Reviews, Vinyl Records

RAW PICKS Joel Reviews (RPJR#16): Ella Fitzgerald – The Rogers and Hart Songbook

LP REVIEW: everybody’s favorite garage sale find, with Ella Fitzgerald, The Rogers and Hart Songbook (1977)



I literally have no idea where to start with Ella Fitzgerald (1917-1996), a.k.a ‘the first lady of song’ or ‘the queen of jazz’ or just ‘Lady Ella’. She was larger than life, so incredibly famous, won 14 Grammy awards and is omnipresent in the musical repertoire that is jazz, TV, movie and American popular song. In fact, you just have to look at her massive wikipedia entry or check out this more readable biography. She was an amazing and unique talent.


In RPJR#7 I wrote about the Verve label so I will refer you to that article. These types of Verve albums are pretty good, they are somehow ubiquitous and you can usually find them at bargain bin prices. They must have pressed hundreds of thousands of them worldwide. This one is a Brazilian pressing. The record was originally mastered by Bob Ludwig when he was at Masterdisk, so a top name in the recording industry.


This album was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999 for its “qualitative or historical significance.” In 2000 it was voted number 642 in Colin Larkin’s All Time Top 1000 Albums.

Ella’s rendering of these songs is the gold standard. The orchestra is top notch as well, swinging, supportive, with a wide-ranging big band sound and together they create a nostalgic place. There is no doubt about the quality and importance of these songs and performances.  Personally, I have moved on from this type of music – I can no longer sit through four sides of these songs (if you promise not to tell anyone, I will admit that I did not even make it through side one ;-o. Timeless music? I don’t know. It sounds very dated (the fifties) to me now. This hobby is very subjective – it’s just my opinion, so let me say this; if you’ve never listened to this, I encourage you to give it a try … Lady Ella was a gem.

All these tunes are pretty famous and you can find them all over youtube. You can sample the feel of the music with the cut ‘Manhattan’:


This album is available online at the RAW MUSIC STORE site for 60AED.


Ella Fitzgerald, vocals

The Buddy Bregman Orchestra – consists of the following members:
Al Hendrickson, Alvin Stoller, Arthur Herfurt, Barney Kessel, Bob Cooper, Bud Shank, Buddy Bregman, Chuck Gentry, Claude Williamson, Conrad Gozzo, Conte Candoli, Corky Hale, Dale Issenhuth, Dan Lube, Dorothy Remsen, Edgar Lustgarten, Eudice Shapiro, Francis Howard, Frank Rosolino, George Roberts, Harry Edison, Herb Geller, Jerome Kasper, Jimmy Giuffre, Joe Howard, Joe Mondragon, John Altwerger, Lloyd Ulyate, Lou Raderman, Manny Klein, Marshall Cram, Maurice Stein, Maynard Ferguson, Milt Bernhart, Paul Smith, Pete Candoli, Raphael Kramer, Ray Linn, Shelly Manne, Si Zentner, Stan Getz, Ted Nash, Uan Rasey, Virginia Majewski – some famous names in there, most had successful solo or band leader careers who (in bold)


A1 You Took Advantage Of Me

A2 Everything I’ve Got

A3 Where Or When

A4 The Lady Is A Tramp

A5 Here In My Arms

A6 Blue Moon

A7 Lover

A8 Wait Until You See Her

A9 My Funny Valentine

B1 Bewitched

B2 The Blue Room

B3 Ten Cents A Dance

B4 With A Song In My Heart

B5 Spring Is Here

B6 This Can’t Be Love

B7 Thou Swell

B8 Little Girl Blue

C1 Johnny One Note

C2 I Wish I Were In Love Again

C3 It Never Entered My Mind

C4 Dancing On The Ceiling

C5 There’s A Small Hotel

C6 My Heart Stood Still

C7 Mountain Greenery

C8 I Didn’t Know What Time It Was

D1 I’ve Got Five Dollars

D2 Have You Met Miss Jones

D3 To Keep My Love Alive

D4 A Ship Without A Sail

D5 Manhattan

D6 Isn’t It Romantic

D7 Give It Back To The Indians

D8 I Could Write A Book

D9 My Romance