Reminder: Judy Garland – The London Studio Recordings 1957-1964 available October 11

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“It’s Lovely To Be Back In London” (Judy at the Dominion, 1957)
Judy Garland at the Dominion 1957

Don’t forget!  The new 2-CD set Judy Garland – The London Studio Recordings 1957-1964 hits stores on October 11.

The set features 14 previously unreleased tracks (15 if you count the quick intro chat to the alternate take of “It’s Yourself”).  All of the tracks have been newly remastered, many from the original session masters.  However, after many searches of the EMI UK/Abbey Road and Capitol USA archives, it was discovered that some of those session masters did not survive.  In those instances, the original Capitol edited masters were used.  Have no fear, regardless of the source materials they all sound better than ever, having been remastered at “96kHz/24bit hi-definition sound.”

Judy Garland - The London Studio Sessions

The details of the set are provided at The Judy Garland Online Discography.  The set is packaged in a sturdy hardbound “digi-book” (similar to the “book” style of recent Warner Home Video DVDs like A Star is Born and the upcoming Meet Me In St. Louis), housing the two discs in sleeves and the liner notes by the set’s producer Jonathan Summers with an “afterword” by John Fricke.  The booklet also features a nice smattering of photos and album cover art.

The big news for fans is the inclusion of the alternate takes.  Most notably, the previously unknown “Please Say ‘Ah’!”   This demo was recorded by Judy and music supervisor Saul Chaplin for possible use in Judy’s final film I Could Go On Singing.  The intent was to have co-star Dirk Bogarde eventually supplant Chaplin’s vocals.  That never happened, but this demo survives.  Summers’ liner notes give a nice account of the history of this previously unknown song.  At just under five minutes it’s longer than expected and completely charming.  It’s a breezy lark that both Judy and Saul are obviously enjoying.  You’ll enjoy it too!

This is a definite “must have” for all Garland fans.  It goes without saying that it would make a great holiday gift.

Note that the set will not be available for digital download.  To purchase the CD, click here.

Judy Garland at the Abbey Road Studios 1962
May 9, 1962: Judy at the Abbey Road Studios with Mort Lindsey (covering face) and Saul Chaplin (sitting, far right) and engineer Peter Bown (center front) among others.

One comment

  1. I think it should be noted that the notes in the new release state that Judy recorded the so-called “London Sessions” on August 2-9, 1960. According to previously published information, Judy did not record on August 9. If you look at the master numbers for all of the sessions at that time, it is clear that she recorded on August 2, 3, 4, 5, and 8. In the First Hand brochure, it is listed that she recorded “Stormy Weather,” the medley Judy at the Palace, “It’s a Great Day for the Irish,” the OLIO medley, and “Over the Rainbow” on August 9. Even though, according to the brochure, First Hand found documentation during their research for this release to the effect that Judy recorded on August 9, according to the master numbers of the songs they claim she recorded on August 9 they could not have been recorded on that date. Perhaps further work was done on August 9, but it is far from sure Judy recorded anything on that date. Who knows? Why not imagine a simple mistake made at the time whereby the production people misdated the logs? Work on the session could have been completed on the 9th, but it would seem Judy could not have recorded on that day. It would be useful if Jonathan Summers of First Hand could kindly explain more specifically what documentation he is basing his recording dates for 1960. Below is a listing of the dates and master numbers:

    August 2, 1960
    34437 Chicago
    34438 Do It Again
    34439 Lucky Day
    34440 Stormy Weather

    August 3, 1960
    34441 I Happen To Like New York
    34442 Swanee
    34443 You’ll Never Walk Alone
    34444 Why Was I Born?

    August 4, 1960
    34445 The Man That Got Away
    34446 Come Rain or Come Shine
    34447 San Francisco
    34448 Over the Rainbow

    August 5, 1960
    34449 Medley: You Made Me Love You/For Me and My Gal/The Trolley Song
    34450 You Got To My Head
    34451 Happiness is a Thing Called Joe
    34452 Rock-a-Bye Your Baby (with a Dixie Melody)

    August 8, 1960
    34453 Medley: Judy at the Palace
    34454 I Can’t Give You Anything But Love
    34455 After You’ve Gone
    34456 It’s a Great Day for the Irish


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