Compact Discoveries®
a series of one-hour radio programs produced, written, hosted, and edited by Fred Flaxman
©2004 by Compact Discoveries, Inc.

Program 65
"Chanticleer"

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Nelly Bly" from Wondrous Love [Teldec 16676-2, track 3] [under the following]

Welcome to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide Fred Flaxman, and during the next hour let's explore the music of the extraordinary, internationally reknown San Francisco male chorus Chanticleer.

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Chanticleer has been around for many years and I had certainly heard about them. But I didn't realize how much I had been missing all this time by not having any of their recordings until I recently received their newest release, which is called How Sweet the Sound. This album is so terrific, the voices so perfect, the interpretations so exciting, that I just had to have more!

So this hour I'm going to share with you my very favorite pieces by Chanticleer from four of their many CDs. I'll play a couple of selections from How Sweet the Sound later. But first let's hear four songs from another one of their albums called Our American Journey: "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair," and "Camptown Races" by Stephen Foster, "Love Walked In" by George and Ira Gershwin, and "Wayfarin' Stranger," a traditional song aranged by Joseph Jennings.

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair," and "Camptown Races" by Stephen Foster, "Love Walked In" by George and Ira Gershwin, and "Wayfarin' Stranger," a traditional song aranged by Joseph Jennings from Our American Journey [Teldec 0927-48556-2, tracks 12, 13, 14 and 17]

Chanticleer sang "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair," and "Camptown Races" by Stephen Foster, "Love Walked In" by George and Ira Gershwin, and "Wayfarin' Stranger," a traditional song arranged by Chanticleer's music director, Joseph Jennings.

You are listening to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman, and this hour is devoted entirely to this multiple Grammy Award-winning male vocal ensemble.

Chanticleer has developed a remarkable repertoir of vocal literature, ranging from Renaissance to gospel, jazz and new music. The group has earned an international reputation as "an orchestra of voices."

Since 1994 Chanticleer has recorded exclusively for Teldec/Warner Classics International. In addition to the CDs we're sampling in this hour, the group's catalog includes Colors of Love, Lamentations and Praises, Chanticleer: A Portrait, Evening Prayer, and Lost in the Stars. When Chanticleer celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2003, it was named one of the Top 10 best-selling classical ensembles of the year by Billboard magazine.

Next we turn to Chanticleer's Where the Sun Will Never Go Down, an album of spirituals and traditional gospel music. We hear two classics of that genre, "Old Time Religion" and "Deep River."

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Old-Time Religion" and Deep River" from Where the Sun Will Never Go Down [Teldec 4509-90878-2, tracks 1 and 2]

"Old Time Religion" and "Deep River," sung by Chanticleer from their Teldec compact disc album, Where the Sun Will Never Go Down.

My name is Fred Flaxman. The program is Compact Discoveries, and this hour is devoted to the music of the male vocal ensemble Chanticleer.

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When I say that Chanticleer is an all-male vocal ensemble, it is sometimes very hard to believe, because some of the voices are so high. Well in this next CD, released in September 2004, there is a woman's voice -- that of special guest artist Bishop Yvette Flunder. We'll hear two tracks from this CD, first a medley starting with "Soon One Morning," then "Hold On," otherwise known as "Keep Your Hand on the Plow." Two excerpts from Chanticleer's How Sweet the Sound.

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Soon One Morning Medley" and "Hold On" from How Sweet the Sound [Warner Classics unnumbered promotion CD, tracks 4 and 7]

Two excerpts from Chanticleer's How Sweet the Sound: "Soon One Morning," and "Hold On," otherwise known as "Keep Your Hand on the Plow."

Have you been wondering where Chanticleer got its name? Well, one of the founding members was in the midst of reading Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, and he suggested Chanticleer, the name of the "clear singing" rooster in The Nun's Priest's Tale. Chaucer had actually borrowed the name from the ancient French tale, Renard the Fox. It is a combination of the French words chanter ("to sing") and clair ("clear") -- to sing clearly. The name appealed to everyone, and so Chanticleer debuted on June 27, 1978 before a capacity audience at San Francisco's historic Old Mission Dolores.

If you would like to know more about Chanticleer's interesting history, do what I did and go to their website: www.chanticleer.org. Chanticleer is spelled c-h-a-n-t-i-c-l-e-e-r.

Right now I'm going to play for you some selections from Chanticleer's world folk song collection called Wondrous Love. We'll start with the first two tracks on the CD: folk songs from Ireland and China.

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Dülamán" and "Fengyang Gi" from Wondrous Love [Teldec 16676-2, tracks 1 and 2]

Folk songs from Ireland and China sung by Chanticleer on their album Wondrous Love. Two more folk songs from this CD now -- the first from Russia, the second from Cuba.

MUSIC: Chanticleer: "Oy, Polna, Polna Koróbushka" and "El Manisero" from Wondrous Love [Teldec 16676-2, tracks 4 and 6]

"El Manisero" ("The Peanut Man") from Chanticleer's album Wondrous Love. Before that you heard a Russian folk song from the same album.


MUSIC: excerpt from "An American Folk Medley" from Chanticleer's Wondrous Love [Teldec 16676-2, track 23] under:

A medley of American folk songs from Chanticleer's Wondrous Love Teldec CD.

I hope you've enjoyed this hour of Compact Discoveries which featured the artistry of the male vocal ensemble Chanticleer.

If you have an idea for a theme for a future Compact Discoveries program, I'd love to hear from you. You can get in touch with me -- Fred Flaxman -- through the Compact Discoveries website: www.compactdiscoveries.com. Or write me in care of this station. You'll find the script with music information for each Compact Discoveries radio program as well as a list of radio stations carrying the series at the Compact Discoveries website. The web address, once again, is www.compactdiscoveries.com. I hope you'll visit us soon.

Compact Discoveries is a production of Compact Discoveries, Inc., and a presentation of WXEL-FM, West Palm Beach, Florida.

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