JACKIE GLEASON PRESENTS - OPIATE D'AMOUR / REBOUND
Here’s a pair of late 50s gems from Jackie Gleason – back to back on a single CD! Opiate D'Amour definitely has the drug promised in the title – thanks to some lush arrangements from the legendary Jackie Gleason! But the set's also got some other charms, too – thanks to solo instrumental passages by some surprisingly great guests – including Al Caiola on guitar, Lawrence Brown on trombone, Bernie Leighton on piano, and Romeo Penque – who plays the "oboe d'amore"! The album's definitely got Gleason at the top of his game – working well within the specific concepts Capitol allowed him for the record – on titles that include "The Girl", "It's All Right With Me", "Pink Lace", "Casa D'Amor", "Caress", and "Pale Blues". Rebound features beautiful music for the blue at heart – and the kind of record that really helps get us through a late night after a big breakup! Jackie Gleason is at his moody best here – with orchestrations that are full, but nicely restrained – and some great solo inflections from Bernie Leighton on piano, and reedman Romeo Penque – who plays a special instrument here named the "oboe d'amour"! Titles include "Do Nothin' Till You Hear From Me", "Satin Doll", "Ain't Misbehavin'", "Nevertheless", "Long Before I Knew You", "I'm Making Believe", "Without Love", "Close Your Eyes", "You Stepped Out Of A Dream", "More Than You Know", and "I Just Couldn't Take It Baby". ~ Dusty Groove.
HENRY MANCINI - THE MANCINI GENERATION / HANGIN' OUT WITH HENRY MANCINI
Overlooked genius from Henry Mancini – and two albums back to back as a single set! The Mancini Generation is one of the first great electric moments for Henry Mancini in the 70s – and a record that's got a way groovier sound than you might expect from the title! Things are still very much in the best soundtrack Mancini mode – and pretty jazzy, too – but there's also a bit of Arp on the record, played by Hank himself – which makes for some mighty cool electronic touches! The rest of the lineup is pretty wonderful too – and features key work from west coast jazz soloists – including Clare Fischer on organ, Jerome Richardson on flute and soprano sax, and Jimmy Rowles on Fender Rhodes – all of whom sound great alongside the Arp. Titles include "The Mancini Generation", "Memphis Underground", "Killer Joe", "A Blusih Bag", "Charade", and "The Masterpiece". Hangin Out is very cool work from Henry Mancini – and one of the key 70s albums to feature the maestro himself playing an Arp! The added electric presence of the instrument really brings a lot to the usual Mancini charts here – creating some cool spacey and soulful moments you wouldn't expect, and some of those surprising Mancini funky bits that show up on records from the time! The set features a great medley of Barry White's "Love Theme" and MFSB's "TSOP"; classic soundtrack material like "The Thief Who Came to Dinner", "Theme From White Dawn", and the great "Theme From The Girl From Petrovka" (which was sampled by Pete Rock) – plus the tracks "The Sex Symbol", "Hangin' Out", "Song For Anna", "The Stripper", "Dolce" and "The Entertainer". ~ Dusty Groove
PAUL MAURIAT - UN JOUR UN ENFANT / JE T'AIME...MOI NON PLUS
Late 60s magic from Paul Mauriat – a pair of records from a time when he was really riding high on the instrumental charts! Un Jour Un Enfant is filled with groovy 60s touches – that special bounce that Mauriat could bring to his rhythms, mixed with orchestrations that are full but never overblown, and served up with some especially nice moments on a keyboard that seems to be an electric harpsichord. Some numbers are upbeat and groovy – and titles include "Love Child", "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me", "Abraham Martin & John", "My Girl", and "Catherine". Je T'Aime Moi Non Plus is worth it alone for the title track – a sweet instrumental cover of the Serge Gainsbourg/Jane Birkin hit, done with some groovy touches that nicely differ from the original! Other tunes follow in Mauriat's best late 60s modes – these nicely streamlined pop instrumental passages that have lean orchestrations, groovy undercurrents, and some especially nice standout guitar and piano bits! Titles include "Je T'Aime Moi Non Plus", "Alors Je Chante", "Let The Sunshine In", "De Musique En Musique", and "Que Je T'Aime". CD also features a bonus single mix of "Je T'Aime Moi Non Plus". ~ Dusty Groove