Friday, August 28, 2015

Belated Birthdays...Carolyn and Lee

 Carolyn Leigh and her collaborator for Peter Pan,
Mark "Moose" Charlap...
it was thought that the score needed "goosing",
so Jules Styne and Comden/Green were brought in for additional music.
So without a "map" it's difficult to find out who wrote what.
We'll hear "I'm Flying"...which is FOR SURE a Leigh/Charlap creation.

Always with the pearls.
Carolyn was born in the Bronx in 1926, went to Hunter College,
Queens College AND NYU, which makes you wonder if she had a PhD. 
or was thrown out. Hmmm....let's think the best, shall we?
Above, working with composer Cy Coleman on Little Me.

 Here with Elmer Bernstein, her musical partner on 
How Now Dow Jones...
I tried to find a song to play from this show,
but I have a hard time playing stuff I don't like, 
so we will hear NOTHING from this show.
Elmer (no relation to Leonard) was known for his movie scores,
notably westerns, like The Magnificent Seven and The Great Escape.
But getting back to Carolyn, she also wrote the lyrics for "Young At Heart" 
for the movie of the same name.

 Our other birthday lyricist, Lee Adams, 
who wrote primarily with Charles Strouse.
Ohio born and bred, with a Master's Degree from Columbia.

 Lee's collaborator of choice was Charles Strouse,
and together they wrote a bevy of popular musicals.
Above, the recording session for one of their lesser known works,
It's A Bird...It's A Plane...It's Superman.
Goddard Lieberson (producer), Bob Holliday (the man of steel),
Lee and Charles.

 Bye Bye Birdie was the team's first success...
Lee with Marijane Maricle and Paul Lynde, recording the cast album.

And then Golden Boy...
Lee with glasses, standing with Clifford Odets,
upon whose short story the plot was based.
Charles Strouse at the piano.
Sammy Davis Jr. made it a challenging musical to make,
demanding solos that would echo his nightclub style.
Billy Daniels' number, "While The City Sleeps" was more indicative
of the musical's tone.
The show featured a mixed race romance and an urban, jazzy score,
a far cry from Hello Dolly and Funny Girl, just down that 
Great White Way. 

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