June 17

Bobby Short is K-RA-ZY for Gershwin, Bobby Loves Cole Porter, but Bobby Short is Mad About Noël Coward!

I found this 1972 gem of a record at a local thrift store. And, even though I was not familiar with the music of Noël Coward or the style of Bobby Short, it was in such fine condition I couldn’t pass it up.

Some time ago I found a U.K. pressing of Noël Coward At Las Vegas and did OK with it as trade in fodder:

I figured I might do OK with this record too. What I didn’t expect was to like the record as much as I did! Coward’s lyrics, dry and witty, are delivered with sparse accompaniment, piano bar style, by Short. These complex melodies, and even more complex lyrics, were delivered magnificently by an interpreter who obviously cared a great deal for the material.

The humorous songs were standouts to me… especially Nina, a dance number about a woman who refuses to dance;

There surely never could’ve been a
More irritating girl than Nina
They never speak in Argentina
Of this degenerate bambina
Who had the luck to find romance
But resolutely wouldn’t dance.


Now I just need to find Short’s Gershwin and Porter compilations…

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