Peggy Lee

Decca Rarities (Digital Release)

Universal Music Group (Digital Release)
Release date: April 3, 2020

 

Though she was most associated with Capitol Records throughout her decades under the musical sun, for five years (1952-1956) Peggy Lee had an artistically and commercially successful recording career with Decca Records. For Decca she recorded one of her most widely praised albums, the torchy Black Coffee with Peggy Lee, as well as a similar collection of late-night laments, Dream Street; a brassy big-band album, Miss Wonderful; and a wistful collection of folk ballads and poetry, Sea Shells. In addition to these albums she released dozens of singles at Decca, ten of which charted in the top thirty and one of which — her wild reinvention of Rodgers and Hart’s Lover — became a million-seller. These five years coincided with Peggy’s most active work in film, so other Decca releases in various formats showcased films in which she acted and sang (The Jazz Singer, Pete Kelly’s Blues), films in which she was heard singing and contributed as a songwriter (Lady and the Tramp, Johnny Guitar), and films in which she substituted on record for other actresses (Road to Bali, White Christmas).

All 31 songs in the Decca Rarities collection are making their download/streaming debut. Eleven of them were co-composed by Peggy, as noted by asterisks in the track listing below. Among these are seven songs co-written by Peggy and Sonny Burke for Lady and the Tramp, some of which did not make the final film. Another song, Where Can I Go Without You, co-written by Peggy and Victor Young, has become a minor standard, having been recorded by Nat King Cole, Natalie Cole, Vic Damone, Connie Francis, Jack Jones, Dean Martin, Catherine Russell, Mel Tormé, Nina Simone, Dionne Warwick and many others. (This is Peggy’s original recording of the song, from 1953; she recorded it again for other labels in 1963 and 1989.) Peggy shares the microphone on several other songs with Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, the Mills Brothers, and jazz pianist-singer Jimmy Rowles.

Tracks

1. Straight Ahead* (with the Mills Brothers)
2. Me
3. You Let My Love Get Cold
4. I Still Get a Thrill (Thinking Of You)
5. Ooh, That Kiss
6. It Must Be So* (with the Mills Brothers)
7. Baubles, Bangles And Beads
8. Where Can I Go Without You*
9. Summer Vacation
10. That’s What a Woman Is For
11. Never Mind
12. How Strange
13. Apples, Peaches and Cherries
14. The Moon Came Up With a Great Idea Last Night
15. How Bitter, My Sweet
16. Merry-Go-Run-Around (with Bob Hope and Bing Crosby)
17. It’s Because We’re in Love* (Jimmy Rowles)
18. Watermelon Weather (with Bing Crosby)
19. Moon Flowers
20. Pablo Pasablo
21. The Possibility’s There (with Bing Crosby)
22. Guess I’ll Go Back Home (This Summer)
23. Bouquet of Blues
24. That’s Him Over There
25. Singing (‘Cause He Wants to Sing)*
26. That Fellow’s a Friend of Man*
27. Jim Dear*
28. Old Trusty*
29. What Is a Baby?*
30. La La Lu*
31. Bella Notte*

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