The Left Banke have been acknowledged as forerunners of the musical style known as "Baroque Pop." This genre has found a resurgence with new artists including The Shins, The Decemberists, Regina Spektor, plus Belle and Sebastian (who in their interviews have cited the Left Banke repeatedly, as major influences on their music.)
Originally formed in New York City in 1965, the group came to prominence with the orchestral and melodic "Walk Away Renee," which featured a harpsichord and a string quartet. “Walk Away Renee” was shopped to every major label, and turned down by all except Smash, a subsidiary label of Mercury Records. It charted in 1966, reaching #5 on the Billboard charts. The follow up single, "Pretty Ballerina" was cited by Leonard Bernstein (Conductor of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and brilliant composer of many musicals including WEST SIDE STORY and CANDIDE), who played "Pretty Ballerina on piano for his CBS-TV special, INSIDE POP - THE ROCK REVOLUTION, in which he stated, "The Left Banke and 'Pretty Ballerina' are an example of what good pop music can be."
Two albums were released: WALK AWAY RENEE/PRETTY BALLERINA and THE LEFT BANKE TOO.
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