The two albums which make up this twofer were recorded six years apart, so there is no obvious reason why they were paired together, but they are both excellent examples of Peggy's music and they fit well together. The first, Pretty eyes, recorded in 1960, shows Peggy's sexy, seductive voice at it's most romantic, including lovely versions of I remember you and In other words (fly me to the moon), done very slowly. Most of the other songs are obscure gems from the Great American Songbook. Peggy knew which songs suited her style and didn't mind whether they were famous or not. Her song selection was always impeccable. The second, Guitars ala Lee, is from 1966. It begins with Nice'n'easy which, despite it's title, is more upbeat than anything from Pretty eyes. Peggy soon slips back into romantic mood with a soft, reflective version of Strangers in the night. There is generally more variation in this second album, but even here, there are plenty of soft, romantic rongs just like those on Pretty eyes. The final track on this album is a swinging cover of Petula's Call me. Peggy was Petula's main influence back in the fifties, but Petula moved away from that sound in the sixties. Here, Peggy shows that she could also adapt to the sixties without sacrificing her integrity, and it's a great way to close this twofer.
From her best period (early '60s)here's an excellent double album. I bought Pretty Eyes as an LP way back. Its essentially a ballad album for late night listening, and this is is a great re-mastering, improving on the original sound considerably.
As far as I know Guitars ala Lee was never released as an LP over here, and it has to be one of her very best, with a great mix of sultry and uptempo songs. As always, she knew how to pick a good song, and there are some crackers here - especially the ballad 'My guitar' which is a stunner and shows off her flawless timing. In addition this lady could swing an uptempo number with an ease that no-one else matched. Even with that soft husky voice she always drove the arrangements along - no doubt a skill she learnt from her band singer days.
She inspired the next generation of singers. Today's young 'wanna be's could do a lot worse than learn from someone who really knew her craft.
Buy and enjoy - especially for the revelatory Guitars ala Lee...
I first purchased this album `Pretty Eyes' when I was in the Army serving in Bahrain during the 1960's, during my travels it got broke and I was unable to buy a new one. Now Thanks to Amazon I can again listen to the wonderful Peggy Lee with a glass of wine. If you like listening to lovely soft music, Buy this, you also get a bonus album, 'Guitars A La Lee'.