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The Best of the War Years

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All Music Guide - Alex Henderson
Back in the '60s and '70s, no artist underscored the gap between the World War II generation and the baby boomers more than Perry Como. To the boomers many of them, anyway, he was square, dated, and unhip -- music your parents listened to while you were off in another room cranking the Doors, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, or Led Zeppelin. And not everyone from the WWII generation appreciated Como; some people who are old enough to remember the '40s and '50s insist that he was never as cool as Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, or Tony Bennett. To be sure, Como wasn't as edgy or adventurous as those fellow Bing Crosby admirers; regardless, he could still be a pleasing, darn ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Alex Henderson
Back in the '60s and '70s, no artist underscored the gap between the World War II generation and the baby boomers more than Perry Como. To the boomers many of them, anyway, he was square, dated, and unhip -- music your parents listened to while you were off in another room cranking the Doors, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, or Led Zeppelin. And not everyone from the WWII generation appreciated Como; some people who are old enough to remember the '40s and '50s insist that he was never as cool as Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, or Tony Bennett. To be sure, Como wasn't as edgy or adventurous as those fellow Bing Crosby admirers; regardless, he could still be a pleasing, darn enjoyable pop singer when he had strong material to work with. Spanning 1943-1946, The Best of the War Years takes listeners back to Como's most productive decade. Most of the CD focuses on V-Discs -- 78s that, in the '40s, were not sold commercially and were strictly for the enjoyment of the United States military. However, some of the tracks are from radio broadcasts. But whether he is performing for servicemen or radio listeners, Como usually embraces decent or excellent songs. Cornball novelty items are not a priority here, and the singer is in good to excellent form on romantic gems such as "Don't Blame Me," "It's the Talk of the Town," and "Like Someone in Love." Did Como record his share of schlock in the '50s? Absolutely, and Como himself hated some of the dreadful novelty items that he agreed to record during that decade. But the '40s recordings on this CD are generally respectable. For those who want to hear how pleasing Como could be when he had the right material, The Best of the War Years is enthusiastically recommended.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/13/2002
  • Label: Cleopatra
  • UPC: 741157123128
  • Catalog Number: 1231

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Perry Como Primary Artist, Vocals
Will Bradley Trombone
Roy Eldridge Trumpet
Benny Goodman Clarinet, Leader
Yank Lawson Trumpet
Specs Powell Drums
Teddy Wilson Piano
Billy Butterfield Trumpet
George Arus Trombone
Ruth Berman Harp
Johnny Blowers Drums
Dave Bowman Piano
Vernon Brown Trombone
Ernie Caceres Baritone Saxophone
Frank Carroll Bass
Russ Case Leader
Mac Ceppos Violin
Jacques Gasselin Violin
John Ingram Saxophone
Harry Katzman Violin
Tommy Kay Electric Guitar
Leo Kruczek Violin
Tony Mottola Guitar
John Owens Saxophone
Bernie Privin Saxophone
Samuel Rand Violin
Arthur Rollini Tenor Saxophone
Hymie Schertzer Alto Saxophone
Terry Snyder Drums
Gene Traxler String Bass
Herman Shertzer Saxophone
Melvin "Red" Solomon Trumpet
Stanley Webb Saxophone
Wolfe Tayne Tenor Saxophone
Allen Hanlon Guitar
John d'Agostino Trombone
Fred Dornbach Saxophone
Harry Hoffman Violin
William Lockwood Violin
Reggie Merrill Alto Saxophone
Irving Prager Violin
Henry Ross Saxophone
Herbert Winfield Trombone
Raymond Scott & His Orchestra Piano, Leader
Ward Silloway Trombone
Mickey McMickle Trumpet
Frank Saracco Trombone
Nat Natoli Trumpet
Harold Furmansky Viola
Samuel Persoff Viola
Henry Rowland Piano
Frank Worrell Guitar
Robert Haggart Bass
Lloyd Shaffer Leader
Ted Steele Leader
Murray Cohen Saxophone
Ruth Hill Harp
Technical Credits
Carroll Gibbons Composer
Johnny Burke Composer
Herb Hendler Producer
R. Scott Composer
Larry Stock Composer
James Van Heusen Composer
Harry Warren Composer
Athan Maroulis Liner Notes
Raymond Scott & His Orchestra Arranger
Edgar Leslie Composer
Lou Ricca Composer
Jimmy Rule Composer
Ira Schuster Composer
James Cavanaugh Composer
James Dyrenforth Composer
Jules Loman Composer
Harry Glick Composer
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