- Ella’s first album to come out after Clap Hands finally makes its Hot Stamper debut, with outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides
- What took us by surprise was how rich and sweet this original Verve was – so many of Ella’s early albums don’t have the smooth, natural vocals of this pressing
- We absolutely love the swinging R&B organ Bill Doggett brought to these big band sessions, all backing an exceptionally well recorded First Lady of Song
- “Ella Fitzgerald is in the spotlight throughout, mostly singing swing-era songs along with a couple of newer pieces… [her] voice was in its prime, and the charts are excellent.”
This copy is as quiet as we can find any domestic original Verve stereo pressing. The monos of this title — which naturally are five times more common — have that hard, honky sound that so many mono cuttings made from Ella’s stereo recordings suffer from.
Clap Hands is a notable exception to that rule, and of course any of her albums recorded in mono sound best in mono, when cut right and pressed right.
1962 was a great year for Ella. She released this album early in the year and followed it up with the Grammy winning Ella Swings Brightly with Nelson. Later in the same year Verve released Ella Swings Gently with Nelson, and it’s interesting to note that all three of these classic albums were recorded late in 1961. The woman could do no wrong! We would have to wait for her first release of 1963, Ella Sings Broadway, before she put out a clunker. But who’s fault is that? The music is fine, it’s the recording that’s bad (as far as we can tell; we have yet to hear one sound good). (more…)