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Showing posts with label Little Girl Blue. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Little Girl Blue. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Nina Simone and Her Friends' deluxe reissue coming from BMG; four tracks from 'Little Girl Blue' recording session in 1957










Set includes four tracks from the Little Girl Blue recording session in 1957

along with songs by jazz-vocal greats Chris Connor and Carmen McRae


Available from Bethlehem Records/BMG

December 3 on vinyl, CD and digital platforms 

Stream the “African Mailman” re-mastered track here (hyperlink tk)  



LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Originally released by Bethlehem Records in 1959, Nina Simone and Her Friends was a compilation album comprising the few remaining unreleased tracks from the 1957 Little Girl Blue recording session plus songs recorded by two other former Bethlehem artists, the powerhouse jazz vocalist Carmen McRae and the elegant song stylist Chris Connor. 

An RSD-Essentials exclusive “emerald-green” limited-edition 180-gram LP will be available, along with CD and digital/streaming versions (high-definition and standard) on December 3, 2021. The reissue features a fresh stereo master done by four-time Grammy winner Michael Graves as well as a vinyl remastering by the renowned Kevin Gray. Grammy winner Cheryl Pawelski produced the set, which includes a new essay by Daphne A. Brooks, author of Liner Notes for the Revolution.


As Brooks explains in her essay, “Bethlehem clustered their work — tracks that had previously appeared on the label’s Girlfriends compilation — together with the younger, upstart Simone’s and essentially offered up a collection of songs that span a range of genres — folk, jazz, pop song staples, and torch song laments, plus a couple of provocative original compositions by McRae and Simone. Each track is a reminder of the clear-eyed independence, verve, and confidence of three artists whose music, taken together, brims with the majesty and the assured talents of the late 1950s women artists who led with conviction and invention as musicians and song interpreters.” 

Available today, October 20, as a sneak-peak, “African Mailman” is an instrumental track recorded during the Little Girl Blue sessions, showcasing Nina Simone’s incredible piano playing. At the time, Simone was in her mid-20s and still aspiring to be a classical concert pianist. As Brooks describes it: “A magisterial original composition of Simone’s which, as she recounts it, ‘was made up on the spot in the studio and recorded in one take,’ finds her moving across an Afrodiasporic terrain of percussion, leading at the keyboard, rolling and tumbling, building waves of contrasting chromatic depth and spinning, ethereal flight.”




1.     Nina Simone – “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” 

2.     Chris Conner – “Someone to Watch Over Me” 

3.     Carmen McRae – “Old Devil Moon” 

4.     Nina Simone – “I Loves You, Porgy” 

5.     Chris Connor – “I Concentrate on You” 

6.     Carmen McRae – “You Made Me Care” 

7.     Nina Simone – “For All We Know” 

8.     Chris Connor – “From This Moment On” 

9.     Carmen McRae – “Too Much in Love to Care” 

10.   Nina Simone – “African Mailman” 

11.   Chris Connor – “All This and Heaven Too” 

12.   Carmen McRae – “Last Time for Love” 


# # #


Watch the "African Mailman" single:

Linkfire for the “African Mailman” single:


Tuesday, August 10, 2021

BMG artist: Nina Simone - Little Girl Blue - New Release Review

 I just had the opportunity to review the newest release (August 13, 2021), Little Girl Blue, by Nina Simone and it's terrific! This is a classic album which was originally recorded in 1957 by the then 24 year old Simone on her first recording outing. This release has been remastered and engineered by Michael Graves and Cheryl Pawelski and the vinyl (180g blue or black) cut by engineer, Kevin Gray. Opening with Ellington's, Mood Indigo and opens with Simone showing that she really knows her way around the keyboard having attended Julliard. In this hot jazz improvization, she really swings in with potent piano lines and great offset vocals, joined by Jimmy Bond on bass and Albert "Tootie" Heath on drums. Excellent opener. Don't Smoke In Bed, a Willard Robinson composition, finds Simone singing the blues with only a bed of piano as a light accompaniment for the most part and highly tense at the end of her phrases. Masterful. Another terrific blues, He Needs Me, shows Simone really knows how to work the track vocally and just the right amount of accompaniment to make the vocals glisten. You don't often hear the purity of feeling as expressed in this track. Moving into full throttle swing, Simone pours on the heat on Donaldson's Love Me Of Leave Me. Her vocal phrasing is really poised and her piano work blends classical lines with full on jazz. Just enough bass by Bond and a tight rhythm by Heath makes this a top track on the release. Rogers and Hammerstein classic, You'll Never Walk Alone gets a formally classical type arrangement tht will leave you sitting back thinking, this is a blues/jazz singer? She really is exceptional. Gershwin's I Love You, Porgy is a precious gem among the diamonds here. This track has been covered by most of the greats, most notably Miles Davis but this is no second class cover. Simone's expressive vocals and her dynamic piano work is stunning. Wrapping the release is Simone original, Central Park Blues with Bond walking the bass and Heath on brushes. A straight up blues number positions Simone on piano at lead but giving Bond a fine opportunity to front on solo as well. Her lead lines are stark and dynamic yet quiet and sensitive. This is an excellent closer for one of the classics of our times. 

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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Janis Joplin: Little Girl Blue - The Critics Go Wild!!



Seven Years In The Making!
Janis: Little Girl Blue
Directed by Academy Award Nominated Amy Berg



Check Out The Official Trailer Click Here