Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Seduction: Sinatra Sings Of Love (Deluxe 2 CD Edition)
Genres: Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
The legendary voice-and unparalleled master of seduction-sends the world a valentine with a new compilation of classic songs of love and romance. This deluxe 2 CD edition includes a CD featuring 22 timeless songs by a host... more »
The legendary voice-and unparalleled master of seduction-sends the world a valentine with a new compilation of classic songs of love and romance. This deluxe 2 CD edition includes a CD featuring 22 timeless songs by a host of legendary songwriters, including a previously unreleased rendition of Rogers & Hart's 'My Funny Valentine.' The bonus disc features ten additional tracks.
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SEDUCTION'S PRIMARY INSTRUMENT: EXTREME FOCUS
Mark Blackburn | Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada | 01/20/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My words are aimed at young people . . . of a particular sort: You have eclectic tastes. You enjoy some classical music, a little jazz by singer/musicians, such as Diana Krall. Women singers especially, have refined your musical tastes in recent years . . .
You may have read (or heard about) last week's `Op-Ed' column in the New York Times, by "Bono" - an astute, rollicking ode to the genius of Frank Sinatra, from the perspective of an aging, Irish rocker.
If you are asked to "name a Sinatra song," you think first, of him singing that familiar tune, to a million celebrants clotting Times Square at midnight, when The Ball comes down . . .
"If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere! It's up to you, New York, New York!"
But . . . you don't own ANY Sinatra albums (yet). And, why should you buy a compilation like this one? Why not one of his "theme" albums? (like "WEE SMALL HOURS" -- highest-ranked by musical historians, and personal favorite of his first-born, Nancy. Right, they sang "Somethin' Stupid" together!)
Well, I say . . . Go for the compilation! And if you buy only one, make it this one. Pour yourself a drink, kick back and . . . prepare to be `seduced' by these remarkable songs! (22 on the single CD version; 32 on the Deluxe Edition).
A collection this thoughtfully-assembled (by the folks at RHINO) `flows' in a way that actually resembles one of Sinatra's late-in-life `live' shows. And, at a time when MP3-downloads may eclipse CD sales . . . this may prove to be the ultimate collection, winning new sub-generations of Sinatra fans.
Author Bill Zehme, who wrote the liner notes for this "SEDUCTION" CD, years ago quoted actress Angie Dickinson's two-word summing up of Sinatra's primary instrument of seduction -- "Incredible focus."
The two dated, "off-and-on for ten years, before-and-after they made OCEANS ELEVEN together. Recalling those famous blue `lasers' of his, Ms Dickinson enthused: "You feel swept in . . . he doesn't unnerve you by doing it (but) it's like a drug, swirling around you. He has a magical way, you feel very, very comfortable. And he doesn't ignore you when he's in the company of others. He stays `connected' to you, without coddling.'
(Recalling words Sinatra shared about the Art of Singing: an audience is rather like a woman; "if she senses indifference . . . Endsville!")
Concerning the remarkable arrangements: The lion's share (12) were penned by America's greatest-ever orchestrator, Nelson Riddle; six were arranged by the late Don Costa (Nikka's Dad); three each, from Billy May and Neal Hefti (who died 2008); Quincy Jones wrote two; six other musicians (11 arrangers in all) get credit for one apiece. Those last include the "dean" of living arrangers Johnny Mandel plus Polish-born American, Claus Ogerman (both of whom have arranged recently for Diana Krall).
Every Sinatra compilation (I say) should include at least one song from Frank's historic album with Brazilian musical giant Antonio Carlos Jobim arranged by Claus Ogerman.
[A personal aside: I've always thought of the late Mr. Jobim as "Brazil's Cole Porter." Thus my delight to find the one track here from that great album is Porter's "I Concentrate on You." Recorded in 1967 (a "very good year" for the Sinatra family) Frank emerged from a nighttime session with Jobim to record one of his few million-selling singles -- "Somethin' Stupid" -- with daughter Nancy (a song you will find on most every other Sinatra REPRISE compilation . . . but not on this one.]
Among rarities you'll only find here is a previously unreleased "alternate version" of "My Funny Valentine" - this one from a `live' show that truly ranks among Sinatra's greatest vocal performances. Talk about breath control! The singer sustains with deceptive ease, consecutive phrases "Stay! Pretty Valentine, stay . . . each day is Valentine's Day" -- 15 seconds of Sinatra's `bel canto' virtuosity. (Just try singing along! The old Master will show you up, every time -- you breathless pipsqueak!)
A salute to producer Charles Pignone for making "Prisoner of Love" track Number 1. Sinatra's seductive ways with the Ladies were legendary. Here, however he goes straight to the hearts of all males `consensually enslaved' by beauty. (Hard to believe such words were first sung in prim & proper 1931!)
"For one command I stand and wait now
From One who's master of my fate now . . .
She's in my dreams, awake or sleeping
Upon my knees to her I'm creeping,
My very life is in her keeping . . .
I'm just a prisoner of love."
The ache in Frank's voice! Seems he's `been there, done that.' And listen closely, if you will, to the perfectly-mated arrangement by Don Costa (from their 1961 "Sinatra & Strings" album - one of the first Sinatra CDs you should purchase).
Concerning which obsession, the writer of the pleasurable liner notes, author Bill Zehme, wrote:
"He had a weakness for poise: Elusive Women vexed him . . . drew him in, with their flight, and their casual indifference. Once, at a party at Humphrey Bogart's house, he complained to Lauren Bacall "after following one such specimen around without success: `She's ignoring me!'
To which the rueful Bacall said, `Yeah, she's ignoring you right into the sack.' (Her prophesy was realized!)."
Favorite surprises among these many gems, if I may single out a couple, or three (which I'd not heard until recently on SiriuslySinatra satellite radio - they're not among my 60 Sinatra CDs).
The one song which could have fit, seamlessly, into my all-time favorite "CONCERT SINATRA" album (recorded the same year, 1963) is `Track 9' here: A ravishingly beautiful orchestration by Nelson Riddle, from Rodgers & Hammerstein's SOUTH PACIFIC -- "Some Enchanted Evening." In a word . . . wow! Wonder what the song's composers (my favorites) thought of that one?
Other delightful rarities: "STAY WITH ME" and "ALL THE WAY HOME" . . . the latter, features a gorgeous late-in-life (1983) orchestration by the late Joe Parnello, sometimes band-leader/pianist for Sinatra. [I can imagine Frank listening to the playback of this one, and telling Joe (as he did once to sax giant Johnny Hodges after his solo on "Indian Summer") "My God, that's beautiful!"]
A friend at the Sinatra family website points out the similarities in the Parnello arrangement's opening bars, to `Edelweiss' (from THE SOUND OF MUSIC) - just a hint, suggesting "that Joe Parnello was paying homage to Richard Rodgers."
[Rodgers perhaps inadvertently, once paid similar homage to Nelson Riddle's great `counter-melodies -- borrowing, as his five opening notes of "The Sound of Music," the same sequence of notes you'll hear on the closing orchestral flourish of Riddle's great arrangement (4 years earlier) of Sinatra's "TIME AFTER TIME."]
Such subtleties await your detection throughout this marvelous collection of `prime Sinatra.' Look -- if you really appreciate great music -- and need to banish those little town (mid-winter) blues -- do yourself a favor and pick this one up. And why not treat yourself to the "Deluxe Edition" with 10 extra tracks, including some exceptional beauties!
Winnipeg Manitoba Canada
Great for the ears and your mental health.
Robert Busko | North Carolina | 01/21/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Preamble: I've recently become a huge fan of MP3 downloads. Honestly, I've become disenchanted with the so-called "greatest hits" collections by various artists that contain ten to fifteen songs of which you've never heard of half of them. You end up with the songs you wanted, but you also have a load of music you'll honestly skip over when you're listening. Downloading singles for $.79 to $.99 is the only way to go.
That's all true unless you're buying something like this CD, Seduction: Sinatra Sings of Love. What a great compilation of hit standards from a simpler time. If you buy the deluxe edition you get a collection of 32 songs that include such mega hits as: Witchcraft; I Get a Kick Out of You; The Second Time Around and others. I don't believe I didn't recognize a single song.
This is a marvelous collection of music that spans several decades. Sinatra was a force of nature the likes of which I doubt we'll see again. It is a cliché but honestly, they broke the mold after he came through.
Labor of love
Thomas Thomsen | Denmark | 02/01/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a first class "follow-up" compilation to Nothing But The Best. As beautifully packaged as Nothing But The Best, if you buy the deluxe edition (digipack), which you really must, Seduction: Sinatra Sings Of Love is another labor of love.
Instead of the more familiar hits on Nothing But The Best, this new compilation largely concentrates on stylish, classy love songs, which are the perfect romantic setting for seducing that special someone. The first song Prisoner Of Love with its heart-tugging string arrangement...Phew! Sheer class, pure bliss! It's one of those delicate songs - like, say, Moonlight Serenade - that isn't catchy in the traditional sense, but Frank's performance and the tasteful arrangement just command your attention, it's that beautiful.
I've always loved Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing and having Frank's version of this standard on this particular collection is...well, let's just say that I am very pleased about it, since it never fails to give me goosebumps. Other songs worthy of mention - well, they all are, really, but other songs worthy of special mention are: I Concentrate On You, How Little We Know, The Second Time Around, At Long Last Love, The Look Of Love, Secret Love, I Wish You Love - and Then Suddenly Love (sounds so good when towards the end Frank sings: "Ding, dong, ding, I'm a-hearin' those church bells ring"). Not forgetting the charming All The Way Home, which makes me think of the Bruce Johnston-penned Beach Boys ballad Disney Girls - not because they sound similar, but because the performances and the evocative lyrics of both songs (about summer days gone by, etc.) ooze irresistible, sentimental nostalgia.
Have a glass of wine - or like me, Jack Daniels - and let yourself be "seduced" by Sinatra singing of love."