Dancing in Wonderland

by: Bert Kaempfert & His Orchestra

More smooth orchestral pop in the vein of Kaempfert's two prior albums, Wonderland by Night and The Wonderland of Bert Kaempfert and His Orchestra -- this album actually made the Top 100 in late 1961, peaking at number 92 with help from the number 48 chart single "Now and Forever." The trumpet is the dominant instrument on much of what's here (with the saxophone occasionally playing a serious role on solos), and gets in some pleasant little grace notes on the fade out of the string-laden arrangement of "Unchained Melody." The repertory is drawn from light classics such as Eric Coates' "Sleepy Lagoon" (on which the percussion is featured very prominently) to '30s and '40s pop standards like "Blue Moon" (done with a cha cha beat); "Somebody Loves Me" (with some lovely sax); and recent movie/pop hits such as "When I Fall in Love" (all strings, trumpet, and percussion) and "How Deep Is the Ocean." It's all inoffensive and soothing without being dull...Kaempfert knew how to use the studio and its effects to full advantage, so that on "There, I've Said It Again" you get little up-close percussive flourishes that delighted hi-fi and stereo freaks of the period. ~ Bruce Eder

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