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Ben Bagley’s Leonard Bernstein Revisited is another delightful entry in the Revisited series.
For Leonard Bernstein Revisited, Bagley assembled his usual eclectic group of singers, including Nell Carter, Estelle Parsons, John Reardon (who worked with Bernstein on the 1961 recording of On the Town, and the recording of Songfest/Chichester Psalms), Chita Rivera, Arthur Siegel, and Jo Sullivan. The arrangements were mostly by Bagley’s frequent collaborator, Dennis Deal.
The album includes cut songs from Wonderful Town, including its original opening number that was cut out of town, and other rarities from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and Candide, as well as assorted other pieces.
The album came out on CD in 1989, and, as with most of the Bagley CDs, the mastering was perfunctory. As we’ve done with the other albums in this series, we have considerably spruced up the sound. For almost all the other CDs in the series, Bagley went into the studio and recorded bonus material to fill out the CD length. But not in the cast of Leonard Bernstein Revisited, which clocks in at just over forty-one minutes. So, we’ve taken the liberty of including three bonus tracks from the purported London cast album of West Side Story, the one starring Bruce Trent and purportedly George Chakiris – but there is some confusion as to what that album actually was – most likely a studio cast album and whether George Chakiris is actually on the album is anyone’s guess. So, from that we’ve chosen the “Overture,” the “Ballet Sequence (“Somewhere”),” and “The Rumble,” just to present that marvelous Bernstein music in that fun stereo sound. -KRITZERLAND
1. Conquering the City Chorus
2. Lonely Me John Reardon
3. Big Stuff Chita Rivera
4. We Are Women Angelina Reaux and Maggie Task
5. Bright and Black Nell Carter
6. Another Love/Dream With Me Jo Sullivan
7. Rio Bamba Bob DeAngelis, Denise Nolan, Dennis Roberts aka S.R.O.)
8. President Jefferson March John Reardon and Company
9. It’s Got to Be Bad to Be Good Nell Carter
10. The Story of My Life Chita Rivera
11. Take Care of This House Angelina Reaux and David Love Calloway
12. Ain’t Got No Tears Left Estelle Parsons
13. Ringarounda Rosie Arthur Siegel and Company
15. Ballet Sequence
16. The Rumble
From the London Cast Recording of West Side Story
Lyrics by Comden and Green, John LaTouche, Richard Wibur, Alan Jay Lerner, and Leonard Bernstein