Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Enjoy the official start to summer 2011

It may not be as fast-paced and up-tempo as summer activities but this song captures those calm summer days where you just chill (or imagine chilling) in the shade drinking whatever it is you like to pour down your throat. 

Definitely one of the best to ever open up The Great American Song Book, Ella Fitzgerald makes every tune a favorite. The Ella Fitzgerlad/Luois Armstrong duo is, in my opinion, one of the best. Ella's refined, clear, well-presented diction is starkly contrasted by Louis' raspy voice, country boy pronunciations on almost every song they did. This song is taken from the music composed by George Gershwin for the opera "Porgy and Bess". A great many of the tunes Gershwin produced ended up becoming jazz standards.

So, funny story about this song that happened just recently. This past Saturday I was heading to a Ella & Gershwin tribute played by a section of the Hartford Symphone Orchestra. I'm driving with the windows down, sunroof open, blasting some music. I stop at a light and there was a guy with a sign that read "Homeless: please help." He was positioned right next to my car and as I'm waiting for the light to turn green the track changes and a few seconds later, out from my car comes blasting "Summertime, and the living is easy". Needless to say this was quite an awkward situation. 

Enjoy the summer!

--For other artists like Ella Fitzgerald, check out other female jazz and blues artists: Etta James, Nina Simone, Lena Horne, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee, Bessie Smith.

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