Ella Fitzgerald: Someone to Watch Over Me


Someone to Watch Over Me


Ella Fitzgerald (vocals)


The Legendary Decca Recordings (GRP 46482)

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Ella Fitzgerald (vocals), Ellis Larkins (piano).

Composed by George & Ira Gershwin


Recorded: New York, September 12, 1950


Rating: 98/100 (learn more)

In truth, any of the eight selections produced by Milt Gabler for the 10-inch Decca album Ella Sings Gershwin would deserve a place in a list of this vocalist's finest performances. Here Ella’s great talent is seriously and conscientiously employed on material with which she was in total sympathy. She sings with confidence and a total lack of artifice, without flights of virtuosity or exercises in complexity. She does not attempt to impose an emotional dimension on what she sings, yet the success of this number lies in the way in which she sounds detached but at the same time intimate. It is achieved though a combination of impeccable diction (in which she took great pride), the clarity and purity of her voice, and precise intonation. But equally important is the creative duality between singer and accompanist. While Ella shapes the song with inch-perfect precision, Ellis Larkin’s accompaniment frames her talent to perfection, so that from wherever this song is heard, it sounds its best.

Reviewer: Stuart Nicholson

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Related Links

The Legacy of Ella Fitzgerald by Ted Gioia
The Dozens: Twelve Essential Ella Fitzgerald Performances by Stuart Nicholson
”Ella Fitzgerald” by Stuart Nicholson (from The Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians)

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