Jack Nitzsche - The Arranger As Superman: The Reprise & WB Years 1963-1969

The Arranger As Superman: The Reprise & WB Years 1963-1969

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By the late summer of 1963, Reprise Records — the independent record label founded by Frank Sinatra three years earlier — had run into a few financial difficulties, partly because the label hadn’t produced any major chart hits, and was purchased by Warner Bros. Morris “Mo” Ostin, Reprise’s vice-president and general manager, had brought in ""whiz kid"" producer Jimmy Bowen in 1963. Bowen’s main job, at least in the beginning, was to produce hits for some of the younger Reprise acts, including a brand-new recording artist, arranger/producer Jack Nitzsche. Those Bowen-produced Reprise singles, released under Jack Nitzsche’s own name between July 1963 and October 1965, were compiled together for the first time and released by Hanky Panky Records on “The Reprise Singles 1963-1965.”

The focus of this new collection is the work of Jack Nitzsche as arranger and producer for those hopeful Reprise acts, from 1963 to 1969. The number of records supervised, one way or another, by Nitzsche in this time – not only for the Reprise and Warner Bros. labels, but for myriad others — is simply amazing. Many of them were assembled for the first time by Ken Barnes for a legendary interview with Nitzsche in the Winter ‘76/77 issue of Who Put the Bomp! magazine, entitled “The Arranger As Superman.”

The aim of the compilers for this specific collection was to include some of the harder-to-find titles from Nitzsche’s Warner/Reprise legacy, along with a few favorites and must-haves, with track-by-track annotation by Barnes himself. Most of the selections feature the talents of the Wrecking Crew regulars as backing musicians, as Nitzsche applies his magic to songs written by David Gates, Ellie Greenwich, Carole King and Gerry Goffin, P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri, Sharon Sheeley and Jackie DeShannon, Sonny Bono, Hal David and Burt Bacharach, Randy Newman, Harry Nilsson and the Everly Brothers themselves, among others! The amount of talent in the grooves is staggering, encompassing the decade’s forever-changing musical landscape.

JACK NITZSCHE - ARRANGER AS SUPERMAN: THE REPRISE & WB YEARS

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Jack Nitzsche - The Arranger As Superman: The Reprise & WB Years 1963-1969
Jack Nitzsche - The Arranger As Superman: The Reprise & WB Years 1963-1969

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