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Support Cole Wide WebThere are lots of Cole Porter CDs and some are better than others. If you are looking for a CD for yourself or for a gift, this may help you. Clicking on CD titles links you to details and the option to buy at Amazon.com. If you link from this site to Amazon.com and purchase there, you help support Cole Wide Web, a community service!

This list includes only currently available CDs that contain only Cole Porter songs. This list does not contain CDs (movie soundtracks or bands) that contain less than 100% Cole Porter. This also does not include out-of-print CDs or albums only available on tape/record. If you are interested in comprehensive album coverage, that would take an entire book! In fact, that book, "The Cole Porter Discography", is very thorough; you can find more info about it on the Cole Wide Web Books page.

If you want to add CD information to this list or send me free CDs for me to review, please write to me.

Note that I list some CDs with the record label/publisher on the same line as the title. This indicates there are several CDs with similar names from different labels. Be careful when ordering these CDs!

Cole Wide Web Recommends
   
  Anything Goes: Capitol Sings Cole Porter
An excellent CD with 25 tracks with great singing, great artistry, and high production values. It contains particularly brilliant renditions of "What Is This Thing Called Love" by Keely Smith and "Just One Of Those Things" by Nat King Cole. If you could only have one Cole Porter CD, this would be the one to have.
 
Cole Wide Web Rating System
   
    Cole Porter fans should own this.
    Cole Porter fans will love this.
    Cole Porter fans would like it.
    Worthwhile to hear, but you may not listen often.
    Good for collectors, but not recommended.
    Recommended by someone else. I don't have it, so I won't rate it.
 
Cole Wide Web Reviews

These are CDs that Cole Wide Web owns and has rated. Note that you might need to try several sections in stores to find them; you may have try all of the following sections: Soundtrack, Jazz, Vocal, Rock and even Pop.

 
Anything Goes: Capitol Sings Cole Porter
  An excellent CD with 25 tracks with great singing, great artistry, and high production values. It contains particularly brilliant renditions of "What Is This Thing Called Love" by Keely Smith and "Just One Of Those Things" by Nat King Cole. If you could only have one Cole Porter CD, this would be the one to have.
 
  Ben Bagley's Cole Porter (6 CDs)

 

Wonderful CDs from Painted Smiles Records. These CDs contains many of the rare songs you will never hear anywhere else. Email Amazon and request that they sell it! You can find the Painted Smiles (snail mail) order form online. After a lifetime of supporting "lost" music, Ben Bagley passed away on March 21, 1998, after a long illness. Any of the Painted Smiles CDs listed on that site can be purchased for just $10 each directly from Bagley's not-for-profit company.
  Volume 1
Great versions if "You're a Bad Influence on Me" and "It Ain't Etiquette", and "Coffee". Note: this CD is also called Cole Porter Revisted.
  Volume 2
Just plain brilliant, with wonderful energetic renditions of "Pets", "Sweet Nudity", and other great songs.
  Volume 3
Great versions of "Make a Date With a Great Psychoanalyst" and "Her Heart Was In Her Work". The singing is good, but these are not Cole's finest songs, in my opinion.
  Volume 4
Good, but not the best in the series.
  Volumes 5-6
I don't have volumes 5 or 6 for review.
 
  Red, Hot, and Blue: A Tribute To Cole Porter

 

  Most people will love this CD whether they get it because of the star line-up (U2, David Byrne, Erasure, etc.) or because they are fans of Cole Porter songs. Most tracks are done true to the original with modern instrumentation. Purists should note that 2 or 3 tracks are very loosely interpreted. As a whole, I think Cole would be very proud of these versions. My favorites are David Byrne's "Don't Fence Me In" and k d lang's haunting rendition of "So In Love". If you like modern instrumentation and classic brilliant songs, you'll love this album. If you don't know who these musicians are, this album is optional.
 
  Ella Fitgerald Sings the Cole Porter Songbooks

 

 

Excellent singing, excellent muscianship. Classic. Enough said.

You can also buy this 2 CD set as separate Volume 1 and Volume 2.

 
  You're the Top: Cole Porter in the 1930s

 

 

Another "Centennial Collection", this one from Koch International Classics. These 3 CDs are a fun historical romp through the early recordings. You also get to hear tracks like Experiment and The Physician from the musical Nymph Errant, an entire Porter musical about woman trying to get laid. The set includes a nice book with biography and pictures and a nice box for everything. This would make a nice gift.

The three CDs are sold separately as well for those who are on a budget or just want to samping the collection. If you are choosing one of the three, I'd choose Volume 1 because of the great songs from Nymph Errant:

    Vol. 1 - How's Your Romance?: Cole Porter In The 1930s
Vol. 2 - Easy To Love: Cole Porter In The 1930s - not available on its own?
Vol. 3 - Ridin' High: Cole Porter In The 1930s
 
  The Complete Cole Porter Songbooks [Polygram]

 

  The three CDs in this set are also sold separately. Sold together, you also get a book and biography. See below for reviews of individual CDs.
 

Vol. 1 - Cole Porter Songbook: #1

   

Also called Night And Day. A delightful album with much variety. It includes several jazzy classics by Louis Armstrong (Let's Do It, Just One Of Those Things) and Ella Fitzgerald (Night and Day, Anything Goes).

 

Vol. 2 - Cole Porter Songbook: #2

   

Also called I Get A Kick Out of You. More jazz covers. In comparison to CD#1, this album has renditions which are more loosely based on the more upbeat originals. More mellow than CD#1 of this series.

 

Vol. 3 - Cole Porter Songbook: #3

   

Also called Anything Goes. Nice jazz instrumentals – no singing. The musicians were allowed to be quite loose with the song melodies and structure, so purists may not like this one.

 

  Cole Porter Centennial Gala Concert [Teldec]

 

  Live album in London. I am not a big fan of live albums, but this one is pretty good. Includes Michael Feinstein, Julie Wilson, Robert Guillaume.
 

  Close: Steve Ross and Cole Porter

 

  Steve Ross is a well known caberet singer in New York. He released this compilation of tunes, many of them obscure Porter tunes. I like some of the tracks, including "Me and Marie (by the old seaside)" and his version of "Night and Day". Some of the obscure tracks are deservedly obscure, so I think the strengths of this album are in the 'standards'. You'll like this album if you like cabaret style of piano&vocal singing or are looking for to add unusual tracks to your collection like "When the Summer Moon Comes Along" and "Close".
 

  Great American Songwriters [Columbia's] -- temporarily not available?

 

  Not to be confused with Laserlight's CD of the same name.This 2 CD set has a great version of "Most Gentlement Don't Like Love" (Ballard, Alvarez, Wendel), "Tom, Dick and Harry", and some great classics from Mary Martin and Tony Bennett.This CD is also cursed with a wacky disco version of "Begin The Begiune".
 

  Cole Sings Porter [Koch]

 

  Cole himself singing a few standards and a few obscure songs. Some people really like this album, although I don't agree about quality of the song selections and the recordings themselves.
 

  Tribute: Songs of Cole Porter – Jerry Van

 

  Vision Records. A big band recording with (what I consider) lifeless vocals.
 

  Cole Porter: A Centennial Celebration [BMG's]

 

  A real mix of 20 very different tracks, including 2 old tracks sung by Cole. Some tracks are really good. Personally, I feel that there are too many tracks with good technical performance, but lacking depth of emotion and depth of humor – to the point where it bugs me.
 
  The Words & Music of Cole Porter
  This is a CD of remastered 78's, etc. by Bing Crosby, Marlene Dietrich (You Do Something to Me); Cole himself (You're the Top). This is not available from Amazon.com, but you can buy it online at pastperfect.com. One Cole Wide Web visitor recommends this album. Temporarily Unavailable!
 
  Julie Wilson: Sings the Cole Porter Song Book

 

  I've heard a few songs from this, but I don't own it. Her version of "Always True To You In My Fashion" is great, and appears on other collections. It was one of the songs that started her career.
 
  Frank Sinatra: Sings The Select Cole Porter

 

  Many people consider this a classic Porter album. although I do not own it. I have respect for Frank, but I'm not such a big fan of his Porter recordings as I think they lack the silliness and playfulness intended when originally written.
 
 

Mabel Mercer Sings Cole Porter

 

  One Cole Wide Web visitor says, "This is a MUST for everyone who considers himself a Cole Porter fan. I have heard great things about this CD. I will order it when I get around to it.
 
  Cole Porter: A Centennial Tribute [Pearl Flapper's]

 

  1993. Six tracks and supposed to be OK.
 
  American Songbook Series, Cole Porter

 

  Smithsonian Collection, 1992.
 
 

Oscar Peterson: The Cole Porter Songbook

 

  One Cole Wide Web visitor says, "Great record printed in 1959, now in CD."another visitor said "I think it's a little more for Oscar Peterson fans than for Cole Porter fans. The selections are the ordinary ones, and it's very pleasant, but not a must-have."
 
  Concord Special Products: Cole Porter Songbook

 

  Contains Mel Torme?
 
  Cole Porter Classics

 

  Teddy Wilson on instrumental piano
 
  Shearing & Tuckwell: Play The Music Of Cole Porter

 

  French Horn versions of Cole Porter songs. One Cole Wide Web visitor says "the best instrumental Porter music I have heard![...].This is a must."
 
  Decline & Fall of the Entire World as Seen Through the Eyes of Cole Porter

 

  Painted Smiles Records. Part of the Ben Bagley collection. You can find the Painted Smiles (snail mail) order form online. I've heard great things about this CD.
 
  Anything Goes: Rebecca Luker Sings Cole Porter
    One Cole Wide Web visitor says "It's very good!!!"
 
  Anita O'Day Swings Cole Porter

 

  Recommended by a Cole Wide Web visitor.
 
  Dionne Warwick Sings Cole Porter

 

  One Cole Wide Web visitor says, "Awful, soulless, synthesized, modern pop arrangements performed with little regard for the lyrics [...] If someone likes their standards gutted and disco-ized, this might be for them.
 
  Cole Porter: Night And Day – 101 Strings

 

  One Cole Wide Web visitor says, "I enjoyed it very much".
 
  Kiri Sings Porter [EMI Classics]

 

  Kiri Te Kanawa. Mixed reviews here. One Cole Wide Web visitor says "You can live without it" Another visitor says "Very beautifully sung and she principally sticks to songs that were meant to be sung with some voice in the first place. There are also gorgeous symphonic arrangements, and they're the real stars here."Another says, "Nice instrumentals and an excellent, albeit operatic, singing voice."
 
  Cole Porter in Concert: Just One Of Those Things

 

  Verve Records. A 1994 jazz compilation.
 

Full Cast Recordings

I cannot verify the quality of the following CDs. If you have heard any of these CDs, please email me and let me know what kind of versions are on the CD and what you think about it. There are a few full cast recordings that I know do exist but are not available on Amazon. If you know how to buy the italicized CDs below, please email me.

 

Additional Cole Porter CDs

I cannot verify the quality of the following CDs. If you have heard any of these CDs, please email me and let me know what kind of versions are on the CD and what you think about it.