Billy Vaughn

Magic Moments [Hallmark]

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"A collection of top melodies of the '60s and '70s," a sleeve note claims, as easy-listening orchestra leader Billy Vaughn conducts big band versions of 20 songs (culled from his Dot Records albums of the period), many of which are well-known hits from those decades, ranging from "Red Roses For A Blue Lady" to "When I Need You." The "top melodies" comment is belied by the inclusion of several unfamiliar titles (though the tunes themselves turn out to be familiar)-"Blue Heaven, Blue Moon, Blue Eyes" (which sounds exactly like "Sloop John B"), "The Bells Of Home" (which sounds exactly like "Greensleeves"), "Eagle Wings" (which sounds exactly like "El Condor Pasa"), and "Farewell Goodbye" (which sounds exactly like "Amazing Grace")-while the title tune actually dates from the 1950s. Vaughn's fruity treatments tend to work better on material that is already in his soft, melodic style, such as "Love Is Blue" and "Strangers In The Night." But he considers everything appropriate for acquisition, and when he gets into the more rock-oriented '70s songs that can produce oddities. "My Sweet Lord" is almost tolerable, but the real howler on this set is "Hotel California"!