segunda-feira, 3 de maio de 2010

George Melachrino - Begin the Beguine - Featuring The Melachrino Strings

  1. Masquerade
  2. The Swan
  3. The Pink Lady Waltz
  4. Serenade (Schubert)
  5. Vision d'Amour
  6. Out of My Dreams
  7. Dusk
  8. Begin the Beguine
  9. Portrait of A Lady
  10. Destiny
  11. La Golondrina
  12. The Donkey Serenade
  13. Serenade ("Les Millions d'Arlequin")
  14. Malagueña
  15. Poème
  16. Estrellita
  17. El Relicario
  18. They Didn't Believe Me
  19. Intermezzo ("Cavalleria Rusticana" - Mascagni)
  20. Lady of Spain
  21. Moonlight Serenade
  22. Indian Summer
  23. Woodland Revel
  24. Autumn
  25. Romance in E flat (Rubinstein)
Begin the Beguine
Music and the theatre seem to have been in George Melachrino's blood; happily he managed to combine both to his own satisfaction and our great delight. In 1950 when Nat Karson started his famous stage shows at the Empire, Leicester Square, Melachrino supplied the orchestra. He also supplied much of the music, writing scores as required for ballets or jazz production numbers with equal facility. The Empire Girls became, once again, one of the sights of London, but a newer and even more inspiring spectacle was George at the rostrum urging on his singing strings to greater efforts.

All his life, music has played a vital part in Melachrino's existence. At the age of four he was already the proud possessor of a miniature violin upon which his stepfather - a theatre orchestra conductor - taught him to play. Later he entered Trinity College of Music where he gravitated naturally towards string instruments and chamber works. Having mastered the violin and viola and being able to acquit himself creditably on the 'cello, the insatiable Melachrino started on the wind instruments, the oboe, clarinet and saxophone, and worked his way through the entire orchestra until only the harp and piano remained outside his range of accomplishments. In addition, he developed an extremely pleasant singing voice (at 18 he was already broadcasting solos from the Savoy Hill studios) and was beginning to be talked about as a very original arranger and composer.

In 1939 George had advanced so far in his professional that he was fronting his own dance band at the Café de Paris and broadcasting pretty regularly from the BBC, but then the Battle of Britain closed things down all over the West End and Melachrino volunteered for the forces.

Posted to the Corps of Military Police he graduated via the cookhouse to P.T. Instructor, making a name for himself 'en route' as an entertainer specialising in juggling and knockabout comedy. an ijured back put him out of active service and he was moved to the War Office where he was responsible for recording musical programmes for broadcasting to troops overseas. Later, promoted to R.S.M., Melachrino became musical director of the newly-formed British Band of the A.E.F. which gained a tremendous reputation over the air, not only with the troops but among civilians who found the ideal antidote for the stress and strains of wartime Britain in the quiet, soothing strains of music in the Melachrino manner.

Upon demobilisation he absorbed the cream of his A.E.F. personnel into the George Melachrino Orchestra and, with these picked musicians as a nucleus of an ever-expanding organisation, he more than consolidated his position in the post-war musical world, while through his distinctive compositions and arrangements for films, radio, theatre, the ballroom, and latterly on TV, his name became a household word.

(From the original liner notes)

George Melachrino (born George Militiades; 1 May, 1909 — 18 June 1965) was a musician, movie composer, and musical director who was English born of Greek and Italian descent. He was an accomplished player of the violin, viola, oboe, clarinet and saxophone.

George Melachrino was born in London, England. As a young boy, he had a love of music. At the age of five, he began composing and by the age of fourteen he enrolled in the Trinity College of Music. In 1927, he began his career by singing and playing at the Savoy Hill Studios in London. For the next twelve years, he played in many different bands and orchestras. In the 1930s, Melachrino started working for bands led by Ambrose and Bert Firman, and started playing on radio for the BBC. By 1939, he started his own band and secured a contract at the "Café de Paris". He joined the Army a year later, and received training at the "Corps of Military Police" where he became a P.T. Instructor. Melachrino also gained experience as a military musician, at the "Army Broadcasting Department", as Musical Director for the recording of entertainment for overseas forces, leading the British Band of the American Expeditionary Forces and the Orchestra Khaki. After the war, in 1945, he formed the "George Melachrino Orchestra", an orchestra that became synonymous with sweet and melodious music.

Melachrino frequently performed on BBC and American Armed Forces Radio. He vied with Mantovani in trying to dominate the post World War II easy listening audiences.

Melachrino has a "Star" on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

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