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XSingers we love -- from vintage torch to vocalese, scat, jazz poetry, standards, and more!



Bethlehem Edit search

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Exact matches: 1
Exact matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mel TormeBethlehem Years ... CD
Bethlehem/Shout Factory, Late 50s. Used ... $3.99
Excellent work from Mel Torme – material recorded in the late 50s for Bethlehem Records – easily one of our favorite periods in the career of the Velvet Fog! The tunes here are tremendous – numbers that are tightly jazzy, often with hip west coast backing from arranger Marty Paich – who really knows how to balance together swinging rhythms and warmer tones that perfectly suit Torme's unique vocal style. In fact, if we dare say it, as great as Mel is in other settings, he'd also probably admit that the Bethlehem sides were the high point of his recorded career – material he'd reference often in later years. CD features 16 tracks in all – including "Lullaby Of Birdland", "The Lady Is A Tramp", "Lulu's Back In Town", "I Got It Bad & That Ain't Good", "They Can't Take That Away From Me", "It's All Right With Me", "Poor Little Extra Girl", "Nice Work If You Can Get It", "I Got Plenty O Nuttin", "Fascinating Rhythm", and "Just One Of Those Things". CD
Close matches: 9
Close matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Chris ConnorChris Connor Sings Lullabys Of Birdland ... LP
Bethlehem, Mid 50s. Very Good ... $6.99
A great set of tracks that represents some of Chris Connor's first recordings as a solo act – culled from earlier ep and 10" releases, and issued here on a full LP with a total of 14 tracks. Backing is by three groups – the Ellis Larkin Trio, Vinnie Burke's Quartet, and Sy Oliver's Orchestra – and Chris is in fine fine form, vocalizing with that icy tone we love so much, a bit sad, and a bit mellow, but always heartfelt, without the forced emotion of other singers of her generation. Titles include "Stella By Starlight", "Goodbye", "Spring Is Here", "Ask Me", "Lullaby Of Birdland", "Try A Little Tenderness", and "He's Coming Home". LP, Vinyl record album
(80s Cayre pressing. Cover has thin stains at the sides.)

Close matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Teal JoyTed Steele Presents Miss Teal Joy (with bonus tracks) ... CD
Bethlehem/Solid (Japan), 1955. Used ... $13.99
A great little album from this overlooked singer – an east coast vocalist from the 50s, working here on one of the few sessions she ever recorded! Teal's got an exotic look on the cover, but the presentation of the music is right up there in the best mainstream jazz modes of the time – and unlike some of the other small combo vocal work on Bethlehem in the 50s, this album has the fuller feel of the sorts of records you might hear on a label like Capitol or Verve at the time. Ted Steele handles the arrangements – and is also credited with discovering Teal in Atlantic City – and the backings are a mix of jazzy flourishes and larger strings – never poppy or overdone. Titles include "Autumn Leaves", "El Cumbanchero", "Deed I Do", "For You My Love", "Who's Sorry Now", "Let's Fall In Love", and "Easy To Remember". CD also features three bonus alternate takes! CD
(Includes obi.)

Close matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Carmen McRaeFinest Of Carmen McRae – You'd Be So Easy To Love (aka Carmen McRae) ... LP
Bethlehem, 1954. Near Mint- ... $6.99
Great early work from Carmen McRae – small combo, jazzy, and a nicely different set than some of her other work of the 50s! Backings are by two groups – one headed by accordionist Mat Mathews, the other by saxophonist Tony Scott – both quartets, and both of them working with a nicely lean sense of swing that seems to bring the same out of Carmen! The album's not as dark or moody as you might expect from these years – and that's a great thing to us, because it illuminates another side of Carmen's talents that don't always get as much exposure. Titles include "Easy To Love", "If I'm Lucky", "Tip Toe Gently", "Old Devil Moon", "Misery", and "Too Much In Love To Care". LP, Vinyl record album
(70s pressing. Cover has an unglued bottom seam & a cutout notch.)

Close matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Frank MinionSoft Land Of Make Believe ... LP
Bethlehem, 1959. Near Mint- ... $29.99
One of the coolest jazz vocal albums you'll ever find! Frank Minion sings this suite of tracks billed as an "Introduction To Black Opium Street", and he puts the music together with little recitations in between the tracks, so that the whole thing sounds like one of the great Langston Hughes jazz albums from the same period. Minion's singing voice is in the same rich-toned tradition as singers like Johnny Hartman, but his speaking voice is raw and very soulful – and he gets more than able backing by a great set of players that includes Tommy Flanagan on piano, Roland Alexander on tenor and flute, Dannie Richmond on drums, and Paul Chambers on bass. The whole album sounds more like a rare session on Candid than it does the usual stuff on Bethlehem – and it's a surprisingly hip album that still holds up well over the years! Titles include "Oddsville USA", "Bongo Blues", "Autobiography Of A Musician", "Watermelon", "Flamenco Sketches", "Laughing Boy", and "Later". LP, Vinyl record album
(Great Japanese pressing, with insert – PAP 23025. Cover has very light wear on the top seam, but is nice overall.)

Close matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Nina Simone/Chris Connor/Carmen McRaeNina Simone & Her Friends – An Intimate Variety Of Vocal Charm (180 gram emerald green vinyl pressing) ... LP
Bethlehem, 1960. New Copy (reissue)... $34.99 36.99
A classic collection of work from Bethlehem Records – a package that brings together some of their strongest jazz singers of the time, under a cover image that's similar to the first album by Nina Simone! The difference here is that the record features a killer non-LP track by Nina – the stunning "African Mailman" – a righteous groover that points the way towards some of her work to come in the 60s – alongside versions of "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands", "I Loves You Porgy", and "For All We Know". The set also features the great Chris Connor singing "Cottage For Sale", "What Is There To Say", "Try a Little Tenderness", and "Good Bye" – plus Carmen McRae delivering nice takes on "Old Devil Moon", "You Made Me Care", "Last Time For Love", and "Too Much In Love To Care". LP, Vinyl record album
(Limited edition on emerald green vinyl!)

Close matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mel TormeIt's A Blue World (80s pressing) ... LP
Bethlehem/Affinity (UK), 1955. Near Mint- ... $5.99 7.99
One of the most beautiful albums ever from the great Mel Torme – and a set that's a bit different than his other work for the Bethlehem label too! The set features Mel singing to lush backings from arranger Al Pellegrini – who brings in a mode that definitely lives up to the blue tones promised in the title – with enough melancholy moments in the mix to rival the sound of Frank Sinatra's classic Wee Small Hours album. The voice of the Velvet Fog is perfect in such a setting – and Torme's all serious, all classic, all the way through – no gimmicks or tricks or goofy moments at all. Titles include "How Long Has This Been Going On", "It's A Blue World", "Polka Dots & Moonbeams", "I Got It Bad & That Ain't Good", "All This & Heaven Too", "Wonderful One", and "Stay As Sweet As You Are". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Mel Torme, Francis Faye, Johnny Hartman, & OthersComplete George Gershwin Porgy & Bess ... LP
Bethlehem, 1956. Very Good 3LP Box Set ... $4.99 8.99
One of our favorite recordings ever of George Gershwin's Porgy & Bess – done by Bethlehem Records in the mid 50s, and featuring nearly every one of the label's great talents at the time! The choice of the lead characters is a bit odd – as Mel Torme plays Porgy and Francis Faye plays Bess – but both singers are actually pretty darn great for the set, and really bring a lot out of the tunes. Plus, the other artists on the set really keep things interesting – as the collection features vocal performances by Johnny Hartman, Frank Rosolino, Betty Roche, Bob Dorough, and Sallie Blair. Plus, the whole thing's presented as Gershwin wrote it – complete with narration by Al Jazzbo Collins, and a number of strong instrumental passages. Music is performed by groups led by Russ Garcia, Duke Ellington, Pat Moran, and Stan Levy – and players are an array of the best of both the New York and LA scenes at the time! LP, Vinyl record album
(Mono red label pressing. Box has seam splits, name in marker, light surface wear.)

Close matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Johnny HartmanAll Of Me (70s pressing) ... LP
Bethlehem, 1956. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
Although the world always remembers Johnny Hartman best for his Impulse recordings with Coltrane, we've always dug some of his earlier stuff – like this album – because the sound's a bit rawer, and the style's got more of a kick! The magical Hartman voice is presented in two great settings – one a small orchestra directed by Frank Hunter, the other an even cooler group headed by Ernie Wilkins – with great horn work from players who include Anthony Ortega, Howard McGhee, Jerome Richardson, and Lucky Thompson! The tracks are familiar, but done with that dusky Hartman style – and titles include "I Could Make You Care", "The Lamp Is Low", "Stella By Starlight", "All Of Me", and a very haunting rendition of "The End Of A Love Affair". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Johnny HartmanSongs From The Heart ... LP
Bethlehem, 1955. Near Mint- ... Temporarily Out Of Stock
A nice little album from Johnny Hartman – recorded back in the mid 50s for Bethlehem, in the years before he recorded his more famous dates for the Impulse label! The set has Johnny singing nice and mellow – with backing by a group led by pianist Ralph Sharon, one of Tony Bennett's longtime accompanists, with added trumpet by Howard McGhee – which creates some nicely moody interplay in the relatively spare setting of the session. Hartman's vocals are a dream, as always – and tracks include "What Is There To Say", "Moonlight In Vermont", "I'll Remember April", "Down In The Depths", "I Fall In Love Too Easily", and "We'll Be Together Again". LP, Vinyl record album
(Japanese pressing, on Trio, with obi – a great copy!)
Possible matches: 1
Possible matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Chris ConnorChris Connor ... CD
Atlantic (Japan), 1956. Used ... Out Of Stock
The first album in a legendary run of vocal jazz classics on Atlantic Records – and a set that really helped Chris Connor move to a new level of expression in her music! The sound here is much richer than Connor's previous recordings for Bethlehem – and the small combo jazz backings have been replaced by fuller orchestrations by Ralph Burns – done in a cool, edgey sort of way that really pushes Chris into newly sophisticated territory! The sound's on a par with the best June Christy/Pete Rugolo collaborations on Capitol – and the group's filled with some great jazz players, including Zoot Sims, John Lewis, Milt Hinton, and Oscar Pettiford. Titles include "I Get A Kick Out Of You", "My April Heart", "He Was Good to Me", "Where Are You", and "Get Out Of Town". CD
(Out of print.)

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