Michael Lasser and Musicians, The Songs of Johnny Mercer
Even if you’re not aware of it, you know Johnny Mercer. From the light-hearted “Jeepers Creepers” to the romantic “Laura;”from the big band “And the Angels Sing” to the dramatic “Come Rain or Come Shine;” from the sassy “Accentuate the Positive” to the cinematic “On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe;” not to mention the timeless standards of “That Old Black Magic,” “Glow Worm,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” and “Moon River”—these songs, with their wide range of musical styles, have been heard by millions of people all over the world on recordings, radio, films, television programs and Broadway shows over the past century. Johnny Mercer wrote over 1,400 songs for radio, records, 100 motion pictures and 23 theatrical productions such as St. Louis Woman and Li’l Abner. He won four Academy Awards for Best Song. He was both a top radio personality and recording artist himself and was the co-founder and President of Capitol Records. Johnny Mercer’s poetic genius continues to reflect the romantic yearnings, the wit, the energy, and the personality that is our America dream.
Return to a golden age of American songwriting with host Michael Lasser and musicians Cindy Miller (vocals) and Alan Jones (piano/vocals).
Michael Lasser is the author of America’s Songs: The Stories Behind the Songs of Broadway, Hollywood, and Tin Pan Alley (with Philip Furia) and America’s Songs II: Songs from the 1890s to the Post-War Years. His expertise on the American Songbook informs his nationally syndicated public radio program, Fascinatin’ Rhythm, winner of a 1994 Peabody Award. He has presented sold-out Library events on Irving Berlin, Sheldon Harnick, and others.
Cindy Miller received her Master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music and is widely known as an exceptional eclectic performer. In the field of jazz, she has performed or recorded with flutist Hubert Laws, guitarist Gene Bertoncini, Chuck Mangione, world famous vibraphonist Peter Appleyard, pianist Ted Rosenthal, and bassist Jay Leonhart, alongside numerous appearances with the Gap Mangione Big Band and other ensembles in the region. Recordings include Love You Madly, a collection of jazz standards, and I’ve Got The Music In Me, which highlights her versatility as a presenter of music and comedy at its best.
Singer, pianist, songwriter, and educator Alan Jones is best known as a cabaret performer whose style has been compared to Billy Eckstine. Holding a Master’s from the Eastman School of Music, he received the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s award for Choral Conductor of the Year and has appeared with that orchestra as well as with the Brockport Symphony and at the Royal York in Toronto.
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