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Swingin' On the Moon

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Album Review

This unusual project, reissued on CD in 1998, features singer Mel Torme with the Russ Garcia Orchestra performing 11 songs that have the word Moon in their title plus "A Velvet Affair." Although the renditions are quite concise (all are less than four minutes) and a couple of the arrangements use novelty effects, the music is generally quite jazz-oriented. With the exception of Torme's title tune (which deserves to be revived), the songs are all standards including "Moonlight Cocktail," "How High The Moon," "Blue Moon," "No Moon At All" and "Oh, You Crazy Moon." Torme is accompanied by several different ensembles including an orchestra, a group with several strings and one with four trombones. Although not essential, this is a cheerful and enjoyable release by the great Torme.


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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Swingin' On the Moon, Mel Tormé
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