Rosemary Clooney

Buddy Cole & Nelson Riddle Sessions

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This curious European CD simply combines two previously released Rosemary Clooney LPs, Swing Around Rosie, originally issued by Coral Records in 1959, and RCA Victor's Rosie Solves the Swingin' Riddle! (1961). On the former (tracks one-twelve), Clooney is accompanied by organist Buddy Cole and a rhythm section, though "dominated" might be a better word than "accompanied." Cole's playing is busy and showy and tends to overwhelm Clooney's ever-controlled singing. On the other hand, the RCA album (tracks 13-24) represents her first recorded pairing with sympathetic arranger/conductor Nelson Riddle, who provides punchy neo-swing charts that support her beautifully and also leave room for some tasty soloing. Rosie Solves the Swingin' Riddle! is one of Clooney's best albums, in whatever configuration it appears. (Oddly, the CD booklet prints the lyrics to the songs but doesn't bother to credit the songwriters!)

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