The Golden Age of Light Music: Bright & Breezy

The Golden Age of Light Music: Bright & Breezy


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The Golden Age of Light Music: Bright & Breezy

Bright and Breezy is an installment in the Guild label's exhaustive survey of the genre known as light music in Britain and (since the 1960s) easy listening in North America. The Guild series is a superb accomplishment, combining research, musical sensitivity, and engineering skills in the service of an almost-forgotten genre. The roots of easy listening music lay in the incidental music played by hotel, cafe, and cinema orchestras in the first few decades of the 20th century, and the genre lasted well into the 1970s as the careers of such figures as Percy Faith, Mantovani, and André Kostelanetz neared their ends. Except for two 1930s recordings, which are interesting but don't quite fit with the rest of the music, the pieces on Bright and Breezy all date from between 1957 and 1960. The collection is somewhat random, and they're certainly not all bright and breezy. This is the period in which the style entered a somewhat extreme phase as it attempted to compete with the carnality of rock & roll, and unusual orchestral effects were the order of the day. Sample the contribution by the Starlight Symphony under British conductor Cyril Ornadel (who lived until 2011); his version of "Begin the Beguine," track 12, with its multiple instrumental layers arising out of the opening Latin percussion, would have been well known to American audiences. Latin influences appear in several pieces, and cinematic styles are heard in many more, such as the Melachrino Orchestra's "Ragazza Romana" (track 5). One attraction of this disc is the inclusion of several groups from non-English-speaking countries, such as the Brussels New Concert Orchestra (represented twice) and the miniature light-music symphony at the end by Ernst Fischer, played by a German group conducted by Bruno Seidler-Winkler. This may not be the ideal place to start with Guild's series (shoot for A First A-Z of Light Music, or one of the 1940s or 1950s collections), but the already converted will find many pleasures here.

Product Details

Release Date: 12/13/2011
Label: Guild
UPC: 0795754518023
catalogNumber: 5180

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Hugo Alfvén   Conductor
Baxter   Conductor
Jack Hylton   Conductor
Billy Vaughn   Conductor
George Melachrino   Conductor
Carmen Dragon   Conductor
Robert Farnon   Conductor
Robert Farnon Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Angela Morley   Conductor
Knightsbridge Strings   Ensemble
Philip Green   Conductor
Marjan Rawicz   Piano
Guy Luypaerts   Conductor
Walter Landauer   Piano
Bruno Seidler-Winkler   Conductor
Josef Weinberger   Conductor
Cosmopolitan Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Melachrino Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Guy Luypaerts Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Starlight Symphony   Performing Ensemble
Concert Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Billy Vaughn's Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Reg Owen   Conductor
Hilversum Radio Symphony Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Hugh Granville   Conductor
Angela Morley Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Brussels New Concert Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Baxter Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Grosvenor Studio Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Crawford Light Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Reg Owen Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Cyril Ornadel   Conductor
Jack Hylton & His Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Pinewood Studio Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Orchestra of the 6th San Remo Festival   Performing Ensemble
Jacques Leroy Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Jacques Leroy   Conductor
Westway Studio Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Standard School Broadcast Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Phillipo Andez   Conductor

Technical Credits

Hugo Alfvén   Composer
Nino Rota   Composer
Erroll Garner   Composer
Vincent Youmans   Composer
Carmen Dragon   Arranger
Bronislaw Kaper   Composer
Johnny Burke   Text
Peter Dennis   Composer
Robert Farnon   Arranger,Composer
Oscar Hammerstein   Text
Otto Harbach   Text
Laurie Johnson   Composer
Gus Kahn   Text
Alan Jay Lerner   Text
Cole Porter   Composer
Bob Russell   Composer
Harry Warren   Composer
Victor Young   Composer
Frederick Loewe   Composer
Herbert Stothart   Text
Ivor Slaney   Composer
Georg Buschor   Text
Melle Weersma   Arranger
Walter Jurmann   Composer
David Ades   Liner Notes
Johnny Steggerda   Composer
William Davies   Composer
Brian Fahey   Arranger
Reg Owen   Arranger
Christian Bruhn   Composer
Ernst Fischer   Composer
Cyril Watters   Composer
Charles Williams   Composer
Anthony Mawer   Composer
Dante Vignali   Composer
Arthur Dieudonne Charlier   Composer
Maurice Grabmann   Composer
Mariano Marquina   Composer

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