Three Suns - 26 Original Classics (Soft and Sweet / Midnight For Two)-CDs-Palm Beach Bookery
Three Suns

Three Suns - 26 Original Classics (Soft and Sweet / Midnight For Two)

Regular price $23.98

26 Original Classics  (Soft and Sweet / Midnight For Two)  Two Albums on One CD

By The Three Suns

Very Good Condition

A Review:

The Three Suns, an instrumental trio of the 1940's and 1950's, performed easy listening music that usually featured an unusual combination of accordion, electric jazz guitar, and organ. They honed their skills in the 1940's playing night clubs and hotel lounges, mostly on the east coast from Washington, D.C., up to Boston. In 1944, their recording of "Twilight Time" sold in the millions and pushed them to national prominence and into the ears of future first lady Mamie Eisenhower, who is said to have counted them as her all-time favorite music group.

The Three Suns were a family affair, founded by brothers Al and Morty Nevins on guitar and accordion, respectively, and cousin Artie Dunn on organ. In 1944, their recording of Morty's original song, "Twilight Time" (later a hit for the Platters), sold in the millions and pushed them to national prominence and also into the ears of future first lady Mamie Eisenhower, who is said to have counted them as her all-time favorite music group. In 1954, Al retired from touring with the group and began producing the group's recordings. Brother Morty followed soon after, and this signalled a change in the sound of the groups recordings. Compared to their earlier efforts, which were rather lean and stripped-down arrangements, the Suns' work as the 1950's progressed showed more experimentation, sometimes lush and beautiful, sometimes more quirky and comical, with various offbeat sound effects, slight chordal dissonance, and nearly pre-psychedelic organ and accordian.

In the late 1950's, Al and Don Kirshner went on to form Aldon Music, a publishing company based in the famous Brill Building. In the 1960's, Aldon published hundreds of hits by the likes of Carole King, Neil Sedaka, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil and others. Al died in 1965 after a few years of heart problems that had forced him to retire from even producing the Three Suns. Morty died in 1990 and Artie in 1996.

I myself love both albums featured in this twofer CD. First off, audiophiles should not be disappointed by the sonic clarity on this CD. The CD booklet contains some background information on the band written for the CD release, and although that information does not state whether or not the original master tapes were used in the making of the CD, for all practical purposes, the quality of the recordings here make it seem as if they were. The original liner notes from each album are also included. I also love the cover to 1955's SOFT AND SWEET, featuring a soft and sweet living doll reclining on a lavishly expensive sofa with Fido nearby, and the back cover to 1957's MIDNIGHT FOR TWO, showing a nattily-dressed couple flying in tandem through a starry midnight blue sky on what looks like a rocket-powered flying broom.

As for the musical selections, being a big fan of beautiful orchestral music, I prefer SOFT AND SWEET, which is more the romantic mood music album of the two. It contains several of my favorite standards, such as "Flamingo", "Moonlight in Vermont", "Stars Fell On Alabama", and "Skylark", all with gorgeous strings complementing the Suns' unique combination of accordion, organ, and guitar. One track, "A Sinner Kissed An Angel", was co-written by Hal David, later the lyricist of Bacharach-David fame. This is no doubt one of his earliest efforts, although of course, no lyrics are sung here in this recording.

MIDNIGHT FOR TWO was no doubt recorded more with dancing in mind, as several tracks are lively and upbeat. "I Don't Stand A Ghost Of A Chance With You" begins with appropriately eerie ethereal organ and bells. The lone original song on the CD, Morty Nevins' "Intermission Time", contains cartoon-like sound effects and not surprisingly, what reminds one of an old theater organ. The CD ends with a bouncy rendition of the old Rimsky-Korsakoff composition, "Song of India", which is one of two bonus tracks, the other being a fairly romantic and dreamy version of "April In Portugal".

This is not very lush orchestral music, and I would suggest looking to Percy Faith or Mantovani if you prefer your instrumental standards drowned in string arrangements. I myself sometimes do, and therefore I also own almost all of the Percy Faith CD twofers thankfully reissued over the last ten years. It's just that the organ and accordion are the hallmarks of the sound of the Three Suns and are not to everyone's taste. But for me, this CD has become an instant favorite of mine, especially SOFT AND SWEET.

So this long and windy review concludes with my overwhelming recommendation to buy this CD if you are a fan of mood music from its golden era, the 1950's.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. There Is No Greater Love
  2. A Sinner Kissed an Angel
  3. Moonlight in Vermont
  4. Flamingo
  5. The River Seine
  6. Velvet Moon
  7. Stars Fell on Alabama
  8. Touch of Your Lips
  9. Autumn Nocturne
  10. Blue Orchids
  11. Skylark
  12. It's Dawn Again
  13. The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise
  14. When Yuba Plays the Rumba on the Tuba
  15. Memory Lane
  16. Blue Tango
  17. I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance With You
  18. Intermission Time
  19. Stella by Starlight
  20. Cumana
  21. Midnight for Two
  22. Ain't Misbehavin'
  23. Let's Call the Whole Thing Off
  24. The Very Thought of You
  25. April in Portugal [*]
  26. Song of India [*]

Product details

  • Audio CD (July 27, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Collectables
  • ASIN: B00000JJAS

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