Welcome to the launch of VocalStandards.com! So what’s the plan for this site?

It’s a place to revel in, and explore the Vocal Standards… the intersection of the great American songbook during the Rat Pack era and the re-emergence of this great music over the last 15 or so years. A place to discuss, explore and review the artists, songwriters, songs, albums and mid-century lifestyle of the era that produced this wonderful music.

I may offer a post on books, movies and even food every now and again, but first and foremost this site is about the music… the vocal standards from Billie Holiday to Jonny Blu and the constellation of performing stars in between. It’s going to be fun!

Hey, just to be clear; I look for this to be a conversation… a venue where we can exchange views and opinions. I don’t begin to “know it all” about this giant musical genre… I’m just a guy that loves listening to this music, has been doing so for many years and can’t get enough!

I will toss out opinions and perspectives — views and reviews aplenty about the songs, performers, and the trappings of the vocal standards genre … I’ll turn the tables and ask you for your opinions, likes and dislikes too. Who rendered the best performance of “Lullaby of Birdland”? Which streaming music service does the best job with the standards? Is it really appropriate to make duet titles with great artists who have passed away? Which of the cross-over artists kick it and which… suck? (sorry, some of them really do suck)… and tons of other topics.

I’ve wanted to do this site for several years but my “live on the razor’s edge” high-tech biz dev life always schemed to get in the way. When I finally sat down this summer to give it a go, I had a brainstorming session to make sure there is enough content — that a Vocal Standards web destination made sense. In a matter of about 45 minutes I had outlined 65 post/article ideas and realized this is a no-brainer … we have a lot to talk about and I should just get on with it!

Some of the topics rolling out in the coming weeks…

  • How I break down the vocal standards genre into the categories you see on this site  …  the Classic Artists, the New Guard, the emerging class of Fresh Faces and Crossover Artists performing the American Songbook today.
  • Speaking of fresh faces… a Nikki Yanofsky review – concert appearance, her music and available material.
  • A series of posts on the best duet titles, albums and artist tag teams… as well as the not so great teams
  • It’s time to move past “Mr Bojangles” and “The Candy Man” to the real Sammy Davis Jr. — he rocks!
  • How I found my way to the Rat Pack standards… I’ll tell you how I got here and ask how you made this scene?
  • A series reviewing music sources for the vocal standards – internet radio stations, Pandora, Sirius/XM, DirectTV, iTunes, Rhapsody, MOG, Napster… the good, bad and ugly for streaming, downloading and consuming the standards.
  • Have you ever actually listened to the lyrics of some of these songs? It’s weird, wild stuff… “Wives and Lovers”, “Lean Baby” or Bobby Darin’s “Artificial Flowers” … Wow…what other songs are rife with co-dependent or just plain strange lyrics?

….it just keeps going. Drop by when you can and share your knowledge and opinions… there will always be something new getting tossed into the Vocal Standards conversation and it will be fun to have you here.

There’s a lot to cover, so let’s get to it!

  • Sinatra#1

    Cool site. I’m looking forward to seeing more. How often do you plan to post?

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for stopping by #1! I plan to post new material 3 times a week at a minimum … shooting for a major post early in the week, a review or a lighter piece mid week and then something off the wall as we go into the weekend. Come back when you can and let me know what you think.

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