Mel Tormé

A Chronicle of His Recordings, Books and Films


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About the Book

Known for a voice as mellow as his moniker, “The Velvet Fog,” Mel Tormé was an accomplished vocalist, pianist, drummer, songwriter, arranger and author. Leaving a recording legacy of jazz and popular music, his death in June 1999 ended an entertainment career spanning over sixty years.
This comprehensive discography is intended not only for the Tormé enthusiast, but the casual fan as well, who may only know Tormé for his Night Court television appearances or as vocalist and co-writer of “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire),” which was first recorded by Nat “King” Cole. Included are a selective chronology providing the highlights of Tormé’s career as an entertainer; notes on record issues, recording dates, session numbers, takes, musicians and arrangers; lists of all musical releases by label and category; “hits” and awards; and indexes of song titles and musicians. Films, short subjects, stage appearances, and television work (recorded on video) in which he acted, performed musically, or served as a contributor are noted, as are books that Tormé wrote, or to which he contributed.

About the Author(s)

The late George Hulme contributed to such publications as Jazz Journal, Just Jazz, and Red Bank Special. He lived in Old Basing, Hants, England.

Bibliographic Details

George Hulme
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 197
Bibliographic Info: appendices, indexes
Copyright Date: 2008 [2000]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3743-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1


Melvin Howard Tormé: The Man      3

An Appraisal      4

A Selective Chronology      6

Notes      11


1942–1946 Jewel and Decca      13

1946–1947 Musicraft      15

1948–1952 Capitol      26

1953–1954 Coral      35

1955–1957 Bethlehem, Decca, Philips and Tops      37

1958–1961 Verve      44

1962–1967 Atlantic and Columbia      51

1968–1982 Liberty, Capitol, London, Atlantic, Century, Gryphon,

Finesse and Flair      62

1982-1996 Concord Jazz and Telarc      66


Singles 78 and 45 rpm      77

EPs and MPs      86

LPs (albums)      88

Tapes      121

CDs      124


Drama and Documentary      157

Musical Stage Performances      159

Television Shows      159

Songs in Films      159

The Judy Garland Show      160

The Mel-Tones Soundies      163


Tormé as Author      165

Tormé as Contributor      165

Tormé as Subject      165


The Hit Parade      167

Desert Island Discs      167

Nominations and Awards      168

Appendix 1: Alternative Takes      169

Appendix 2: A Discographical Problem      171


Songs Recorded by Mel Tormé      173

Musicians      183

Book Reviews & Awards

Winner, ARSC Award for Excellence
“useful and important”—Public Library Quarterly; “highly recommended”—IAJRC Journal; “exhaustive”—Record Collector; “thoroughly recommended”—In Tune International; “an absolute must for all Tormé aficionados”—Perfectly Frank; “essential reading for every fan of the great Mel Tormé”—Big Bands International; “comprehensive”—Crescendo & Jazz Music; “impressive…an enormous amount of research”—Names & Numbers; “this chronology concisely sums up his career”—ARBA; “the definitive work on its subject”—Classic Images.