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Anita O'Day Sings the Winners

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iTunes Review

For Anita O’Day Sings the Winners the singer takes a big band in her sway and completely revitalizes several of the best-known songs in jazz history. The original 1958 LP was divided into two sides, the first arranged and conducted by Marty Paich, the second by Russell Garcia. Led off by an unstoppable version of Duke Ellington’s “Take the ‘A’ Train,” the first half is notable for its bold, brassy performances. In “Four” and “Four Brothers” O’Day pushes the orchestra to be wily and flexible, but it’s nothing compared to her fearless take on Dizzy Gillespie’s “Night In Tunisia.” The performance is testament to Anita’s unmatched maneuverability as a vocalist. The big band arrangement of “Tenderly” is complex and melancholy, but the real blue-flame goodies are on side two. Anita moves through “Body and Soul” and “My funny Valentine” like a low ripple across a lake. The finale is “Peanut Vendor,” a Caribbean pastiche that could be corny in the hands of another singer — Anita makes it the coolest, grooviest song on the album. Triple your mirth with a culinary trifecta formed by bonus tracks “Blue Champagne,” “Hershey Bar” and “Peel Me a Grape.”

Customer Reviews

Anita's zenith

This is an essential recording for even the most casual listener of jazz vocals. Anita's voice was at its peak on the year, month and week when these tracks were made. Combine that with some great songs and and top-drawer orchestra talent, and you're got a "winner." Only complaint -- and it's a small one -- is that the four bonus tracks detract from the package.

Classic jazzy numbers from the late 50's!

O'Day has such an easy, cool vocal tone. It blends so perfectly with the bass and clarinet. This is a long tracklist, very worth the $10.

The Jazz Singing Legend With Wonderful Bands & Great Songs

This is a great Anita O'Day recording that I've listened to since the 1980s, plus there are 7 bonus tracks not on the 12-song cassette. The highlights are a fabulous "Tenderly", a hip version of Miles Davis' "Four", drop-dead beautiful "Early Autumn", great scatting on "Four Brothers", and her swinging signature "Body and Soul" in a big band setting. Hats off to the band leaders and arrangers for giving her such great settings so she could 'cut loose' on these beauties. This is so good I'm downloading these, rather than transfer from my worn-out, noisy cassette tape. Enjoy one of jazz' greatest singers!!


Born: October 18, 1919 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Few female singers matched the hard-swinging and equally hard-living Anita O'Day for sheer exuberance and talent in all areas of jazz vocals. Though three or four outshone her in pure quality of voice, her splendid improvising, wide dynamic tone, and innate sense of rhythm made her the most enjoyable singer of the age. O'Day's first appearances in a big band shattered the traditional image of a demure female vocalist by swinging just as hard as the other musicians on the bandstand, best heard on...
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Anita O'Day Sings the Winners, Anita O'Day
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