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Review: ALICE IN WONDERLAND -- One of the All-Time Best!
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Posted on Nov 28 2006 by Greg and Tim

Walt Disney's
ALICE IN WONDERLAND

Music from the Motion Picture Score
Arranged and Conducted by CAMARATA
Featuring Solos by DARLENE GILLESPIE

Originally Released on Disneyland Records
as WDL-4015 in September, 1957
Reissued as DQ-1208 in 1959 and 1968
(Never released on CD in the U.S.,
except on the now-defunct Wonderland Music System in Disney Parks)
Now available exclusively on iTunes



The DQ-1208 reissue of "Alice" from 1959.

This album is a landmark in many ways. It was the first Disney-produced "studio cast" score (the soundtrack was not available due to prior contracts with Decca Records). It features moving solo performances by the talented Darlene Gillespie, a member of the original Mouseketeers who was only in her mid teens at the time, yet blessed with a voice that conveyed an almost unimaginable depth and grace.

And most of all, it showcases the diverse talents of Salvador "Tutti" Camarata (1913-2005), one of the music world's greatest arranger/conductor/composers, who worked with the greats including Ella Fitzgerald, Bing Crosby, Billie Holiday, Mary Martin and many others.

Tutti was responsible for the famous tempo change arrangements for such Jimmy Dorsey hits as "Amapola" and "Yours," and you can hear the very same effect on ALICE IN WONDERLAND in "'Twas Brillig."

Tutti’s astonishing ear for sound fidelity is also very much in evidence on ALICE. Even though it is a mono recording, you don’t miss a single musical effect. It can put some stereo recordings to shame.

Tutti was also one of the founders of London Records and was equally adept at classical and jazz as he was at rock and folk. In his decades as the first A&R and Musical Director of Walt Disney Records, he was instrumental in the musical success of Annette Funicello. He is remembered by all as one of the kindest and most giving people in the business.

ALICE IN WONDERLAND was one of Tutti's favorite accomplishments. Oscar-winning songwriter Richard Sherman sings the praises of Tutti and this album. Many other Disney insiders and renowned experts cite ALICE as a crowning achievement in an already remarkable career  - a career that was capped with Tutti being awarded as an official Disney Legend shortly before his passing.

This album also has another amazing aspect in Disney history: when the actual film was released in 1951, it was not a box office success and was not reissued theatrically until 1974. However, since this album's release in 1957, the musical score actually took on a life of its own and continued to be a strong seller for over 30 years until the end of the vinyl era! It was out of print for years, except for a CD issue in Japan, until fairly recently when Disney Producer Randy Thornton made it available at Disney Theme Parks.

Now you can enjoy for yourself. Download it here, and welcome to Wonderland!

CHOICE CUTS: Alice in Wonderland; The Caucus Race, All in the Golden Afternoon; 'Twas Brillig; Very Good Advice; March of the Cards








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