The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

Archive for November 8th, 2012

In Case You Missed It: A Very Looney Christmas

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With new Christmas albums by everyone from Rod Stewart to Cee Lo Green coming out this year, you might think you’ve heard everyone there is to hear singing about the holiday season. But a recent, way-under-the-radar reissue from Warner Bros. might change that, thanks to a certain wascally wabbit and his animated friends.

Warner’s Watertower Music soundtrack imprint has quietly repressed Have Yourself a Looney Tunes Christmas, a 1994 collection originally issued by Kid Rhino (and released by Watertower as a digital download in 2010) featuring the Looney Tunes gang – Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd, Foghorn Leghorn, Sylvester and Tweety, and all the rest – leading a family-friendly charge through Christmas standards, comically-rewritten tunes and the odd original.

It’s a fairly bare-bones reissue, offering very little in the way of album credits and no remastering. (The lack of credits is particularly infuriating, given the interchangeable nature of voice actors after Mel Blanc’s death in 1990; performers like Jeff Bergman, Billy West, Joe Alaskey and Greg Burson have each voiced nearly all of the major characters in multiple features and Looney Tunes projects – and it’s still hard to tell who’s doing what on this disc.) But if you’re looking to entertain the kids with something a little different this December, Have Yourself a Looney Tunes Christmas is certainly inoffensive (and comparatively inexpensive) fun.

Order your copy at Amazon and hit the jump for the track list. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

November 8, 2012 at 11:20

Posted in News, Reissues, Soundtracks

JSP Goes Beyond the Rainbow with 4-CD Collection of “Creations” by Judy Garland

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Judy Garland’s place in the annals of popular music would have been all but assured if she had only introduced Harold Arlen and E.Y. “Yip” Harburg’s “Over the Rainbow” to the world.  After all, the Academy Award-winning song from The Wizard of Oz (1939) was ranked the No. 1 Song of the Century by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) and the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts) and topped a list of the 100 Greatest Movie Songs compiled by the American Film Institute.  Garland introduced another venerable standard when she was first to sing Arlen and Ira Gershwin’s torch song to end all torch songs, “The Man That Got Away,” in 1954’s film A Star is Born.  But those two classic songs are just the tip of the iceberg for the actress, singer and artist like no other.  The U.K. label JSP Records has recognized the full extent of Garland’s immense contributions to the art of popular song, and has set out to compile a collection of the songs she introduced between 1929 and 1962.  The four-disc set, entitled Creations 1929-1962: Songs She Introduced, boasts 94 tracks and over five hours of pow!

The set comes with quite a pedigree.  JSP has already released a number of Garland collections including 2010’s landmark Lost Tracks, 2011’s singles collection Smilin’ Through and 2012’s reissue of The Historic Concert Remastered.  (Carnegie Hall, that is!)   Creations has been compiled and annotated by Lawrence Schulman, responsible for not only those three JSP sets but other Garland releases such as Child of Hollywood (RPCD, 1993), Judy Garland at the Paris Olympia (Europe 1, 1994), and Classiques et inédits (Frémeaux & Associés, 2008).  Schulman will be joined in the liner notes by a number of other Garland scholars including Christopher Finch (author of Rainbow: The Stormy Life of Judy Garland, The Art of Walt Disney: From Mickey Mouse to the Magic Kingdoms, and Beyond), Will Friedwald (author of A Biographical Guide to the Great Jazz and Pop Singers, Sinatra! The Song Is You: A Singer’s Art), and John Meyer (author of Heartbreaker, Operation Ruby Slipper).  Peter Rynston of Tall Order Mastering, who has remastered the prior JSP sets as well as a number of recent rock and pop releases for Edsel Records, is handling the set’s audio restoration under the supervision of JSP’s John Stedman.   Andrew Aitken has designed the package.

There’s more after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

November 8, 2012 at 10:17