Personnel: Chet Baker (vocals, trumpet); Herb Geller (alto & tenor saxophones); Jack Montrose (tenor saxophone); Bud Shank (baritone saxophone, flute); Bob Gordon (baritone saxophone); Bob Brookmeyer (valve trombone); Corky Hale (harp); Pete Jolly, Russ Freeman (piano); Jimmy Bond, Red Mitchell, Joe Mondragon, Leroy Vinnegar, Bob Whitlock, Carson Smith (bass); Lawrence Marable, Bobby White, Larry Bunker, Peter Littman, Stan Levey, Shelly Manne, Bob Neel (drums).
Producer: Richard Bock.
Compilation producer: Michael Cuscuna.
Recorded between July 24, 1953 and July 26, 1956.
Personnel: Chet Baker (vocals, trumpet); Corky Hale (harp); Bud Shank (flute, baritone saxophone); Herb Geller (alto saxophone, tenor saxophone); Jack Montrose (tenor saxophone); Bob Gordon (baritone saxophone); Bob Brookmeyer (valve trombone); Pete Jolly, Russ Freeman (piano); Bobby White, Larance Marable, Larry Bunker, Shelly Manne, Stan Levey, Peter Littman, Bob Neel (drums).
Recording information: 07/24/1953-07/30/1956.
Photographer: William Claxton.
Arrangers: Jack Montrose; Johnny Mandel; Marty Paich; Bill Holman.
This collection of ballads sees Chet Baker at his vocal prime. A thoroughly touching album, MY FUNNY VALENTINE displays Baker's talent and fondness for love songs. Love's gain and loss is explored most poignantly on "Time After Time" and "I Fall in Love Too Easily." On the former, Baker's voice sounds innocent and pure as he croons, "so lucky to be the one you run to see, in the evening, when the day is through."
Baker's trumpet playing is equally tender and amorous, despite the nonchalant and laid-back groove of the music. (Such qualities would later become the hallmarks of the so called "cool" style of jazz.) But on MY FUNNY VALENTINE, Baker is far from cool. Indeed, his singing and trumpet playing is never callous, thick-skinned or unfeeling. In contrast, his approach is warm and affectionate. In fact, Baker may very well be the greatest example of a modern day troubadour.