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Get Happy / Jenny Lin


Release Date: 10/30/2012 
Label:  Steinway & Sons   Catalog #: 30011  
Composer:  Irving BerlinEarl WildStefan MalzewRichard Rodgers,   ... 
Performer:  Jenny Lin
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews


Jenny Lin is one of those pianists who deserves a major career for the sheer intelligence and musicality of everything that she does. This collection of show tunes arranged by virtuoso pianists offers the perfect combination of the familiar (the melodies) and the new (the arrangements). The result is a tribute not just to Lin’s clever programming and impeccable pianism, but also to the many arrangers she has chosen (or commissioned) for this project, including some very major colleagues such as André Previn, Stephen Hough, and Marc-André Hamelin.

The program, 18 numbers in all, is organized principally around the work of Stephen Hough (Carousel Waltz, March of the
Read more Siamese Children, My Favorite Things, and Hello, Young Lovers) and, naturally, Earl Wild (all Gershwin—I Got Rhythm, Embraceable You, and Fascinatin’ Rhythm); but who knew that Alexis Weissenberg transcribed Richard Rodgers (Lover)? Dick Hyman’s two Irving Berlin arrangements, Blue Skies and Cheek to Cheek, are delicious, while Stephen Prutsman (Get Happy) and Greg Anderson (So In Love) offered their contributions especially for this collection.

Some of the arrangements, aside from their virtuoso demeanor, are relatively straight transcriptions of the originals, but others are independent works conceived on a grander scale. These include Marc-André Hamelin’s Meditation on “Laura,” not strictly a show tune, but taken from David Raksin’s classic film score, and Stefan Malzew’s Eliza in Ascot, a full-blown and brilliant set of variations on a theme from My Fair Lady. Lin plays this music “con amore,” with warmth, a generous tone, and a real romantic lilt that never turns tasteless; and she’s got virtuosity to burn.

Steinway’s sonics are magnificently natural, a tribute to their pianos, to the glorious legacy of the American musical theater, to a galaxy of great pianist/composers, but most of all to Jenny Lin for putting it all together and presenting it so stylishly. I’ve played this disc several times already in just a few days, and I have no doubt that you will, too.

– David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com

“Get Happy,” Jenny Lin’s new recital told me. “Come on,” I said back. “Make me”. Then it did. Yes: “Get Happy” gets me happy. I’ve tried it on several occasions, even almost medicinally once in a very bad mood. It works. Doctors should prescribe it. The medicine is not at all mysterious: take classic Broadway show-tunes like “Blue Skies”, “Begin the Beguine”, “Blue Moon” and “My Favorite Things” mix in a few other delicious morsels from musicals and movies. Then pare them down for the piano and dress them up in glittering costumes designed by performers who live and breathe jazz. Finally hand the whole thing over to Jenny Lin, one of the best new pianists of the century so far. How could it fail to make me happy? ? ?Here’s Earl Wild’s high-octane, sporty rewrite of “I Got Rhythm”; here’s jazz legend Dick Hyman riffing on Irving Berlin’s “Cheek to Cheek”; here’s Stephen Hough’s frankly fantastic transcription of the Carousel Waltz. Jenny Lin asked a few of her friends to contribute, too, and they provided still more riches. Stephen Prutsman is tasked with “Get Happy”, of which Lin says in the booklet, “One has to feel like Liberace when playing this!” Marc-André Hamelin supplies a wonderfully introspective Meditation on the main theme from Otto Preminger’s classic film Laura. This is not the same side of Hamelin which one hears in his finger-shredding études; instead of giving pianists nightmares this short work should steal into their dreams. ? ?In Jenny Lin’s hands, the hour passes like a gift from the gods of happy. She’s got it all: a voracious appetite for lesser-known music, total technical command of even the most difficult music, a keen emotional ear, and a spirit of adventure and good cheer. She sounds completely at ease in this idiom, her fingers unbroken by the cascades of notes which composers like Earl Wild poured all over the page. More importantly, she has a great sense of fun, wit, and, oh, what’s the word? Happiness. That’s the word. Borrowing the Sono Luminus label’s studio, the Steinway recording engineers have brought a flattering sound to their piano. Listen: I can’t promise that this album is a medically viable substitute for, say, antidepressants or a loving companion, but it really is an outright joy. It’s something every piano collection should have. For sixty-four minutes, you’ll really believe it’s nothing but blue skies from now on.

– Brian Reinhart, MusicWeb International

"After listening to the CD, one cannot help but wear a smile and tingle with goose bumps. Uplifting and effervescent." – Christie Grimstad, ConcertoNet Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Betsy: Blue Skies by Irving Berlin
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1927; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 1 Minutes 21 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Dick Hyman 
2.
Virtuoso Etudes (7) after Gershwin: no 1, I got rhythm by Earl Wild
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950/1976; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 2 Minutes 18 Secs. 
3.
Eliza in Ascot [after "My Fair Lady"] by Stefan Malzew
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 4 Minutes 59 Secs. 
4.
Love Me Tonight: Lover by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1932 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 3 Minutes 24 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Alexis Weissenberg 
5.
Jubilee: Begin the beguine by Cole Porter
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 3 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Cy Walter 
6.
Sweeney Todd: Johanna by Stephen Sondheim
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1979; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 2 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Christopher O'Riley 
7.
Carousel: Waltz by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1945; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 6 Minutes 18 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Stephen Hough 
8.
The King and I: March of the Siamese Children by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1951; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 3 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Stephen Hough 
9.
Manhattan Melodrama: Blue Moon by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1934; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 2 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: André Previn 
10.
Top Hat: Cheek to Cheek by Irving Berlin
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 2 Minutes 8 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Dick Hyman 
11.
Virtuoso Etudes (7) after Gershwin: no 4, Embraceable you by Earl Wild
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950/1976; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 3 Minutes 13 Secs. 
12.
Meditaton on "Laura" [after Raksin] by Marc-André Hamelin
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012  
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 5 Minutes 21 Secs. 
13.
Porgy and Bess: Bess, you is my woman now by George Gershwin
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 5 Minutes 52 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: David Saperton 
14.
Virtuoso Etudes (7) after Gershwin: no 6, Fascinatin' rhythm by Earl Wild
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950/1976; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 1 Minutes 33 Secs. 
15.
Kiss Me, Kate: So in Love by Cole Porter
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1948; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 4 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Greg Anderson 
16.
The Sound of Music: My favorite things by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1959; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 3 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Stephen Hough 
17.
The King and I: Hello, young lovers by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1951; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 2 Minutes 27 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Stephen Hough 
18.
9:15 Revue: Get Happy by Harold Arlen
Performer:  Jenny Lin (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1930; USA 
Date of Recording: 5/31 - 6/2, 2012 
Venue:  Studio A, Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia 
Length: 4 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Notes: Arrangement: Stephen Prutsman 

Featured Sound Samples

Blue Skies (Berlin, arr. Hyman): (from Betsy)
Eliza in Ascot (Loewe, arr. Malzew): (from My Fair Lady)
Johanna (Sondheim, arr. O'Riley): (from Sweeney Todd)
Carousel Waltz (Rodgers, arr. Hough): (from Carousel)
Blue Moon (Rodgers, arr. Previn): (from Manhattan Melodrama)
Cheek to Cheek (Berlin, arr. Hyman): (from Top Hat)
Virtuoso Etudes after Gershwin (Wild): No 6: Fascinatin' Rhythm
Get Happy (Arlen, arr. Prutsman): (from The Nine-Fifteen Revue)

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  20 Customer Reviews )
 Piano stylings at their best October 21, 2014 By David M. (Winona, MN) See All My Reviews "Jenny Lin's playing is superb, but her stylings which she carefully selected of Broadway melodies are most superior to almost any show tunes album. I heard one on public radio and ordered the album, and each was a delight. Highly recommend "Get Happy"!" Report Abuse
 Get Happy Jenny Lin October 26, 2013 By M. Formosa (Victoria, BC) See All My Reviews "Nice music,but not something I would sit down to listen to.This kind of music is good for when you have company over for dinner." Report Abuse
 Outstanding. From Giddy to the Sublime October 22, 2013 By Daniel H. (Cincinnati, OH) See All My Reviews "I loved this on the first listen. I have listened to it 5 times since. I grew up with classical piano music in the house. My mom played all the time. Track 11. Virtuoso ... Embraceable You just blows me away. It touches me deeply. Thank you to Jenny for this wonderful music." Report Abuse
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