Saturday, 20 September 2014

Retro CD Review: Matt Monro - Collection (EMI)

In recent years I've taken to picking up the occasional Matt Monro album on vinyl format. There's something quite wonderful about listening to Matt's music, be it his rich laid back vocal tones or the wonderful production of his records.

He was often compared to Frank Sinatra and for a time left the UK to work in America when signed to Capitol Records where he was held in as high esteem as Sinatra, Dean Martin and Nat King Cole.

It is said that Frank Sinatra even became a fan of Matt's music and a look through the Sinatra discography of the 1960s you can see he even recorded some Matt Monro ballads.

So there I was a few weeks back perusing a local charity shop and this 2005 compilation on CD pops up.

Matt Monro Collection opens in glorious style with John Barry'and Don Black's Born Free, the theme to the film of the same name then follows through with some fabulous Matt standards including Fly Me To The Moon and The Music Played and a great meaure of hits Softly As I Leave You, Portrait Of My Love, Yesterday and From Russia With Love.

My favourites undoubtedly are his 1964 hit Walk Away, (recently performed with egreat passion by Martine McCutcheon on the Don Black From Hackney To Hollywood Tour) and Matt's cover of Blood Sweat and Tears You Made Me So Very Happy demonstrating Matt's knack of making a great song a big song!

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