Jerome Kern: Lost Treasures (Rare Kern!) CD


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1. I Want To Sing In Opera 

2. A Little Thing Like A Kiss 

3. The Edinboro Wriggle 

4. Katy Was A Business Girl 

5. Whistle When You’re Lonely 

6. Take Care 

7. Ballooning 

8. Mind The Paint 

9. If You Would Only Love Me 

10. I’m Well Known 

11. I’ve A Little Favor 

12. Call Me Flo 

13. By The Country Stile 

14. Blue, Blue 

15. An Irish Husband 

16. Nothing At All 

17. Suzette And Her Pet 

18. Since The Days Of Grandmama 

19. The Ragtime Restaurant 

20. Hoop-La-La, Papa 

21. A Little Bit Of Silk 

22. Bill’s A Liar 

23. Oh You Beautiful Spring 

24. De Goblin’s Glide 


George Gershwin was quoted as saying that all of his early music for the theatre sounded like Jerome Kern’s. In fact, it was Kern’s “They Wouldn’t Believe Me” from the 1914 “The Girl From Utah” that inspired Gershwin to write for the stage rather than for the concert hall. Now we have a collection of 24 songs composed by Kern before 1914 on this Centaur CD and please be sure not to lose the chance to own a copy!


Concentrating on Kern’s output from to 1906 to 1913, the producers have drawn upon the talents of soprano Anne Sciolla and pianist Brian Kovach to reproduce songs that are not exactly “lost” (if they were, how could they be recorded?) but certainly little known by lovers of this composer and of the Broadway historical scene in general. Shows known by readers of Kern biographies can now actually be heard: “Fascinating Flora,” “The Rich Mr. Hoggenheimer,” “Fluffy Ruffles,” and so on.


Yes, most of these sound too much like most of the others: all ragtime and bounce with just a hint of the great tunes Kern would turn out after 1914, especially in his “Princess” shows with P.G. Wodehouse’s lyrics and Guy Bolton’s books. This is also the kind of material that Joan Morris and husband William Bolcom do so well on an Arabesque collection called “Silver Linings,” and perhaps Ms. Sciolla does suffer a bit by comparison. For example, when she adopts a crooning delivery that befits the ragtime pieces, she sacrifices articulation to vocalization and one must strain now and then to understand all the words as one seldom does with Morris.


But these are quibbles when one can finally hear such Victor Herberty numbers like “I Want to Sing in Opera” and Scott Jopliny ones like “The Ragtime Restaurant.” If anything, these will remind you of the English Musical Hall stuff with which singers like Gracie Fields made their names and fortunes; and so there is an incredible amount of historical interest as well as musical interest in this Centaur release. This disc is a marvelous opportunity to hear Jerome Kern getting his feet wet in the musical game. I would particularly recommend the song “Take Care” as one of the collection’s highlights, combining a delightful melody and an excellent vocal performance by Ms. Sciolla. 

Additional information


Jerome Kern


Various Lyricists


Jerome Kern






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