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Cole Porter from Rare Piano Rolls

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Album Review

Biograph Presents Cole Porter From Rare Piano Rolls features interpretations of 14 of Porter's best-known show tunes and soundtrack songs from the '20s — '50s, based on the original piano rolls. The versions of "You Do Something to Me," "Night and Day," "I Get a Kick Out of You," and "Anything Goes" have the sprightly, intricate sound that is usually associated with music from the late '20s and early '30s, while the late '30s, '40s and '50s songs like "My Heart Belongs to Daddy," "I Love Paris," and "C'est Magnifique" have a smoother, more melodic playing style. The collection is also notable for its liner notes, which include a mini-biography of Porter and lyrics to all of the songs featured on the disc.

Customer Reviews

Great, but wish it included the extras

This four-star review results from reading the small print. I downloaded this album and love the player-piano "feel" of classic Porter tunes. (Hence the gist of this album.)

All 14 tracks are lively renditions of mainly well-known compositions, but the review above - based on the original CD, I assume - notes that it included a mini-bio of Porter and the lyrics to all of these songs. Hence, I give it four stars.

If I hadn't read that review, I'd probably give this album five stars. But I did, and the "Gee, I wish the iTunes version woulda included that" factor is in my head.

Bottom line: Porter fans won't go wrong buying this album. I don't regret it at all. The sound quality is excellent, and if you're reading this, I don't need to sell you on the genius of his ability and why, so many decades later, you're contemplating buying Porter's stuff via a medium he never imagined.

But still, I wish this purchase included that other cool stuff.


Born: June 9, 1891 in Peru, IN

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '10s, '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s

Many arguments could be generated over whether Cole Porter or Irving Berlin should be considered America's greatest tunesmith. Both wrote music and lyrics; it's clearly a pick 'em situation. Porter had violin and piano lessons as a child, pursued undergraduate studies at Yale (where he penned fight songs that endure to this day such as "Bulldog"), and studied law and music at Harvard, all courtesy of a rich grandfather. His grandfather was appalled Porter would consider music as a career and never...
Full Bio

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