Album Review: Sondheim’s “Company” – Original Broadway Cast

1 Feb

If you are a regular visitor of this blog, and you actually care for what I write in here, you would be familiar of my previous entry on some of my favorite Sondheim tunes, mostly culled from his hit musical “Company”, a Broadway adaptation of the book written by George Furth which garnered 10 nominations and eventually won 3 Tony’s in 1971 for Best Musical, Best Lyrics for Stephen Sondheim, and Best Director for Harold Prince. I happen to discover Sondheim at the time I was experimenting on musicals, I have previously heard of 1984’s “Sunday in the Park with George” but my real connection to his earlier works was thru Barbra Streisand, who did brilliant cover versions of “Ladies Who Lunch” and “Being Alive” in her 1985 “Broadway Album”. I loved the wittiness of the lyrics and of course the music. I had no idea until recently, about the subject that this musical dealt with. Today, I received via the Original Broadway cast recording of “Company”, courtesy of a dear friend.

“Company” is a bittersweet, clever portrayal of five married couples—as seen through the eyes of bachelor friend Robert—explores love and commitment, fear and longing, and the simple joy of being alive.

This album has a treasure of real musical gems, with “Being Alive” coming out on top.

Someone to hold you too close
Someone to hurt you too deep
Someone to sit in your chair
And ruin your sleep
And make you aware of being alive

Another favorite is “Ladies Who Lunch”;

Here’s to the ladies who lunch
Everybody laugh
Aren’t they the best
When they get depressed,
It’s a bottle of scotch
Plus a little jest!

The heartfelt “Sorry-Grateful” which was sung to me beautifully, it was just as I remember it;

Youre always sorry, youre always grateful
Youre always wondering what might have been
Then she walks in.
And still youre sorry and still youre grateful
And still you wonder and still you doubt
And she goes out.

And a new favorite, “Little Things You Do Together”;

It’s the little things you do together
that make perfect relationships
the hobbies you pursue together
savings you accrue together
looks you misconstrue together
that make marriage a joy.

And as an encore;

Somebody crowd me with love,
somebody force me to care
somebody make me come through
I’ll always be there as frightened as you
to help us survive, being alive,
being alive, being alive!


8 Responses to “Album Review: Sondheim’s “Company” – Original Broadway Cast”

  1. Pedro Vecino February 1, 2006 at 10:28 pm #

    How lucky! Company no less… one of the best musicals I have ever heard.

    It´s only after listening the whole record that you understand completely the “Being alive” song.

    I confess I have cried more than once at the end of the listening when Bobby sings that.

    A masterpiece of one genius… and he is alive and still working!

  2. Monette February 2, 2006 at 10:24 am #

    Ahhhh… another soul with good taste! I am sure you can tell me who influenced you to listen to this work of art? 😉

    I brought the CD to work and I am actually listening to it now. *winks*

  3. feignedmischief October 20, 2006 at 8:38 pm #

    I dont believe this at all, ‘Company’ is coming back to Broadway this fall!!!

  4. Peter December 1, 2006 at 3:08 pm #

    I was fortunate enough to have an elder sibling who was a Sondheim fan and remember listening to the OBC of Company at the age of 11, now at 47 I am thrilled to be heading to NYC to see the 2006 return of this incredible masterpiece. Steve Sondheim is a genius!! The songs listed are timeless, and when it comes to NYC so is “Another Hundred People”!

  5. Simone December 1, 2006 at 3:48 pm #

    Oh lucky you! I wish I could come to New York!

  6. sal January 5, 2007 at 5:27 pm #

    Do not worry that you did not get to see the recent NY production of COMPANY. Yes, it is one of the BEST Musical Comedies and BEST Scores, but this production does not represent the SHOWS best qualities. Cast members playing instruments cuts half of the orchestrations, and the coldness of the direction takes away from the IMPORTANCE of the show. My opinion of course, but listen to the original and ENJOY!

  7. JohnnyFox March 21, 2009 at 9:02 am #

    If you love ‘Little Things You Do Together’, there’s another song about fractured couples which you’ll like and which I think belonged in ‘Follies’ but comes from ‘Do I Hear a Waltz’ called ‘We’re Gonna Be All Right’

    She once was quite well read.
    He once was intellectual.
    No one’s suspicious — they’re gonna be alright.
    She’s nice and sweet and dead.
    He’s tall and ineffectual.
    They look delicious — they’re gonna be alright.

    Who’s on the skids? She goes to night school
    (If it’s the right school, he’ll permit her.)
    They love their kids, they love their friends too
    Lately he tends to
    Hit her.

    Sometimes she drinks in bed,
    Sometimes he’s homosexual,
    But why be vicious? They keep it out of sight?
    Good show — they’re gonna be all right.

  8. feignedmischief March 31, 2009 at 11:45 pm #

    John, maybe I should check what’s on your iPod and start copying your playlists! I just caught Saturday Night and it has a few songs I quite enjoyed, but I can forgive Sondheim for that piece of work.

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