Rosemary Clooney

Rosie Solves the Swingin' Riddle!

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Although Rosemary Clooney worked with Nelson Riddle nearly every week for her '50s radio show, they were together for full LPs much less often -- only this record from 1961 and a 1963 follow-up titled Love. The pair made the most of their first collaboration, devising a program of 12 standards that combined Riddle's pugnacious yet intricate arrangements with Clooney's warm, grand vocals to create a swing record with feeling. Riddle's orchestra roars through his breakneck arrangements for "April in Paris" and "Cabin in the Sky," but Clooney weathers the storm with an elegance that borders on the untroubled. Vocalist fits together with orchestra like hand in glove, since nearly all of the musicians were veterans of her show. [A Bluebird reissue from 2004 added two bonus tracks, "Without Love" and "The Wonderful Season of Love" (the latter was the theme from Return to Peyton Place, directed by her husband, José Ferrer).]

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