Posts Tagged ‘1959’

Cy Coleman – Playboy’s Theme

(click song title above to listen)

The soundtrack to ’50s/’60s swingin’ bachelor pad cool…

In the late 1950s, Cy Coleman opened the Playroom, his own nightclub located in midtown NYC. The Playroom quickly became a hangout for the New York celebrity crowd (gents like William Holden and Jackie Gleason were regulars) and the Broadway elite. A frequent patron was none other than Hugh Hefner, who quickly struck up a friendship with Coleman, a bond that would last until Cy’s passing in 2004. At the time, Hef was about to debut his now-iconic television show, Playboy After Dark, and tapped Cy to write the theme, which would go on to become one of the generation’s defining instrumentals and Cy’s biggest hit as a performer. Cy frequently appeared on the program over the years — here’s Cy’s first appearance from October 1959, performing “Witchcraft” (a Top 10 hit for Sinatra).

Put on your smoking jacket and slippers, mix yourself a dry martini, and crank the hi-fi for a little “Playboy’s Theme.”

sc000efb22 300x187 Cy Coleman   Playboys Theme

Contact & Licensing info:

“Playboy’s Theme” was written by Cy Coleman. Published by Notable Music Co. (ASCAP). Contact: Damon Booth / info@notablemusic.net. Administered by Downtown Music Publishing. Contact: Sean McGraw / seanmcgraw@dmpgroup.com. Master controlled by Universal Music Group.

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Bob Dylan – Why Try To Change Me Now

(click song title above to listen)


One year ago today, Bob Dylan tipped his hat to Frank Sinatra with his critically acclaimed 36th studio album for Columbia Records, Shadows In The Night. The intimate album was done live in one or two takes and recorded in famed Capitol Studio B, where the Chairman had recorded so much of his classic work. Shadows consists of ballads recorded by Frank in the late 50s and 60s, songs that explored the emotions of heartache and melancholy. The album debuted at #1 on the UK Album charts and at #7 on the Billboard Top 200 and is nominated for “Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album” at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards to be held Feb 15th 2016.

In Dylan’s memoir, Chronicles: Volume One, Dylan wrote of Sinatra’s Ebb Tide: “When Frank sang that song, I could hear everything in his voice – death, God, and the universe, everything.” Mojo Magazine correctly points out that the same an be said for Dylan’s half-century of work.

“Why Try To Change Me Now” was written by Cy Coleman and Joseph McCarthy and it’s been said that Dylan’s performance is so assured you might think he wrote it himself. Sinatra and Dylan share that trait in spades. While separated by a generation, as well as style, both men are, of course, rooted in the blues.

0088875057962 500X500 300x300 Bob Dylan   Why Try To Change Me Now

Contact & Licensing Info
Written by Cy Coleman & Joseph A. McCarthy. Published by Notable Music Co. Inc (ASCAP)
Contact: Damon Booth info@notablemusic.net, Administered by Downtown Music Publishing contact: seanmcgraw@dmpgroup.com
For Joseph McCarthy: Sony/ATV Tunes LLC (ASCAP).
Master controlled by Sony / http://www.sonymusiclicensing.com/

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Jesse Belvin – Witchcraft

Click song title above to listen.

A great singer, performer, and songwriter too (penning, Earth Angel among others), Jesse Belvin inspired many vocalists in the early days of of rock & roll, soul & R&B. Marvin Gaye, Harold Melvin, and Lou Rawls just to name a few.

Etta James called Belvin, “The most gifted of all…even now I consider him the greatest singer of my generation. Rhythm and blues rock and roll, crooner, you name it. He was going to be bigger than Sam Cooke, bigger than Nat Cole”.

Sadly, her prediction never came to be as Belvin‘s life was cut short after he and his wife were killed in a head-on car crash shortly after finishing a performance in Little Rock, AR on a bill with Cooke and Jackie Wilson. It was Feb 6, 1960, just a year after he had recorded his major label debut album for RCA, Just Jesse Belvin.

Groomed by his label to become the next Nat “King” Cole, Jesse and his A&R man Dick Pierce put together a collection of standards by Coleman/Leigh, George & Ira Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein & Jerome Kern & others and started to define Belvin’s smooth, sophisticated West Coast sound.

We hope you dig the sweet spells of Witchraft.

600x6001 300x300 Jesse Belvin   Witchcraft

Contact & Licensing Info
Publishing controlled by Notable Music Co. (Cy Coleman). Contact: Damon Booth / info@notablemusic.net
Administered by Downtown Music Publishing
Contact: Sean McGraw / seanmcgraw@dmpgroup.com
Publishing (Carolyn Leigh) controlled by Morley Music Co c/o MPL Communications Inc / contact: inquiry@mplcommunications.com
Master controlled by Sony / http://hub.sonymusic.com/licensing/contact/

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Blossom Dearie – Too Good to Talk About

Before Blossom Dearie moved to London in the early 1960′s appearing regularly at Ronnie Scott’s and on Dudley Moore’s popular television show, she could be found playing piano and turning heads in the jazz clubs of New York City.

Rooted in jazz and popular song, Dearie’s signature chic and sleek vocal style won her praise among critics and fellow musicians alike as one of the greatest interpreters of the Great American Songbook. Around the time of this album, Miles Davis was such a fan that he would personally invite her and her combo to perform between his legendary sets at the Village Vanguard.

This week’s Top Tune (click the song title above to play) was written by Cy Coleman & Carolyn Leigh and comes from her sixth album for Norman Granz’s Verve Records, My Gentleman Friend. A champion of witty & rarified material, Blossom masterfully tackles a couple of Gershwin tunes on this album and an additional Coleman & Leigh classic, “You Fascinate Me So”.

Recorded in 1959, Too Good to Talk About swings finely and features a great solo by Kenny Burrell on guitar and some sweet brushwork by Ed Thigpen on drums. Dearie plays piano and the impeccable diction she had become renowned for is on display.

51Ju+J6OOHL1 300x300 Blossom Dearie   Too Good to Talk About

Contact & Licensing Info
Publishing controlled by Notable Music Co. (Cy Coleman)
Contact: Damon Booth – info@notablemusic.net
Administered by Downtown Music Publishing
Contact: Sean McGraw – seanmcgraw@dmpgroup.com
Publishing controlled by Carwin Music Co. Inc (Carolyn Leigh)
Administered by EMI U. Catalog Inc.
Master controlled by Universal Music Group / http://www.universalfilmandtvmusic.com

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