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Label:
Name: KRITZERLAND
Number: KR200312

THE GANG'S ALL HERE (1000 EDITION) (CD)
Composed by: Harry Warren, Leo Robin

THE GANG’S ALL HERE

Featuring The King of Swing, Benny Goodman and his Orchestra Songs by Leo Robin and Harry Warren Musical Direction by Alfred Newman

“It’s colossal, it’s stupendous, and one of the artiest productions ever made… It is a Technicolor dream that takes on nightmarish proportions or the aspects of a Dali drawing in motion.”

So said the New York Daily News and it kind of sums up Twentieth Century Fox’s 1943 Technicolor extravaganza, The Gang’s All Here, in a nutshell. Directed by Busby Berkeley at his most outrageous, the film starred Alice Faye, Carmen Miranda, James Ellison, Phil Baker, Benny Goodman and his Orchestra, and such stalwart character actors as Eugene Pallette, Charlotte Greenwood, and Dave Willock. The film is loaded with great musical numbers, and has there ever been a number like “The Lady in the Tutti Fruitti Hat,” with all those chorines holding huge bananas, especially considering the era in which the film was made? The film was very popular – the war was on and audiences wanted and needed respite from it and The Gang’s All Here really delivered the Technicolor escapism they craved.

The Gang’s All Here had a screenplay by Walter Bullock (Springtime in the Rockies, Greenwich Village) but it really was just an excuse to have a whole lot of great musical numbers, many of which were written by the great Harry Warren and Leo Robin. Add to that the King of Swing, Benny Goodman and his Orchestra, and numbers like “You Discover You’re in New York,” “Minnie’s in the Money,” “No Love, No Nothin’,” “A Journey to a Star” “Paducah,” the wacky final number, “The Polka Dot Polka” and others, and you have a big, bountiful cake with mounds of delectable frosting. As surreal as the whole concoction is, it is a wildly entertaining ride every step of the way.

Over the years, the film has attained camp classic status, but it’s more than just camp – it’s a crazy Technicolor fever dream filled with Berkeley’s mad genius and wonderful performances and music. To say they don’t make ‘em like this anymore would be the understatement of all time.

For this first ever legitimate CD release of The Gang’s All Here, we present all the music recorded for the film, as well as a few unused cues, all culled from materials in the Fox vaults and restored by Mike Matessino.

1. Hail, Hail, the Gang’s All Here / * Aquero do Brasil 2. You Discover You’re in New York 3. Acuerdo 4. Digga A Ella (The Uncle Samba) 5. P’ra Que Disquitir 6. Let’s Dance * 7. Minnie’s in the Money * 8. A Journey to a Star (instrumental) * 9.Soft Winds * 10. The Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat 11. A Journey to a Star 12. The Kiss 13. Later Tonight / The Jitters * 14. Newspaper Montage / Befuddled 15. No Love, No Nothin’ * 16. Marlbrough (Jolly Good Fellow) * 17. Party Rehearsal (No Love, No Nothin’) * 18. The Dance (No Love, No Nothin’) * 19. Blackmail Sequence 20. Minnie’s in the Money (instrumental) * 21. The Panther / Pulling the Picture 22. Swan Song / Paducah * 23. A Journey to a Star (Reprise) 24. Polka Dot Polka — Finale (A Journey to a Star)

UNUSED MUSIC
25. You Discover You’re in New York (instrumental) * 26. No Love, No Nothin’ (score cue) 27. Minnie’s in the Money (alternate) * 28. The Gang’s All Here (fanfare)

*features The Benny Goodman Orchestra

  
Reviews and Comments: (1)
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Posted by Andrew Feinberg on January 27, 2017 11:51 AM
Mike Matessino has done a good job in restoring these tracks. There is some distortion at the top of the spectrum, but it does not interfere with the enjoyment of the score. He has miraculously isolated the vocals of Alice Faye's numbers, and Benny Goodman's playing is sharp and crisp. Unfortunately, the booklet is awful; it is pure hyperbole. Although the restoration is mentioned, it says nothing about the source materials or the engineering. There is no plot summary, and in one instance, there is an error on the vocals (credit to vocals by Alice Faye and James Ellison for Soft Winds are given, but it is an instrumental cue). Nor is the whole cast mentioned in the final reprise of A Journey to a Star, even though they all sing a line). The orchestral arrangers are not mentioned, and David Raksin's contribution to the Polka Dot Polka is not highlighted (it is mentioned only in the list of selections. There are no pictures for the Polka Dot Polka. These shortcomings are minor in light of this project, but a modicum of scholarship is warranted.

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