George Shearing

My Ship

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This solo piano set by George Shearing (which has been reissued on CD through Polygram) is quite eccentric and unpredictable. Freed from the constraints of his popular Quintet, Shearing lets his imagination loose on songs that include "My Ship," "Happy Days Are Here Again," "The Entertainer" (which is turned into jazz after a rag beginning), "Londonberry Air," and -- unfortunately -- "Send in the Clowns," on which he makes the mistake of singing. Some of the classical allusions are a bit too cute, but Shearing's wit and charm eventually win one over.

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