tony Catina Banjo
Harry Daugherty Trombone
Victor Green Clarinet, Flute, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Vernon "Mutt" Hayes Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Stanley Hickman Vocals
Dottie Hill Vocals
Freddy Hulme Trumpet
Clyde Hylton Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
George Jernberg Trumpet
Ray Johnson Guitar
M.J. Lippman Clarinet, Flute, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Harold Loynd Trumpet
Walter Mauver Trombone
Charlie Puchta Drums
Jack Read Trombone
Donald Rhea Trumpet
Herb Saman Piano
Eddie Storman Banjo, Vocals
Woody Taylor Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Vera Van Vocals
Ansel Vick Drums
Jack Wuerl Violin
Technical Credits
Irving Berlin Composer
Bing Crosby Composer
John Gray Engineer, Transfer Assistant
Jerome Hopkins Liner Notes
Ned Washington Composer
Clarence Williams Composer
Victor Young Composer
Ted Fio Rito Composer, Director
Ned Freeman Arranger
Harry Tierney Composer
Bill Cogswell Composer
Albert Von Tilzer Composer
Charles Warfield Composer
Johnny Noble Composer
Bill Hebden Engineer
Joseph McCarthy Composer
Harry McPherson Composer
Tommy Harrison Composer
Ted Jr. FioRito Producer, Engineer
Frank Papile Contributor
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