Al Jolson

Let Me Sing and I'm Happy [Living Era]

  • AllMusic Rating
    6
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by John Bush

An exhaustive (and exhausting) look at Al Jolson's five-year period between his 1946 comeback with The Al Jolson Story and his death five years later, the Living Era collection Let Me Sing and I'm Happy plows ground that has not only been worked over well, but has proved fallow compared to Jolson's recording prime of the 1900s and 1910s. In fact, the liner notes admit as much, stating that "many of us take the overly familiar Decca recordings for granted" and going on to reprint the fallacy "[T]hey really do represent some of Jolson's greatest moments in the recording studio." At least this late work did perform well, charting highly and placing many more million-sellers ("April Showers," "Ma Blushin' Rosie," "My Mammy," "Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody," "The Anniversary Song") into Jolson's canon. A few of his collaborations are the best material here, including two famed duets with Bing Crosby -- "Alexander's Ragtime Band" and "The Spaniard That Blighted My Life" -- as well as the Andrews Sisters and 4 Hits and a Miss. The chronological, completist approach does provide a few magic moments, including the eight-song Stephen Foster songbook that Jolson recorded three months before his death (and which lay unissued on CD until this appearance).

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Al Jolson 01:56 Amazon
2 Al Jolson 03:05 Amazon
3 Al Jolson 02:01 Amazon
4 Al Jolson 02:55 Amazon
5 Al Jolson 02:37 Amazon
6 Al Jolson 02:52 Amazon
7 Al Jolson 02:25 Amazon
8 Al Jolson 03:05 Amazon
9 Al Jolson 02:17 Amazon
10 Al Jolson 03:06 Amazon
11 Al Jolson feat: Bing Crosby 02:59 Amazon
12 Al Jolson feat: Bing Crosby 03:11 Amazon
13 Al Jolson 02:42 Amazon
14 Al Jolson 02:39 Amazon
15 Al Jolson 02:25 Amazon
16 Al Jolson 01:52 Amazon
17 Al Jolson 02:48 Amazon
18 Al Jolson 02:10 Amazon
19 Al Jolson 02:34 Amazon
20 Al Jolson 02:15 Amazon
21 Al Jolson 02:06 Amazon
22 Al Jolson 01:57 Amazon
23 Al Jolson 02:37 Amazon
24 Al Jolson 02:02 Amazon
25 Al Jolson 03:04 Amazon
26 Al Jolson 02:22 Amazon
27 Al Jolson 02:53 Amazon
28 Al Jolson 02:24 Amazon
29 Al Jolson 02:18 Amazon
30 Al Jolson 02:09 Amazon

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 Al Jolson 02:37 Amazon
2 Al Jolson 02:41 Amazon
3 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:42 Amazon
4 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:29 Amazon
5 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:49 Amazon
6 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:57 Amazon
7 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:35 Amazon
8 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:36 Amazon
9 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:16 Amazon
10 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:53 Amazon
11 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:34 Amazon
12 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:36 Amazon
13 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 03:08 Amazon
14 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:17 Amazon
15 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 02:45 Amazon
16 Al Jolson feat: The Mills Brothers 03:20 Amazon
17 Al Jolson feat: The Andrews Sisters 03:04 Amazon
18 Al Jolson feat: The Andrews Sisters 02:23 Amazon
19 Al Jolson 03:21 Amazon
20 Al Jolson 03:17 Amazon
21 Al Jolson 02:52 Amazon
22 Al Jolson 02:21 Amazon
23 Al Jolson 03:23 Amazon
24 Al Jolson 02:28 Amazon
25 Al Jolson 03:19 Amazon
26 Al Jolson 02:08 Amazon
27 Al Jolson 03:09 Amazon
28 Al Jolson 02:43 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick