George Shearing

How Beautiful Is Night

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George Shearing recorded many mood albums with strings during the 1950s (at the same time as his more jazz-oriented Quintet albums) and this CD is a throwback to that era. Robert Farnon's writing for the 29-piece string orchestra is unremittingly pretty and filled with overblown drama. Many of the selections come across as sickly sweet with "Lady Be Good" (which is turned into a saccharine waltz) being the lowpoint. Shearing plays well enough and four of the selections bring back the sound of his famous quintet, but it is not enough to save this misfire.

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