Welcome to this week’s Release Round-Up!
Frank Sinatra, Nice ‘n’ Easy: 60th Anniversary Expanded Edition (Capitol/UMe)
Capitol Records, Frank Sinatra Enterprises, and UMe have a 60th anniversary edition of Frank Sinatra’s classic 1960 album arranged and conducted by Nelson Riddle. For the occasion, the album has been completely remixed and features three bonus tracks: the outtake “The Nearness of You,” plus the previously unreleased session takes for “Nice ‘n’ Easy” and “I’ve Got a Crush on You.” Available today on digital platforms and June 5 on CD and vinyl. (The vinyl edition has just the remixed album.) Read more here!
Parlophone Records has announced that three rare David Bowie live releases from the 1990s will all be returning to streaming formats in the months ahead. Today, the first of these titles arrives on digital platforms. Liveandwell.com was made available as a limited edition CD release in 2000 to BowieNet subscribers. It typically fetches high sums secondhand. For this streaming reissue, it has been expanded with two bonus tracks: “Pallas Athena” and “V-2 Schneider,” the former originally recorded on Black Tie White Noise and the latter from Heroes. Liveandwell.com‘s 12 tracks are culled from concerts recorded in New York, Amsterdam, Rio De Janeiro, and at the U.K.’s Phoenix festival during the 1997 Earthling tour. All of these performances are exclusive to the release, while the two bonus tracks have been drawn from the 12-inch single The Tao Jones Index (so titled for the name used by Bowie and his band when they played impromptu sets in festival dance tents).
On this 1973 album – which proved to be the final studio album of his life – jazz piano legend Erroll Garner teamed with Grady Tate, Bob Cranshaw, Jose Mangual, Norman Gold, and Jackie Williams for a collection of original songs and classic and contemporary favorites like “I Only Have Eyes for You,” “Watch What Happens,” and “(They Long to Be) Close to You.” This is the 11th release in the artist’s Octave Remastered Series. Available today on CD and digital services; Vinyl Me Please has a member-exclusive vinyl edition.
The 1986 Broadway musical Rags has become the stuff of Broadway legend. Penned by Joseph Stein (Fiddler on the Roof, Zorba), Charles Strouse (Bye Bye Birdie, Annie), and Stephen Schwartz (Pippin, Wicked), the epic musical drama closed after a mere four performances at the Mark Hellinger Theatre (today, alas, the Times Square Church). But the show lived on thanks to its cast recording which preserved Strouse and Schwartz’s expansive, sweeping, and powerful score. The story of a group of Jewish immigrants arriving in America in the early days of the 20th century, Rags has undergone numerous revivals and revisions over the years, culminating in an acclaimed production in 2019 at the U.K.’s Hope Mill Theatre with book revisions by David Thompson (The Scottsboro Boys, Steel Pier). The Hope Mill’s staging transferred to London’s Park Theatre and was nominated for nine Off-West End Awards. Now, a cast recording for the beautifully-sung revival has arrived from Ghostlight Records. The cast stars Carolyn Maitland as Rebecca, Dave Willetts as Avram and Sam Attwater as Bronfman, alongside Debbie Chazen as Anna, Alex Gibson-Giorgio as Sal, Rachel Izen as Rachel, Samuel Jones and Jude Muir as David, Martha Kirby as Bella, Oisin Nolan-Power as Ben, and Jeremy Rose as Jack. Rounding out the cast are Arthur Boan, Angela Caesar, Adam Crossley, Drew Dillon, Matthew Gent, and Natasha Karp. The recording – produced, mixed, and mastered by Joe and Nikki Davison, co-produced by Nick Barstow, and executive produced by Stephen Schwartz – is available today on all digital streaming platforms. Watch this space for news of a CD release!
Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool [Blu-ray + DVD] (Eagle Rock)
Director Stanley Nelson’s documentary film about the late jazz titan arrives on home video formats this week. The Grammy-nominated Best Music Film chronicled the late Davis’ life and art via previously unseen footage and new interviews with the likes of Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Carlos Santana, Clive Davis, Wayne Shorter and Ron Carter. Both the Blu-ray and DVD formats are packaged in a hardcover book format and include a bonus DVD of Davis at the Montreux Jazz Festival.
Marshall Chapman, Songs I Can’t Live Without (TallGirl Records) (Amazon U.S.)
Singer-songwriter-actress Marshall Chapman’s fourteenth release comprises nine classic songs which carry great meaning for her. It’s easy to hear why her fans include Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell as she brings a deep well of emotion to intimate renditions of classics by Johnny Cash (“I Still Miss Someone”), Leonard Cohen (“Tower of Song”), Carole King and Gerry Goffin (“Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”), Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne (“I Fall in Love Too Easily”), and others. Neilson Hubbard produced, and musicians include Will Kimbrough on lead guitar and bass, Hubbard on drums and bass, and Dan Mitchell on keyboards, bass, and flugelhorn. Available on Amazon and through Chapman’s website.
This new release captures Ruthie Foster at Austin, Texas’ Paramount Theatre for a big-band soul revue featuring guitar, keyboard, bass, drums, ten horns, and three background singers. The album captures her blend of blues, gospel, and soul fervor on both original songs and reinvented covers of “Mack the Knife,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” and “Ring of Fire.”
Singer-songwriter Willie Nile marks 40 years of albums with New York at Night, his 13th studio album and a tribute to his adopted city. The rock and roll survivor – a Buffalo native who long ago relocated to the city – has penned 12 new songs drawing on his life and experience in the Big Apple, and the album was recorded just across the river in Weehawken, New Jersey with co-producer Stewart Lerman, his live band, and a group of background singers. Bruce Springsteen, Lou Reed, and Pete Townshend have all counted themselves as Nile fans; why not join that illustrious group with this energetic, spirited, and personal album? Available on CD, digital, and vinyl.
From The Second Disc family to all of you, we wish you health, comfort, and safety during these difficult times. – Joe, Mike, Sam, and Randy