Good Ol' A Cappella!
- John Neal at Primarily A Cappella has dug deep to put this list together. If you're a fan of the old stuff or just like to hear some of variety of a cappella that's been around for the last ?? years, scan this list and you'll come up with some real gems. And PAC will make a deal with you -- just mention "colorado-acappella" when you send along an email order and you might get a break!I don't usually pass along this stuff, but these titles just sort of intrigued me.Im agine seeing the DeCastro Sisters in a CD list? Amazing! Here are some titles you probably haven't heard in awhile:For cover art, song lists, group info and to listen to sound samples go to:
CAMERATA VOCAL GROUP - MY ANGEL
The Camerata Vocal Group comprises eight professional musicians, seven singers and a sound engineer. All are graduates of higher schools of music in Belarus and Russia. Their repertoire includes pieces belonging to different genres, from classical to jazz, oftentimes interwoven with each other, giving birth to totally new and uncommon combinations. The core of "Angel" is Slavic folklore, but each piece is a work of experimental and quite amazing vocal art. Concert tours in the Soviet Union, Switzerland, Poland, Turkey, Austria and the U.S. have gained them fans from all music traditions. Eight stunning pieces: "Near The Grove," the soaring "Falcon," the title tune (with a marvelous vocal "horn section"), the classical/jazzy "My Little Eye-Brows," "Autumn Night," "Segudilia," "Bulgarian Fantasy" and "Christmas." Absolutely lovely, with harmonies and vocal effects that must be heard to be believed. Camerata is one of the best in the world, however we wish to define or categorize them!
4547 CD $14.98
TALISMAN - WATCH ME FLY
Founded in 1990 with the purpose of bringing African and African-American music to the Stanford University (CA), community. Since then the 17 to 18-member mixed voice a cappella group has recorded several excellent, critically acclaimed albums, of which "Watch Me" is number six. 14 spirited, beautifully-arranged tunes, some favorites: the People's Movement of South Africa song, "Toyi Toyi," "Free," a new arrangement of "Swing Low," "Chant of the Islands," "Strange Fruit," "Sum'Bulala," "Be Like Him," the celebration of motherhood "Fifa," "Tumba," "On Children," and the title tune. Rhythmic, powerful, sweet, heartfelt CDs and "Watch Me" is their most poised, most confident yet. Outstanding!
1747 CD $14.98
GO FISH - SPLASH!
In their mission to share the word of God with the world through their music, Contemporary Christian , Minnesota-based 3-man group Go Fish have brought us 3 excellent a cappella CDs, "More Than A Story," "Out of Breath" and "Part of the Proof. Some non-vocal percussion, synthesizer, etc. are there, but the message, the voices and the infectious original words and melodies are what stands out. 10 songs: "I've Got the Joy" makes you want to get up and boogie, "The B-I-B-L-E," "Alleluia," the rocking, joyful chorus ("Oh me, oh my") of "Big, Bad Billy," the sweet, inspirational "You Are Mine," "Planes, Phones and Microwaves," the wonderfully arranged "This Little Light of Mine," "Ladybug," "My Very Own Church" and the powerful "I'll Do My Best." Go Fish, their music and their ministry just keep getting better and more popular, and every cut on Splash! is an upbeat winner!2827 CD $14.98
AFRICAN CHILDREN'S CHOIR - WINDOW TO THE WORLD
"Windows On The World" is a dynamic new musical, featuring an international cast, and the voices of Jodi Benson, the African Children's Choir and guests from around the globe. 13 songs, all accompanied: "He Is My Light," "Driftin'," the sweet ballad "Good News," "O Most High," "Journey Home (Song for the East)," "Standing for Heaven," "Let the Little Children Come," "How Good It Is," "You Are The Shepherd," "Hallelujah," "The Lord's Prayer," "There Is Hope" and "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands." The brightly-clad young ACC sing as brightly and spiritually as they look in the colorful liner notes. Joyous and inspirational!
7061 CD $14.98
SHALIMARS - BEST OF
If there were a Sweet Adelines All Stars of All Time, most people would place The Shalimars near the top of the list! Their surprising, bright, ringing sound shines on 20 wonderful pop selections, and then 9 more "sacred selections." "I Don't Care If The Sun Don't Shine," "Red Sails In The Sunset," "Just Friends," "Floating Down The River," "Sunrise, Sunset," "Lavender Blue," "Sound of Music Medley," "In The Garden," "Nearer My God to Thee," "Joshua Fit The Battle of Jericho" -- each song is a gem. This is the CD that beginning Sweet Adelines groups listen to, and say "We want to be like the Shalimars!" Outstanding.
5611 CD $14.98
LAURELS - KEEPING TRADITION
Harmony is a universal urge, and when it accompanies a love theme, it's the pinnacle of music-making. The Laurels first sought that peak in 1959, harmonizing at sock hops and at the studio. Forty years later, original member Dick Muse and four others took their places around the mike to record 16 classic and "should-have-been-classic" doo-wop tunes. "Please Mr. Sun," "Ball & Chain," "Everyone's Laughing," the top-40 hit "Barefootin'," "Willette," "Cold Feet," "For Your Love," "Something's Got A Hold On Me," "Lundy Dundy," "Time Can Make You Change" and "Sweet Was The Wine" and others. All a cappella except for the final cut, "Rhythm." These are authentic, gravelly-bass, soaring tenor, sweet harmony doo-wop, the kind we love to hear. "Keeping" is a keeper!
8262 CD $14.98
DELTA RHYTHM BOYS - I DREAMT I DWELT IN HARLEM
The rise of groups like the Golden Gate Quartet took gospel music out of the conservative confines of the Black church, and opened the door for other groups who wanted to sing spirituals in a different way. One of the groups to achieve success in the more liberated climate was the Hampton Institute Quartet, who changed their name to the Delta Rhythm Boys, and were equally at home delivering a pop song as a gospel item. They teamed up with Ella Fitzgerald during the 1940s recording ban in America, when her career might have been put on hold. However much the gospel group might have been threatened with eternal damnation to even think about "La Cucaracha," their fearlessness, both musically and politically, is what made them one of the greats. 20 winners, and we can't decide which we like the best, pop tunes like "Little Lize," the sweet "It Was Wonderful Then," a swinging "La Cucaracha," the silly minstrel-show tune "Watermelon On The Vine," the hip "Gimme Some Skin" and "Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gave To Me," or gospel hits like "Wait Till I Put On My Crown," a rocking "Ezekiel Saw De Wheel," "Certainly Lord," "Mighty Day," and "Scandalize My Name" (which is actually more of a commentary on religious bigotry). There's a particularly fine, laid-back early version of "Georgia On My Mind," and the swinging title tune, the final cut, is a joy. All songs at least piano accompanied, recorded in NY in 1941.
4542 CD $13.98
HOT HARMONY GROUPS 1932-1951 - THAT'S THE RHYTHM VOLUME 1
"That's The Rhythm" is a delicious collection of 20 examples of Black vocal roup harmony from the early 1930s to the early 1950s, all at least lightly ccompanied. The watershed moment for these groups was the rise of network radio, which made immediate stars of the Mills Brothers and the Ink Spots. y 1945 there were three routes an aspiring group could take, the "jubilee" gospel style of the Golden Gate Quartet, which enjoyed a crossover appeal, the jump/jive stylings of the Four Vagabonds, which had an almost entirely Black following, or going into the pop crossover stylings of the Ink Spots/Mills Brothers, whose huge success was due to the support of a vast white audience. So many treats: The Three Keys' cartoon-like "Somebody Stole Gabriel's Horn," Three Sharps and a Flat's wonderful title tune, the raunchy, double-entendre "Garbage Man" by the Four Aces, the very funny "Wig Blues" by The Melody Masters, who also star on "Subway Cutie," The Four Vagabonds' swinging "Choo Choo," The Four Blues' boogie-woogie anthem "It Takes A Long Tall Brown Skinned Girl," the Four Knights' sweet "Wrapped Up In A Dream," The Three Riffs' silly "Cherry In My Lemon And Lime," The Beavers' torch song "I'd Rather Be Wrong Than Blue" musical treasures on many levels. Funny, poignant, hip, romantic here, and some of the sweetest leads and harmonies you could imagine. We love this collection!
4543 CD 13.98
GOLDEN GATE QUARTET - GOOD BOOK
When the four young black men first began harmonizing together in Norfolk, A in 1934, they could hardly have imagined being invited four years later o New York to perform in the now legendary "From Spirituals to Swing" cncerts at Carnegie Hall. About that time they cut their first recorded ides, laying down an amazing 14 tracks in 2 hours. Nearly 70 years later, he group is still spreading the Gospel and delighting audiences with their beat, rhythmic hits. "Good Book" is essentially a "best of" studio CD, ontaining 18 tunes. "I Soon Will Be Done With The Troubles Of This World," Ezekiel Saw The Wheel," "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot," "Rock My Soul," "Gospel rain" Day," "Down By The Riverside," "Swing Down Chariot" aboard the Gospel train, and it's a great ride!
2829 CD $14.98
CATS & FIDDLE - WE CATS SWING FOR YOU
The Cats and the Fiddle was one of the pre-eminent pioneering R&B vocal roups of the 1930s. "The Fiddle" in the group's name is not purely himsical: it alludes to the stand-up bass they used, while in jazz parlance ach member of the group was a "hep cat," as in track 17 of this ompilation, "Hep Cat's Holiday." And what a compilation it is 27 swinging, iving mono recordings from 1939 to 1946. All songs are lightly accompanied y the infamous "fiddle" and guitar, but whatever it was that made whole enerations go nuts over R&B music, these "Cats" have got a boatload of it! isten to the title tune, a too-hip-for-words "Killin' Jive," "Gang usters," "Thursday Evening Swing," "Nuts To You," "Mr. Rhythm Man," "When I row Too Old to Dream," "Public Jitterbug Number One," "That's On, Jack, hat's On," "One Is Never Too Old to Swing," "Stomp, Stomp," "Life's Too hort" -- these guys are simply cookin' on every one of these cuts. Over 77 inutes of the finest jive and swing you never got a chance to hear -- an nbelievable bargain!
4554 CD 13.98
DE CASTRO SISTERS - TEACH ME TONIGHT
Most popular in the 50s, the de Castros began a decade earlier as a Latin act, which they virtually dropped when they were signed by the otherwise hillbilly-oriented Abbott label. Besides 31 (big band accompanied) period hits, "Teach Me" includes a thick photo album with the history of these 3 Cuban rich girls who shared an amazing musical career stretching from the 1940s to the present day (at least as of 1999, when the CD was released), from Miami to Hollywood to New York City. Sneaking off from their gig at Miami's Clover Club to sing (and record) with Tito Puente's band, being invited to Hollywood by Walt Disney to sing background vocals on "Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah" flip side of the supposed-to-be hit "It's Love." A Cleveland disc jockey turned it over, played it and got bags of mail. The "suggestive" tune became the Sisters' biggest hit. Novelty and pop tunes like "Boom Boom Boomerang," "Cuckoo In The Clock," "Rockin' and Rollin' In Hawaii," "Cowboys Don't Cry," "Don't Call Me Sweetie," "Old Timer's Tune" the upbeat "Biddle-Dee Bop" and You Take Of Me (I'll Take Care of You;" torch songs like "No One to Blame ut You," "Give Me Time," "If I Ever Fall In Love," "It's Yours," and the ountry tune "That Little Word Called Love"we've never heard most of these ongs, but we like them. They are as full of energy, spirit and innocence as he 1950s, and the improbable de Castro Sisters!
4548 CD $16.98
RAVENS - BIRDS OF A FEATHER
In the development of Doo-Wop in the years following WWII, the most influential singer, on a level with Elvis in Rockabilly, was The Ravens' Jimmy Ricks, whose booming bass would set the standard for a generation of aspiring bass vocalists. "Birds" is a generous 2-CD set with 50 soulful, authentic (all accompanied) cuts, recorded from 1946 to 1952 by one of greatest R&B quartets of all time! Smooth and romantic on hits like "Lullaby," "Until The Real Thing Comes Along," "Deep Purple," "It's Too Soon to Know," Gershwin's "Summertime," and "I'm So Crazy For Love" and "You Foolish Thing;" hip, swingin' and funny on "Be I Bumble Bee or Not," "Marie," "Leave My Gal Alone," "Oh Babe," "Don't Look Now," "My Baby's Gone," "Midnight Blues," "Gotta Find My Baby," "I Get My Lovin' on a Saturday Night," a jazzy "Begin the Beguine" and a Ravens original, "Rock Me All Night Long." Wonderful extensive liner notes with photos and vintage posters. Every cut is a winner and these guys deserve to be a lot more famous! Outstanding.
4549 CD $14.98
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PRIMARILY A CAPPELLA