Peggy Lee’s Is That All There Is? Celebrates 50th Anniversary
Digital-Only Release Slated for November 15 Features Three Previously Unreleased Tracks
SiriusXM’s Siriusly Sinatra Channel to Air Peggy Lee Special
Los Angeles – November 1, 2019 – In conjunction with the Peggy Lee Estate, Capitol/UMe will release Is That All There Is? 50th anniversary digital-only edition on November 15. The remastered edition features three previously unreleased tracks: a remixed version and alternate take of the title track, and an alternate version of “Me and My Shadow.” A full track list is below.
On November 2 (9pm ET/6pm PT), SiriusXM’s Siriusly Sinatra (Channel 71) will air a half-hour special hosted by Sinatra archivist/producer Charles Pignone with interviews by Peggy Lee’s granddaughter and archivist Holly Foster-Wells, as well as Mike and Peter Stoller. The special will also premiere two of the previously unreleased tracks, including Peter Stoller’s remix of “Is That All There Is?” and the never-before-heard alternate version of “Me and My Shadow,” culled from Lee’s vast archive of personal recordings of her own recording sessions.
Peggy Lee’s Is That All There Is? 50th anniversary edition is now available for pre-order.
Watch/share: Peggy Lee “Is That All There Is? 1969 live performance:
A singer, songwriter, and composer, Peggy Lee, whose smoky, insinuating voice in such songs as “Is That All There Is?” and “Fever” made her a jazz and pop legend, wrote over 200 songs and recorded over 1,100 masters in her remarkable six-decade career. During the late ‘60s, Lee and her contemporaries who emerged during the big band era faced professional hardship. Seeking a return to the charts, at 49, she defied all expectations with Is That All There Is?, her 42nd album.
Recorded when rock ‘n’ roll was all the rage, the haunting and idiosyncratic “Is That All There Is?” was a Peggy Lee smash. But, it’s a song and an album that almost never happened. Penned and produced by noted hit-makers Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and arranged and conducted by Randy Newman, “Is That All There Is?” was recorded January 24, 1969 at United Recording Studio. The session, which took Lee a while to ease into, was long and arduous. Take 30 was good, but take 36 was pure magic. After moments of jubilation at having recorded one of the greatest performances ever, the room learned the engineer forgot to hit record. A stoic Peggy Lee sang it again and take 37 was nothing short of marvelous and thus used as the master, with various splices from the other takes – particularly of the spoken word.
After having initially granted permission for her to record the song, Capitol thought the song too “far out” and too long, and refused to release it. Lee, however, refused to give up. In August 1969, Lee bargained with Capitol to perform the song on The Joey Bishop Show, which the label had asked her to do to as a favor for another artist.
Within days of that performance, “Is That All There Is?” was all there was on the radio. Spending 10 weeks on the Billboard charts, in the company of hits by the Beatles, the Temptations, Elvis Presley, and the Fifth Dimension, the song peaked at #11. Her unlikely hit went on to earn her the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Vocal Performance, Female and a Grammy nomination for Record of the Year (1970).
Built on the title song’s success, the album was recorded in October 1969, produced by Phil Wright and the album was a mix of old and new songs. Released in November 1969, the album featured 10 tracks, including the 1920s “Me and My Shadow,” which was the B-side for “Is That All There Is?”; the 1930s “My Old Flame;” and a reinterpretation of her 1948 Capitol hit “Don’t Smoke in Bed.”
On the contemporary side, she included songs by popular new writers and performers of the day, including George Harrison’s “Something,” Neil Diamond’s “Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show,” Randy Newman’s “Love Story” and “Linda” (called “Johnny” in Lee’s haunting version), and two additional Leiber and Stoller-penned songs, “Whistle for Happiness” and “I’m a Woman.” The latter also received a Grammy nomination.
Is That All There Is? (Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller)
Love Story (Randy Newman)
Me and My Shadow (Billy Rose, Al Jolson, Dave Dreyer)
My Old Flame (Arthur Johnson, Sam Coslow)
I’m a Woman (Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller)
Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show (Neil Diamond)
Something (George Harrison)
Whistle for Happiness (Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller)
Johnny (Linda) (Randy Newman)
Don’t Smoke in Bed (Willard Robison)
Is That All There Is? – remixed version
Is That All There Is? – alternate take
Me and My Shadow – alternate version
About Peggy Lee
One of the most important musical influences of the 20th century, Peggy Lee wrote over 200 songs, recorded over 1,100 masters, and had over 100 chart hits throughout her six-decade career. As one of the world’s first female singer-songwriters, she co-wrote and sang many of her own hits, most notably “He’s a Tramp” for Disney’s Lady and the Tramp as well as “Mañana” and “It’s a Good Day.” She’s best known for hits “Why Don’t You Do Right?,” “Fever,” “I’m a Woman” and “Is That All There Is?,” for which she won the Grammy® for Best Contemporary Female Vocal Performance. A 13-time Grammy® nominee, she received Lifetime Achievement awards from NARAS, ASCAP and the Society of Singers, was inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, and earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in Pete Kelly’s Blues. For more information about Peggy Lee, visit peggylee.com