Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
September of My Years
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
From the evocative cover painting to the impeccably chosen songs within, this 1965 album harkens back to Sinatra's great Capitol-era concept albums like In the Wee Small Hours and Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely. T... more »
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From the evocative cover painting to the impeccably chosen songs within, this 1965 album harkens back to Sinatra's great Capitol-era concept albums like In the Wee Small Hours and Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely. The theme revolves around a man approaching his 50s, looking back with a mixture of nostalgia, regret, and uncertainty; given Sinatra's age at the time (he was 49 when this was recorded) and the way he invests himself in the material, it's impossible to interpret the record as anything but autobiographical. Wistful numbers such as "Don't Wait Too Long," "It Was a Very Good Year," "September Song," and the title track all hit the emotional bull's-eye, but everything here is excellent. Unquestionably his finest Reprise-era achievement. --Dan Epstein
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One of Sinatra's finest hours
Jon Warshawsky | San Diego, CA USA | 01/08/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"September of My Years is a perfectly arranged selection of songs recorded as Sinatra neared his 50th birthday (1965). It is outstanding, in that the 13 songs absolutely belong together on this collection, perfectly realized by Sinatra's mellow voice of the 1960s. It is especially stunning to compare songs like 'Hello, Young Lovers' to the early Columbia recordings, which are also first rate but lack the sincerity derived from five decades of living.From the Gordon Jenkins-arranged introduction to the title track to the closing September Song, the music (with Jenkins signature strings) provides the right wistful, reflective backdrop to a Sinatra whose voice has aged like wine. 'It was a Very Good Year' is probably the standout, and the kind of magic even FS could not have recorded when he was starting out in the late 1930s. Here it is evocative, heartfelt and very moving. 'Man in the Looking Glass' is remarkable, as is 'Once Upon a Time.'I agree with Dan Epstein's review: this is essential Sinatra, certainly the best concept album on Reprise. The listener can feel that Sinatra is singing part of his autobiography here, and for those of us still moved by his passing it takes on an even greater significance.Very highly recommended."
Gentle, poignant Sinatra
audrey | white mtns | 12/07/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I was 20 you couldn't have convinced me I'd ever own a Frank Sinatra album, but a few weeks ago I found myself humming these songs that I'd heard my mother playing years ago. The arrangements sound a little dated but their virtue is unchanged -- they leave Sinatra's voice far forward -- and some of his greatest performances are here, bookended by two masterpieces -- "The September of My Years" and "September Song". The songs selected flawlessly support the album's concept of the singer looking back from his approaching 50th birthday, and Sinatra doesn't hit a wrong note anywhere. When you think of everything it meant to be Frank Sinatra -- what a life to be looking back on! -- the chance to listen in is irresistible. You can't help but bring the ol' math brain out of mothballs to figure out what month your life is in; if you're getting older and have September in common with Ol' Blue Eyes, it doesn't seem so bad; if you're still in the early days, it adds some perspective to your thoughts and feelings about aging."The September of My Years" -- Not the first version recorded by Sinatra, but the definitive version. His voice is perfection, as smooth as Scotch, and his tone one of reflection without bitterness. The dip when he sings 'A-a-and I find ....' is lovely and restrained.So often Sinatra could have descended into melancholy, but didn't -- "How Old Am I?" has not a trace of self-pity and "Don't Wait Too Long" is never churlish."It Gets Lonely Early" -- Good lyrics and superb phrasing propel this tearjerker to a higher plane.Some of the songs have sub-par lyrics and arrangements -- "This Is All I Ask" and "I See It Now" -- but Sinatra's phrasing pulls them out of the hat.Other masterpieces include "Last Night When We Were Young", with an arrangement as timeless as the vocalization, and "The Man in the Looking Glass" -- quintessential Sinatra -- quietly passionate and more than a little irreverent without ever being clownish."It Was a Very Good Year" -- Hey, I'm as cynical as the next person, and I enjoy irony, but you can't listen to this song without thinking it might be nice to hold a world-view that didn't reject romance and hope as passe. And what woman wouldn't want to be remembered as the singer of "Once Upon a Time" remembers his long-ago sweetheart?"When the Wind Was Green" -- an evocative arrangement with Sinatra's smooth-as-silk delivery."Hello Young Lovers" is a terrific song, and can you hear it without believing Frank is thinking of Ava Gardner. The song reaches out to the young without condemnation or condescension -- a trick most adults of the '60s couldn't pull off. "September Song" -- 'When the autumn weather turns the leaves to flame, one hasn't got time for the waiting game' .... 'And these few precious day,s I'll spend with you'. Such a great song so perfectly sung.Even if you're not a diehard fan, you can't help but enjoy hearing Sinatra at the top of his form on this breathtakingly beautiful album."
A Masterpiece and a Mirror
Anthony G Pizza | FL | 01/10/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Tonight will not swing. Tonight is for serious," writes WB executive Stan Cornyn's liner notes to Frank Sinatra's majestic "September of My Years." And, turning 50 in 1965, Sinatra was in reflective mood not only himself, but for a generation which had won WWII and only began to view the uncertainty of the second half of the 60s.This is one of the most empathetic albums ever made. Sinatra addresses the physical changes of age (with humor in "The Man In The Looking Glass"), the familial empty nest ("It Gets Lonely Early") and begins enjoying what younger people overlooked (the title track, Gordon Jenkins' "This is All I Ask"). Although "All I Ask," was covered by Jimmy Durante and "Once Upon A Time" by Tony Bennett (not to mention the gorgeous "Hello Young Lovers" from The King and I") Sinatra posseses them in this context. Listen to him sing the phrase "and it caaaaammmmmeee undone" on "It's A Very Good Year," and you hear someone who enjoyed the true sensuality of that moment. A masterpiece as reflective in covering others' songs as the work of any singer/songwriter."