1. Stormy Weather 2. What Is This Thing Called Love? 3. Ill Wind (You're Blowin' Me No Good) 4. The Man I Love 5. Where or When (from "Babes in Arms") 6. I Got a Right To Sing The Blues 7. Mad About The Boy 8. Moanin' Low (from the musical "The Little Show") 9. As Long As I Live 10. I Ain't Got Nothin' But The Blues 11. I Didn't Know About You 12. One For My Baby (And One More for the Road) (from the movie "The Sky's The Limit") 13. Suddenly It's Spring 14. Do Nothing 'Till You Hear From Me 15. I'll Be Around
Lena Horne became an international celebrity as a teenager -- making her first record at 18 with Noble Sissle and his orchestra -- and in many ways her star never faded. Because her success as a singer and actress paved the way for so many African-American divas in later decades, it's easy to overlook the simple vocal magic that got the legend rolling. This is one of the new Bluebird series' best compilations, a compendium of early-'40s classics that define the era. Sometimes her approach was ironic. Even if the mood of "Stormy Weather" is dark, the innocence of her voice conveys a rich optimism and whimsy. On these selections, which include "What Is This Thing Called Love?" and a hypnotic take on the Rodgers & Hart gem "Where or When?," her tone is light and flowing, with a gentle, sexy lisp in certain spots. The last three tracks, from January 1944, are so rare and obscure that the location of the recording and the backing orchestra are unknown. A must for the Horne fan or for folks who think Judy Garland and Billie Holiday were the only vocal standard setters of the time. ~ Jonathan Widran
Principally recorded in Hollywood, California between 1941 & 1944.