The "three rare cast recordings previously unavailable in the CD era" are "Originals – Musical Comedy 1909-1935," and the cast albums of Off-Broadway's The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Broadway's Inner City.
All will be available as downloads through major digital service providers and as disc-on-demand with the original cover art and liner notes.
Also coming this winter are two digital releases of recently out-of-print recordings: The 1946 Broadway revival of Show Boat, commemorating its 65th anniversary, and Tony winner Tommy Tune's "Slow Dancin'," a studio album of standards including "Wish You Were Here," "The Way You Look Tonight," "On a Slow Boat to China."
The Jan. 18 reissue of "Originals – Musical Comedy 1909-1935" is billed as "a fascinating piece of cultural archeology" that is "the perfect introduction to a lost world: the Broadway musical just as it was changing from a vaudeville-style entertainment to an art form." The collection from 1968 includes famous names and recordings from the era: Blanche Ring's "Rings on My Fingers," Cole Porter singing "You're the Top" and Fanny Brice performing "Second Hand Rose," plus artists including Helen Morgan, Libby Holman, Eddie Cantor, Al Jolson, Beatrice Lillie and the comedy team of Gallagher and Shean in The Ziegfeld Follies number "Mr. Gallagher and Mr. Shean."
Long unavailable, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (released Feb. 15) "is a charming jewel from the vanishing world of the Off-Broadway musical." James Thurber's famous short story inspired this 1964 musical that ran for only 96 performances, but was recorded by Columbia Records. The score is by Leon Carr, a composer best known for writing TV jingles ("Sometimes you feel like a nut…"), with lyrics by Earl Shuman. Marc London plays Mitty, along with Emmy-winner Cathryn Damon (TV's "Soap"), Lorraine Serabian (Tony nominee as The Leader in Zorba) and Rue McClanahan. The reissue of Inner City (on March 15) introduces 21st-century listeners to "the musical that rocked Broadway with its distinctly untraditional take on modern urban life." The 1971 show was conceived and staged by Hair director Tom O'Horgan the same season he directed the Broadway premiere of Jesus Christ Superstar. Based on Eve Merriam's best-selling book "The Inner City Mother Goose," it "recounts children's tales with a contemporary urban vibe and has a lively, R&B-influenced score" by Merriam and lyricist Helen Miller. Inner City introduced Linda Hopkins, who took home a Tony as Best Featured Actress in a Musical, along with Delores Hall, Larry Marshall and Allan Nichols.
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