Yma Sumac, The Peruvian Songbird

Although now considered enigmatic and mysterious, Imma Sumak was originally billed as a folk singer. It wasn’t until a now legendary 1949 performance at the Hollywood Bowl that she suddenly burst onto the American music scene. In 1950, with the release of her first album, Voice of the Xtabay, and thanks to the marketing department Imma Sumack became “Yma Sumac” queen of vocal exotica with expensive gowns outlandish Peruvian jewellery, and colossal stage shows. This CD collection covers her music from the 1943 folk discs to the phenomenal 1954 Mambo! album. Here you will find the very best of her recordings and discover the voice of a Peruvian Folk singer with a voice that had the finesse, range and quality of an opera singer.

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"Yma Sumac made her name (literally!) after a long period as a folk singer, on the basis of her extraordinary vocal range allied to her choice of exotic material. Both are on display in Peruvian Songbird (Retrospective RTR 4156) which presents 27 of her recordings from between 1934 and 1954. The two earliest were recorded in Argentina, the following six are from the album “Voice of the Xtabay”, recorded in Hollywood in 1950 with accompaniment by Les Baxter; he also accompanied the first four selections from the 1951 album “Legend of the Sun Virgin”. The remaining two are accompanied by Moises Vivanco, who also officiated for two 1952 Capitol singles, and the 1953 album “Inca Taqui”. The last five tracks come from the 1954 album “Mambo!” with Billy May. Enjoyment of these virtuoso performances is enhanced by a comprehensive liner note which includes Don Pierson’s commentary for each track." - Barry McCannna

"I first heard Yma Sumac singing when I was a student and it made a great impression now I have returned it is great to meet up with that magnificent voice again."- Anonymous

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