Andrew Lloyd Webber: Now and Forever
The theatrical composer audiences love, and critics love to hate, gets a five-disc, 13-show salute just as his By Jeeves hits Broadway. All of Lord Lloyd Webber’s greatest (Evita and Jesus Christ Super-star, for starters) — and not-so-great (Sunset Boulevard and Whistle Down the Wind) — hit shows are represented with highlights from various cast recordings. The best part: lesser-known numbers from unsung musicals. Skip the familiar Phantom of the Opera selections and bask in the lush, French-tinged tones of Aspects of Love; bypass Cats for the stunning Song and Dance. Still, there’s one inexcusable omission: Patti LuPone’s original Broadway Evita tracks. Madonna’s ”Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina” is surprisingly good, but La LuPone’s will always be the showstopping version.