Collectors’ Choice Music, US
Original release: December, 2009
Wide release: January 26, 2010
Collectors’ Choice and EMI Music Special Markets present Two Shows Nightly, the rarest and most sought-after Peggy Lee album, finally making its first authorized appearance on CD… with twelve bonus tracks.
During Peggy’s second affiliation with Capitol Records (1957-1972), she normally released two albums per year, and in some years even three or four. 1968 was a notable exception: the year without an original Peggy Lee album. Two Shows Nightly was scheduled for November of 1968, and copies were pressed, but the album was withdrawn before its release date due to Peggy’s dissatisfaction with the final mix. The relatively few copies that managed to be released — most of them promotional copies intended for radio play and publicity purposes — have been sold by private collectors, often for hundreds of dollars, over the past 41 years.
The Two Shows Nightly album is drawn from an April, 1968 engagement at the famous Copacabana nightclub, Peggy’s New York home in the mid-1960s, post-Basin Street East and pre-Waldorf-Astoria. Peggy’s repertoire includes recent Broadway and film songs (Do I Hear a Waltz?; Come Back to Me; What Is a Woman?; My Personal Property); an equally generous sampling of current folk-rock-pop selections (By the Time I Get to Phoenix; Reason to Believe; Until It’s Time for You to Go; Something Stupid); a staple of her repertoire (Alright, Okay, You Win, a minor chart hit for Peggy ten years earlier); and one of her own compositions, Here’s to You, a multilingual toast that often closed her act from the 1960s onwards. Of the album’s twelve tracks, only one (Alright, Okay, You Win) has thus far appeared on an authorized commercial CD.
The twelve bonus tracks consist of singles and unreleased songs recorded between 1964 and 1968, including five tracks from March, 1968, the month before the Two Shows Nightly recordings. Six of the bonus tracks make their first appearance on CD (Stay with Me; Happy Feet; The Lonesome Road; Reason to Believe; and two songs previously unreleased in any format, I Wound It Up andMoney). Two tracks, Make Believe andThat Man, appear on a Peggy Lee solo CD for the first time. (These previously appeared on various-artist CD compilations honoring Jerome Kern and Batman, respectively.) Three tracks are heard in previously unreleased stereo mixes (Stay with Me; Happy Feet; The Lonesome Road), while That Man is heard without the vocal overdub found on the released single version.
Two Shows Nightly features unpublished photos of Peggy and liner notes by Ivan Santiago, author of the comprehensive online Peggy Lee Bio-Discography.
Two Shows Nightly review excerpts
“A great set from one of the most sensual and endearing of all singers.” — Jack Gardner, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 2/5/10
“For an artist who had such an unerring sense of rhythm and swing, it’s no wonder that Peggy Lee slipped easily from jazz into pop. Unlike many of her generation, she never sounded adrift in contemporary music…. ‘Two Shows Nightly,’ bolstered by 12 bonus tracks, ranks with Lee’s great live discs…. In any idiom, the lady was a champ.” — Laura Emerick, Chicago Sun-Times, 2/21/10
“Listening to Lee sing ‘Do I Hear a Waltz,’ the lead-off track from the new deluxe edition of the ‘Live at the Copa’ set, one hears several things that tend to be missing from most modern Great American Songbook interpretations — subtlety, soulfulness, sensuality, sexiness. Lee never over-sells the song. And that’s hot.” — Jeff Miers, Buffalo News, 1/24/10
“Lee could be a quirky entertainer toward the end of her life, but in ’68, she was swingin’ and in luxuriously fine voice, gliding with aching eloquence through standards such as ‘Do I Hear a Waltz,’ ‘Come Back to Me’ and ‘Until It’s Time for You to Go.’ She finds beautiful new depth in the then-new Glen Campbell hit ‘By the Time I Get to Phoenix’ and breaks your heart as only she can with ‘Here’s to You.’ Among the bonus-track highlights is ‘It’ll Never Happen Again,’ a veritable soap opera in song, in which she promises her lover never to stray again while knowing she probably will. What this woman could do with the most subtle of note changes was breathtaking. Her impeccable phrasing, that velvet voice, that thrilling control — all are on display here.” — David Wiegand,San Francisco Chronicle, 1/31/10
“The magnificent Peggy Lee… was a rarity among singers from the pre-rock ‘n’ roll era. Lee’s adventurous spirit and openness to good songs led her beyond American standards and her originals into works by rock and folk songwriters such as Randy Newman, The Beatles, Tim Hardin and others. She sounded, for the most part, right at home with the material and often made it her own. ‘Two Shows Nightly’… reflects the diversity of Lee’s restless muse. The Lovin’ Spoonful’s ‘Didn’t Want to Have to Do It’ is superbly interpreted, and she gives a swinging touch to Hardin’s ‘Reason to Believe.’ While ‘Something Stupid’ is a rare misstep, Lee’s passionate take on Buffy Sainte-Marie’s ‘Until It’s Time for You to Go’ sounds like it was written for her.” — Ellis Widner, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 3/2/10
“A welcome addition to the Lee catalog. Twelve of the tunes trace to the Copacabana performance, and twelve more bonus tracks have been added. All are stunning illustrations of Lee’s remarkable versatility as a singer, songwriter and interpreter…. It’s hard to imagine another singer who could have brought such a diverse array of skills to such an eclectic program of songs.” — Don Heckman, International Review of Music, 2/11/10
Two Shows Nightly
Originally scheduled for release as Capitol ST-105 (1968)
1. Do I Hear a Waltz?
2. By the Time I Get to Phoenix
3. Reason to Believe
4. Didn’t Want to Have to Do It
5. My Personal Property
6. Hand on the Plow
7. Until It’s Time for You to Go
8. Something Stupid
9. What Is a Woman?
10. Alright, Okay, You Win
11. Here’s to You
12. Come Back to Me
13. Make Believe – (1964; previously unavailable on Peggy Lee solo CD)
14. Stay with Me – (1966 single; CD debut; previously unreleased stereo mix)
15. Happy Feet – (1966 single; CD debut; previously unreleased stereo mix)
16. That Man – (1966 single; previously unavailable on Peggy Lee solo CD; previously unreleased album mix)
17. I Feel It – (1967 single)
18. The Lonesome Road – (1967 single; CD debut; previously unreleased stereo mix)
19. I Wound It Up – (1967; CD debut; previously unreleased)
20. Money – (1968; CD debut; previously unreleased)
21. Misty Roses – (1968 single)
22. It’ll Never Happen Again – (1968 single)
23. Reason to Believe – (1968 single; CD debut)
24. Didn’t Want to Have to Do It – (1968 single)