Various, Porgy And Bess [OST] (1959)
I love this – the album I mean, not the movie. I’m sure I would like the film – or at the least be interested in it. But I’ve not seen it. As a rule I don’t (really) do musicals. There are of course several exceptions to that rule and this is one of them. The soundtrack album, anyway. I guess I arrive at this as someone interested in the music of George Gershwin. And Miles Davis had a bit to do with me understanding the music of Porgy And Bess – and then, through that, finding out the number of standards that had come from this – versions I realised I knew by Miles and Nina Simone and many, many others. I really should find the film and give it a go – here’s a handy selection of songs from the film in one go. Because I’ve loved this record for many years – it was my grandfather’s. He had, mostly, pretty awful taste in music really. He was a bit of a Foster & Allen type. But he had some cool soundtracks, some very cool gospel/spiritual music. And some amazing classical stuff. The country, folk and crooner tunes he favoured were, mostly, awful. Horrific. Almost spellbindingly bad, even. One day – many years after his death – my grandmother suggested I take what was there in terms of the records (maybe 40, max). Because she didn’t play them. She couldn’t think to play them, she told me. I thought that was sweet. She then confirmed that her arthritis troubled her and she lacked the delicacy in dropping the arm onto the wax. She then confirmed that a lack of delicacy ran beyond the arthritis by holding the cover of this album up and saying “also, look, most of it is just rubbish anyway and it will go to the dump”. I was about 19 when I rescued this record, seizing it from the trembling thumb and forefinger of Grandma. I’ve loved it ever since.
Sample Track: Summertime
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