Doris Day

I Have Dreamed

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"The mood of these songs is dreamy," writes annotator Pete Martin, thus defining the theme of Doris Day's second LP of 1961. As usual, someone -- Day herself, her conductor, a Columbia Records A&R person -- had chosen a theme for her album and picked a group of songs, most of them interwar standards that derived from stage musicals or movies. Dreaminess was a concept familiar to any band singer of the 1940s, and Day was such a singer, so she certainly knew her way around "I'll Buy That Dream," even if the hit versions of the 1945 song were by such competitors as Helen Forrest (with Dick Haymes) and Kitty Kallen (as vocalist with Harry James' band). Her vocal style, warm, but never actually sensual, had always conformed to the unruffled approach of the '40s band singers, and she was right at home exploring sedate nighttime fantasy. Actually, though, the concept was a bit threadbare by now; Day had already recorded "Dream a Little Dream of Me" and "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams (And Dream Your Troubles Away)" on her 1958 album Day by Night, and obvious choices such as "Dream," "I Had the Craziest Dream," and "Darn That Dream" were eschewed in favor of a handful of unknown songs. Day did well by such unusual theater choices as "My Ship" from Lady in the Dark and "Someday I'll Find You" from Private Lives, and orchestra director Jim Harbert (who contributed his own "I Believe in Dreams") swathed everything in blankets of strings. But the album was not all it could have been, and the use of second-rate material and a second-rate conductor suggested that Columbia was losing faith in Day as a recording artist after years of poor sales. Ironically, it became her first new album to chart since 1957.

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