Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Today's cd/Oh! Look At Me Now - Bobby Darin


I feel like I should be wearing a housedress and have my hair tied up in a scarf as I dance around the kitchen to this 1962 album. Oh my, it is wonderful. Anyone my age remembers Bobby Darin and his zillions of hits, but he really shines at singing the standards.

This album is long out of print, but thanks to iTunes I could buy it and listen 49 years later with it sounding as fresh as if it were recorded yesterday. His phrasing, his smooth singing is incomparable. The title song, written by Joe Bushkin and John DeVries in 1941, is just about the best song I've ever heard. I spent a good hour with the song on repeat. I wish there were a video of him singing it, but at least there is this so you can hear his great, great voice.



I did find one of him singing a few other songs on the album like this one, which I'm also exceedingly fond of.



His life was way, way too short. He had a heart condition and died at 37 years old. There's a nice biography of him here.

20 comments:

  1. I always liked Mack the Knife too. And Somewhere Beyond the Sea.His and Sandra Dee's lives seemed to be so unlike their personas, so tied up together. She became a recluse and alcoholic, I believe. Never appeared to get over his death and/or getting old.

    I remember being so shocked when he died. 37. Way too young. He was a very talented young man.

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  2. Their son wrote a biography of them called Dream Lovers (remember BD's song?). I haven't read it, and I haven't seen the Kevin Spacey movie about Bobby Darin but I'll bet he is great in it. I loved Sandra Dee when I was a girl.

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  3. Cast my vote for Mack the Knife, too. Greatness! Thank you for the reminder, Nan.

    There's a YouTube video of him singing Mack live, and the audience is sitting stone still. How is that possible? I had to get up and dance.

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  4. Nan!! I love these songs! I am off to I-tunes to get them!!! Thanks!

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  5. J.G., that song introduced me to the Brecht/Weill Threepenny Opera!

    Laura, I thought you might like these songs! The whole album is just great.

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  6. What a great way to start a snowy day. thank you.

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  7. Nan: Off topic for a moment, but I must ask you: how do you do those link back things from your blog to mine. I notice that you often link one of my posts to yours at the very bottom of the post on my blog. I love the idea. I want to do that too. But can't figure out how. Help. :)

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  8. Yvette, I have no idea. I'm not doing a thing. I see sometimes mine have links from places I don't even recognize.

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  9. I understand your feelings of being exceedingly fond as I am exceedingly fond of the multi-talented Mr. Darin myself. I love this album. It's one of my all time favorites, though all of Bobby's albums have their merits. He is a master at interpreting lyrics and presenting a fresh perspective on many standards. This brilliant album includes Blue Skies and A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square both of which are masterpieces of performance by Darin with orchestrations by Billy May. It is his first album recorded for Capitol Records and is available on cd.
    reina

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  10. Reina, how very nice to meet a fellow fan! From what I read it isn't available to buy on cd, but I got the cd from iTunes. It is so great!

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  11. Thank you, Nan! This was the perfect post to come to after clearing the driveway of yet another foot of snow. Bobby Darin was/is a favorite of mine.

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  12. Marcia, I'm so glad you liked it.

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  13. Nice to meet you, Nan. I enjoyed reading your piece on Bobby Darin very much. OLAMN is admittedly a difficult cd to find for purchase, but possible. I bought mine a few years ago from AmazonUK. I love the hunt. Last month Boxstar Records released an audiophile, remastered version of Bobby's That's All vinyl lp. This month a different company released his Love Swings in remastered vinyl. Both are very wonderful sonically. The listener feels in the same room with Darin. He will never go away. He's too good.
    reina

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  14. Reima, do you by any chance have Sirius radio? If so, there's a station called Siriusly Sinatra - and a show from noon-3 with Jonathan Schwartz. He plays a lot of Bobby Darin. That's where I first heard the song, Oh! Look At Me Now. I was wowed.

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  15. Nan, sadly I do not have Sirius radio, but I do know of Jonathan Schwartz from years ago, too many to count, when his program was broadcast on a Boston station. I listened to him a great deal. He knew so much about music. I think his father was a famous composer. I did read somewhere that he was a Bobby Darin appreciator. Thanks for the reminder. I should get serious about Sirius.
    reina

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  16. Reina (sorry about the misspelling before) - it is worth every penny just for the one station. I do occasionally listen to the 'real jazz' station but mostly it is Siriusly Sinatra. If you get satellite Dish TV, you get Sirius.
    JS was in Boston! We lived there for several years but only listened to WBCN. He has written an autobiography I have on the shelf but haven't read yet called All in Good Time. And he also wrote A Day of Light and Shadows about a particular Red Sox game in 1978. I love his passion for both the RS and this music.

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  17. Hmmm You're planting seeds of ideas in my mind for the near future I must say. Maybe after I get back from the Bobby Darin birthday celebration trip to Carmel-by-the Sea and Big Sur. A group of Darin FANatics are headed there for a few days in May. Bobby would have been 75 years old on May 14. He spent most of a year in Big Sur back in 1968ish to rethink his life and career. Please visit his wonderful website BobbyDarin.net for tons of information about him and his wonderful music. Most people have no idea how versatile he was,a master at the standards and a genius in live performance.
    reina

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  18. I will always be a Bobby Darin fan too, and did write a blog post about him years ago. http://findingafairhope.blogspot.com/2006/06/legends-of-bobby-darin.html

    You might find it interesting.

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  19. Reina, what a great, great thing to do! 75! Impossible to believe. I will spend more time over at the site.

    Mary Lois, so very nice to see you! I thought you might be a fan. I'll read your post soon. Thanks for telling me about it.

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Now that I am a grandmother, it seems that I am often late in replying to your most-appreciated comments. But I read them as soon as they come in, and I will write as soon as I can. Please do come back and check. I love these blogging conversations. A little addendum - I've just spent quite a long time catching up with dear notes you left me months ago!! I do hope you can get back to read them. And I'm trying to be much more prompt now!

Also, you may comment on any post, no matter how old, and I will see it.