Released in 1987, this album is a tribute to the music of Kurt Weill. His songs are performed by a cross-section of artists that have been inspired by Weill, and the collection really demonstrates the genre-crossing impact that he has had on modern musicians. This CD delivers Weill's music in wildly diverse musical styles, from pop to jazz to industrial to chamber music.

The recordings are all contemporary, so absent are the well-known covers by the likes of The Doors (Alabama Song), Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and others. The Tom Waits and Todd Rundgren covers are particularly good, while the Lou Reed version of September Song-- a twilight-years lament, redone as a relatively cheerful ballad-- is fairly bizarre.

The tracks are:

  1. Intro from Mahagonny Songspiel
    (Steven Weisberg)

  2. The Ballad Of Mack The Knife
    (Sting/Dominic Muldowney)

  3. The Cannon Song
    (Stan Ridgway/Fowler Brothers)

  4. Ballad Of The Soldier's Wife
    (Marianne Faithfull/Chris Spedding)

  5. Johnny Johnson Medley
    (Van Dyke Parks)

  6. The Great Hall
    (Henry Threadgill)

  7. Alabama Song
    (Ralph Schuckett/Richard Butler)

  8. Youkali Tango
    (Armadillo String Quartet)

  9. The Little Lieutenant Of The Loving God
    (John Zorn)

  10. Johnny's Speech
    (Van Dyke Parks)

  11. September Song
    (Lou Reed)

  12. Lost in the Stars
    (Carla Bley/Phil Woods)

  13. What Keeps Mankind Alive?
    (Tom Waits)

  14. Klops Lied
    (Elliot Sharp)

  15. Surabaya Johnny
    (Dagmar Krause)

  16. Hurricane Introduction
    (Mark Bingham/Johnny Adams/Aaron Neville)

  17. Oh Heavenly Salvation
    (Mark Bingham/Johnny Adams/Aaron Neville)

  18. Call From The Grave/Ballad in Which MacHeath Begs All Men For Forgiveness
    (Todd Rundgren/Gary Windo)

  19. Speak Low
    (Charlie Haden/Sharon Freedman)

  20. In No Man's Land
    (Van Dyke Parks)

It's a shame that no Nick Cave or Ute Lemper covers made it onto the CD.

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