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Rare Harold Arlen recording released


Composer Harold Arlen at work in 1961. News file photo.

This just in (thanks to Ed Cardoni of Hallwalls): Kritzerland, a small record and book publishing company, is reissuing a 1968 recording of "House of Flowers," the ill-fated musical by Truman Capote and Harold Arlen. While the original Broadway cast recording from 1958 is available on iTunes and elsewhere, Capote and Arlen thought this particular revival of the show far superior to the original.

Buffalo-born Arlen, of course, is a beloved local figure responsible for some of the better known musical standards of the 20th century -- "The Wizard of Oz," for starters. A release from the company notes that the recording contains updated arrangements of the show's numbers by Joe Raposo which were "much funkier and much more in tune with the Caribbean flavor of the score."

Here's an excerpt of "Madame Tango's Particular Tango," which sounds pretty tantalizing to me:

Check out the Kritzerland site here.

--Colin Dabkowski



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