Various Artists – Cocktails with Cole Porter

Various ArtistsVarious Artists
Cocktails with Cole Porter
(Capitol – 2004)
by Matthew Robinson

For their latest Ultra-Lounge collection, the compilations kings at Capitol have decided to ditch the themes (e.g., “Spy” music, TV themes, famous bongo solos) and turn instead to one of the hippest and most influential composers of all time- Cole Porter. In so doing, they have demonstrated not only their knack for brining together the best of the best, but how wide-ranging and long-enduring Porter’s music has been. From Deano’s gentle crooning of “True Love” and Nat Cole’s lamenting “Miss Otis Regrets” to Satchmo’s boss Bossa “High Society Calypso” and Kay Starr’s swing through “C’est Manifique,” the album runs the gamut from romance to rollick, from husbands (Louis Prima) to wives (Keely Smith) and from mothers (Judy Garland) to daughters (Liza Minnelli).

With musical contributions from Count Basie, Duke Ellington, and George Shearing and vocal magic from Ella, Nancy, Sarah, Tony, and Sammy, this compilation also travels the musical globe from Kay Starr’s “I Love Paris” to Judy’s “I Happen to Like New York.” Yes there were few moods that Porter did not cover, and covers of most of them are here. As with any great romantic, “Cocktails” is a great introduction to the man and his music.
© 2004, M. S. Robinson, ARR