Billy Barnes Revued

“Billy Barnes is an underrated Composer whose name is comparable to a sip of fine cognac or whiskey, only connoisseurs of theater songs know who this “Revue Master of Hollywood”…

Album art for Billy Barnes Revued

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About Billy Barnes Revued…

“Billy Barnes is an underrated Composer whose name is comparable to a sip of fine cognac or whiskey, only connoisseurs of theater songs know who this “Revue Master of Hollywood” is.” – William Gregory

“The two dozen-plus numbers on the CD are primarily from Barnes’ revues and exhibit his wonderful sense of humor, sometimes biting, often gentle, but always witty” – Show Music

This CD features 6 Billy Barnes’ gems in their FIRST RECORDINGS!

Mr. Billy Barnes can’t be called a “new” songwriter like others on Ducy Lee. In fact, in my opinion, he is the least recorded of our great American songwriters. Starting with “Billy Barnes Revue” in 1958, he literally defined the revue form in this country, introducing stars such as Jo Anne Worley, Ken Berry, Jackie Joseph, Bert Convy, Joyce Jameson and Tom Hatten along the way. He was nominated for two Emmy Awards writing specialty material for “The Danny Kaye Show”, “The Carol Burnett Show”, “Sonny And Cher”, “Cher”, “The Acadamy Awards”and many others. On “Laugh-In”he was also a member of the cast! – Wayne Moore DUCY LEE RECORDINGS

The show opened January 11, 1999 at the Cinegrill in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and features a bright NEW cast of future stars: PAUL AINSLEY, CINDY BENSON, LAURI JOHNSON, HOPE LEVY, BRET SHEFTER, CRAIG WASSON … and BILLY BARNES himself.

This original cast production was directed by DAVID GALLIGAN with choreography by TERRY BARTO and musical direction by WAYNE MOORE and produced by “Shoestring Productions/RONN GOSWICK.

Songs include: “Weather Report”, “Marital Infidelity”, “Ambivalant”, “Little Leaguers” “Fooling Ourselves”, “The Forties”, “City of the Angels”, “New Girl”, “Nervous”, “Where Are Your Children?”, and 21 others, including his best-loved songs “Something Cool” and “Too Long At The Fair”.

Track Listing

1 Do a Revue
2 Where Are Your Children?
3 Weather Report
4 Who Am I?
5 Whatever Happened To ...
6 Where Is The Music?
7 Nervous
8 Whatever Happened To ...
9 Fooling Ourselves
10 City of the Angels
11 Dance, Dance, Dance
12 I Never Attended At All
13 Whatever Happened To ...
14 Little Leaguers
15 Marital Infidelity
16 New Girl
17 Ambivalent
18 Whatever Happened To ...
19 The Forties
20 L.A. Is
21 I Love L.A. / Covina / Burbank / I Love Hollywood / LA-LA Land
22 Something Cool
23 The Akron
24 I'm The Only One
25 Show Biz
26 Too Long at the Fair
27 Do a Revue (Finale)

Praise for Billy Barnes Revued…

  • “Billy Barnes Revued, a perfect antidote to the unfunny ’90s, is the cast album of the limited-run revue that premiered at Hollywood’s Cinegrill earlier this year. Even those who aren’t familiar with The Billy Barnes Revue, Billy Barne’s People, …Party, …L.A., …Hollywood, or Movie Star have probably heard his witty songs or special material without realizing it, because he wrote for the TV shows of Danny Kaye, Judy Garland, Carol Burnett, Dean Martin, Sonny and Cher, Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In and Oscar telecasts. The two dozen-plus numbers on the CD are primarily from Barnes’ revues and exhibit his wonderful sense of humor, sometimes biting, often gentle, but always witty – and are too much fun to discover, so I won’t spoil it by quoting lines. But, to demonstrate the range of Barnes’ talent, he also wrote ‘Something Cool’. a sophisticated lament popularized by June Christy, and ‘Have I Stayed Too Long At The Fair?’, recorded by Barbra Streisand. Alphabetically, Paul Ainsley, Cindy Benson, Lauri Johnson, Hope Levy, Bret Shefter, and Craig Wasson are individually and collectively splendid. So is Barnes, who sings some of his numbers and plays piano for the crowd, making this program even more fun.”

    — Show Music
  • “Billy Barnes Revued (Original Cast Recording) Various Artists (Ducy Lee Recordings) Billy Barnes is an underrated Composer whose name is comparable to a sip of fine cognac or whiskey, only connoisseurs of theater songs know who this “Revue Master of Hollywood” is, unfortunately. His songs have been performed by the likes of Barbra Streisand, Carol Burnett, Judy Garland, Rosemary Clooney, Patti Page and June Christie. The Billy Barnes reviews have launched the careers of such performers as Joanna Worley, Ken Barry, Bert Convy and many others. This CD is a collection of songs from Mr. Barnes reviews over the past 45 years. Unlike other farcical music comedies, this material is all original. In this day and age of cynicism, giant teapots, and dancing chandeliers, these musical spoofs are gems that deserve more than their cabaret room notoriety. There is wit, naivet?, and kitschiness to spare in these songs, and sadly enough, they might be deemed corny or outdated in this day and age. The meat of this recording is humorous commentary on modern living such as “What ever Happened to Ms. Molly Ringwald”, and “When Ellen Degeneres comes out and says, I’m a Lez, I’m shocked”, some of the lyrics to “Ambivalent”. Apart from the comic genius that goes on for miles, “Something Cool” and “Too Long at the Fair” are thankfully included in this revue. These two songs help shed light on the seemingly simplistic compositions of Mr. Barnes. His songs are a wonderful tribute to the artistry of musical theater, sometimes joyous, sometimes keen and poignant. Hopefully this and future recordings will help change Mr. Barnes’ name to a household one. Paul Ainsley, Cindy Benson, Lauri Johnson, Hope Levy, Lauri Johnson, Hope Levy, Bret Shefter, Craig Wasson, and Billy Barnes do a delightful job on this recording by creating a tight, exuberant, funny, and honorable job at interpreting these whimsical pieces of joy.”

    — William Gregory Midwest-Ursine.com
  • “Billy Barnes Revued, The Cinegrill – Joining legendary Barnes, “The Revue Master of Hollywood”, with director David Galligan, once refered to as “The Julius Monk of the West Coast”, was a most serendipitous decision, to say the least. The effect was explosive, only made better by Barnes himself onstage singing, playing piano, and even dancing a tad, just to prove hs still had it in him. Another performance which deserves a New York run ASAP.”

    — Entertainment Today
  • “In its masterful blend of the nostalgic and the hip, the classy new Billy Barnes Revued is nothing less than grade-A cabaret. In bringing together the incomparable songwriting talents of Barnes (Mr Hollywood Revue himself), the musical and comedic gifts of a seasoned cast, and the exquisite showmanship of omnipresent director David Galligan, the Cinegrill witnesses a refreshing burst of old-fashioned Hollywood glory. The simple but potent formula combines six performers wearing basic black, Barnes serving up patter and piano accompaniment, and a grab bag of boffo songs from Barnes’ past revues (and one new song) … Barnes Revued is vaguely cemented by Barnes’ brief but charming reminiscences of the songs’ origins, but the selections are strong enough to satisfy with or without narration. Barnes’ music and lyrics provide crackerjack vehicles for the superbly versatile cast. Dynamic Lauri Johnson, who combines a Rosemary Clooney appearance with a Dorothy Loudon brashness, is hilarious in a recurring series of ‘whatever happened to…’ vignettes (drive-in movies, Molly Ringwald, etc.) and offers a heartfelt interpretation of ‘New Girl’, the melancholy lament of a jilted wife. In Barnes’ amusing new song, ‘Who Am I?’ the chameleon-like Craig Wasson expertly mimics movie star icons ranging from James Stewart to Jack Nicholson. Droll comedian Bret Shefter achieves a showstopper in the sardonic ‘I’ve Never Attended At All’, about a Hollywood newcomer who feels left out because he hasn’t been invited to an orgy. Petite Hope Levy has her moment to shine in the haunting ‘I’m The Only One’. Pixie-like Cindy Benson excels in both comic numbers (‘Nervous’) and wistful ballads (‘Something Cool’). Rubber-faced Paul Ainsley brings down the house in a timely send-up of bisexual confusion (‘Ambivalent’). Barnes also lends his jaunty singing prowess from time to time, most notably in his medley of sharp songs that affectionately satirize L.A. (such as ‘Don’t Call It La-La-Land’). Several group numbers also delight, including ‘Marital Infidelity’ (an ironic paean to mate-swapping), the spirited ‘Dance, Dance, Dance’, and the exuberant opener and closer, ‘Do A Revue’. Wayne Moore’s musical direction is first-class … This lightning-paced, 75-minute show is so captivating, that the only disappointment is when it comes to an end.”

    — Back Stage West
  • “For nearly forty years, composer/lyricist Billy Barnes has been the maestro of the revue genre. It is only fitting, in preparation for the millennium, he put together a review of his revues. Billy Barnes Revued: from past to present is an evening of mostly light comical ditties performed in solo, duet and company renditions with Barnes himself at the keyboard to chime in with friendly banter and an occasional vocal offering. A talented troupe sings about the likes of: women looking for respect in L.A. ‘City Of The Angels’ (Lauri Johnson, Cindy Benson and Hope Levy), men with girl troubles ‘Foolin’ Ourselves’ (Craig Wasson & Bret Shefter), and a guy who’s ‘Ambivalent’ (Paul Ainsley). The lite-n-lively bouncy-n-jivy mood is broken three times when each of the ladies take the solo spot in more serious and memorable moments, especially Johnson’s ‘New Girl’. This is cabaret fare of an old and treasured style which may not find favor with a younger crowd unfamiliar with Walter Brennen, Veronica Lake or Alice Faye, but for seasoned entertainment buffs, Revued is an evening of laughs, smiles, memories, toe-tapping and feel-good nostalgia.”

    — After Dark

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Welcome to the wonderful world of DUCY LEE RECORDINGS. My name is WAYNE MOORE. I founded this company in order to record the songs of the NEW writers of music for the theater and for cabaret ... the Gershwins, Porters…