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Something To Live For by Ella Fitzgerald

I find it difficult to review any Ella Fitzgerald material. The superlatives have all previously been transmitted in books, newspapers, radio, TV, magazines, morse code, smoke signals and private conversations. Some years ago, I had the opportunity to interview jazz/pop singer Kay Starr. When I asked about her "prime influence," she replied "Ella." When I enquired further about her "present" favorite singer, male or female, and she replied "Need You Ask?". Ella again!

When any reference is made to Ella Fitzgerald's career in music, superlatives abound. PBS, in their usual good taste, aired a documentary on Ella in December 1999. It was titled "Something To Live For" and appeared on the American Masters Series by WNET. Now, Verve Records has released a 2-CD compilation of music played in the PBS program.

The collection encompasses Miss Fitzgerald's career with both Decca and Verve spanning the period of 1935 to 1955. Performances were produced by Milt Gabler, Norman Granz and Dave Kapp. The musicians collectively form an encyclopedia of jazz and it would be silly if I were to attempt to list them all.

There is a total of 30 songs in the set including JATP sessions, some Chick Webb, European Tour Selections and many studio recordings. You are guaranteed to find some of your favorites in this great collection. A complete discography of the CD content is included for your reference. The 24 bit digital remastering is nothing short of superb.

If you don't already possess a collection of Ella's finest, this is for you. Visit Verve's website for a complete list of tunes.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Ella Fitzgerald
  • CD Title: Something To Live For
  • Genre: Jazz Vocals
  • Year Released: 1999
  • Record Label: Verve
  • Rating: Five Stars
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