Now in stores, on retail websites and digital outlets are the live cabaret album of Tony Award nominee Kate Baldwin's She Loves Him, a tribute to Fiddler on the Roof lyricist Sheldon Harnick; the world-premiere studio recording of Vernon Duke's musical Sweet Bye and Bye; and Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway's live recording of their sister act, Boom! (All were previously available by ordering from psclassics.com.)
Baldwin's new recording, "She Loves Him: Live at Feinstein's," will be celebrated at a release event July 14 at Feinstein's at Loews Regency, where she and special guest Harnick sang his songs earlier this year.
The album from PS Classics was recorded live at Feinstein's in March. The nightspot will continue its summer 2011 season with a specially-priced CD-release concert event 8:30 PM July 14. Her CD boasts the lyrics (and some music) of the Tony Award-winning Harnick, who will appear as a guest star in the 30-minute concert.
For this special event, all tickets — which include a copy of the disc, a ticket to the show, and, if desired, an invite to the VIP after-party — are being sold exclusively through PSClassics.com. The show takes place at the Loews Regency Hotel (540 Park Avenue at 61st Street).
For $24.95, patrons receive one ticket to the show, in addition to a copy of the CD. For $29.95, patrons receive two tickets to the show, in addition to a copy of the CD. For $34.95, a patron receives one ticket to the show, a copy of the CD and an invite to the VIP after-party to meet Baldwin and Harnick and join them for a champagne toast. For $39.95, you receive two tickets to the show, a copy of the CD and an invite for two to the VIP after-party for a meeting and champagne toast.
There is an additional two-drink minimum at all price levels. Jackets are suggested but not required.
The disc features liner notes by journalist Frank Rich. Here's the track listing for She Loves Him:
1. He Loves Me
2. "Good evening..."
3. The Boston Beguine
4. "What a daredevil..."
5. When Did I Fall in Love?
6. A Trip to the Library
7. "My favorite Sheldon Harnick show..."
8. Will He Like Me?
9. The Ballad of the Shape of Things
10. "Be kind to this Irish girl..."
11. Fiddler on the Roof medley
Far From the Home I Love
12. To Life
13. If I Were a Rich Man
14. "Jerry Bock and I wrote a song..."
15. Dear Sweet Sewing Machine
16. "Cy Coleman and I had a meeting..."
17. You're Going Far
19. "He drew from very personal images..."
20. I Couldn't Be with Anyone But You
21. "It's time to start saying goodnight..."
22. In My Own Lifetime
23. Sunrise, Sunset
Aside from cast albums and the recording made of his Lyrics & Lyricists program at New York's 92nd Street Y, She Loves Him is the first recording devoted entirely to Sheldon Harnick's work, according to PS Classics. Read Playbill.com's recent "Harnick on Harnick" feature, in which the writer reflects on his career and collaborators.
Baldwin, a 2010 Best Actress Tony nominee for Finian's Rainbow, made her Broadway debut in The Full Monty in 2001, followed by appearances in Thoroughly Modern Millie and Wonderful Town. She was nominated for the Helen Hayes Award for her portrayal of Nellie Forbush in the 2002 Arena Stage production of South Pacific. Additional credits include The Sound of Music and The Music Man at The Muny in St. Louis, Missouri, and Charlotte in A Little Night Music at Centre Stage in Baltimore. Baldwin played the role of Sharon in the 2009 Encores! staged concert production of Finian's Rainbow, the expanded version of which moved to Broadway.
In October 2009, Baldwin released her first solo album, "Let's See What Happens," a compilation of songs written by Burton Lane and E.Y. Harburg.
Harnick's first song in a Broadway show was "The Boston Beguine" in New Faces of 1952, which Baldwin sang at Feinstein's and the Allen Room in early 2011. He was his own composer for a time, and later teamed with composer Jerry Bock on The Body Beautiful (1958), the Pulitzer Prize-winning Fiorello! (1959), Tenderloin (1960), She Loves Me (1963), the Tony Award-winning Fiddler on the Roof (1964), The Apple Tree (1966) and The Rothschilds (1970). Harnick's other collaborators in musical theatre have included Michel Legrand, Mary Rodgers, Richard Rodgers and Joe Raposo.
The She Loves Him recording — featuring music director Scott Cady at the piano, Andrew Sterman on woodwinds and John Beale on bass — is produced by Grammy-winner David Frost and mixed by Tom Lazarus. Executive producers are Jeff Berger and PS Classics co-founder Philip Chaffin.
Boom! is the concert of baby-boom generation songs featuring sisters and Tony-nominated actresses Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway. The album was recorded during the Callaways' recent engagement at New York's Birdland. Tommy Krasker and Bart Migal serve as album producers.
Celebrating "the soundtrack of the sisters' childhood with songs from the 1960s and '70s," Boom! premiered in 2010 at New York City's Town Hall to great acclaim. According to PS Classics, the label devoted to the heritage of Broadway and American popular song, the show is "a joyous, exultant evening — sometimes zany, often moving, always surprising — that features tunes made famous by Joni Mitchell, Carole King, Bob Dylan, The Beatles, Barbra Streisand, Jimmy Webb, Stevie Wonder and others. The sisters, who alternate expressive solos with radiant duets, also share heartwarming, humorous stories of their years growing up in Chicago and New York."
In celebration of the album release, Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway will appear at a 5 PM July 20 special performance and CD signing at the Barnes & Noble at 150 East 86th St. (at Lexington Ave).
The complete Boom! track listing is as follows:
1. Got to Get You into My Life/Happy Together
2. Come Together
3. (There's) Always Something There to Remind Me
4. A Case of You
5. "Do you remember those long car trips…"
6. Back-Seat-of-the-Car Medley (Mercedes Benz/Brand New Key/Sugar, Sugar/Dance to the Music/ Sweet and Innocent/Joy to the World)
8. "We would like to take this time…"
9. You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'
10. "Having a dad who was a reporter…"
11. Blowin' in the Wind
12. "I wanted to be the 6th Dimension…"
13. Didn't We/MacArthur Park
14. I Know a Place/Downtown
15. These Boots Are Made for Walkin'
16. "We were very different…"
17. That's the Way I've Always Heard It Should Be
18. The Way We Were
19. "The Ed Sullivan Show…"
20. Stevie Wonder Medley (All in Love Is Fair/You Are the Sunshine of My Life /Sir Duke/ Living for the City/Isn't She Lovely?/Ma Cherie Amour/Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing/Knocks Me off My Feet/For Once in My Life)
21. "One album that unites us…"
22. You've Got a Friend
PS Classics researched and restored Vernon Duke and Ogden Nash's score (albeit with new orchestartions) for the musical Sweet Bye and Bye, which opened and closed in 1946 on its way to Broadway. The studio cast album features Danny Burstein, Philip Chaffin, Jim Stanek, Heidi Blickenstaff, Graham Rowat, Michele Ragusa, Telly Leung, Sara Jean Ford, and, in the leading role originated by Dolores Gray, Tony nominee Marin Mazzie. The disc includes guest appearances by Broadway's Rebecca Luker, Fred Applegate, John Cullum, Georgia Engel, Joel Hatch and Edward Hibbert.
As previously reported in a Playbill.com exclusive, Sweet Bye and Bye has been a long-time labor of love for PS Classics co-founder and album producer Tommy Krasker. A one-of-a-kind collaboration between composer Duke, lyricist Nash, and bookwriters S. J. Perelman and Al Hirschfeld, the show experienced a tumultuous out-of-town tryout period — including cast firings, nervous breakdowns and backstage violence — that left one of the most accomplished theatre scores of the '40s in ruins. Read Playbill.com's extensive feature about the colorful, drama-filled history of the show.
Fully restored by Krasker, and featuring new orchestrations by Jason Carr (the originals did not survive), Eric Stern as conductor and vocal direction by David Dabbon, Sweet Bye and Bye has been brought back to life in a world-premiere studio recording.
Shortly after completing recording the week of May 23, Krasker told Playbill.com, "I've been doing music theatre restorations since the early 1980s — I don't think I've ever fallen in love with a 'lost' score the way I did with Sweet Bye and Bye. The ballads are so richly romantic, and the comedy songs seem as clever and fresh and sharply satiric today as they must have in 1946. Most of the time when you discover these lost scores, there are one or two numbers you kind of want to sweep under the rug — they just don't measure up. That's not the case here; it's all of a piece. But beyond that, I think what makes the Sweet Bye and Bye saga so deeply moving is that this brilliantly original score was shredded and decimated by the time it reached the stage.
"Duke and Nash wrote this masterful work, but there were casting problems and script problems, and songs had to be jettisoned right and left to accommodate them. By the time the show closed in Philadelphia, less than half the original score remained. The title song was cut. The 'I want' song was cut. The sole love song was cut. It was wild — and awful. I've felt such a need to restore this work since I discovered the original musical manuscripts back in 1986, to let the world finally hear what Duke and Nash intended. The longer you spend in this business, you don't get a lot of chances to trot out superlatives, but recording Sweet Bye and Bye was one of the most gratifying, moving experiences I've ever had in the studio."
Krasker added that PS Classics "will be going all out, with a 32-page full-color booklet, with essay, synopsis, lyrics, production photos and other surprises."
Krasker had previously told Playbill.com, "Sweet Bye and Bye isn't quite like anything else. It's this one-of-a-kind collaboration between Duke and Nash and S.J. Perelman and Al Hirschfeld, who wrote the book, and I think it represents Duke and Nash at the very height of their creative powers. It was Duke's first attempt to write an 'integrated' musical score in the style popularized by Oklahoma!, and you can tell he brought his full talents and background and passion to bear on the project; the music is challenging and virtuosic yet deeply romantic in a way I've never quite seen in any other Broadway score I've studied. The show was a huge flop in 1946 — never even made it into New York — and folks have postulated the reasons for decades now. I think it was combination of a lot of factors — some conceptual, some casting — but at the end of day, for the purposes of recording, what's left is this simply stunning score. Duke and Nash loved three of the songs so much — 'Born Too Late,' 'Roundabout,' and 'Just Like a Man' — they re-used them later."
The track listing is as follows:
2. Sweet Bye and Bye
3. "Scientists' Scene"
4. Born Too Late
5. "Pope's Entrance"
6. Ham That I Am
7. "Solomon at Futurosy"
8. Yes, Yes
9. As You Were Saying
10. Factory Ballet
12. Too Enchanting
13. I Says to Him
14. Let's Be Young
15. Round About
16. Executives Anonymous
17. Knife's Recitative
18. Our Parents Forgot to Get Married
19. My Broker Told Me So
20. Just Like a Man
21. Utility Polka
22. It's Good
23. Where Is Bundy?
24. The Sea-gull and the Ea-gull
25. Eskimo Bacchante
26. Sweet Bye and Bye (Reprise)
Founded in 2000 by Tommy Krasker & Philip Chaffin, and a six-time Grammy nominee (for its cast albums of Assassins, Nine: The Musical, Grey Gardens, Company, A Little Night Music and Sondheim on Sondheim), PS Classics celebrates the heritage of Broadway and American popular song through its award-winning cast recordings; solo albums by Maureen McGovern, Victoria Clark, Kate Baldwin, Jessica Molaskey and Christine Andreas (among others); and recordings drawn from rare sound archives, including "Sondheim Sings." Summer releases also include a studio cast album of the Gershwins' 1930 Strike Up the Band.
PS Classics recently recorded the Joshua Schmidt-Jan Tranen score to A Minister's Wife, a new musical based on Bernard Shaw's Candida. Visit the label's website, www.psclassics.com.