7 posts in this topic

jun1143nanwynn.jpg

No time for a sensible post - fish & chips on the way.

Nan sang with Teddy Wilson; suffers by comparison with Billie. On her own terms, she's a lovely singer in the Lou Donaldson mould - but twenty years earlier.

She was Pinup of the month in "Yank" 11 June 1943.

QRT

MG

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Yes, her vocals with Teddy Wilson are rather nice in her own way (like you said, who wants everybody to sound like Billie Holiday, and besides, Billie's had her share of clones through the decades anyway, e.g. Marilyn Moore or Madeleine Peyroux). But beware anyhow - some of her big band vocals are downright painful to listen to today. Nothing wrong technically with her singing but that kind of operatic aria vocalizing in front of a schmaltzy band certainyl is BADLY dated and even then certainly did nothing to uplift the "SWING" era. ;)

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I’m really enjoying Wynn’s appearances on the new Teddy Wilson Mosaic set. That’s too bad about her big-band sides... perhaps why there’s never been a CD compilation of her recordings by Collectors Choice, Jasmine, or any of the other usual suspects? 

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27 minutes ago, ghost of miles said:

I’m really enjoying Wynn’s appearances on the new Teddy Wilson Mosaic set. That’s too bad about her big-band sides... perhaps why there’s never been a CD compilation of her recordings by Collectors Choice, Jasmine, or any of the other usual suspects? 

I think the days whe someone would reissue the complete works of Hal Kemp, for example (which might have happened in the days of these Ajax, Ajazz etc. LP series) are over.

There are quite a few Youtube videos of her with old soundies and movie excerpts. Not sure if there would a be a huge market for these "straight" ballads. I also remember seeing and recording on video one Soundie that has three girl singers with the Vincent Lopez orchestra (Betty Hutton doing a totally over-the-top version of "The Dipsy Doodle"; Nan Wynn with a very, very straight tearjerker and a third singer whose name I forgot with another ballad). Nothing at all wrong with the voice of Nan Wynn but this (like those Youtube samples I have listened in) isn't exactly what jazz/swing fans have been waiting for. Jasmine might do it, considering what else they have done in that vein, but how big is THAT market after all? OTOH, maybe better than some of those Mickey Mouse orchestra girl singers trying (and failing) to swing?

 

Edited by Big Beat Steve

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It doesn't look like she had an extensive recording career.  Outside of her recordings with Teddy Wilson, the rest appear to be big band sides with Will Hudson, Emery Deutsch, Isham Jones, and Raymond Scott.  I don't remember having heard any of those.  

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Four of her vocals with the Raymond Scott Orchestra are on the Scott "Uncollected" (1940) LP on Hindsight (HSP-201). Some of ther singing is not as stiff (to my ears) as other big band sides I've heard of her. But "Blueberry Hil" sure had a long way to go between her version and the Fats Domino evergreen! :D

Edited by Big Beat Steve

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She's on a forthcoming Jasmine compilation that a Yahoo Songbirds listserv contributor put together.  This from his recent email:

>>In October, Jasmine is releasing a compilation I did of movie “ghost” singers. Not the well-known hits, which are readily available elsewhere, but rare recordings they did on their own. The title is “They Called Them Ghosts -- The Great Movie Dubbers Sing” and the vocalists I are chose are Jo Ann Greer, Annette Warren, India Adams, Anita Ellis, Louanne Hogan, Nan Wynn, Eileen Wilson, and Martha Mears. There are several tracks for each singer and almost all are on CD for the first time.<<

I wish I had that first volume of Raymond Scott on Hindsight--I have a CD-R dub of V. 2.  I don't think V. 1 has ever been reissued on CD.

Yes, in 2018 I imagine there's no market for a Wynn compilation, but I'm surprised Collectors' Choice didn't get to her in the late 1990s/early 2000s when they were putting out compilations of singers from that era.  But then again, maybe not--she doesn't appear to have ever really attracted a strong following in her heyday.  

EDIT:  also meant to mention that she did record with Hal Kemp at the end of the 1930s.  I have a compilation of Kemp's mid-1930s Brunswick recordings, which don't cover her time in the band.  Obviously a lot of tracks floating around on YouTube and what not that I could stitch together into a home-made compilation if I were so inclined.

Edited by ghost of miles

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