Robyn Spangler | Something Cool: The Billy Barnes Sessions

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Something Cool: The Billy Barnes Sessions

by Robyn Spangler

Robyn Spangler sings Something Cool and a smooth set of some of Billy Barnes best songs.
Genre: Jazz: Smooth Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
clip
1. Something Cool
4:21 $0.99
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2. Rome
2:42 $0.99
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3. The Other One
3:54 $0.99
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4. Talkin' to Myself Again
3:07 $0.99
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5. Woman Is
1:54 $0.99
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6. Does Anybody Here Love Me
5:39 $0.99
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7. Have I Stayed Too Long at the Fair
3:00 $0.99
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8. Wonderful World Full of Love / It's a Small World
2:35 $0.99
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9. Was It Worth It
2:39 $0.99
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10. Just up Ahead
3:18 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
BILLY BARNES’ most well known compositions are “Too Long at the Fair” and “Something Cool.” But his “specialty” was special material. In the late ’50’s, ’60’s, ’70’s and early ’80’s Billy Barnes was part of a small and elite group of songwriters who wrote for musical variety television and, thus, wrote for every celebrity. Dinah Shore, Rosemary Clooney, Peggy Lee, Diana Ross and Judy Garland just to name a few.

Billy also wrote musical revues, Broadway shows and Las Vegas and club acts. Much of his work is camp, specific - and hilarious - but not a fit for this project.

I want to send a heartfelt thank you to Richard Tyler Jordan. Richard was Billy’s partner for over 30 years and granted unlimited access to his catalog so I could choose songs that I felt were right for this project. With some brilliant arrangements by Todd Schroeder, I have put together some of my favorites. Now enjoy!

1-"Something Cool": Originally written for Lehman Engel’s Musical Theatre Workshop (special to me as I studied from this book when I was in college) and for UCLA classmate Beverly Dixon who was doing Blanche in "Streetcar Named Desire", "Something Cool" was heard by June Christie and she recorded it at Capitol Records. Later that summer she sang it at the very first Playboy Jazz Festival which was, at that time, in Chicago. Today it is a Great American Song Book standard.

2-"Rome": Written for Peggy Lee. I have yet to find a released recording but I have heard the demo tape sung by Peggy and Billy playing the piano.

3-“The Other One”: Richard Tyler Jordan, Billy’s partner for over 30 years, found this piece of sheet music, sent it to me and ask me to record it because he had never heard it. One of my favorites.

4-“Talkin' To Myself Again”: Written for the 1976 TV Special "Pinocchio" starring Danny Kaye, Sandy Duncan and Flip Wilson. Danny and Billy had remained good friends after Billy wrote regularly for “The Danny Kaye Show.” They both adored Sandy Duncan. Sandy told me, “My two most famous parts I play little boys - Peter Pan and Pinocchio!"

5-“Woman Is”: Only heard once on episode of #1 of ”The Sonny and Cher Show." Cher never sang this haunting intro again but continued to sing “The V-A-M-P” every week from that point forward sitting on top of an upright piano in a red Bob Mackie gown with Sonny banging away on the keys. Interlaced with comedy sketches “The V-A-M-P” remains one of the best loved and most remembered part of every Sonny and Cher show. Earl Brown, a writing partner and close friend of Billy’s, gets full writing credit on ASCAP. My research tells me it was co-written with Billy. Either way, I had to include it in this set.

6-“Does Anybody Here Love Me”: Imagine Marilyn Monroe standing alone on stage with a spotlight on her. I need say no more. Originally sung by ex-wife Joyce Jameson, this song appeared over and over in many of Billy's shows. Most notably "Movie Star" which was co-produced by Ray Argeon and Bob Mackie in the early 1980's and ran at the Westwood Playhouse (now the Geffen Playhouse) for nine months. The wonderful Eileen Barnett sang it for the stage production.

7-"Have I Stayed Too Long at The Fair": Billy's best known "popular" song put him in an exclusive category when Barbra Streisand choose it for her second album. Originally featured in Broadway's "Billy Barnes Revue" and originally sung by by Billy's ex-wife Joyce Jameson. This is the original version I found handwritten in Billy's storage unit.

8-Wonderful World Full of Love: Billy was tapped to write special material for the “Grand Opening of Disney World” in 1971. The television special featured Glen Campbell, Bob Hope, Jonathan Winters and Julie Andrews among others. They wanted to feature Julie riding on a boat through the Small World attraction. So what did Billy do? He wrote a brilliant counter melody to the Sherman Brothers tune you’ll never get out of your head. It’s too good not to include.

9-Was It Worth It: The only information I can offer regarding this song is it is the summary of Billy's life and career.

10-“Just Up Ahead”: Billy dies of Alzheimers disease in 2012. This is the very last song Billy ever wrote before he became too ill to write. It was written for the movie "Old Timers."

For more information about Billy’s life and career visit: www.thebillybarnesfoundation.org

For more information about Robyn Spangler visit: www.robynspangler.com





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