When you bring 2 legends together ( in this case Ella and Nelson Riddle) you are bound to get something quite magical and special and that's exactly what this album has in spades!
Ella swings brightly with Nelson was the second of 2 albums she recorded with Nelson Riddle in 1962, the other - "Ella swings gently with Nelson" is also top notch and there's little to differentiate in terms of quality over each other. You can say what you want about your Beyonce's or Mariah's but there's no one today that will ever touch the superb Ella Fitzgerald in terms of that something extra special, her voice is such that everytime you listen to her you get goosebumps, revelling in her warm silky voice that is distinctly her own. She is totally and utterly every bit as special as Sinatra was.
Of course Nelson Riddle will be remembered by most because of his superb work with Sinatra but many other acts in the 50's and 60's benefited from his amazing arrangements like Nat king Cole, Peggy lee, Dean Martin and of course Ella. Riddle's arrangements here are nothing short of superb, "When your lover is gone" is a very similar arrangement to his one for Sinatra's "I got you under my skin" even down to the crescendo in the middle, a lovely catchy bouncy beat, a superb crescendo and stunning vocals make for a quite magical song and my favourite on this album.
There's not a duff track on this album and as an added bonus the CD is bolstered by 3 additional tracks recorded for Ella and Riddle's "Gershwin Songbook" album from 1959 but left off. I don't know why these were left off, i can only guess for space issues as it's certainly not down to the quality of the songs.
I really can't recommend this album enough, it see's 2 brilliant talents working in perfect sync delivering a stunning piece of work that is hard to find any fault with!