JERRY VALE: 17 MOST REQUESTED SONGS
Not only does Jerry Vale have an outstanding, definitive voice quality that plays to the best of the senses in the listener, but Mr. Vale seems to forever choose songs that have wonderful, heartfelt lyrics. An example of this is Steve Allen's terrific composition, “Pretend You Don’t See Her,” which has a great melody and wonderful words. Jerry had a big hit with this track. One fan commented that when he heard the song played years ago on his local radio station, he was “so moved by the rich simplicity of Mr. Vale's style and the haunting resonance I felt deep within my heart, I tried for months to get it on tape the next time they played it. I finally was able to copy it and enjoyed it over and over again."
Indeed, “Jerry Vale: 17 Most Requested Songs” is full of hits, sung with his inimical passion and phrasing. How did Robert Goulet score a top 10 hit with his version of “My Love Forgive Me” over Vale's masterwork? Maybe this explains Elvis shooting the television?
Your eyes will well up with tears when you hear Jerry sing about “Mama,” (in both Italian and English), and you will long for the wistful days on “Old Cape Cod.” (He proves there's no reason a man can't sing this Patti Page hit and achieve equal believability).
“Tears Keep On Falling” is a highlight of this album. The lush orchestration is superb and compliments Mr. Vale's effortless crooning. “Dommage, Dommage (Too Bad, Too Bad)” also showcases Jerry's incredible voice as he shows off his operatic qualities.
“O Sole Mio (My Sunshine)” sparkles like gold in Jerry's capable hands. He sings it beautifully and the strings enhance the natural beauty of the melody.
“The Impossible Dream” has been overdone by so many artists and it is our least favorite on the CD, but we have to admit he sings it better than anybody we can think of. The accordiion on “Arrivederci, Roma” is the perfect touch.
Born Gennaro Luigi Vitaliano in 1930 in the Bronx, New York, Jerry took a job while in high school shining shoes in a barbership. He sang while he shined shoes, and his boss liked the sound so well that he paid for music lessons for the boy. Soon Vale was singing in high school musicals and at a local club. When Paul Insetta (who was a road manager for Guy Mitchell and a hit songwriter) heard him, he signed Jerry to a management contract, changed his name and further coached him. He then got the budding singer a contract with Columbia Records.
Jerry's version of “The Star Spangled Banner,” recorded in the late 1960s, was a fixture at many sporting events for years.
Vale and his wife of more than 40 years, Rita, reside in Palm Desert, California.
In the annals of American music, Jerry Vale ranks high on the list. He's one of those singers who couldn't sing a bad note if he tried. He's a polished gentleman in person and on stage, and exudes class. Simply put, this is the kind of CD any guy in the city should have, especially when he's mixing cocktails for the girl he's brought back to his apartment. Just don't forget to light some candles and turn the lights down low...
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