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Thursday, June 21, 2007

Lee Wiley - Unrequited Love's a Bore, Yeah... - A Selection of Songs, 1931-1940

Lee Wiley (1908-1975) is one of my favourite singers. The now defunct (it seems, alas! Let me know if you have other news!) Baldwin Street Music sub-label Devil's Music did a series of four complete volumes of Lee Wiley, covering her earliest beginnings in 1931 up to the Cole Porter album in 1940.
The music in this post is taken from these four volumes - my own personal selection.

The Spanish bastards also did a few Lee Wiley releases, most notably a 4CD set covering the years 1931-1951 and duplicating the master takes of the Devil's Music volumes, but in much worse sound. Still these four discs cover material that is not available readily elsewhere, to my knowledge.
Also on Definitive are two more 2CD sets, one covering the 50s (minus the RCA albums) and one collecing some live recordings.
The 50s set duplicates the Columbia Sessions also available as part of the (now out of print) "Classic Columbia Condon Mob Sessions" collection on Mosaic (MD8-206). These were the "Nights in Manhattan" album , as well as two more songbooks, dedicated to Irving Berlin and Vincent Youmans.

The Devil's Music volumes 1-3 also consist partly (mostly for Vol. 2) of radio broadcasts from the 30s, while Vol. 4 contains the complete, glorious Cole Porter album sessions, with Bunny Berigan (who was involved with Lee more than just musically...) in fine form.

More live material - in mediocre sound, but the music is great! - can be found on Uptown's "Music of Manhattan, 1951" (UPCD 27.46). This disc contains a lovingly compiled booklet with tons of information and photos from one of the gigs documented on the disc. Lee is featured with small groups including trumpet soloists Billy Butterfield, Muggsy Spanier, Buck Clayton and Red Allen. Also present among others are Joe Bushkin, George Wettling, George Wein, Milt Hinton and Jo Jones.

Mosaic Records also has recently put out one of the RCA albums, "West of the Moon", in their Mosaic Single releases, I just got my copy and like it a lot!


Unrequited Love's a Bore, Yeah... A Lee Wiley Selection, 1931-1940

1. GOT THE SOUTH IN MY SOUL (Wiley-Young-Washington)
NYC, October 13, 1931 - Rudy Vallee & His Connecticut Yankees, personnel unknown

2. YOU'VE GOT MY CRYING AGAIN (Newman-Jones) (take 2)
3. I'VE GOT A RIGHT TO SING THE BLUES (Koehler-Arlen) (take 2)
NYC, March 7, 1933 - The Dorsey Brothers & Their Orchestra
incl. Tommy Dorsey (tb), Jimmy Dorsey (as,cl,bsn), prob. Bunny Berigan (t), prob. Joe Venuti, Harry Hoffman (v), Fulton McGrath (p), Dick McDonough (g), Artie Bernstein (b), Stan King (d)

4. REPEAL THE BLUES (Green-Dyrenforth)
NYC, March 17, 1934 - Johnny Green & His Orchestra
incl. Johnny Green (p,ar), prob. Mannie Klein (t), prob. Benny Goodman (cl)

5. CARELESS LOVE (Handy-Williams)
NYC, August 13, 1934 - Justin Ring (or Victor Young) & His Orchestra
poss. incl. Sterling Bose (t), Tommy Dorsey (tb), Sid Stoneburn (cl,as), Ernie White (ts), Larry Gomas (d)

7. GEORGIA ON MY MIND (Carmichael-Gorrell) (radio broadcast)
NYC, October 3, 1936 - The Saturday Night Swing Club Orchestra

8. SWEET AND LOWDOWN (G. & I. Gershwin)
9. SAM AND DELILAH (G. & I. Gershwin)
NYC, St. Regis Hotel, November 5, 1938 - Max Kaminsky (t) & His Orchestra
Max Kaminsky (t), Bud Freeman (ts), Joe Bushkin (p,cel), Artie Shapiro (b), George Wettling (d), Brad Gowan (arr)

10. I'VE GOT A CRUSH ON YOU (G. & I. Gershwin)
NYC, November 15, 1939 - Max Kaminsky (t) and His Orchestra feat. Fats Waller (p/org)
Max Kaminsky (t), Pee Wee Russell (cl), Bud Freeman (ts), “Maurice” [Fats Waller] (p,cel,org), Eddie Condon (g), Artie Shapiro (b), George Wettling (d)
Note: the November 1938 tracks are from the "Gershwin Album"

12. YOU'RE SO INDIFF'RENT (Parish-Fain)
Hollywood, CA, 1939 - Jimmy Van Heusen (p)

NYC, February 1940 - Joe Bushkin (p) & His Orchestra
Max Kaminsky (t), Bud Freeman (ts), Joe Bushkin (p), Artie Shapiro (b), George Wettling (d), Brad Gowans (arr)

15. GLAD TO BE UNHAPPY (Rodgers-Hart)
NYC, February 1940 - Max Kaminsky (t) & His Orchestra
Max Kaminsky (t), Bud Freeman (ts), Joe Bushkin (p), Artie Shapiro (b), George Wettling (d), Paul Weston (arr)
Note: the February 1940 tracks are from the "Rodges & Hart Album")

16. LET'S FLY AWAY (Cole Porter) (Take 1 - alternate)
17. LET'S DO IT (Cole Porter) (Rehearsal - between takes 2 & 3)
18. LET'S DO IT (Cole Porter) (Take 5 - master)
19. FIND ME A PRIMITIVE MAN (Cole Porter) (Take 7 - alternate)
NYC, April 10, 1940 - Bunny Berigan (t), Joe Bushkin (p), Sid Weiss (b), George Wettling (d)

20. YOU DO SOMETHING TO ME (Cole Porter) (Take 5 - alternate)
21. WHY SHOULDN'T I (Cole Porter) (Take 2 - master)
NYC, April 15, 1940 - unknown octet incl. Joe Bushkin (p), Paul Weston (arr,cond)

MP3 @ 320 / selected & produced by ubu roi


Check the comments for the download link!


ubu said...

Here's the link:

Harley said...

A phenomenal, magical singer. Lee Wiley is my favorite female vocalist, and competing with the likes of Connie Boswell, Billie Holiday, and Mildred Bailey, that's saying something.

Thank you for helping to inform people about this absurdly underrated goddess of song.

rubber man said...

link is down ubu roi...can you please reupload..I am hankering after the voive of lee wiley

Rowdy said...

Would like to second that request for new links.