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Customer Review

on 18 December 2010
It took Vocalion quite a number of years to finally reissue a third volume of Joe Loss records, but here at long last it is, and a very fine one at that. Most titles find the band augmented by three strings, which lends the band that typical British dance band sound. Happily, there are quite a number of not very familiar tunes here, which adds a sense of discovery to the disc. Although admittedly some tunes are forgettable little nothings, they are played and sung with a dedication that lifts them on a higher plane than their lack of memorability would warrant. Most titles are in the capable hands of vocalist Chick Henderson, who in time became even more popular than Al Bowlly (though as a singer not in the same class) and who, like Bowlly, was killed in a bombing raid. The band is perhaps not quite in the same class as the very best (Ambrose, Gibbons etc.) but certainly capable enough to do full justice to the music. The only drawback is the presence of vocalist Monte Rey on four otherwise enjoyable titles (and Irene Johnson, whose voice and delivery remind me of Jimmy Dorsey's singer Helen O'Connell, makes no bones about her mediocrity on her sole title that appears here), but that's just a very minor quibble.
The liner notes give a synopsis of Joe Loss's almost 60 year band-leading career and gives useful background info on the composers and the band personnel. This is yet another example of Vocalion treating this kind of music with the care, attention and love it deserves. Well done!
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