Mitch Miller - Orchestra Leader, Arranger and Talent Spotter (CD)

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He Made the Stars Who Made the Hits

Most music fans recall Mitch Miller for his'Sing A Long' albums and TV shows of the late 1950s/early 1960s. However, this collection looks at other aspects of his career. He was orchestra leader, choirmaster, oboe and English horn soloist, talent scout, record producer and, for a decade and a half, A&R man with Columbia Records. He was born in 1911, in Rochester NY to immigrant parents. He was taught piano at home but before he was a teenager he switched to the oboe. He attended Rochester's Eastman School Of Music where, by the age of fifteen, he was second oboe in the School's Symphony Orchestra. After graduation, Mitch joined the CBS Symphony Orchestra. In the late thirties, he was invited to appear on disc as solo oboeist under Igor Stravinsky. He also played with Percy Faith's orchestra. In Fall 1947 he joined Chicago-based Mercury Records, as director of their pop division, guiding the careers of singers like Patti Page, Vic Damone and Frankie Laine. In 1950 he took over Columbia Records Popular Music Division at a troubled time. Dinah Shore was leaving to join RCA, as was orchestra leader Hugo Winterhalter. And Frank Sinatra, a hitmaker since the early 1940s, was now suffering career meltdown. His fan base had matured and moved on. To revive Sinatra's image, Mitch offered him material that Frank deemed lightweight. They parted company. It was a rare setback. Waiting in the wings was a new signing ... Guy Mitchell. He took Sinatra's spurned material into the hit parade - helped by Mitch's French horn backings. Mitch went on to work his magic with artists as diverse as Sarah Vaughan, Doris Day and Rosemary Clooney. He also tempted Jo Stafford from Capitol Records. This collection covers1950 to 1956 and includes examples of nearly all Mitch's popular collaborations. His sure handling of artists of all types and temperaments shows what a truly versatile musician he was. Just as important we give new life to an era of American music that is often forgotten.

Additional Details

Label: JSP Records

Genre: Adult Contemporary/MOR

Release Date: 10/23/07

UPC: 788065904722

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