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Sinatra! the Song Is You


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Table of Contents

* Night and Day: The Sinatra Style The Skinny Years * For Old Times Sake: Hoboken and Harry, 1915-1939 * Of Love and Youth and Spring: With Tommy Dorsey, 1940-1942 * With Axel Stordahl, 1943-1948 * All the In-Between Years, 1948-1953 The Hat Years * With Nelson Riddle, 1953-1979 * With Billy May, 1953-1979 * Gordon Jenkins and the Search for Long Forms, 1956-1981 The Tux Years * Looking for the Hook, 1960-1971 * Ol blue Eyes Is Back and the Concert Years, 1973-1994

Promotional Information

Winner of the 1996 ASCAPDeems Taylor Award for outstanding book on music

About the Author

Will Friedwald is the author of The Warner Bros. Cartoons, Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies, and Sinatra! The Song Is You.


Frank Sinatra is a 20th-century icon‘a singer, actor, and celebrity whose career stretches from boy singer with Tommy Dorsey in the Forties to creater of two bestselling discs of duets in the Nineties. In this musical biography, names like Nelson Riddle, Billy May, and Gordon Jenkins (some of Sinatra's most significant arrangers) dominate, while Ava Gardner and Mia Farrow get but passing mention. Despite the serious intent, Friedwald writes in a loosely casual writing style (as in his earlier Jazz Singing, LJ 5/1/90) that tends to wear thin after a while. Also, a few examples with musical notation would have been welcome. Still, the level of detail in which his singing and recordings are discussed in over 500 pages is sure to delight true Sinatra fans, even if more casual readers may lose interest. Recommended for larger popular music collections.‘Michael Colby, Univ. of California, Davis

This admiring account of Frank Sinatra's career provides only sporadic glimpses of the singer's personal life, focusing instead on the music. Friedwald (Jazz Singing) portrays Sinatra as an artistic rebel in the 1940s who campaigned for style and class against mediocrity and a bottom-line mentality. The crooner from blue-collar Hoboken, New Jersey, spent 20 years in an ultimately triumphant struggle to own and control what he produced, yet by the 1960s, market forces compelled him to work with material alien to his personal taste. Nevertheless, observes Friedwald, whose generally perceptive criticism is laden with superlatives, Sinatra expanded his musical palette while remaining true to his heritage. The colorful, prodigiously researched narrative focuses on Sinatra's collaborations with bandleaders Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, musical arrangers Axel Stordahl, Nelson Riddle and Billy May and songwriter/orchestrator Gordon Jenkins. (Sept.)

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