The first presentation of A Man and a Woman on CD in stereo – from the original album masters housed in the MGM vaults, in both French and English versions. One of the finest soundtrack albums of the 1960s came in 1966, when Francis Lai composed much of the music for Claude Lelouch's French film A Man and a Woman (Un Homme et une Femme in French). Most European films enjoy very little publicity in the U.S., but A Man and a Woman was an exception because the soundtrack was so superb. With this classic LP, Lai and his allies (who include arrangers Maurice Vander and Ivan Julien) brought together French pop, jazz, and the Brazilian bossa nova (which Antonio Carlos Jobim, Stan Getz, and João Gilberto had popularized in the early 1960s).
This is a great collection of more of this Readers' Digest series of beautiful music or easy listening as some call it. All these sets are very consistent with their excellent quality in both musical selections and production. This set focuses on piano, of course with orchestra. If you like the "great American songbook," then you will know many if not all of the songs. The set is a compilation of tracks, all with the standard excellent, first-class production values. Buy this set and put it on your cd player, turn down the lights and pour a glass of wine. Then relax and enjoy the music.
The late-'60s film starring Marianne Faithfull and Alain Delon has a cult reputation, if only because it's one of Faithfull's few film appearances (and has rarely been seen, especially in the U.S.). The soundtrack has enough of a groovy late-'60s period feel to merit a cult reputation of its own, with its bordering-on-bizarre mix of solid '60s Hammond organ grooves, soothing quasi-classical interludes, lush '60s Europop along the lines of the theme from A Man and a Woman, and brief flashes of psychedelia and avant-gardisms. (Faithfull fans be cautioned: Marianne does not sing on the soundtrack at all.) The recurring motifs are quite insinuating, and treated with a number of imaginative arrangements, making this a pretty interesting find for fans of '60s Euro easy listening/pop hybrids, even if they're not interested in having a souvenir of the film. The CD reissue does the job right by adding good liner notes and three bonus cuts by vocalists Mireille Mathieu and Cleo Laine, who recorded these tracks after Les Reed added lyrics to three instrumental pieces from the film.