String-heavy early genius from a young Michel Legrand – tracks from some of his best travelogue albums for Columbia from the 50s! The first half of the set is Legrand's original I Love Paris album – a sparkling postwar musical fantasy of Paris, made up of a host of famous themes from French pop music of the 20th century, all set to lush string arrangements! The album's not as upbeat or jazzy as some of Legrand's later soundtrack work, but it's got a wonderful quality
all its own – a warmly romantic vision of a Paris that was still putting the pieces back together less than a decade after WWII, presented in a way that glosses sweet sounds over darker corners with a vaguely eerie feel. The record instantly made Legrand an international favorite, and features 16 tracks that include "Mademoiselle De Paris", "The Last Time I Saw Paris", "Paris Canaille", "Autumn Leaves", "A Paris", "La Vie En Rose", "Under Paris Skies", and "April In Paris. Next up are 11 more tracks from another postwar site – Italian themes from Legrand's Holiday In Rome record, done in a similar style to the Paris session – with titles that include "Vieni Vieni", "Aveva Un Bavero", "Fiorin Fiorello", "Torna A Surriento", and "Funiculi Funicula". The travels are completed in Vienna – with 3 more titles from Legrand's Vienna Holiday album, including "Vilia", "Third Man Theme", and "The Cafe Mozart Waltz".