Sinatra at the Sands (With Count Basie & the Orchestra)
1966/1998: Reprise 9 46947-2
Ah, Frank Frank, Frank, Frank . I really didnt hear anything of his work except his bombastic New York, New York until I was in my early 30s, and then he finally got his chance to slide into my life. And actually Im so glad he waited that long, because when he arrived I had lived long enough to recognize the nuances of his singing, and his nuances run a spellbinding range. Also, its a good thing I wasnt born 20 or 30 years earlier than I was, because I probably would have been a totally swooning and lovestruck fan and that kind of thing didnt go over so well back then when the fan and the star were both guys. I find Sinatra intensely sexy, on the whole, and his swagger (which is part of the appeal) gets ample exposure on this album, whereas the more moody/reflective/tender side makes brief appearances just enough to mesmerize the listener utterly and leave their jaw hanging slack in unconsiously registered empathy.
This album is particularly dazzling because it has not just plenty Frank but also Count Basie and his band, and that is some firepower.
His delivery of One for My Baby sends chills through my body and leaves me breathless, staring in awe at the speakers as Franks voice (which was so slickly humorous only minutes before) paralyzes me with its intense immediacy and intimacy that has me THERE where his character is singing the actual setting of the recording and the presence of hundreds of audience members would be unimaginable if there werent the occasional clink of plates and cutlery and quiet coughs. Thats probably the most riveting recording on this album, but his cover of Send in the Clowns (included in the Reprise Collection) matched the effect, with all of the slightly-quavering repressed emotion of this track. Angel Eyes is similarly riveting, but the audience cuts in with the applause before it gets its proper dying-out moment.
My body may be 50, but Im 28.
Franks standup routines are surprisingly funny, I mean REALLY funny and surprising for the context, but theyre also well-delivered and of course loaded with in-joke references.
Comments © 2005 Mark Ellis Walker, except as noted, and no claim is made to the images and quoted lyrics.