Seduction: Sinatra Sings of Love
Ten years after his death, Frank Sinatra's cocksure shadow looms as large as ever over affairs of the heart. Francis Albert was the "world's preeminent Chief Tilted-Hat Attitudinalist, Swingin'est Rake of Nights Unending [and] a Man for All Men (Whose Women Still Wouldn't Mind a Piece of Him," writes The Way You Wear Your Hat: Frank Sinatra and the Lost Art of Livin' author Bill Zehme in the overheated liner notes to this new compilation released just in time for Valentine's Day. (Imagine that.) Seduction rounds up 22 of Frank's best-known treatises on love - courtesy of composers like Sammy Cahn, the Gershwins and Cole Porter - from koo-koo swingers "I've Got You Under My Skin" and "I Get a Kick Out of You" to near-operatic ballads such as "My Funny Valentine" and "Some Enchanted Evening."
Whatever the arrangement, it's all about The Voice: passionate but wary, impeccably phrased and warm as a glass of Scotch on wee-small-hours selections like "It Had to Be You" and "That's All." If for some ghastly reason you've never been schooled by Frank, Seduction makes a fine (if by-the-numbers) point of entry - but if you're spending this Valentine's Day with an empty bottle and a broken heart, do yourself a favor and unwrap 1958's Sings for Only the Lonely instead.