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Everything I Have Is Yours / The Best of the MGM Years

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Album Review

This two-CD set improves upon the original two-LP package by adding 14 more songs. The pop side of Billy Eckstine was emphasized during his period with MGM and many of these selections (including hit versions of "Everything I Have Is Yours," "Blue Moon," "Caravan," "My Foolish Heart," and "I Apologize") feature his warm baritone backed by string sections. There are some exceptions, including "Mr. B's Blues" (which gives Eckstine a chance to solo on valve trombone), dates with Woody Herman and George Shearing, eight numbers on which the singer is accompanied by the Bobby Tucker Quartet, and a pair of wonderful performances with the Metronome All-Stars in 1953 (a group that includes trumpeter Roy Eldridge, both Lester Young and Warne Marsh on tenors, and vibraphonist Terry Gibbs). Although not as essential from the jazz standpoint as Billy Eckstine's earlier big-band dates, this two-fer features the singer at the peak of his powers; five ballad duets with Sarah Vaughan are a highlight.


Born: 08 July 1914 in Pittsburgh, PA

Genre: Jazz

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

Billy Eckstine's smooth baritone and distinctive vibrato broke down barriers throughout the 1940s, first as leader of the original bop big band, then as the first romantic black male in popular music. An influence looming large in the cultural development of soul and R&B singers from Sam Cooke to Prince, Eckstine was able to play it straight on his pop hits "Prisoner of Love," "My Foolish Heart" and "I Apologize." Born in Pittsburgh but raised in Washington, D.C., Eckstine began singing at the age...
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Everything I Have Is Yours / The Best of the MGM Years, Billy Eckstine
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