|A Wonderful World
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Never mind the project's odd couple, "He's got a girlfriend; so does she" marketing shuck. This is a musical love affair in all its splendor. Produced by the seemingly chameleonic producer T Bone Burnett (who previously revived traditional bluegrass with spectacular success on O Brother, Where Art Thou?), the septuagenarian legend and his unlikely contemporary foil affectionately court a dozen songs from the Louis Armstrong repertoire with the warmth and natural grace that have been a deceptively effortless Bennett trademark for 50-plus years. The pair kick proceedings off with a playful, irony-free "Exactly Like You," then perform a tender vocal waltz across both the ages and the masterful, sympathetic orchestrations of the late Peter Matz, one of Bennett's longtime collaborators. But it's on the more melancholy performances, like "If We Never Meet Again," "I'm Confessin'," and the Armstrong perennials "Wonderful World" and "Lucky Old Sun," that the pair tap into something akin to timeless musical telepathy. Her own talents hardly in need of burnishing, lang invests the project with some gratifying new smokiness and is rewarded with a postgraduate course in saloon singing for the ages. It's an album that begs the best kind of question: When do we get an encore? --Jerry McCulley
- A Wonderful World- Tony and K.D. duets
If you are fans of either, you won't be disappointed. As a fan of both, this cd is a great addition to other recordings of theirs and superior to the current Tony Bennett duet release "An American Classic".While that one is good also, some of the duet artist pairings feel strained stylistically. This is the beauty of his matchup with K.D.Lang on Wonderful World. Her voice and his flow musically as one. Not only are their talents equal, their feeling for the music and arrangements is in sync as well....more info
- A Perfect Blend of Great Voices
This Louis Armstrong tribute album is absolutely a winner! This won the 2004 Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album. It includes some of the finest songs ever recorded from "Exactly Like You" and "I'm Confessin' (That I Love You)" to "What A Wonderful World" and "A Kiss To Build A Dream On." Likewise, this sublime album was orchestrated and conducted by Peter Matz, dazzling piano/arrangements by Lee Musiker, superb vocal arrangements by Rob Mathes, with the backing of Paul Langosch on bass, Clayton Cameron on drums, Gray Sargent on guitar and a special appearance of Scott Hamilton on tenor sax.
Listen to my all-time favorite "La Vie En Rose" and you'll agree with me that this is the very highlight of this wonderful CD. Its arrangement has a Bossa Nova touch that makes it so delightful to one's ears. You could listen to it endlessly without ever tiring. I did! Tony Bennett's voice is fabulous as ever and k.d. lang's voice is simply superb. I would say a cross between Diana Krall and Julie London. This duet was nominated for 2004 Grammy for Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals.
Also one of the stunning and ear-catching tracks is my favorite "Dream A Little Dream Of Me," a song made popular by the late Mama Cass of The Mamas And The Papas. Listen to its grand guitar solo by Gray Sargent.
"Sweet dreams till sunbeams find you
Sweet dreams that leaves all worries behind you
But in your dreams, whatever they be
Dream a little dream of me."
An outstanding recording. My highest recommendation!
- "You Can Depend On..." This One
Louis Armstrong is my favorite instrumentalist AND vocalist of all time. So, we have Tony Bennett (the best old style jazz singer still kicking) and K.D. Lang...well, what do you say about K.D. Lang? Just the best voice in so-called country and easily one of the top four vocalists in jazz (with Cassandra Wilson, Diane Reeves and Diana Krall). Now we have these premier singers doing Louie songs. How about that cover of "Exactly Like You". Oh man. I listened to that one four times before I went on the rest of the album. Every song is exquisite. "What a Wonderful World" is my numero uno song on the hit parade of all songs ever written. What a great cover. And dig that cover of "Lucky Old Sun". Whoa. I had to go through that one three times before moving on to "If We Never Meet Again".
So on my fifth listening to this CD, I'd say T-Bone hit another one out of the park......more info
- Tony Bennett & K D Lang--fantastic!
Very well done--good songs, too bad more artists do not release recordings like this. Buy it--you can't go wrong! Hopefully Tony Bennett and K D Lang will do more recordings together in the future....more info
- tony bennett has lost his voice
he is too old. he sounds awful. retire. manilow is much better....more info
- Beautifully Blended Voices
I have always like both of these artists. After hearing a cut from this album on NPR is just had to have it. It is a great rendition of Louis Armstrong's work! Especially K.D. Lang!...more info
- Very Pleasant Duo / Bennett and Lang
Is this the Tony Bennett of the past; of course not! Yet, he teams up with K.D. Lang in what I would call a "most" pleasant CD! His voice is certainly not the voice of Bennett when he sang such songs as Because of You, Stranger in Paridise, I left My Heart In San Francisco, or even, When Joanna Loves Me. Yet, this is a very good CD and I am enjoying it very much; Bennett is being smart in teaming up with other artists at this stage of his career! I definitely recomment this CD even through his voice is not of the Tony Bennett of the past!...more info
- A masterpiece from two superb vocal stylists
Since returning to the Columbia roster in the mid-80's, Tony Bennett has made a number of superb albums...and this new one is no exception. Thankfully, he has brought the gifted k.d.lang along for the ride in a collection of songs associated in one way or another with the great Satchmo.
The superb orchestrations were penned by the legendary arranger Peter Matz (presumably his final project before his death this past August).
Both singers are in excellent voice here, and blend well together - Tony continues to enthrall listeners, even at 75 years young, and k.d. demonstrates that she has the voice to handle the great pop standards. She should make a standards album on her own in the near future....more info
- A so-so effort
I bought this CD with no preconceived notions of how it would be. I am a long time kd fan so I figured that this was a must for my collection. I listened to the entire cd and found it palatable, but lacking. There are some lovely songs on here and kd sounds wonderful, but then there are other songs were their voices aren't really meshing and they come out sounding like they are trying way too hard. I couldn't help but think that this would make the perfect album for a wedding reception. I think kd is at her finest on her own....more info
- Easy listening fare
I thought this was an odd pairing that might not work but I was definitely wrong. The reworkings of Louis Armstrong classics are timeless interpretations. K.D.Lang sounds as if she has been singing this type of music for decades. Naturally Tony Bennet is flawless with his silky smooth vocals remisniscent of Sinatra and a bygone era. The arrangements are quite nice, with great piano solos accompanied by horns that play in unison or dart out in solos with strings that soothe the savage beast. This is soft piano romantic music that does not require imagination, just two people in the mood for love. "I'm Confessin'(That I love you)" is a song that fits into the groove just mentioned. The give and take playful interplay between Lang and Bennet is right on time and comes across naturally. At times Lang sounds like another jazz songbird, Keely Smith. On possibly the most recognized Sachmo song and title track, "What a Wonderful World" there is a depth to the interpretation that transcends the original song. It is as though they concurr with Sachmo and want to honor his memory with a beautiful redo of his classic by making it even better. This is music for a quiet night to be with someone special, where you don't want the music to intefere with your romance but rather to enhace the mood. Get this disc, turn down the lights and listen to the songs over a nice candlelight dinner for a real treat. ...more info
- Tony and k.d.sing the oldies
I loved this c.d. Tony and k.d. have terrific voice control and they complimented each other on the duet tracts.
I enjoy listening to the old standard tunes and this c.d. delivered some of the great tunes of the past....more info
- A heavenly pairing
k. d. lang has always had a gorgeous voice, but it was kind of hard to pay attention to her sounds when she was cavorting around in silly outfits and generally playing the clown. Now that she's past that era and is allowing her voice to illustrate just who she is and what she brings to the table, she's better than ever. With a voice that on one track sounds the way velvet feels ("What a Wonderful World") and on another is as refreshing as shaved ice with raspberry flavoring on a summer afternoon ("Exactly Like You") she is a perfect compliment to the great Tony, who isn't anywhere close to losing his chops. He still sings like a dream. The two bring humor and heart and peerless talent to the well-chosen selections on this CD--including some of my all-time favorites: "A Kiss to Build a Dream on," "You Can Depend on Me," and "That Lucky Old Sun." When two great singers team up, and you've got a phenomenal tenor sax man like Scott Hamilton dropping by to help out as a sideman, with orchestrations and conducting by Peter Matz, you just can't ask for more. But more would be wonderful--maybe another half dozen collections.
Most highly recommended....more info
I love the duet concept records and I am a big k.d. Lang fan and when I heard this record was coming out I was very excited. A wonderful combination of voices singing classics, and the title track makes this record perfect. I was not a big Tony Bennett fan beforehand, but became one because of this....more info
- This is a sexy, classy album
I've loved k.d. lang's sultry, beautiful voice for some time now, but I have never heard it put to better use than here. She excels on these jazzy, sexy songs. So does Tony Bennett, with his strong smooth voice, so different than k.d.'s, yet so complimentary. This album is one I listen to over and over again, and am so glad to have in my collection....more info
- A great album to have
I've been a jazz lover for a while now and when I came across this album, I knew that it'll be a great one to get. Tony and K.Ds voice blend really well together and you can tell that they had fun cutting this album. Tony's ever classic voice coupled with K.d's smooth voice produce an album that I believe is a great showcase of each star's talents without overshadowing one another. My personal fav was the first song. Yes, Tony pays tribute to Mr. Armstrong and his attempt at doing "A Wonderful World" is a great effort but way short of the original. Then again, I don't think any artist can do it the way that Louis did.If you're looking for a great vocals album, pick this one up. Even if you decide you don't really fancy it, it makes great background music at parties....more info
- This is a great CD
I bought this cd to add to my KD Lang collection. What an amazing album. Perfect for that cold night in front of the fire with someone you love....more info
- Tony & KD Wonderful World should be called Wonderful Duet!
KD's silky voice is one-of-a-kind and it was a pleasure hearing her apply her talent to some classics. The combination of Tony and KD is wonderful although KD is fantastic on her own. This is a great album to listen to while eating dinner, relaxing or as background to some fine conversation......more info
- not as good as expected
I ordered this CD thinking it would be as good as the 49th Parallel Cd of hers-it is not-I was disappointed-did not care for Tony Bennett that much-...more info
- A wonderful world
The blending of Tony Bennett and K. D. Lang's voices is amazing. Very enjoyable listening....more info
- k.d. lang could manage this one on her own!!
I finally got the album today and I wasn't really in too big of a hurry to get it - unlike any other time k.d. lang puts out a solo album and I'm buying it the day it comes out. I have to say that this is also an album my mother will love as a Xmas present - since she loves BOTH Tony Bennett and k.d. and really enjoyed the show I took her to last year. All I can say about this album, is that it's torture to sit there and have to listen to Tony sing with kd - when I want so much for it to be ONLY kd singing these songs. I love these old standards and Ella Fitzgerald is also one of my favorite singers and she's done all of these songs on her various solo albums. k.d. would have done the songs a greater justice doing them all solo, rather than "helping" Tony out to sell yet another album for him....more info
- classic, timeless
K.D. Lang's voice is incredible and she is even better when singing with the forever classic, Mr. Bennett....more info
- A Wonderful Pairing
Pairing k.d. Lang and Tony Bennett was a stroke of musical genius. The magical synergy between them, the combination of two such diametrically opposite vocalists, the obvious chemistry between them is wonderful to behold. Tony has never been better, and k.d. displays the full range of her vocal talents effortlessly and perfectly in sync with Tony's flawless pop/jazz style. It is a masterful collaboration on every track, but "Exactly Like You" and "What A Wonderful World" are exceptionally good. This is an essential purchase if you collect either artist. It has all the makings of a great classic album from two of the greatest vocalists around today. Bennett proves conclusively with this gem that great vocal artistry is possible at any age and at any stage of one's career. I only hope there's 'A Wonderful World Part Two."...more info
- Just great
Their voices are a perfect pairing.
Its amazing to think that k.d. has so many years left to continue sharing her talents. I wish I could say the same for TB. If only they had met thirty-five years ago (which, obviously, would have been impossible)....more info
- Excellent! :)
Songs like "Exactly Like You" and "I Wonder" are gems. This is good slow dancing in the kitchen music for couples from their 30's to their 90's. KD Lang is quite a genius and when her sound combines with Tony, there is a sort of magic synergy that occurs. You have got to hear this CD!!
- Great CD
I was pleasantly surprised at the union of two very talented artists. Great CD...more info
- The Music Stays With Us
"A Wonderful World,"(2002), a collection of duets by Tony Bennett and K.D. Lang, to songs inspired by the legendary New Orleans trumpeter Louis Armstrong, included "What a Wonderful World," "Exactly Like You," and "You Can Depend on Me." It was produced by the near-legendary T Bone Burnett, and includes trumpet work by Scott Hamilton. Of course, in 2002, the New York-born crooner was 76 years old; and his voice was not what it once was: but still, the embers of it, with its liquidity, smoothness, intonation and phrasing are enough to cast his light upon the world. Critic Howard Garwood wrote of him, "He has the face you'd want on your neighborhood bar owner - seamed, rumpled, and infinitely kind.... It's the face of a man who has seen life and triumphed, and who proclaims his joy of living through one of the best sets of pipes in the business."
And as for K.D. Lang's voice, 2002 found it still in top form. It's a thing of unearthly, silken beauty, a voice that comes along only once in a generation: in her case, from Alberta, Canada. I remember seeing her once on late night television, early in her career, wearing the silliest cowgirl outfit and hopping up and down, and wishing I could tell her that with her voice, she didn't need to hop, she could leave that to Herman's Hermits. Of course, I couldn't, but she seems to have figured it out, anyway.
The title song, as done by this pair, boasts all the colors of the rainbow. And some of the quieter ballads are still waters running deep, indeed. Just listen, to say, "La Vie En Rose," or "If We Never Meet Again."
I am lucky enough to have seen this pair present this repertory in person, at New York's Radio City Music Hall, in the most striking of circumstances, to wit: late September, 2001, about two weeks after the 9/11 destruction of the World Trade Center, and so much of downtown Manhattan. I already had my ticket, and anxiously watched the paper to see if they would keep the date: they did, and so did I. So did most of the ticket holders, I believe: there were empty seats, but not that many. Took ages to get through security, of course. You can believe that emotions ran high in that theater, on stage and in the audience: you could describe it as a love-in. And as for the music that came from that stage - it was simply blessed, and unforgettable. Lucky for all of us, the music, so evanescent in live performance, stays with us on this cd.
- Tony, it's over....
Listening to Bennett on this CD is like listening to post-1965 Sinatra. They're both just faking it, but, due to their iconic status, they get away with it. On this CD, Lang just plain carries Tony, which is the only reason I gave it 2 stars.
Take a pass on this one and the 'Duets' album; age has caught up with Bennett. Instead, give a listen to 'Fifty Years: The Artistry of Tony Bennett'. Hearing his early material will make the deterioration in Bennett's voice quite obvious and make you wonder if it's really the same vocalist.
Time marches on and it's cruel what it has done to Bennett's range, but, thankfully, the great work of his early and middle years is still around.......more info