|Courtesy of the Yahoo Group Songbirds, this review from the Jersey Jazz Journal:
PEGGY KING Metropolitan Room, New York April 29, 2014
By Joe Lang
Many people of a certain age remember viewing The George Gobel Show, a popular television show in the 1950s. One of the most appealing aspects of the show was the segments when Gobel introduced "pretty, perky Peggy King," and we were treated to tasteful vocalizing from this fine singer. That was not her only mass exposure as a performer, but was the credit that comes to mind when most of us hear her name.
While she continued to have a career in music, King's recorded output was far too limited for a singer of her quality. She was among the many talented vocalists who was pushed to the margins by the onset of rock, and the changing tastes in popular music. By the early 1960s, she took a leave of absence from her singing career to raise a family. Two memorable albums by King released on the Stash label in the mid-1980s heralded her return to performing.
Now 84, Peggy King has once again resumed singing for audiences. Last year she joined forces with pianist Andy Kahn and his All-Star Jazz Trio for a few performances in her hometown of Philadelphia. The response was enthusiastic, and she has subsequently started to make the scene in New York. Based on her April 29 appearance at the Metropolitan Rom, there should be banner headlines shouting "Welcome Back Peggy King!"
The set opened with a few swinging selections by Kahn, bassist Bruce Kaminsky and drummer Bruce Klauber, a group aptly named the All-Star Jazz Trio.. These gentlemen play regularly in Philadelphia, and are a tight group. Kahn is a terrific improviser, and proved to be an equally adept accompanist when Peggy King arrived on stage following a video clip of her singing "You Took Advantage of Me" from a 1950s Steve Allen TV show.
From her opening number, "While We're Young," it was apparent that King still produces vocal magic. Her voice was smooth and strong, her phrasing was exquisite, and she exuded a warm and relaxed presence.
As she proceeded through her program, singing one fine tune after another, King provided an occasional anecdote that enhanced the occasion. She mentioned that Arthur Hamilton first approached her with his new song, "Cry Me a River," believing it to be well-suited to her, but it was rejected by the man who controlled material at Columbia records, Mitch Miller, who dismissed the song by stating that "we will never record a song at Columbia records that includes the word plebeian!" Of course his judgment in this case proved to be faulty, as it went on to become a great standard that was recorded countless times, most memorably by Julie London. She then gave a masterful reading of the song.
King proved to be equally comfortable with rhythm songs and ballads. She included many wonderful tunes that seem to be mostly overlooked today, selections like "Born to Be Blue," "Wait Till You See Him," "Maybe You'll Be There," and "What Is There to Say," the last serving as her closing piece.
The synergy between Peggy King and Kahn's trio was just what you like to experience when attending a performance like this. They were obviously having a fun time, and that effectively transferred itself to the audience.
King, like other stellar performers such as Marilyn Maye and Pinky Winters, has retained the performing excellence that was first exhibited when she hit the scene over 60 years ago. Now it is time for Peggy King to get back into a recording studio, and spread her tasty vocalizing to a wider audience.
We receive word today (4/25/14) from both Alan Eichler and Andy Kahn that there is now a page on Amazon.com devoted exclusively to the music of Peggy King. Click here!
Courtesy of Alan Eichler and the Yahoo group Songbirds:
Peggy King alert
Sat,, Mar 29, 2014 3:26 pm (PDT). Posted by:
David Kenney will feature Peggy King on his popular Sunday night show "Everything Old Is New Again," this Sunday starting at 9 PM Eastern on WBAI. It can also be heard on his internet site: http://www.oldisnew.org/
April will be a busy month for Peggy -- Sunday, April 6 at the Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club outside D.C.; Wednesday, April 9 at the Metropolitan Room in NYC; Friday and Saturday, April 18-19 at the Hedgerow Theatre in Rose Valley, PA; and Tuesday, April 29 back at the Metropolitan Room. Pretty good for 84 (after 30 years of "retirement")!
Peggy King reviewed
Sun, Mar 30, 2014, 3:47 pm (PDT). Posted by:
From the March issue of "Friends of Alec Wilder," edited by Rob Heller:
Peggy King, star of stage, screen and vinyl, and a "gigantic fan" of Alec Wilder recently opened her first New York concert in four decades with a fabulous uptempo, rhythmic take on While We're Young. Supported by her regular Philadelphia All-Star Jazz Trio at Broadway supper club 54 Below, Ms. King, as evidenced on YouTube, was in excellent voice, sounding uncannily like her much younger self. In the 1950s Ms. King worked for Mitch Miller at Columbia and waxed a few Wilder tunes. Her first record, on MGM, sported a B-side of There's Doubt in My Mind (But Hope in My Heart) by Arnold Sundgaard and Al Lafett, a Wilder alias. Of While We're Young King says, "I love that song. It's hard to sing; people think you're singing a wrong note." In the '60s King put out I'll Be Around as a 45 on Roulette. "I think I'll Be Around is one of the four great pop tunes of all time, and I love singing it," says King, who first heard the song at age 12 via the Mills Brothers 78. "It takes a certain kind of wistfulness to sing Alec," attests King, adding, "He's in a class with Rodgers and Hart and Cole Porter." She looks forward to including some Wilder on the new CD currently underway with her trio.
|Good friend Marle Becker sends along this information regarding Peggy's upcoming appearance in the Big Apple at the Metropolitan Room, 34 West 22nd Street, on February 23, 2014. Click here for complete details and ticket information.|
|Good friend Marle Becker alerts us to the following review of Peggy's appearance at 54 Below in New York City on the evening of December 30, 2013 . . .
December 30, 2013
Reviewed by Joe Regan Jr.
For those of us of a certain age, we remember Peggy King as “perky Peggy King” of the "George Gobel Show," one of the big hit television series of the 1950’s. She was also a stellar Columbia Records recording star, guest starred on several great 50's television series, and appeared in many Broadway musicals on the road and especially at the St. Louis Muni. Contemporary people will recognize her from her recent vocal appearance in the HBO special “Behind the Candelabra” on which she sang “When Liberace Winks At Me.” King, now in her early 80's, lived for many years in Philadelphia, had not sung in public for many, many years. She retired from singing when she married a prominent Pennsylvania businessman. Now widowed, one night she walked into a local jazz club and was impressed with the All-Star-Jazz-Trio, consisting of Andy Kahn, piano, Bruce Kaminsky, bassist, and Bruce Klauber, drums. Inspired by their playing, King contacted them and began to sit in at local gigs.
The act at 54 Below, which was attended by many New York cabaret performers, composers and critics, began with a wonderful series of instrumentals: “Stompin’ at the Savoy,” “Lil Darling” (featuring Kaminsky,) “Yesterdays” and “Caravan” spotlighting Klauber. Then we were treated to a television appearance of young Peggy King on the Steve Allen TV show doing a great swing version of “You Took Advantage of Me.” King made her entrance, singing “While We’re Young” demonstrating that her voice has lost none of its special purity. There didn’t seem to be changes in keys as some singers are forced to do when they reach her age, and her phrasing and acting chops were a revelation. She gave a brief history of her years as a band singer for Charlie Spivak and how she auditioned and won the female singer part in a Mel Torme TV series. She described how much she learned from Torme and honored him by singing a great “Born To Be Blue.”
What followed was a series of her own personal favorites, most of them sung with the unfamiliar verses. When she sang “Where or When,” the years melted away right in front of your eyes and she was suddenly the young Peggy King we remembered. She also did a wonderful thing that I have only heard Beryl Davis do years ago on live TV on Peter Potter‘s “Juke Box Jury.“ After she had sung the familiar chorus of the song, and her great musicians did their virtuoso work on the melody, she sang the verse before she sang her second full chorus. Kahn’s arrangements and accompaniment were exquisite on this song and every other one!
Arthur Hamilton was a good friend of hers and he wrote one song especially for her which Mitch Miller wouldn’t let her record. “Cry Me A River” was a tour de force of dramatic intensity and muted power. And her second Hamilton selection was “Any Questions,” which was the only full musical number in Jack Webb’s “Dragnet” series. Almost all the standards sung were performed with the seldom sung verses and she elicited Brava’s after several. Brought back for the crowd demanded encore, she chose an obscure Vernon Duke-E. Y. Harburg number that she had given to Kahn only two weeks ago, stating that she was a good friend of “Yip.” It was the beautiful “What Is There To Say,” and she artfully negotiated Harburg’s tricky but appropriate rhymes.
One of her future engagements will be a celebration of her next Birthday at the RRazzRoom in New Hope, Pennsylvania on February 16th. There are several of her 2013 appearances on youtube.com and you can see her performing with The All-Star-Jazz-Trio. All I can say, is welcome back Peggy King! We need this kind of purity today!
*Photos below: Maryann Lopinto
|From Anthony DiFlorio we have the following alert . . .
........... Did you know that "Cry Me A River" was written by Arthur Hamilton for Peggy King? And that Mitch Miller would not let her record it for Columbia Records because it included the word 'plebian'? True! Will she sing it at her concert on December1st at the Ethical Society? Only The All Star Jazz Trio know for sure. Come and hear for yourself.
Wesley A. Smith, Peggy King fan and long time devotee of popular music from an earlier era, sends along this copy of an ad from a trade publication promoting Peggy's recording of two songs from Zero Hour, the movie in which Peggy had a prominent supporting role. The exact orgin of the advertisement is unknown, but it likely appeared in Billboard, trade paper of the music and recording industry for many years.
..............Anthony DiFlorio alerts us to a complete version of When Liberace Winks at Me now available on YouTube, although initially Peggy was not credited properly by the individual who posted the video. A shorter version with intermittent commentary was used as part of a British documentary, and it has been available on our Video Vault page, but you can now view the original in its entirety by clicking here. This video is also available to enjoy on Peggy's page of the WYYR.com website here. .
Peggy's close friend and archivist Anthony DiFlorio informs us that Amazon.com have now released season two of the 50's/60's television series Maverick starring James Garner. The 2nd season concluded with The Strange Journey of Jenny Hill featuring Peggy King. Click here to go to Amazon.com for complete details.
Peggy King is to be the next grand marshall of the world famous Doo Dah Parade in Ocean City, New Jersey on April 13, 2013 and also honored with a lifetime achievement award by the city. A press conference will be held in Ocean City on April 12, 2013, and Peggy will be speaking at the event. For futher information as it becomes available check www.WYYR.com.
Mr. Anthony DiFlorio, lifelong Peggy King fan and archivist, has made a personal appeal to Ron Simon of the Paley Center for Media in New York City, reproduced here with Mr. DiFlorio's permission:
Anthony DiFlorio III
|Chris Valenti of WYYR.com has provided information on the next two editions of Peggy's show Off the Cuff. On Sunday, May 27th, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. EDT, Pat Boone will be paying a return visit to chat with Peggy and Chris. He will be introducing his new CD featuring songs originally introduced by the Ink Spots, the popular 40's singing group. Chris will be playing selections from the CD for the first half hour of the program before Pat joins in via the telephone.
Then, on Sunday evening, June 24th, Peter Marshall will be returning to chat once again with Peggy and Chris. He will be bringing along his latest CD titled Let's Be Frank With a Touch of Tommy, Peter's tribute to Sinatra and the Dorsey years.
Remember that these and all other shows in the series in which Peggy has participated on WYYR.com are archived on the website and can be downloaded for convenient listening at any time following the original live broadcast date. Below is a recent photo taken by Chris' nephew of Peggy's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
|........ .....Host Chris Valenti of WYYR.com has announced that Peggy will be joining him on his Sunday Night Special online interview program as a guest on a regular basis starting Sunday, June 19, 2011, at 7:00 p.m. EDT. Dates of subsequent appearances will be announced on the WYYR.com website. Click here to learn much more and hear Peggy's personal invitation to you to listen to Chris' program and her collection of fascinating stories. Peggy's was a most colorful and interesting singing and acting career on television, in the movies and on stage......|
|Peggy King's good friend and friend of this website, Ronnie Allen, has created a musical slide show featuring sixty-one images of Peggy and family, along with three songs from among the many that Peggy recorded over the years. Click Peggy's picture above to view this new feature. Java script must be enabled on your browser in order to view the show, and pressing F5 on your keyboard one or more times at any time throughout the display will change the song Peggy sings.|
,,,,,,,,.TThe February 2010 issue of InTune International magazine published in the UK features a glowing review by Dan Singer of Peggy's 1984 album, Oh, What a Memory We Made, along with her 1985 album, Peggy Sings Jerome Kern. Both albums were reissued on a single CD sometime in the 1990's, by a now-defunct record company named Jazz Classics. Click here to read Mr. Singer's singularly enthusiastic comments.
|New Peggy King CD Released
On July 21, 2009, Submarine Records based in Enfield, Middlesex in the UK, released a CD entitled Peggy King and the Andre Previn Trio. The disc features four complete fifteen- minute shows in the series The Navy Swings, produced here in the U.S. during the late 1950's. Peggy and many other prominent performers of the era contributed their talents to such public service radio programming promoting recruitment in the national services, civil defense, and the sale of United States savings bonds. Programs were produced for the federal government, which then distributed them to radio stations throughout the country via vinyl transcriptions, usually sixteen inches in diameter. Radio stations were expected to place such programs in their broadcast schedules sometime during the week in order to meet, at least in part, the public service requirements of their operating licenses. Click here or on the image below to read the liner notes accompanying this new CD, together with the complete track listing. The CD may be ordered online from CD Universe or Amazon.com.
Please note: The first copies of this CD received by your editor and by Peggy King fan Herb Stark did not play on conventional CD players. We advised Submarine Records of this problem, and received this response from them:
Anyone who does buy a faulty copy has only to return the disc or part of the packaging to us (address on the packaging) and we will be more than happy to replace it by return.
|Hello to everyone here who loves Peggy King and her wonderful music!
I'm Ronnie Allen and I had the pleasure of doing a one hour in-studio interview with Peggy back in 2007 in the studios of WNJC in Washington Township, New Jersey. The interview was recorded for the Jersey Girls Sing website and was also broadcast on that radio station as well as on the internet. You can hear the interview by visiting this page:
At the end of our interview show Peggy did something that to me was truly incredible. She honored me (and her fans as well) by doing a live performance of the wonderful George Gershwin standard "Someone To Watch Over Me." We didn't have an orchestra in the studio (The room wasn't big enough and I couldn't afford to pay for one anyway!), so she sang it against a piano track. We were recording the interview show (It was not live radio.), so she had the luxury of doing a re-take if necessary. She began to sing and about ten seconds into it she said, "Ronnie, can we do it again?" I didn't notice anything wrong, but she didn't feel it was "right," so I said, "Of course"! Then we did "Take Two"!
A few weeks ago I created a Record Page on which I have samples of many different records. Tonight I made the decision to add Peggy's recording ("Take Two" on my show) to my Record Page, even though it is unreleased. I hope that at least some of you will listen to it not once but several times. I say that for a reason. I have a Top 100 chart on my page which is based on the popularity of the individual records. If enough of you listen to Peggy's recording, it will not only make the Top 100 but will climb high. Okay, here's that page:
Let me add one more thing. Peggy and I have become close friends. I was instrumental in coaxing her into making an appearance at the Friends Of Old Time Radio convention in Newark, New Jersey a few years ago, and a lot of wonderful things have happened to Peggy as a result of that appearance. One of the most wonderful things has been Al Kopec's willingness to create a website for her. Yes, if the truth must be told, Peggy wasn't initially thrilled with the idea. She's not really a computer person and she wasn't sure that she wanted to go through with it. Eventually I stopped twisting her arm. Then, one day, out of the blue she called me up and said, "Ronnie, I've decided I'd like to go through with a website. What do I do?"
I called up Al Kopec and, well, the rest is history!
I feel so blessed to have Peggy as a part of my life and I am so thrilled that her singing voice is still so incredible. If any of you would like to e-mail me about Peggy or anything else that you see on my pages, please do so at [email protected]
Thanks so very much!
|On May 13, 2009, Peggy journeyed to nearby Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, to entertain the residents of Bryn Mawr Terrace, a retirement home for older adults. Bryn Mawr Terrace public relations manager Nan Lansinger was kind enough to send along some pictures that she took at the event. Just click here to see Peggy during her performance.|
Sepia Records (UK) have announced the release on CD of the soundtrack from the original TV production of Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates from 1958. Peggy King fans will be pleased to know that, in addition to the soundtrack of this musical in which she co-starred with Tab Hunter, the CD will include sixteen selections from Peggy's own 1950's catalog of recordings. The CD will be accompanied by a 16-page booklet with many behind-the-scenes photographs of the television production obtained from the personal collection of Tab Hunter. For complete details on the scheduled November 11, 2008 release, just click on the link below:
|For those of you who receive the Encore West channel on cable or by satellite, you could have caught Peggy as Jenny Hill in the episode of Maverick from 1960 entitled The Strange Journey of Peggy Hill. The program was shown at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 14, 2008, and it may be repeated at some time in the future, so watch your local listings. We are indebted to Peggy King fan Herb Stark for alerting us to the recent broadcast of the classic television Maverick episode written especially for our Peggy.|
|On October 21, 2007, Ronnie Allen conducted an hour long, live in-studio interview with Peggy for broadcast over Philadelphia area radio station WNJC. That program is archived on Ronnie's Radio Page of the Jersey Girls Sing website. Click below to go the site where you can hear the entire interview, as well as take a nostalgic journey through the world of popular music and other music makers of the 1950's and 1960's.|
|Jersey Girls Sing|
|In August 2007, Peggy journeyed from her home in Philadelphia to the Los Angeles area to sing at the Plaza Sweets free summer concert series at the Beverly Hills Civic Auditorium. Click on Peggy's image below to see much more of Peggy's participation in the event.|