There are two new box sets that even the “person-who-has-everything” would love to get. The first is the most comprehensive box set devoted to songs about Paris ever issued: Chansons de Paris. On twelve CDs, you get every conceivable song about the City of Light covering over 100 years. Artists like Georges Brassens, Aristide Bruant, Maurice Chevalier, Paul Anka, Bing Crosby, Damia, Noel Coward, Leo Ferré, Fréhel, Juliette Gréco, Eartha Kitt, Bob Hope, Al Jolson, Billie Holiday, Mistinguett, Yves Montand, Marcel Mouloudji, even Anthony Perkins.
I’ve never seen such a comprehensive love letter to Paris. Attractively packaged, with a vintage map of the city and some classic photographs as well. A sure-to-please collection for francophones or anybody who loves the fabled French capital city.
The other stocking-stuffer is Decca Sound: The Analogue Years, a fifty four disc set from the U.K. based record company, known for its audiophile recorded sound and vast repertoire of classical gems. The box covers eleven years, 1969 to 1980, the dawn of digital recording. Decca perfected its famous sound through ingenious microphone technique that made their mono recordings from the 1940s. With the birth of stereophonic sound, Decca again lead the classical recording industry with its “full frequency stereophonic sound” technique. Sound quality aside, these recording also feature the best orchestras and conductors the classical world has ever produced: conductors like Bernard Haitink, Charles Dutoit, Antal Dorati, Pierre Monteux and countless others. Works by Bartok, Bloch, Brahms, Bruckner, Chopin, Copland, Debussy, Dvorak…and this only covers B-D in the alphabet. There are over 200 other works in the colossal. An über-comprehensive collection.
Decca Sound: The Analogue Years is also available in a 180 gram virgin vinyl six LP set. Vinyl or CD, you can’t beat this beautiful and expansive new collection. It is a treasure you will enjoy for years.