Jun 14, 2014
A Deluge Of Divas, Hess' Devil, Dreamy Music And - Hot-cha! - Here Comes Liza, Plus A Jinx-You're-It Secret Song!
Sometimes too much is just too delicious, like the name Anna Maria Alberghetti. Ahhhhh. Doesn't it just slip off your tongue? An actress and an operatic singer, Anna, pictured above, is one of many divas crowding this delightful collection, a Cheerfully Delectable Exclusive! just for you.
There's bop, swing and jazz, served piping hot by Kay Starr, Ann Richards (who sings "Something's Coming" from "West Side Story" and sounds more convincingly butch than Larry Kert ever did) (but I digress), Dolores Grey, Shirley Bassey, Lena Horne, Peggy Lee and scads more, making it nearly 40 minutes of pure pleasure. Really, you can't go wrong here.
For some reason, the CD says "Las Vegas!" in the title, which is either a come-on or a threat (it's the latter for me since I don't gamble and the only other things to do in Vegas are watch unbearable "Cirque Du Soleil" shows or buy a 24-hour buffet pass and shovel heaps of food into your yap or snort lots of coke and pretend you like the whiplash techno in the clubs) (and then do this in your hotel room at the end of the night) (which is not my idea of fun) (but I digress). The Diva part? They got that right.
Let's make like a duck (not this duck) and skip across the pond, shall we? Because if we're going to listen to whiplash disco, or rather, velvety smooth electro, we should really visit Danish composer Nikolaj Hess, or Hess Is More.
Actually, we don't have to travel too far, because Hess now spends much of his time in New York. And it's probably unfair to call his album "Creation Keeps The Devil Away" mere electro. Why? Because he's an award-winning jazz pianist and composer for numerous European ballet companies, and so he can't just do one thing (even if he tried). With this 2011 masterpiece, he's created a mesmerizing hybrid - part jazz, part classical, part electro, part Turkish folk (!). It defies genres. And it's fantastic.
Sometimes when I'm sleeping and I dream, I look like this:
I don't wake up that way (I wake up more like this) (okay, I lied, it's like this). Anyhoo, if you enjoyed last weeks "Fragments From A Space Cadet" (and I know you did), then let Kenneth Bager's music slip into your bedtime thoughts and beyond in "Music For Dreams, Vol. 1," a luxurious electro landscape which utilizes the music of Grassskirt, Boom Clap Bachelors and more (including Hess Is More).
Stop the presses! Liza's back! Can you stand it?!
Is there anyone in showbiz as hot-cha! as Liza? Name one. You can't, can you? She's irrepressible, unstoppable, incorrigible. And in this fabulous, all-Liza-all-the-time 2-CD compilation, you get not just the very best of Miss Showbiz, but many new classics, like her rendition of "Losing My Mind," and irresistible disco anthems like "Tropical Nights." There's even her take on Ethel Merman's "Some People" (and she slays, I tell you, slays). You're welcome.
The Secret Song File would like to propose a toast. Here's to the ladies who lunch. And the boys who dress up as them. Why? Because while the pop scene has a long history of drag performers making a mark (here and there, at least), very few make substantial inroads into the jazz/cabaret circuit. Much less do it this well.
I know, I know, you're bewildered, and perhaps a touch impatient, because why should you care if a performer is wearing a wig or not? (though most of them do, female or male). You want to know, "Will I play this? Is it any good?" To which the Secret Song File answers, "Yes and yes, you absolutely will." And don't worry, you won't get jinxed. Unless, of course you're overwhelmed by a passing monsoon.
Wig or no wig, I think you're pretty!
Leave a hair-raising thought in the comments, if you like.