Ferrante & Teicher

50 Fabulous Piano Favorites

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LeRoy Holmes produced the piano duo on this installment of United Artists Fabulous Fifties series, recordings which featured artists like Otto Rodriguez crunching 50 Fabulous Latin Favorites onto two sides of a vinyl album, Sir Julian performing 50 Fabulous Organ Favorites, and so forth and so on. This 1964 release is called "a major advancement in the art of recording!" by Bob Rolontz in his liner notes -- "...50 selections, far more than have ever been included on any one LP since the Long Playing record was first introduced 15 years ago" is hyperbole supreme. The ten medleys containing five popular songs each are interesting but inevitably end up being too much material played with too little time. The novelty is to get all those melodies squeezed into the format, something Art Ferrante and Louis Teicher do with ease for 50 Fabulous Piano Favorites. Their embellishments dazzle, but with so little of "Witchcraft," "That's Amore," "Stella by Starlight," and "It's So Nice To Have a Man Around the House" available to explore, the key element of the duo's charm -- experimentation -- is sacrificed for the mission at hand. Lovely as background music there is no jolt as tunes like "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive"/"Dear Hearts and Gentle People"/"Route 66!"/"Five Minutes More"/"Enjoy Yourself" and "Hey Look Me Over" seamlessly bunch up and become one. The medleys all blur into each other just as the songs melt together for a mildly entertaining middle of the road excursion. Seven publishers are listed with no times and no songwriter credits on the label and album jacket.