Various Artists | Chip Deffaa's Irving Berlin Rediscovered: Rare Songs of Love and Longing

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Chip Deffaa's Irving Berlin Rediscovered: Rare Songs of Love and Longing

by Various Artists

Here are 29 rare--and, in many cases, never-before-recorded--love songs by master songwriter Irving Berlin, selected by the foremost authority on Berlin's music, Chip Deffaa, and performed by an all-star New York cast!
Genre: Easy Listening: Tin Pan Alley
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Goodbye Girlie and Remember Me
Seth Sikes
2:24 $0.99
2. Someone Else May Be There While I'm Gone
Clark Kinkade
3:48 $0.99
3. There's a Girl in Havana
Matthew Nardozzi & Emily Bordonaro
2:22 $0.99
4. How Can I Forget (When There's so Much to Remember)?
Stephen Bogardus
2:47 $0.99
5. Kiss Me, My Honey, Kiss Me
Dylan Adams
2:40 $0.99
6. Do It Again
Emily Bordonaro
2:29 $0.99
7. My Sweetie
Giuseppe Bausilio
2:06 $0.99
8. If I Thought You Wouldn't Tell
Alec Deland & Livi Perrone
3:09 $0.99
9. Goody, Goody, Goody, Goody, Good
Kelsey McCabe
1:49 $0.99
10. Mandy
Jonah Barricklo & Mariah Hill
2:21 $0.99
11. Tell Me, Little Gypsy
Magnus Tonning Riise
1:43 $0.99
12. A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody
Jeffrey Sewell
4:40 $0.99
13. The Broadway Chicken Walk
Jenn Spottz
2:14 $0.99
14. If All the Girls I Knew Were Like You
Jeremy Greenbaum
3:26 $0.99
15. Sadie Salome (Go Home)
Carl Kissin
2:08 $0.99
16. How Do You Do It, Mabel, On Twenty Dollars a Week
Gabriella Green
1:39 $0.99
17. In My Harem
Michael Caizzi
2:33 $0.99
18. I Love to Quarrel with You
Joris De Graaf & Samantha Cunha
2:25 $0.99
19. Christmas-Time Seems Years and Years Away
Charlie Franklin
2:37 $0.99
20. Wishing
Clark Kinkade & Emily Bordonaro
3:01 $0.99
21. Furnishing a Home for Two
Bailey Cummings
2:39 $0.99
22. After the Honeymoon
Rick Crom
3:18 $0.99
23. After You Get What You Want You Don't Want It
Ray Demattis
3:01 $0.99
24. When I Lost You
Tyler Duboys
2:29 $0.99
25. Simple Melody / Musical Demon
Emily Bordonaro & Jack Saleeby
1:40 $0.99
26. Oh, That Beautiful Rag
Jon Peterson & Michael Townsend Wright
2:26 $0.99
27. Stop That Rag
Natalie Douglas
2:07 $0.99
28. When the Curtain Falls
Peter Charney & Emily Bordonaro
3:32 $0.99
29. Bring on the Pepper
Seth Sikes & Clark Kinkade
2:15 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

Chip Deffaa's
Rare Songs of Love and Longing

Musical Numbers ...
(Richard Danley is the musical director/pianist on all tracks)...

1. GOODBYE GIRLIE AND REMEMBER ME (words by Irving Berlin, music by George W. Meyer) ... Seth Sikes

2. SOMEONE ELSE MAY BE THERE WHEN I'M GONE (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Clark Kinkade

3. THERE'S A GIRL IN HAVANA (words and music by E. Ray Goetz, Irving Berlin, and Ted Snyder) ... Matthew Nardozzi and Emily Bordonaro

4. HOW CAN I FORGET (WHEN THERE’S SO MUCH TO REMEMBER)? (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Stephen Bogardus

5. KISS ME, MY HONEY, KISS ME (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Dylan Adams

6. DO IT AGAIN (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Emily Bordonaro

7. MY SWEETIE (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Giuseppe Bausilio

8. IF I THOUGHT YOU WOULDN'T TELL (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Alec Deland and Livi Perrone

9. GOODY, GOODY, GOODY, GOODY, GOOD (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Kelsey McCabe

10. MANDY (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Jonah Barricklo and Mariah Hill

11. TELL ME, LITTLE GYPSY (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Magnus Tonning Riise

12. A PRETTY GIRL IS LIKE A MELODY (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Jeffrey Sewell

13. THE BROADWAY CHICKEN WALK (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Jenn Spottz

14. IF ALL THE GIRLS I KNEW WERE LIKE YOU (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Jeremy Greenbaum

15. SADIE SALOME (GO HOME) (words and music by Irving Berlin and Edgar Leslie) ... Carl Kissin

16. HOW DO YOU DO IT, MABEL, ON TWENTY DOLLARS A WEEK? (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Gabriella Green

17. IN MY HAREM (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Michael Caizzi

18. I LOVE TO QUARREL WITH YOU (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Joris de Graaf and Samantha Cunha

19. CHRISTMAS-TIME SEEMS YEARS AND YEARS AWAY (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Charlie Franklin

20. WISHING (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Clark Kinkade and Emily Bordonaro

21. FURNISHING A HOME FOR TWO (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Bailey Cummings

22. AFTER THE HONEYMOON (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Rick Crom

23. AFTER YOU GET WHAT YOU WANT YOU DON'T WANT IT (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Ray DeMattis

24. WHEN I LOST YOU (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Tyler DuBoys

25. SIMPLE MELODY/MUSICAL DEMON (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Emily Bordonaro, Jack Saleeby

26. OH, THAT BEAUTIFUL RAG (words by Irving Belin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Jon Peterson and Michael Townsend Wright

27. STOP THAT RAG (words by Irving Berlin, music by Ted Snyder) ... Natalie Douglas

28. WHEN THE CURTAIN FALLS (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Peter Charney and Emily Bordonaro

29. BRING ON THE PEPPER (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... Seth Sikes and Clark Kinkade

* * *

This album is dedicated by the producer, with appreciation, admiration, and affection, to a terrific dancer–“the man, the myth, the legend himself,” “a prince among men”--who shall remain nameless, since we wouldn’t want him to get too swell-headed. (Although he probably pretty much already knows how we feel about him.)

This album is being distributed in the US exclusively by CDBaby.

[* * *

Chip Deffaa's IRVING BERLIN REDISCOVERED: Rare Songs of Love and Longing.

Notes from the producer...

Oh, man! I’m proud of this album. Here’s an assortment of rare, little-known, and in many cases never-before-recorded songs by one of the greatest of all songwriters, Irving Berlin. And there are some really good songs in the mix–songs that will be brand new to almost all listeners. (I’ve been collecting Berlin sheet music for decades. And for this ongoing recording project, I’ve gone through every song he’s known to have written There are some “trunk songs” here that are real finds.) Oh, I’ve thrown in a few well-known Berlin songs, too, just for the sake of variety on this album. But even there, you may find some surprises–perhaps some rarely heard extra lyrics Berlin wrote that will be new to you.

And I love the mix of performers; these are favorites of mine from New York’s theater and cabaret communities. There are some veterans here, with many years experience on Broadway. The great Stephen Bogardus, for example, has more than a dozen Broadway shows to his credit. (I’ve actually been an admirer of his work since he was 19--years before he starred on Broadway!) And I’ve long savored the work of Ray DeMattis, who recently celebrated his 50th year in the business.... There are such seasoned pro’s from the worlds of stage, screen, and comedy as Carl Kissin and Rick Crom.... You’ll hear two of the most popular singers from the nightclubs, Seth Sikes and Natalie Douglas.... And some of the best younger Broadway singers I know, like Giuseppe Bausilio, Charlie Franklin, Jeremy Greenbaum.... And some artists who, as I write these notes, are still in their teens--like Emily Bordonaro, Alec Deland, Jonah Barricklo, Mariah Hill, and Jeff Sewell; I have great belief in these rising younger singers no less than in the long-established artists. And they all sing with elan!

These performers come from the worlds of musical comedy and cabaret. And they understand the tradition that Berlin was part of. None of these artists are opera singers--that wasn’t Berlin’s world at all. He was a scrappy, self-taught songwriter, from the streets of New York. He had little formal education. He never actually learned to read music or write music. (Musical secretaries helped him put his songs on paper.) But what an ear for music he had! And what a strong work ethic! He wrote well over 1200 songs. The songs of love and longing that you’ll hear on this album–pure Americana–were sung on Broadway stages, in vaudeville theaters, and in cabarets. And it’s a joy to hear them.

* * *

The singers and the songs....

1. GOODBYE GIRLIE AND REMEMBER ME. Who better to start things out than the one-and-only Seth Sikes? He comes on big! And he comes on singing! Sikes is the hottest male singer in the nightclubs these days. In New York, his appearances at Feinstein’s 54 Below always sell out. Everyone loves that radiant voice of his, and the verve he brings to the stage.

He’s the first person ever to record “Goodbye Girlie and Remember Me.” And I love the way he puts the song over. Sikes has been a favorite singer of mine since he first landed in New York from his hometown of Paris, Texas, over a decade ago. He understands “big singing” and the music-hall tradition the way few younger singers do these days. And this really is a terrific song–a wonderful rediscovery. No one recorded this song when Berlin and collaborator George W. Meyer created it in 1909. Berlin was then just 21 years old--not yet famous; he was near the very start of his long career. But this irresistible song is proof that young Irving Berlin had it, even then. And to me, it’s as if this song has been waiting all of these years for Seth Sikes to sing it.

2. SOMEONE ELSE MAY BE THERE WHEN I'M GONE was a big hit in its day–one of the best of forgo Berlin’s early ballads--successfully recorded by Al Jolson in 1916 and again in 1947. It’s largely unknown today–which is a pity, because it’s such a pretty song. And worthy of a revival. Clark Kinkade puts his own stamp on the number, beautifully. And he sings the complete, uncut song–including the little-known second verse that Jolson didn’t record.

Clark Kinkade, who’s in his mid 20s, is one of my favorite younger singers. I like the life and color in his voice. And he’s got a great natural feel for classic pop music. I wrote the role of “Bryan Foy”--which Kinkade originated wonderfully in my musical comedy “The Seven Little Foys”--expressly for him. He’s very busy these days–acting in musicals and also performing with the vocal group “RANGE a cappella” (which has sung at Radio city Music Hall, and on the red carpet at the Emmy Awards). He’s first rate. It’s always a treat to get him into the recording studio.

3. THERE'S A GIRL IN HAVANA is a cute rediscovery–a charming, little-known duet, written for a short-lived 1911 Broadway show, “The Never Homes.” And it’s a treat! Singing this number are two younger performers I like very much, who always sound good together. They are both such natural, down-to-earth performers, and they really have a perfect rapport, on stage and off: Matthew Nardozzi and Emily Bordonaro. [NOTE FOR FRANK: PHOTO #3, showing Emily Bordonaro and Matthew Nardozzi, goes in this section.] They’ve both done my show “The Seven Little Foys.” And they’ve been heard on various other albums of mine, like “The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” “Irving Berlin & Co.,” and “Irving Berlin Revisited.” I’ve enjoyed Matthew Nardozzi’s work since I first saw him on Broadway in “Dracula” and “Inherit the Wind.” And Emily Bordonaro first impressed me when she was in “Les Miserables” at Connecticut’s historic Thomaston Opera House.

4. HOW CAN I FORGET (WHEN THERE’S SO MUCH TO REMEMBER)? is a real find–a thoughtful, intriguing, never-before-recorded ballad. Written in 1917, it feels like a kind of warmup for one of the Berlin masterpieces that was yet to come–Berlin’s immortal 1925 ballad “Remember.” Both songs are based on the juxtaposition of the words “forget” and “remember.” At the time Berlin wrote this song, he believed his forte was writing catchy rhythmic numbers. At that point, most of his biggest commercial successes–ever since he’d made his professional debut in 1907--were lively rhythmic things. He believed it took him longer to gain full mastery of ballads than of rhythmic numbers. In time, of course, he would become at least as well known for his ballads as for his rhythmic songs. (Many Berlin fans, of course, love his ballads best of all.) However, in 1917, he felt he was still maturing as a ballad writer.

“How Can I Forget?” is given its first-ever recording by Stephen Bogardus. This musical-theater star is certainly no stranger to Berlin, having appeared on Broadway in Berlin’s “White Christmas.” He’s given memorable performances in many Broadway shows, including “Bright Star,” “Old Acquaintance,” “Man of La Mancha,” “James Joyce’s The Dead,” “High Society,” “King David,” “Love! Valour! Compassion!,” “Falsettos,” “The Grapes of Wrath,” “Safe Sex,” “Les Misérables,” and “West Side Story.” (When Bogardus was recording this song, one of the younger singers waiting to record next, listened enraptured, noting he’d grown up listening to Bogardus on one of his all-time favorite cast albums, “Falsettos.” Bogardus originated the role of “Whizzer” in that show.) I’ve always loved Bogardus’ honest, heartfelt work. He enhances any show he’s in. Long before I saw him starring in shows on Broadway or making guest appearances on TV dramas, I was impressed with his work. I can close my eyes and still see him running around the stage of Princeton’s McCarter Theater, when he was just 19–an exuberant Princeton undergraduate, starring in a student musical, “Mugs Money.”

5. KISS ME, MY HONEY, KISS ME. The moment I found this beautiful unknown early Berlin ballad, “Kiss Me, My Honey Kiss Me,” I thought of Dylan Adams. His singing is pure, sincere, and innocent–just right for this lovely rarity. I treasure Dylan Adams’ singing. He’s been featured previously on such albums as “The Irving Berlin Songbook” and “Irving Berlin Revisited.” And he’ll be featured on more to come. He’s an invaluable part of this project.

6. DO IT AGAIN. Berlin’s little-known “Do it Again” (not to be confused with the later, better-known Gershwin song of the same name) is a delight. Singing it here is Emily Bordonaro. I don’t know of any gal her age with better pipes! She’s a protégé of Tony Award-winner Betty Buckley, and has won the Betty Buckley Award.

7. MY SWEETIE (words and music by Irving Berlin) ... I love the insouciant charm that Giuseppe Bausilio brings to this song. Bausilio is that real rarity–a genuine triple-threat, equally winning as a singer, actor, dancer. Since starring on Broadway in “Billy Elliott,” he’s gone from one Broadway musical to another: “Newsies,” “Aladdin,” Cats,” “Hello, Dolly!” He’s also featured on the TV series “The Next Step” (The Family Channel). I think the world of Giuseppe, as both a performer and a person. He co-starred with Michael Townsend Wright in the first New York production of my musical play “Irving Berlin’s America.” He may be heard on the original cast album of that show, as well as on such albums as “The Irving Berlin Songbook,” “Irving Berlin Revisited,” and “The Chip Deffaa Songbook.” He’s a huge talent. The sky is the limit for this young man.

8. IF I THOUGHT YOU WOULDN'T TELL pairs Alec Deland with Livi Perrone. They’re the first to record this sassy ditty. Perrone, who’s currently studying theater at NYU, starred in the world-premiere production of my show “The Fanny Brice Story” (published by Leicester Bay Theatricals). You can also hear her on “The Irving Berlin [Songbook.” Deland, whom I discovered in a musical at Stagedoor Manor in the Catskills, has enlivened such albums as “The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” “The Irving Berlin Songbook,” and “Irving Berlin Revisited”--with more to come. He’s a natural musical comedy performer.

9. GOODY, GOODY, GOODY, GOODY, GOOD gets its first-ever recording by Kelsey McCabe, who’s previously been heard on such albums as “Irving Berlin Revisited” and “The Irving Berlin Songbook.” She’s added her elfin charm to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, too. And this playful “unknown” number suits her well.

10. MANDY has been one of my favorite Irving Berlin songs ever since I saw Eddie Cantor (aided and abetted by the Nicholas Brothers) perform it insouciantly in the movie “Kid Millions.” The song was also performed–albeit with much less flair–in the movie “White Christmas.” I love this whole number–the verse is as good as the refrain–and it’s great for dancing.

It’s a fine showcase here for two exuberant performers, Jonah Barricklo and Mariah Hill. Jonah, who was featured in my show “The Irving Berlin Ragtime Revue” (and is heard on original cast album), is not only a sprightly, personable singer, he’s the best tap dancer his age I know. And he choreographs his own routines. (I saw him starring in a memorable production of “Godspell”; he was a terrific, tap-dancing “Prince of Peace.”) He’s also been heard on such albums as “The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” “Irving Berlin & Co.,”“The Irving Berlin Songbook,” and “Irving Berlin Revisited.” And he brings a good vibe to any recording studio, rehearsal hall, or theater he’s working in. [ Mariah Hill, like Jonah, is very comfortable on stage–and I like that quality in a performer. She’s making her recording debut here. And I’m looking forward to working more with her. A video of her performing at the annual MAC Awards--honoring the best in cabaret--caught my eye, and I invited her to record. I asked Jonah and Mariah to do this duet, without knowing that they’d already worked together–and had already developed a good rapport--doing shows with music director Brett Kristofferson for Wingspan Productions. Hearing them together just makes me smile.

11. TELL ME, LITTLE GYPSY was the hit song of the 1920 Ziegfeld Follies, introduced by Ziegfeld’s star tenor, John Steel. It’s largely forgotten today. And it’s well worth rediscovering. Magnus Tonning Riise--who demonstrated his sensitive way with a Berlin ballad by singing “Lady of the Evening” on the “Irving Berlin Songbook” album–revives the number beautifully here. Originally from Ilseng, Norway, Riise is a recent transplant to NYC. I’m indebted to Brady Chin for connecting me with Riise, who’s quickly winning a following via his appearances at clubs like Feinstein’s/54 Below and Birdland. He’s got a sound and style all his own.

12. A PRETTY GIRL IS LIKE A MELODY is one of Irving Berlin’s most famous songs, but most people only know the chorus–because that’s the only part that is usually sung. The most commonly encountered sheet music for this song includes the rarely heard first verse, but not the even rarer second verse. However, for our recording, Jeffrey Sewell sings both the first and the second verse (which will surely be new to most listeners). I love Jeffrey Sewell’s lyrical way with a song. He really finds the beauty in this number. I have to thank Broadway star Andrew Keenan-Bolger (“Tuck Everlasting,” “Newsies,” “Seussical”) for calling my attention to Jeffrey Sewell, whose singing–from the very first videos he posted on YouTube–struck me as something special. He’s recorded for several albums I’ve produced–“Irving Berlin & Co.,” “The Irving Berlin Songbook,” and “Irving Berlin Revisited”--and I hope he’ll record for many more. Incidentally, this song–which Berlin wrote quickly, because a song was needed to help cover a scene change in the Ziegfeld Follies–became the theme of the Ziegfeld Follies.
13. THE BROADWAY CHICKEN WALK. Also known as “The Chicken Walk,” this cheeky number was the Act-One Finale of a gala musical revue, “The Century Girl”–a hit of the 1916-17 theatrical season. It gets its first-ever recording by the terrific Jenn Spottz, who’s helped enliven such albums as “Irving Berlin Rediscovered,” “Irving Berln & Co.,” The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” and “The Irving Berlin Songbook.” She sings with wonderful aplomb. She’s been part of a remarkable group of theater people (including Max Beer, Michael Herwitz, Gabriella Green, Christopher Anselmo) studying at Northwestern University. I first saw her when she was co-starring in a musical in high school; I was so knocked out by her sound and self-assurance–her potential was startlingly clear--I immediately invited her to work with me.

14. IF ALL THE GIRLS I KNEW WERE LIKE YOU. Of all the many wonderful actors who went in and out of the cast of the hit musical “Newsies” in its Broadway run, none had a prettier voice, or a more sensitive way with a ballad, than Jeremy Greenbaum. For my ears, he’s one of the best young balladeers in the theater community today. And when I discovered this never-before-recorded Berlin ballad, “If All the Girls I Knew Were Like You,” I couldn’t wait to hear Jeremy sing it. I was lucky to be able to get him into the recording studio before he headed out of town to do “Follies.”

15. SADIE SALOME (GO HOME). Irving Berlin was not yet famous when, in 1909, he gave this ethnic-comedy song he’d concocted to a little-known performer friend of his, who was then working in burlesque: Fanny Brice. (Berlin personally coached Brice on how to perform the song.) Within a few years, both would be well-known–Berlin as the nation’s most popular songwriter, Brice as a star of the Ziegfeld Follies. And this song–about a nice Jewish gal performing sexy dance moves on stage–proved to be a vitally important one in the career of Fanny Brice. She performed “Sadie Salome for the first time at a benefit, and scored such a huge success, she kept the song in her repertoire. This song, and Berlin’s “Wild Cherries,” became her two big numbers in burlesque, and helped get her into the Ziegfeld Follies. And this song–her first Yiddish-accented specialty–help establish her comic persona on stage. For the rest of her life, Brice would insist that singing “Sadie Salome” for the first time was a turning-point for her. In her own words: “Before I reached the second verse, it happened. The thing that begins to change your life–the clangor, the first thunder on the mountaintop.”

It made me very happy that Carl Kissin agreed to do this song. He’s got that old-school showmanship I like so much. He certainly understands comedy. And he knows the accent this song requires. What’s not to like? For many years, I’ve greatly appreciated Carl Kissin’s work on stage, screen, and TV. He was, for example, in Eric Bogosian’s Pulitzer Prize-nominated play “Talk Radio” at the Public Theater, and in Oliver Stone’s motion picture adaptation of that play. He’s been seen on television’s “The Today Show,” “The Joan Rivers Show,” “ “The Jackie Mason Show,” “Kwik Witz,” “Mouth to Mouth,” and more. He’s won the Manhattan Monolog Slam three times. He’s written plays. He’s done more than 4,000 shows with the famed improv and sketch-comedy troupe “Chicago City Limits.”

16. HOW DO YOU DO IT MABEL, ON TWENTY DOLLARS A WEEK? Oh, I was eager to have Gabriella Green sing this sassy early Berlin song. She’s a terrific performer. She’s got a fine–and immediately recognizable–musical-theater voice, she establishes a point of view–an attitude--when she performs; and she’s good at creating characterizations. (Check out her performances–both with Alec Deland--of “A Stage Door Kind of Love,” on the album “The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” and “Try it on Your Piano,” on “Irving Berlin Revisited.”)

I might add that any song with the name “Mabel” in the title would make me think of Gabriella Green, because the first time I saw her on stage, she happened to be playing a character named “Mabel.” She was co-starring with Alec Deland in a production of Jerry Herman’s “Mack and Mabel,” at Stagedoor Manor in the Catskills--and quite wonderfully, I must say. That whole production was so satisfying, I dropped Jerry Herman a note about it!

17. IN MY HAREM is put over with wonderful panache by Michael Caizzi. I love the verve and self-assurance he displays on stage or in the recording studio. (You can also hear Caizzi on the “Irving Berlin Songbook” CD, and I certainly hope to record more of him in the future.) I was impressed by his presence on stage, playing leading roles at Hofstra University in shows ranging from “The Cherry Orchard” to “The Drowsy Chaperone,” to “Fiddler on the Roof.” And this past summer, he starred in “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” at the Priscilla Beach Theater, one of the oldest and most respected summer theaters in the country. He’s on his way!

18. I LOVE TO QUARREL WITH YOU. I love performers who take risks, who make bold choices, who really put their own marks on material you offer them. And I picked two strong, spontaneous performers I like--Joris de Graaf and Samantha Cunha–to make the first recording, ever, of Berlin’s unusual “I Love to Quarrel with You.” De Graaf has enlivened a couple of shows of mine–“Theater Boys” and “Mad About the Boy.” And he always surprised me, and delighted me. I never knew how he might inflect or attack a given line from one rehearsal to the next, or from one performance to the next. I remember one of the other actors asking me, in rehearsal, “Don’t you want to rein him in?” I said “No, I like performers who are willing to stretch, and take chances, and add a touch of unpredictability to life.” (You can hear more of de Graaf’s work on the “Mad About the Boy” original cast album , and on “The Chip Deffaa Songbook” album.) I first took notice of Cunha as a performer in a college production of “Rent” several years ago. And I was even more impressed by her when–fresh out of college, and testing the waters as a producer–she helped get that production and another college production over to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival; I admire people with moxie. I really like the way she spontaneously responds to de Graaf here, plays off of him, and helps make a song feel like a complete scene.

19. CHRISTMAS-TIME SEEMS YEARS AND YEARS AWAY. “White Christmas” may be Irving Berlin’s best-known song. Bing Crosby’s recording of it sold more copies than any record anyone had ever made. But several decades before Berlin gave us “White Christmas,” he wrote his first song referencing Christmas: “Christmas-time Seems Years and Tears Away.”
In the song, a fellow is wishing that Christmas-time were here, because that’s when he and his gal will be married. This song gets its first recording, now, by Charlie Franklin, whose Broadway credits include “The Bridges of Madison County” and “Book of Mormon.” Charlie Franklin is one of my favorites among the younger members of the Broadway community today. I like his sincerity, and his timbre, and the fact that he really “gets” these older songs; that’s where his heart is.

In the songs of Irving Berlin, Christmas-time had only positive associations. But in real-life,
for Berlin, Christmas-time was associated with sorrow. Berlin’s only son, Irving Berlin Jr., was just a few weeks old when he died on December 24th, 1928. And one Christmas-time tradition for Berlin and his wife was visiting the grave of their son.

20. WISHING is an important rediscovery. Irving Berlin and Ted Snyder wrote this sweet song for a Broadway-bound show, “The Girl and the Drummer,” that never made it to Broadway; the show closed during out-of-town tryouts. The song was then added to the score of another Broadway-bound show, “Two Men and a Girl,” but that show, too, closed during out-of-town tryouts. An excellent song, trapped in two flop shows. The song was then set aside, forgotten; Berlin moved on to other things. That happens, sometimes--a good song winds up being introduced in a weak show; the show closes and the song goes back into the trunk.

But “Wishing” is really quite a lovely song, with an innocent, idealistic feel. I wanted to wait until two of the very best younger singers I know were available to record this never-before-recorded ode to young love. I was very happy when I was finally able to get Clark Kinkade and Emily Bordonaro–none better!–into the studio to sing this duet. They’ve both worked with me on assorted projects–but never before together. (They’ve both done my show “The Seven Little Foys,” for example–but at different times, in different productions.) Their open-hearted rendition of this unusual early Berlin love song is, for me, a high point of this album.

21. FURNISHING A HOME FOR TWO. This appealing “unknown” Berlin song gets its first-ever recording by Bailey Cummings. I sure like that fine, true voice of his. [ He’s been an invaluable asset in various projects of mine in recent years. You can hear him on my “Seven Little Foys” cast album. He did the first reading of my musical play “Irving Berlin’s America.” On the “Chip Deffaa Songbook” album, he made the premiere recordings of my songs “Magnetic Waterbury” and “An Ode to Popularity.” A member of Actors Equity today, Bailey Cummings has impressed me since I first saw him, as a teen, in shows at the Waterbury Arts Magnet School, Darren Farrington’s New Britain Youth Theater, and at the Thomaston Opera House. (He was brilliant, starring in ‘Into the Woods’ with musical-director Marianna Vagnini-Dadamo.) I’m always glad to record him, when opportunities arise.

22. AFTER THE HONEYMOON. I’m delighted to have Rick Crom interpret this charmingly cynical, forgotten early Berlin song. Crom has always been able to make me laugh, whether as an actor in shows, like the Broadway hits “Urinetown” and “Footloose”; a stand-up comic; or as the writer of shows, like the long-running Off-Broadway revue “Newsical,” and of songs, like his exuberant “Lesbian Madness,” which was a highlight of my own show “Mad About the Boy” (and may be heard on the original cast album for that show). Crom’s performance of Berlin’s “They Were All Out of Step but Jim” is featured on the album “Irving Berlin Revisited.” I’m looking forward to having him record more Berlin rarities for this series.

23. AFTER YOU GET WHAT YOU WANT YOU DON'T WANT IT is given a first-rate performance by Ray DeMattis, whose work I’ve enjoyed and admired for decades. I like the commitment he always brings to his work. His Broadway credits include “Grease,” “City of Angels,” “Zoya’s Apartment,” “Fiorello,” and “Little Shop of Horrors.” His Off-Broadway credits include: “The Fantasticks,” “Flora the Red Menace,” “Enter Laughing,” and Lynda Barry’s “The Good Times are Killing Me” (a show, incidentally, that helped inspire me to write shows myself). He did the first national tour of “Fiddler on the Roof” with Zero Mostel. His television credits include “The Sopranos,” “The Cosby Show,” “Family Business,” and “Law and Order.” He’s a performer’s performer. In a career spanning 50 years, he’s never had to take a day-job outside of the business. And when he stood at the microphone to record “After You Get What You Want...,” all of the other singing actors in the studio watched, rapt. He was giving such a vivid performance, you could practically see the character he was singing to. The 13th Street Repertory Theater has created a “Ray DeMattis Award” to honor young artist to watch. The photo at right shows DeMattis with two recipients. John Brady and Cody Jordan.

24. WHEN I LOST YOU was an important song in the career of Irving Berlin. Written after the tragic death of Berlin’s first wife, Dorothy Goetz, this song was–Berlin would always maintain–the first mature ballad he ever wrote. He’d written 130 songs up until then, but nothing like this. George M. Cohan praised “When I Lost You” as “the prettiest song I ever heard.” Al Jolson called it Berlin’s “greatest song.” Henry Burr–largely forgotten today, but one of the most prolific recording artists of all time (with some 12,000 recordings to his credit)–made an achingly heartfelt recording that became a top hit in 1912. In years that followed, many other noteworthy singers, from Bing Crosby to Jimmy Durante, to Frank Sinatra, recorded their versions of this ballad. But more than 50 years have passed since those singers made their recordings. This number will be new to many of today’s younger listeners. It’s well worth hearing again.

Tyler DuBoys, who sings “When I Lost You” here, is in his early 20s, as Berlin was when he wrote this song. And he knows what it feels like to lose someone you love. He sings directly, honestly, from the heart. I like his unaffected approach. And his respect for the songwriter’s intentions. I’m always glad to get Tyler into the recording studio. You can also hear him on such albums as “The Seven Little Foys” and “Irving Berlin Revisited .”

25. SIMPLE MELODY/MUSICAL DEMON was the first–and arguably remains the greatest–of Berlin’s famed “double songs” (in which one song winds up being sung in counterpoint against another). In this song, and in the next two songs that follow on this album, Berlin is expressing his love of ragtime. And his lyrics and music are so catchy, it’s hard not to share in that love. Ragtime was the music of the younger generation, of his generation. There were old folks who railed against ragtime as being dangerously sensuous music! Ragtime melodies, they feared, could make young listeners lose self-control!

“Simple Melody”/”Musical Demon” is one of my all-time favorite Berlin creations. It’s great fun hearing how this enduringly popular piece changes, every time different singers take a crack at it. And many have performed it. A huge hit when it was first introduced in 1914, it became a surprise hit again in 1950, thanks to a record made by Bing Crosby and his son Gary Crosby.

The recording on this album pairs two of the best younger singers I know–both of whom have worked with me many times over the years. (I love the photo of the two of them, at right; their appreciation for one another really shows.) Both, for example, have done my musical “The Seven Little Foys.” And both may heard on such albums as “The Irving Berlin Songbook” and “Irving Berlin Revisited.” We hear Emily Bordonaro (vocal) and Jack Saleeby (vocal and tap-dancing to his own choreography). And it’s a delight to hear them together. Emily, by the way, also records (and makes music videos of) her own original contemporary songs, under the stage name of “Emily Victoria.” And Jack, as I write these notes, is the process of writing a musical with Peter Charney, another of my longtime colleagues, who’s heard on track 28.

26. OH, THAT BEAUTIFUL RAG. I really love “Oh, that Beautiful Rag,” and the related “Stop that Rag,” which comes next on this album. Irving Berlin, needless to say, loved ragtime, as songs like these make clear. And he was also well aware of the power of music to inspire love, and to help awaken passions. In “Oh, that Beautiful Rag,” the singer enthuses, “Oh! That heavenly strain / It makes me feel so funny.” And in “Stop that Rag,” the gal sings that the music has her “suffocating with delight,” and urges her fellow, “Don’t you dare to leave me.” (Berlin understood well the connections between music and love and desire, as so many of his songs made clear, right from the start of his career.) “Oh, that Beautiful Rag” and “Stop that Rag” are both terrific songs, brimming with life. Neither song is well-known today. And I’m thrilled to have some first-rate performers offer their own takes on these two songs today.

[Jon Peterson and Michael Townsend Wright are two stars, as well as two old friends. They wanted to do “Oh, that Beautiful Rag.” And any chance I get to record the two of them together, on any number, I’ll take. Jon had just gotten back from doing my show “George M. Cohan Tonight!”--which I wrote especially for him, and which he’s done many times over the past decade--in Korea. And he was getting ready to go out on tour, once again, starring in the musical “Cabaret.” (He’s touring the country in that show now.) And Michael (for whom I wrote the show “Irving Berlin’s America”) was busy with personal appearances--both on his own and with Floyd Vivino--and film work. I managed to find a Monday when both were free, and they happily lent their song-and-dance skills to this great number. It’s a joy to get two old pro’s like this in the studio. (They’ve previously been heard together on such albums of mine as “The George M. Cohan Revue” and “The Seven Little Foys.”) This song, incidentally, was originally introduced by Irving Berlin himself; he sang it in the Broadway musical “Up and Down Broadway,” starring Eddie Foy.

27. STOP THAT RAG (which was introduced by Stella Mayhew in a Broadway musical called “The Jolly Bachelors”) is put over with aplomb here by Natalie Douglas, who’s won every award a cabaret singer can win, from the MAC Award (seven times!) on down. She’s sung at Lincoln Center and at Carnegie Hall. She’s added life to such previous albums in this series as “Irving Berlin Revisited” and “The Irving Berlin Songbook.” I always get a kick out of hearing her sing. For info on her own shows and CD’s, please visit: www.

28. WHEN THE CURTAIN FALLS .... Peter Charney and Emily Bordonaro have the distinction of making the first recording of this fascinating early Berlin duet. This love song was introduced by Frank Craven and Edith Day in the Broadway musical “Going Up,” which opened on Christmas Day of 1917 at the Liberty Theater on 42nd Street, New York City. The show and the song may have been forgotten, over time. But it’s a beautiful song. One of the rewards of this project for me, as a producer, has been finding worthy “unknown” Berlin songs, and then choosing just the right singers to do them justice. Emily Bordonaro and Peter Charney (who’ve been heard together previously on my “Seven Little Foys” cast album) are both very special to me. I’ve known them both about a decade. We’ve done many projects together. And I’m glad to work with them any time. They have the beauty of tone and spirit, and honesty, that this song requires. I’ve positioned their performance in the “next-to-closing” spot, which vaudevillians considered a great honor.

29. BRING ON THE PEPPER. An album–just like a concert–needs to have a strong start and a strong finish. We opened this album with one of the best singers around, Seth Sikes. And we’re going to close this album with two terrific singers. We’re bringing back Seth Sikes, joined here by Clark Kinkade, to put over one of the all-time great Berlin numbers, “Bring on the Pepper.” I love hearing Sikes and Kinkade together! They’ve recorded for me before. (Check out their performance of my “Crater Lake Blues” on the album “The Chip Deffaa Songbook.”) It made me so happy to have them in the studio together. It wasn’t easy finding a date they were both available, but we managed to catch them just before Kinkade headed off to do a show (“Plaid Tidings”) on the West Coast and Sikes plunged into rehearsals with a new show (“The Band’s Visit”) in New York. Their voices complement each other beautifully. And they both perform with spirit-lifting elan. When they finished this number, other singers in the control room, waiting for their chances to record, burst into applause.

I really had a great time producing this album, and can’t wait to work on the next one. Good singers, good songs, good people. I can’t ask for more than that.

– CHIP DEFFAA, February 2017

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CHIP DEFFAA (producer/writer/arranger) is the author of 16 published plays and eight published books, and the producer of 18 albums. For 18 years he covered entertainment, including music and theater, for The New York Post. He is a graduate of Princeton University and a trustee of the Princeton "Tiger" magazine. He wrote and directed such Off-Broadway successes as "George M. Cohan Tonight!" and "One Night with Fanny Brice." His shows have been performed everywhere from London to Edinburgh, to Seoul. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Stage Directors & Choreographers Society, and ASCAP. He’s won the ASCAP/Deems Taylor Award, the IRNE Award, and a New Jersey Press Association Award. Please visit:

RICHARD DANLEY (music director/pianist) is Chip Deffaa's first choice among music directors and has worked on many shows and/or albums of Deffaa's, including "Irving Berlin's America," “The Irving Berlin Ragtime Revue,” "One Night with Fanny Brice," "The Seven Little Foys," "George M. Cohan Tonight!," “Mad About the Boy,” “Irving Berlin: In Person,” “The Irving Berlin Songbook,” and "Theater Boys." Danley has performed everywhere from daytime dramas on television, to cruise ships, to clubs, to Carnegie Hall. He is on the faculty of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA).

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Chip Deffaa has written five different musical plays celebrating Irving Berlin. All are available for licensing. “Irving Berlin: In Person” is a one-man play. “Irving Berlin’s America” is a two-character play. “Irving Berlin & Co.” is a biographical musical written for 12 or more players. “The Irving Berlin Ragtime Revue,” featuring more than 40 ragtime songs, is a revue written for 10-14 players. “The Irving Berlin Story” is a full-sized biographical musical, written for 24 or more players.

For more information on any of Deffaa’s shows, please feel free to contact Chip Deffaa Productions LLC, 50 Quartz Lane, Paterson, NJ 07501-3345, telephone: 973-684-3340; Email:;

Playwright/director/producer Chip Deffaa is represented by The Fifi Oscard Agency (attention: Peter Sawyer, President), 1440 Broadway, 23rd Floor, New York, NY 10018, Email:, tel. (212) 764-1100.

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Our thanks for the help provided, in various ways, by Carol Channing, Lee Roy Reams, Donald Brown, Stephen Bogardus, Alex and Alec Deland, Matthew Broderick, C. M. Heinzelman, Jed Peterson, Yunis Alibrahimi, Adam Barki, Deborah Deffaa, Max Deffaa, Louis Deffaa Sr., C. Hernandez, Josh Schaller, Ava Schaller, Julia Deffaa, Logan Saby, Lawson Saby, Victor Calatayud, Adrian Carbajal, Brick Greenbean, the late John Wallowitch, the late Jack Gottlieb, and Prince J. Taibor, Connecticut Department of Inspiration. Editing by H. Al Hussan. Public relations assistance by Ibby, Abraheem, and Cinnamon Abdelhaq. This album is distributed in the U.S. exclusively by CDBaby.

Chip Deffaa’s “Irving Berlin Rediscovered: Rare Songs of Love and Longing” (p) and © 2017 by Chip Deffaa.

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If you’ve enjoyed this album, you might also enjoy these 18 other Chip Deffaa albums (available from,, iTunes, etc.): “The Chip Deffaa Songbook,” “Chip Deffaa’s Irving Berlin Revisited,” “Chip Deffaa’s Irving Berlin Songbook: Rare and Unrecorded Songs,” “The Irving Berlin Ragtime Revue,” “George M. Cohan Tonight!,” “Irving Berlin’s America,” “One Night with Fanny Brice,” Irving Berlin: In Person,” “The Seven Little Foys” “Theater Boys,” “Presenting Fanny Brice,” “George M. Cohan: In his Own Words,” “Mad About the Boy: The Festival Cast,” “The George M. Cohan Revue,” “Mad About the Boy: 13th Street Theater Production,” “Irving Berlin & Co.,” “The Johnny Mercer Jamboree,” “George M. Cohan: Rare Original Recordings.”
Produced by CHIP DEFFAA; Musical Director: RICHARD DANLEY

Music prep by Don Brown, Richard Danley; Historical consultant: Jessee D. Riehl; Proofreader: M. S. Cardona
Assistants to the Producer: Sukhee Jun, Peter Charney, M. M. Jmhour, Max Galassi
Technical advisor: R. I Dalalsheh; International advisors: Byeong hyo Son, I. Khader, Gabriel Beer
Recording engineer: Slau Halatyn; Graphic Design: Frank Avellino; Interns: Max Beer; Michael Herwitz




Chip Deffaa's
Rare Songs of Love and Longing.

with an all-star New York cast...

Stephen Bogardus, Seth Sikes, Giuseppe Bausilio, Jon Peterson, Emily Bordonaro, Matthew Nardozzi,
Michael Townsend Wright, Ray DeMattis, Charlie Franklin, Jeremy Greenbaum, Clark Kinkade,
Rick Crom, Carl Kissin, Alec Deland, Jeffrey Sewell, Peter Charney, Natalie Doulglas,
Bailey Cummings, Dylan Adams, Jonah Barricklo, Jenn Spottz, Magnus Tonning Riise,
Michael Caizzi, Tyler DuBoys, Joris de Graaf, Gabriella Green, Samantha Cunha ,
Mariah Hill, Kelsey McCabe, Jack Saleeby, Livi Perrone

Produced by CHIP DEFFAA; Musical Director: RICHARD DANLEY

Chip Deffaa Productions
Garret Mountain Records CDP JT 1018
“Chip Deffaa’s Irving Berlin Rediscovered...” (P) and © 2017 by Chip Deffaa



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