BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Fly Me To The Moon” Results

I was going to publish this yesterday, and forgot completely about it. We had to go to the Social Security office and order replacement cards, because ours have managed to go missing and I need mine to get a state ID to replace my driver’s license, which I’m giving up because I haven’t driven in 11 years and the license is set to expire on my birthday, anyway. We wanted to get there when they opened at 9, thinking we’d get out sooner, but of course the place was packed when we got there, leading me to believe that even though they say they open at 9, they open earlier, maybe 8 or so. Or maybe everyone else had the same idea. Whatever.

Anyhow, the votes are in and here are the results.

Astrud Gilberto: 8
Angelina Jordan: 2

Congratulations to Astrud for her win and a pat on the back for Angelina for a job well done.

The general opinion was that Angelina was just too young to be singing the song, and that she probably didn’t understand the words, and I don’t disagree. She has an uncanny knack for listening to and imitating other singers (her imitation of Billie Holiday is remarkable), but that’s as far as it goes for now. I’m hoping that she finds her own voice and makes her own emotional attachment to the songs she sings. That might be several years off. Still, you have to admire what she can do.

The next couple of battles are going to somehow involve songs that were originally performed by Ruby Nash and her backing group, The Romantics. Tune in again next Thursday, March 1, for the first. See you then!

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Fly Me To The Moon”

First, Happy Birthday, Dad! He’d be 86 today. In his honor, I’m going to use one of his favorite songs as the basis for this battle.

“Fly Me To The Moon” entered this world as “In Other Words.” It was written by Bart Howard in 1954, who made enough money off the song to live comfortably the rest of his life (50 years). It was first recorded by Kaye Ballard as the flip side to “Lazy Afternoon,” from the show The Golden Apple, in which Ms. Ballard was performing at the time. By the time Frank Sinatra recorded his definitive version of the song (accompanied by the Count Basie Orchestra, arranged by Quincy Jones) in 1964, it had been recorded more than a hundred times, including by Miss Peggy Lee in 1960. She was responsible for convincing Howard to channge the name to “Fly Me To The Moon.” Sinatra’s version was played for the crew of Apollo 10, and Buzz Aldrin played a cassette recording of the song after he stepped on the moon during the Apollo 11 mission. Many years late in 2012, Diana Krall sang it at the memorial for Neil Armstrong. To date there have been over 400 recordings of the song, according to the website Second Hand Songs.

For today’s battle, I’ll be pitting two of my favorite female singers against each other.

CONTESTANT #1: Astrud Gilberto

Astrud was the singer who sang on many of the great bossa nova hits, specifically “Garota de Ipanema” (“The Girl From Ipanema”). Hers is one of my favorite voices. Her version was recorded in 1965.

CONTESTANT #2: Angelina Jordan

Angelina is what you might call a “phenom.” She just turned 12 a couple of weeks ago, but has been singing professionally since she was seven, when she won “Norway’s Got Talent.” She has no official recordings aside from the ones on YouTube. For one so young, her voice is rich and mature. This video was recorded a year ago, when she was eleven.

Now, it’s time to vote. Listen to both versions, decide which you like better, and leave me a comment with your choice, and, if you feel like it, some of your reasons for that choice. Then, head on over to Stephen’s Battle of the Bands page. He has a list of the current participants in Battle of the Bands, so, if you’d be so kind, check out those blogs and vote in those battles, as well as in Stephen’s. I’ll announce the winner of this battle a week from today, on February 22 (once known as Washington’s Birthday), so be sure and get your vote in by then.

The lines are now open. Best of luck to Astrud and Angelina!

Two For Tuesday: Astrud Gilberto (ENCORE PRESENTATION)

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This was originally posted on November 5, 2013; I’m reposting it today because it fits the “Chanteuses” theme. Plus, I wanted to see Jean-Pierre Cassel dance again.

Amazing how Pandora thinks. I started it on “Swing Out Sister” last week and I’ve been getting a lot of bossa nova. One of the singers on heavy rotation on that channel is Astrud Gilberto. Raised in Rio de Janiero, Brazil, she sang on the influential album Getz/Gilberto with her husband João, saxophonist Stan Getz, and pianist Antonio Carlos Jobim, despite never having sung professionally before, and her recording of “The Girl From Ipanema” established her as a star of the genre. She split with João in the mid-1960’s and moved to the US with Getz, now her romantic and musical partner. She started writing and performing her own songs in the 1970’s, and has recorded songs in English, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, French, German, and Japanese. Visit her website at astrudgilberto.com.

The first song today is “Dindi,” from her 1965 album The Astrud Gilberto Album.

Our second tune today is “Bim Bom,” which appeared on the album Verve Remixed 4, released in 2008. Jean-Pierre Cassel does the dancing here.

Astrud Gilberto, your Two for Tuesday, November 15, 2016.