It would be most remiss of us not to give a huge Happy 75th Birthday shout out to Blue Note Records, the preeminent American jazz and hard bop label founded in 1939 by Alfred Lion and Max Margulis in New York City. In November the label will release the first official illustrated history of Blue Note Records, authored by Richard Havers and including forewords by Wayne Shorter, Robert Glasper, and Blue Note President Don Was. The 400-page hardcover book will celebrate over seven decades of extraordinary music and their ongoing commitment to “Uncompromising Expression”.
We’ve highlighted many master recordings this year from our very own uncompromising expressionist & Blue Note artist, Rosanne Cash. This week’s Top Tune comes from one of the many jazz vocalists and artists on the legendary label who have recorded multiple tunes from the Notable catalog. She was one of the most artistically & commercially successful artists in Capitol Records group history, the great Nancy Wilson.
Wilson’s version of Cy Coleman & Carolyn Leigh’s classic “The Best is Yet to Come” was released on the 1963 Top 5 Billboard album, Yesterday’s Love Songs, Today’s Blues. Her version predates the Frank Sinatra/Count Basie version arranged by Quincy Jones that has since served as the standard interpretation of the song but squarely packs a punch. The arrangement was courtesy of the late-great West Coast Jazz master, Gerald Wilson.
Nancy recalls of the session: “The energy level was so high back then because you knew you had to get it right today – you really couldn’t come back in tomorrow and do it again”. Wilson continues: “We didn’t need two years to do an album then. We were already doing these songs everynight and the arrangers would know how to get the most out of a song. The musicians were so great and could read so well, all you had to do was put the charts in front of them and they could get ‘em down.”
Thank you to The Breeders’ Cup for making this week’s tune your signature tune for the 3rd year in a row! Tune in this Saturday Nov 1 for an encore performance of the song LIVE on NBC at 8p ET by Kristin Chenoweth before the running of the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Publishing controlled by Notable Music Co. (Cy Coleman). Contact: Damon Booth / firstname.lastname@example.org
Administered by Downtown Music Publishing
Contact: Sean McGraw / email@example.com
Publishing controlled by Carwin Music Co. Inc (Carolyn Leigh)
Administered by EMI U. Catalog Inc.
Master controlled by Blue Note Records. Contact: Doug James / firstname.lastname@example.org