GYPSY MEETS GYPSY – SEPIA
Sandra Church: Let Me Entertain You (tracks 1 – 12)
1. LET ME ENTERTAIN YOU
2. WILD ROSE
3. HOW COME YOU DO ME LIKE YOU DO
4. THAT'S WHAT I LIKE
5. OOH, THAT KISS
7. YOU'VE GOT TO SEE MAMA EV'RY NIGHT
8. SHE DIDN'T SAY YES
9. WHEN MY SUGAR WALKS DOWN THE STREET
10. MY HEART BELONGS TO DADDY
11. HOW'D YOU LIKE TO SPOON WITH ME
12. FAN TAN FANNY
Gypsy Rose Lee: That's Me All Over (tracks 13 - 24)
13. I CAN'T STRIP TO BRAHMS
14. A HOUSE IS NOT A HOME
15. I CAN COOK TOO
16. RING OF KEYS
17. THAT'S GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME
18. THE OTHER WOMAN
19. PSYCHOLOGY OF A STRIP-TEASE DANCER
21. MR. LIVINGSTON
22. THE HEART IS QUICKER THAN THE EYE
23. I SLEEP EASIER NOW
24. I HAVEN'T A THING TO WEAR
25. GYPSY AT HOME (with Jule Styne at the piano)
Gypsy Meets Gypsy
Artists: Sandra Church, Gypsy Rose Lee
Date: March 2011
In 1935 while Gypsy Rose Lee had become the most famous and highly-paid strip tease performer in the world, her younger sister, a former vaudeville headliner known as "Dainty Baby June," asked her, "Is this all you want to be, just a fad?"
"I want to be a legend," Gypsy replied. "A fad is just one step along the way." By a combination of ambition, brains, humanity and talent – she accomplished her stated goal. From her dazzling rise as a stripper in 1931 until her demise in 1970, she was one of the most quoted and photographed women of her time. And her fame continues undiminished to this day because of the Broadway musical, Gypsy, enormously successful in 1959 and frequently revived with increasing reverence both in England and America.
In Gypsy the role of young Louise Hovick, who in the second act grows up and metamorphoses into the glamorous Gypsy Rose Lee, was given to Sandra Church. Though never previously billed as a singer, Church proved to have a first-rate voice.
Sandra Church's reception as Louise/Gypsy was sufficient that Columbia Records immediately followed their brilliant original cast album with an LP of "Songs in The Great Burlesque Tradition" featuring "Bright New Broadway Star" Sandra Church! And it is here that we can experience the full-out triumph that should have been Miss Church's to enjoy all along, for the album is an unalloyed delight. Supported by the pungent, witty orchestrations and enthusiastic conducting of Luther Henderson, Sandra Church is free to strut her stuff.
Gypsy Rose Lee speaks and sings for herself in the next twelve tracks from her 1958 LP, That's Me All Over. Her delightful album gives us our best and truest glimpse of the unique qualities that made Gypsy, well, Gypsy. The big band-driven rhythms of Church's album are replaced in one smooth segue by the unmistakable authenticity of Miss Lee's delivery, her flawless, uniquely personal timings.
The closer, "Gypsy at Home," is a very rare piece of Broadway history. Recorded in 1959 this is a conversation between Gypsy and Jule Styne, the composer of Gypsy. At the piano, Styne plays bits of the score as he and Gypsy discuss the forthcoming musical and her reactions to seeing her life story portrayed on the stage. Effectively, we get to eavesdrop on Gypsy Rose Lee just at the moment her career-long wish was about to come true, just before her legend was to be set in stone forever.