Harold Sings Arlen (with Friend) (1966)

Catalog Number(s):

* the LP and CD are both out of print

(Below: The original LP cover and back cover)

Harold Sings Arlen cover

Back cover

(Below: The CD cover and back cover.)

Harold Arlen CD covers

Tracks

  1. Blues In The Night [4:00]
    (J. Mercer / H. Arlen)
  2. Little Biscuit [3:56]
    (E.Y. Harburg / H. Arlen)
  3. DING-DONG! THE WITCH IS DEAD [1:56] *
    (E.Y. Harburg / H. Arlen)
  4. A Sleepin' Bee [3:41]
    (T. Capote / H. Arlen)
  5. In The Shade Of The New Apple Tree [4:04]
    (E.Y. Harburg / H. Arlen)
  6. Hit The Road To Dreamland [2:36]
    (J. Mercer / H. Arlen)
  7. Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive [2:43]
    (J. Mercer / H. Arlen)
  8. My Shining Hour [3:27]
    (J. Mercer / H. Arlen)
  9. Today I Love Everybody [2:09]
    (D. Fields / H. Arlen)
  10. HOUSE OF FLOWERS [2:49] *
    (T. Capote / H. Arlen)
  11. For Every Man There's A Woman [2:28]
    (L. Robin / H. Arlen)
  12. That's A Fine Kind O' Freedom [2:40]
    (M. Charnin / H. Arlen)

* with Barbra Streisand

About the Album

Streisand and Arlen

(Above: Streisand and Harold Arlen in the recording booth.)

Streisand records with ArlenStreisand’s vocals were recorded on November 22 and 24, 1965. Harold Arlen, most famous for writing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, wrote of Streisand: “Barbra’s version of ‘House of Flowers’ is the most moving, exciting rendition imaginable—and I’m delighted. As for Barbra joining me on this album—I’m gratulant and grateful and an indebted idolater.”

Barbra said, “His album gave me a chance to sing with the man who, in my opinion, is the greatest composer of American music next to George Gershwin. His melodies hit you in the gut ... soulful, almost painful, moving.”

Streisand loved Arlen's score for the musical House of Flowers. Besides the track on this album, Streisand recorded three other songs from it: “A Sleepin' Bee” on The Barbra Streisand Album; “Don't Like Goodbyes” on the 1964 People album; and “I Never Has Seen Snow” which was included on her 1973 television special Barbra Streisand ..and Other Musical Instruments.

Harold Sings Arlen (with a Friend) was restored and remastered in October 1993 and part of Columbia Records' 11 Essential Barbra Streisand Releases. The master tapes were prepared for release by John Arrias (who put together the masters for Just For The Record). According to Columbia's publicity:

“The objective with each album was to restore the tapes to the quality of the original master recording. To do this in some cases, 30 years of noise had to be eliminated. John used his proprietary C.A.P. Noise Reduction System to eliminate hiss, distortion and noise. In each case great care was taken to maintain the integrity of the original albums.”

Columbia also recreated the album packages using the original art or printing film.

Streisand and Arlen in the studio

In 2005, when the centennial celebration of Arlen’s birth was being honored, Streisand contributed her memories of working on the tracks for this album. “When I got to duet with him singing ‘Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead’, I came to know the little-boy part of Harold,” Streisand recalled. “We had fun being kids together on that recording. I believe that decades from now, people will be as affected by his music as I’ve been. Thank you, Harold.”

Recording the album at Columbia Records

(Listening to playback of the album. Left to right: Tom Shepard, Harold Arlen, Streisand, Jonathan Schwartz, and unidentified.)

Streisand fans who like to collect should note that although this album and CD are both out of print, you can still purchase the Streisand songs from this album on two other CDs: Both “House of Flowers” and “Ding Dong!” appear on Just for the Record. And “Ding Dong!” appears on the 2002 CD Duets.

End.

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