GLCD 5207 – Ça C’est Paris


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Memory Lane – Winter 2013

No problem with understanding the next title; “Ca C’est Paris”. The orchestras of Franck Pourcel, Roger Roger, Michel Legrand and Paul Bonneau are very much at home here but it is Dutchman Jos Cleber who kicks things off with the title Crack and there is also room for Cyril Stapleton, George Melachrino, Monia Liter and Norne Paramour, among others, to show their Paris credentials.

Musicweb International – September 2013

Should you ever find yourself in a position to be on one of those quiz shows where you have to name 25 of Elvis’s Top 20 Hits, or the full forenames of the Monarchs of the Austro-Hungarian Empire – not highly likely, I admit – then you could do worse than buy this disc and mug up on songs containing the word ‘Paris’. Yes, Guild has gone slightly peculiar and programmed no fewer than 28 songs bearing the name of the French capital.
Thus we have Paris in the Spring, an American in, Under the roofs of, Lovers in, Rainy Nights in, Tourbillon de, Heart of and so on. In fact there’s one cheat. Hal Mooney’s La Seine sails through Paris but doesn’t specifically mention it. So that’s 27 then.
The composers and bands are all pretty familiar by now. The timeline is roughly 1952 to 1962 with one exception: Noack’s Lights of Paris is played by the London Concert Orchestra on a Bosworth 78 in c.1939. A bit of an anomalous choice, chronologically speaking, but the title fits and Guild is good at anomalous programming; or maybe quixotic is a better word.
Farnon’s suavely arranged April in Paris is splendid, whilst there’s Gershwinesque traffic noise and nifty strings in En Avril à Paris. Mademoiselle De Paris has a catchy theme and a nice piano line and is soundly dispatched by Art Wainer and the Latin Quartet Orchestra on MGM; whose Latin Quarter, one wonders? An American in Paris is played appropriately enough by David Carroll on Mercury, and wrapped up in three swinging minutes. Kostelanetz parades some cute wears on Paris Original where harpsichord and lurid baroquerie enhance the filmic element – it’s from Frank Loesser’s How To Succeed in Show Business Without Really Trying.
Genial fun is exuded by Hugo Winterhalter’s fast and furious faded out Paris in the Spring, complete with strange duck-like solo. The Clebanoff Strings are suitably richly melancholic in the languorous Heart of Paris. How terrific to hear Monia Liter in his c.1957 Lovers in Paris and also to hear the Gallic blandishments of the accordion in Michel Legrand’s recording of Leo Ferré’s Paris Canaille. Norrie Paramor is altogether more cosmopolitan in his approach to matters Parisian but if you can’t rely on Roger Roger for Gallic chic – via Miss Paris – who can you? He doesn’t let his listeners down. The compilation ends with a decidedly bold and brassy rendition of I Love Paris – not the most subtle I’ve ever heard – from the Monte Carlo Light Symphony Orchestra conducted by Erwin Halletz.
Surely, after this, a sweep of American cities, north to south and east to west, can’t be far behind? Or has Guild been there and done that?
Jonathan Woolf