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The Complete World Transcriptions

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Album Review

A collection of 26 transcription recordings originally intended only for radio audiences and never before released, The Complete World Transcriptions is an excellent collection for Mel Tormé fans and beginners alike. Despite the tossed-off nature of the recordings (they were originally intended for radio stations to use as fill-ins), Tormé treads his way carefully through dozens of intimate standards, always treating songs like "The Night We Called It a Day," "It Never Entered My Mind," "Where Are You?," "Long Ago and Far Away," and "Day Dreaming" with the proper respect they deserve. He's still a bit tied to his crooning style of the '40s and takes no liberties with the songs he knows by heart, but the straight-ahead nature of the songs works throughout.


Born: 13 September 1925 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Mel Tormé was a jazz-oriented pop singer who worked at his craft steadily from the '40s to the '90s, primarily in nightclubs and concert halls. In his 1988 autobiography, It Wasn't All Velvet (its title a reference to his nickname, "The Velvet Fog," bestowed upon him by a disc jockey in the '40s to describe his husky, wide-ranging voice), he mentioned a wish that he had been born ten years earlier, that is, in 1915 rather than 1925. If he had had his wish, Tormé would have been an exact contemporary...
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