Mr. Music Master

by: Hoagy Carmichael

The most offbeat and proto-bohemian of the great songwriters who have contributed to the Great American Songbook, Hoagy Carmichael was as apt to write about actual places in memory, or the sheer passing of time or everyday tasks like doing laundry, as he was to spin out a traditional love song, and it has made his musical legacy a rich and varied one. This nice collection works as a fine introduction to Carmichael's unique voice, and it features his own versions of "Moon Country," "Hong Kong Blues," "Lazy River," and "Lazy Bones" (Carmichael had an almost Zen-like fascination with the art of doing nothing and he wrote countless songs about the glorious inertia of being lazy), as well as versions of his songs by other artists, including Frank Sinatra's early take on "Stardust," Carmichael's most famous composition, and Nat Gonella's wonderful orchestral version of "Georgia on My Mind," another stone cold Carmichael classic. ~ Steve Leggett

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