The Duets

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
Released in 1994 as a precursor to Bear Family's onslaught of humongous Frankie Laine box sets, this bracingly upbeat collection documents his periodic duet collaborations with the mighty Jo Stafford, one of the few female vocalists who could stand her own ground alongside this cocky, surly-voiced pop singer. In the photo on the album cover, old Frankie looks like he's come to the realization that he is sharing the microphone with a woman who can handle anything he belts out and toss it back at him like a medicine ball. Recorded during the years 1951-1954, The Duets will appeal mostly to those who crave zippy, often corny fast paced entertainment. This element is ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
Released in 1994 as a precursor to Bear Family's onslaught of humongous Frankie Laine box sets, this bracingly upbeat collection documents his periodic duet collaborations with the mighty Jo Stafford, one of the few female vocalists who could stand her own ground alongside this cocky, surly-voiced pop singer. In the photo on the album cover, old Frankie looks like he's come to the realization that he is sharing the microphone with a woman who can handle anything he belts out and toss it back at him like a medicine ball. Recorded during the years 1951-1954, The Duets will appeal mostly to those who crave zippy, often corny fast paced entertainment. This element is epitomized by "A Bushel and a Peck" and the Hank Williams numbers "Hey Good Lookin'" and "Settin' the Woods on Fire." The trotting pace of "Hambone" and "Piece a Puddin" is even spunkier, and Wesley Webb West's steel guitar is brought into the fray on "Christmas Roses." Both singers' links to the jazz world are more in evidence during Hoagy Carmichael's "In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening," and Laine pours himself all over "Way Down Yonder in New Orleans" and "Floatin' Down to Cotton Town," made famous during the 1930s by Fats Waller and his Rhythm. A comparatively relaxed rendition of the "Basin Street Blues" comes as a pleasant surprise, and this is a good place to point out the collective presence of a healthy contingent of jazz players such as trumpeters Ziggy Elman and Charlie Teagarden; trombonist Abe Lincoln; saxophonists Babe Russin, Eddie Miller, and Ted Nash, as well as guitarists Barney Kessel and George Van Eps. Some of this material was produced by Mitch Miller. Maybe that's why the annoying Norman Luboff Choir shows up uninvited, as it were, to add early-'50s cheese to performances that are already giddy enough for anybody's money. Most listeners will probably find the choir's grinning, somewhat deranged presence on "Let's Have a Party" to be so over-the-top as to suspend reality with all the charm of a swiftly munched fistful of Dexedrine spansules. Their overbearing delivery is the main drawback to this collection. Then again, of course, if it's subtlety you're after, you're barking up the wrong cactus with Frankie Laine.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/28/1994
  • Label: Imports
  • EAN: 4000127156204
  • Catalog Number: 15620

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Frankie Laine Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Vocals
Ziggy Elman Trumpet
Babe Russin Saxophone
Charlie Teagarden Trumpet
George Van Eps Guitar
Jack Marshall Guitar
Tony Rizzi Guitar
Conrad Gozzo Trumpet
Harold Diner Trombone
Nick Fatool Snare Drums
Francis Howard Trombone
Eddie Kusby Trombone
Harry Lawson Saxophone
Abe Lincoln Saxophone
Allan Reuss Guitar
John Ryan Bass
George Seaberg Trumpet
Jack Stacey Saxophone
Alvin Stoller Snare Drums
Fred Stulce Saxophone
Paul Weston Vocals
Alton Hendrickson Guitar
Jack Rose Guitar
Theodore Nash Saxophone
Edward Miller Saxophone
Henry Beau Saxophone
Leonard Hartman Saxophone
Wesley Webb West Guitar
Rubin Zarchy Trumpet
Carl Fischer Piano
William Schaefer Trombone
Edwin Cole Guitar
Bernard Kessel Guitar
Allen Thompson Trombone
Norman Luboff Choir Choir, Chorus
Vincent Terri Guitar
Technical Credits
Mitch Miller Producer
Mary Lou Williams Composer
H. Brooks Composer
Greene Composer
Hampton Hawes Composer
Bob Hilliard Composer
William Johnson Composer
Bob Jones Mastering, Dub Mixing
Red Saunders Composer
Rudy Toombs Composer
E. Joe Walsh Composer
Ned Washington Composer
Hank Williams Composer
Peter Grendysa Liner Notes
Alan Copeland Composer
Dave Mann Composer
Hoffmann Nienburg Artwork
Richard Weize Producer
Joachim Senkler Illustrations
Walter Melrose Composer
Jessie Mae Robinson Composer
Porter Steele Composer
Richard Dehr Composer
Frank Miller Composer
F. Henri Klickmann Composer
Manfred Weissleder Composer
Leo Moseley Composer
George "Speedy" Krise Composer
J. M. Robinson Composer
Jack Frost Composer
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