Peggy Lee: All Aglow Again!

Lee gets commercial here, but the album collects some classics, the technique is fascinating and Nelson Riddle, Quincy Jones and Billy May lead some of the bands


Peggy was perfectionist and a great jazz singer, so when things become a bit commercial one always has the techniques to admire.

There are some of her classics here – the 1947 Black Coffee with obbligati from Pete Candoli, Sugar with Matty Matlock, and the ones you just like, such as Things Are Swinging, Hallelujah I Love Him So and the wonderful example of Lee’s magic with ballads, The Folks Who Live On The Hill.

The album has as its heart the complete 1960 album of the title (was it ever issued in the UK?).The subtitle is “The Hits Of…”, so you know what to expect. There seems to be a different band on almost every track, but of course Jack Sheldon, Jimmy Rowles, Milt Bernhart and Barney Kessel never rise to ear level. It’s a very enjoyable collection, but lots of her later albums were majestic, graceful and, well, Peggy.

Fever; Where Do I Go From Here?; Whee, Baby; My Man; You Deserve; Mañana; Hallelujah, I Love Him So; You Don’t Know; Louisville Lou; I’m Looking Out The Window; It Keeps You Young; Let’s Call It A Day; Black Coffee; Sugar; I’m A Woman; Ain’t We Got Fun?; Johnny Guitar; The Folks Who Live On The Hill; La La Lu; Christmas Waltz; Golden Earrings; Sweet Happy Life; Things Are Swingin’; All Right, OK, You Win; I Love Being Here With You; Don’t Smoke In Bed; The Lady Is A Tramp; ’Til There Was You; As Time Goes By (78.58)
Lee with orchestras led by Jack Marshall, Nelson Riddle, Quincy Jones and Billy May amongst others. Hollywood, 1947-1962.
Essential Jazz Classics 11443