Judge Lacey Worrell says they don't call him "King" for nothin'...
It's Nat "King" Cole at his very best!
Nat King Cole's legendary contributions to music showcased his unique talents in a multitude of ways. He is at once a pop singer, a jazz singer, and a talented musician. Responsible for what is quite possibly the best recording of a holiday song ever made, "The Christmas Song," Cole also holds the distinguished role of being the first black musician to ever have a weekly radio and television show. (The television show was, unfortunately, cancelled because, in the racially charged atmosphere of the 1950s, no one was willing to sponsor it.) In his admirable career, this preacher's son and talented baseball player made influential friends among the most famous people of his day, and even performed for Queen Elizabeth II.
Although he died of lung cancer at a relatively young age, Cole's astounding body of work is timeless. In today's world, when vocal ability is not necessarily a prerequisite for a recording career, there is something to be said for listening to this supremely talented man, dressed in a simple jacket and tie, and without flashy backup dancers or loud accompaniment. It's not necessary when one can, well, sing.
Facts of the Case
This DVD is a collection of various songs performed by Nat King Cole. All segments are done in black and white.
This DVD, at less than 40 minutes, manages to cram in an impressive number of songs:
• "Shy Guy"
• "Frim Fram Sauce"
• "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a
• "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face"
• "I Want You to be Happy"
• "With You on My Mind"
• "Raintree County"
• "Too Close for Comfort"
• "Walkin' My Baby Back Home"
• "Because You're Mine"
• "My Heart Reminds Me"
• "Do I Love You Because You're Beautiful"
• "Blueberry Hill"
• "Nat's Theme"
There is no doubt about it—this disc will whet your appetite for more of Nat King Cole, who stands on his own as a class act and amazing artist. Other classic Nat King Cole recordings that are a must for every music fan include his version of "Blue Moon," "For Sentimental Reasons," "Perfidia," and "Don't Get Around Much Anymore," as well as his signature tunes "Unforgettable" and "The Christmas Song." I also recommend picking up a copy of "The Christmas Song" CD, where in addition to the titular tune, Cole does sweet justice to lesser known ones like "I Saw Three Ships," and even sings "O Tannenbaum" in perfect German.
Nat King Cole—Stardust Memories is grainy and the sound quality is terrible, but on this particular release I think it is a good thing; part of the experience of listening to music back in the days of 45s and turntables was the accompanying scratchiness and imperfections. Watching this DVD is a trip down memory lane, so the flaws in the sound and picture are expected and—in the age of digitally perfect everything—almost welcome. That said, the overall judgment for this DVD is more a reflection of the choice and quality of Cole's performances in terms of what his fans would be looking for, and it forgives the audio and video as a product of its technologically limited era (at least by today's standards).
Amazon.com currently lists over 20 different compilations of Cole's work. This disc may be brief, but it is a loving tribute worthy of your consideration. In fact, with Cole's considerable talent and sweet humility, it would be difficult to make an unworthy tribute. As a performer, he was a tribute unto himself, in every performance he gave.
The Court orders the gallery to listen to two Nat King Cole songs for every Justin Timberlake or Jennifer Lopez song they play. Failing that, pick up this DVD, which serves as the perfect primer on Cole as a singer and musician.
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