Rough Writings: Perspectives on Buckey O'Neill, Pauline M. O'Neill, and Roosevelt's Rough Riders

Rough Writings: Perspectives on Buckey O'Neill, Pauline M. O'Neill, and Roosevelt's Rough Riders

by Norm Tessman, Carlos Parra
     
 
This wide-ranging four-CD set has performances of George Gershwin's music divided into four categories: Popular Song, Stage and Screen, Concert Hall, and Jazz. The 71 recordings range from fairly straight Broadway singers to classical music, jazz, and several piano solos from Gershwin himself. The beauty of this collection as it has been assembled by producer

Overview

This wide-ranging four-CD set has performances of George Gershwin's music divided into four categories: Popular Song, Stage and Screen, Concert Hall, and Jazz. The 71 recordings range from fairly straight Broadway singers to classical music, jazz, and several piano solos from Gershwin himself. The beauty of this collection as it has been assembled by producer Dwight Blocker Bowers is that it goes into so many far-flung corners of the composer's work and output -- not only into the work of familiar names such as {|Ethel Waters|}, {|Jo Stafford|}, {|Bing Crosby|}, {|Lena Horne|}, {|Dinah Shore|}, {|Tony Bennett|}, and {|Linda Ronstadt|} in the popular song category, but also such less-well-known but important names as {|Johnny Marvin|}; and, in the "On Stage and Screen" volume, notable recordings by {|Irene Bordoni|} ("I Won't Say I Will"), Heather Thatcher ("Boy Wanted"), and Tessa Kosta ("Song of the Flame"), and revelations such as {|Cliff Edwards|}' amazing rendition of "Fascinating Rhythm." Gershwin himself dominates the "Concert Hall" volume as a performing artist, augmented by the presence of {|Leonard Pennario|} on the "Second Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra," and the {|Juilliard String Quartet|} on the "Lullaby for String Quartet." Although not all of the music is of equal interest, there are enough rarities included to interest even veteran collectors and the 64-page booklet is quite appealing, and the producers have also done an excellent job of cleaning up and improving certain technically deficient historical recordings, such as Thatcher's rendition of "Boy Wanted," from a 1921 acoustically recorded cast production; additionally, they have reached out to the licensing of actual film soundtrack excerpts, and {|Fred Astaire|} and {|Ginger Rogers|}, to represent such works as "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off," from Shall We Dance. One could easily do double- or triple-CD sets devoted to the jazz, popular, and theatrical aspects of Gershwin's work, but as an overview of all of them within manageable boundaries, this is a well-conceived and successful reissue of valuable music. ~ Scott Yanow & Bruce Eder

Editorial Reviews

Chuck Parsons
"Janet Lovelady, managing editor for the Sharlot Hall Museum Press, has produced a fascinating group of chapters dealing with many aspects of this era, with the focus on an American whose life ended too soon. Rough Writings will appeal to many audiences: the lawman buff, the cavalry buff, the American history buff, to name but three. There is much new information here, as well as material familiar to all readers." (Chuck Parsons, True West, January 1999)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780927579124
Publisher:
Hall, Sharlot Museum Press
Publication date:
03/01/1998
Pages:
84

Read an Excerpt

[Buckey] O'Neill, "the most many-sided man Arizona ever produced" (as author William McLeod Raine said), epitomized the tough, courageous, independent Westerner so admired by Theodore Roosevelt. "Buckey" (the nickname deriving from his propensity for "bucking the tiger"—going for broke at the faro layouts on Prescott's Whiskey Row) was a genuine Arizona legend who had served as sheriff, judge, newspaperman, Grand Canyon explorer, Arizona booster, Populist politician, husband and father, and, at the time he helped organize the Arizona volunteers for the war, mayor of Prescott. He had a thirst for military glory, dating from his ceremonial work with the Prescott Grays, a spiffily uniformed local militia group, and from his brief tenure as territorial adjutant general. He also had a tendency to emulate the foolhardy practice of many officers of the time, of striding conspicuously up and down in front of his troopers, giving them "confidence." [From Dale L. Walker's, "The Last Rough Riders"]

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