"I want to make music for everyone. It must be enjoyed by all. Otherwise it is pointless."
Tracks 1-11 recorded 1967/1968 and released on Decca singles and Lp DL-4986/DL-74986. Tracks 12-23 recorded 1967/1968 and released on Polydor singles and Lp DL-75059. Reissued on compact disc May 15, 2001.
Original recordings produced by Milt Gabler
Reissue produced by Eliot Goshman
Engineered by Peter Klemt at Polydor Studios in Hamburg, Germany
Research and annotations by Steve Kolanjian
Artwork by John Sellards
All tracks mastered at Taragon Sound and Video Studios, Deer Park, New York January 2001 by Eliot Goshman
All tracks are from the original 2 track stereo master tapes.
Taragon TARCD-1083 (deleted)
Love That Bert Kaempfert
Remember when you first heard the Bert Kaempfert sound? Perhaps it was one of his earlier hits... "Danke Schoen" or "Wonderland By Night"; and suddenly you were aware of music that reached out and grabbed hold of you - a lead trumpet that soured to dramatic heights... a sense of tempo that invited you to dance or listen with equal appeal. That's when you probably said, "Love that Bert Kaempfert" - and joined a fan club of millions in every corner of the world.
But maybe you're one of the rare ones who haven't yet caught the message, and this newest Bert Kaempfert album is your introduction to his music. If so, then you're in for a genuine treat. For the Kaempfert touch has established itself as one of the most persuasive in popular music today.
Bert takes any kind of song - new or old - and makes it his own. As a hit composer himself, he respects the original work of his fellow composers. So a Bert Kaempfert arrangement give the basic melody its due. Yet, somehow, the song emerges with a new gloss to it, and this collection points that up beautifully.
Take the Duke Ellington classic Caravan, with its haunting melody and inconsistently exotic beat. They're all there - and more - in the Kaempfert rendition that has moved upon the charts as a hit single as excitingly as Bert keeps that caravan swinging musically.
The Sheik Of Araby is another vintage number (one that will recall to many the era of movie idol Rudolph Valentino). And, here too, Bert makes magic with the sands of time to give this oldie a fresh sound.
From the talented collaboration of Axel Stordahl, Paul Weston and Sammy Cahn came I Should Care to brighten the Forties. Bert Kaempfert re-polishes that standard, as well as the lilting Again, The Glory Of Love, and others. There's even a country tune that crossed the line into the pop area - Just As Much As Ever - and, topping all of this, some new Bert Kaempfert compositions. The First waltz is a delightful jazz waltz featuring brass, and Fred Moch's singing trumpet is featured imaginatively on the beautiful My Love For You and the toe-tapping Steppin' Pretty.
Whether you be a new fan or old admirer, prepare to echo the affection and respect for talent that's summed up in the phrase, LOVE THAT BERT KAEMPFERT!
My Way Of Life
Musician... magician. The words even sound alike. And they can mean very much the same thing when you're talking about Bert Kaempfert.
Musician he is, without a doubt. Creator of an exciting and distinctive "big band sound," it immediately stamps any recording as his. And not because they are all cast from the same mold. Far from it. In fact, the startling thing about the Bert Kaempfert success has been the brilliant variety of arrangements and tempos – each uniquely suited to the particular song.
That kind of musicianship is a form of magic in itself, of course. But perhaps the most impressive touch of the magician comes in Bert's continuing creativity as a composer. It is not unusual for an orchestra leader to find the time and inspiration to write a fine tune. Some have written several. But probably none has ever proven as consistently prolific in that challenging area as Bert Kaempfert.
Last year, he crowned a succession of remarkable songs with "Strangers In The Night," and it became a classic overnight. Now he is back with a new "biggy" that could well repeat on the charts.
It is the title song of this album – MY WAY OF LIFE – and in addition to being amonth the most beautiful of all Kaempfert melodies, it's one of his best arrangements. The flavor is strangely moving as a truly beautiful Kaempfert ballad can be, and considered by Bert to be one of his best efforts.
Other Bert Kaempfert compositions in this album include the colorful RIDIN' RAINBOWS... ON MY LONELY WAY - a lovely modern waltz... and a lush guitar and string supported portrait of our Southern neighbor in MEMORIES OF MEXICO.
As always, Bert also does handsomely on the works of others. The fine standard, MR. SANDMAN, emerges in a delightful dance tempo that is highlighted by a delicate flute... STOMPING AT THE SAVOY is up tempo featuring the trumpet solo... and FASCINATION offers an inviting slow fox trot tempo as it builds to a spectacular finish.
Happily for all of us, Bert Kaempfert has found his way of life in making music for our pleasure. "My Way Of Life" makes it abundantly evident that his talent remains at their peak.