Ella Fitzgerald

The Lady in Concert

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There's no telling the origins of these live recordings, or even if this European LP is a legitimate release. But aural evidence suggests the performances date from the mid-'50s. Ella Fitzgerald, accompanied by a trio and performing before an enthusiastic audience, goes through some typical items from her repertoire of the time in familiar fashion. The track called "Good Enough to Keep (Air Mail Special-Flying Home)," which is usually called just "Air Mail Special," is a scat performance that features elements heard on other readings, such as the one from the Newport Jazz Festival in 1957. "I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Baby" features her well-known impersonations, including one of Louis Armstrong, and its references to Elvis Presley and "All Shook Up" would seem to confirm a mid-'50s date. The album itself may be skimpy and sparsely annotated, but there is nothing wrong with Fitzgerald here.

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