"Nino And April Sing The Great Songs" Liner Notes
Many singers of popular music have all kinds of problems in merely trying to decide what songs to sing. They are constantly searching for the songs that will suit their voice and particular style. Finding the right songs has never been difficult for Nino and April. All they have to do, it seems, is choose one of the great standard songs, invest it with their amazingly versatile style of singing, and boom--another hit is on the way. They enjoyed their first nationwide success with "Deep Purple," and in quick succession, followed with hit recordings of "Whispering" and "Stardust." It was only natural that Nino and April would go further with the idea and record a full album of the great popular songs.
The songs that Nino and April chose for this LP are the best of the best. These are the songs that set the standards by which most others songs are judged. Is there anyone who hasn't felt (with someone special in mind of course) that one of these was THEIR song?
Nino and April's singing style doesn't fit into a single category. Some day a new category will be invented just for them. In the meanwhile, Nino and April bring their rich imagination to everything they sing, letting the styles fall where they may. And what a variety of musical styles turn up: pop, rock & roll, country, rhythm & blues, bossa nova, latin, and even a touch of comedy (listen to Nino's deadpan singing in "Begin The Beguine"). Nino and April are obviously aware of everything that's happening in music today.
There is always a danger in singing well known songs. Listeners might be reminded of favorite past versions, and the new ones could suffer by comparison. Nino and April recognized the challenge and proceeded to re-interpret these songs with a set of arrangements which are refreshingly different. It is customary, for instance, to sing "Honeysuckle
Rose" at a fast tempo. Here Nino and April give the song a change of pace, singing it in a slow bluesy vein that makes you wonder why it isn't always done this way. "Tea For Two" becomes a completely new masterpiece, transformed by a swinging latin beat. "Tea For Two" never sounded this exciting before.
Nino and April's version of "All The Things You Are" proves that it is really a bossa nova. "I Surrender Dear" is softly romantic without a bit of sentimentality. The lightly rocking bounce of "I'm Confessin' That I Love You" brings out the songs melody more clearly than ever.
The most striking quality in this album is the musicality of every performance. The credit for this must go to Nino Tempo whose talents seem to have no limit. In addition to arranging all twelve selections, singing, "yodeling," and vocalizing various effects, Nino plays tenor saxophone, harmonica, guitar, and on "Honeysuckle Rose," he even plays a solo on his saxophone mouthpiece. April is his musical twin (they are actually brother and sister), and she matches Nino's talents with a voice that is surely among the most flexible in popular music. Having once heard them, can anyone forget April's intimate and insinuating recitations? For that matter, it's going to be pretty hard for anyone to remember how anyone else sang these songs after hearing "Nino And April Sing The Great Songs."
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