Saturday, August 11, 2012

FRANK SINATRA: Retro Rewind Record Review

Recently, I came across several old reviews that I had written years ago for
the popular online arts and culture magazine, Some of these features were published so long ago that I had actually forgotten ever writing
them. But be sure that they're all pure gems, and despite still floating around
out in cyber space, Ink 19 editor Ian Koss has graciously allowed me to reprint
a few of them here as part of my new blog series, "Retro Rewind Record Reviews."

Strangers in the Night
Concord Records

The original 20th century teenage heartthrob, Frank Sinatra had already been an established pop culture icon for a quarter century when Strangers in the Night originally was released on his own Reprise record label in 1966.

Produced by Sonny Burke, this million-selling record captures Sinatra at the top of his game and has now been reborn forty-four years after its initial release in a deluxe, re-mastered CD format via Concord Records.

In addition to the chart-topping title track, Strangers in the Night features such signature Sinatra classics as "Summer Wind" and "All or Nothing at All," and earned "Ol' Blue Eyes" a 1967 Grammy for Record of the Year. It also marked the final recording in a successful string of collaborations with legendary orchestra conductor Nelson Riddle.

Strangers boasts an array of standards from Sinatra's teenage years such as "My Baby Just Cares for Me" and "You're Driving Me Crazy," as well as contemporary pop numbers like "Call Me" and "Downtown" (both of which would also become major hits for British pop singer Petula Clark). The record's crowning jewel is "On a Clear Day," which is quite possibly Sinatra's finest vocal performance of his legendary sixty-plus year career.

This deluxe re-issue also contains bonus live versions of "Strangers in the Night" and "All or Nothing at All," as well as an alternate version of "Yes Sir, That's My Baby."

In sum, this one is a must-have for all "members of the board."

-Christopher Long
(March 2010)

Author Christopher Long's latest book,
is available NOW on Amazon.

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