Alma Cogan

Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries

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Twenty-five tracks pinpoint what many listeners would be inclined to describe as the ultimate Alma Cogan collection, an effervescent mix of hits, show tunes, standards, and novelties that live up to the album's title with an absolute vengeance. There are few surprises here; although Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries will certainly thrill anybody who purchased the Girl with a Laugh in Her Voice box set, by studiously avoiding duplication with that set. Still, "Mambo Italiano," "Naughty Lady of Shady Lane," "Softly Softly," and the title track (not to mention all the rest) are archetypal Cogan, from the buoyancy of the orchestration through to, indeed, the laugh in her voice. Yes, there are some moments of fairly toe-curling triteness on board, but that was such a part of the period landscape that it would be alarming if there weren't. And the end result is a CD that plugs another major hole in the Cogan collection.

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