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Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered

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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, May 26, 1998
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Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Only The Lonely (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:09$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Angel Eyes (1998 Digital Remaster) 3:44$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. What's New? (1998 Digital Remaster) 5:12$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. It's A Lonesome Old Town (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:16$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Willow Weep For Me (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:49$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Good-Bye (1998 Digital Remaster) 5:45$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Blues In The Night (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:45$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out To Dry (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:02$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Ebb Tide (1998 Digital Remaster) 3:17$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. Spring Is Here (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:46$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen11. Gone With The Wind (1998 Digital Remaster) 5:15$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen12. One For My Baby (And One More For The Road) (1998 Digital Remaster) 4:25$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen13. Sleep Warm (1998 Digital Remaster) 2:45$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen14. Where Or When (1998 Digital Remaster) 2:25$1.29  Buy MP3 

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Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely + In the Wee Small Hours + Songs for Swingin Lovers
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 26, 1998)
  • Original Release Date: 1981
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Capitol
  • ASIN: B000006OHF
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,468 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

#1 on the charts for five weeks in 1958!


Look past the tacky, sad-clown velvet painting on the cover (a Grammy-winner for album design in 1959!), there's nothing cheap or sentimental about this record--the bleakest and blackest album of popular songs ever recorded, so quietly powerful it can leave you slumped in your chair with the ice cubes still rattling in your glass. Every single "suicide song" (as Sinatra liked to call 'em) on Only the Lonely is a stunner that will take your breath away. Nelson Riddle's arrangements are like shadows, almost colorless and motionless, so that all you hear is the ache in the singer's voice. "Angel Eyes" and "One for My Baby" each deserve an album to themselves-- so exquisitely moving that at the end of three minutes you feel like you've just heard a lifetime of loneliness. My only regret--and it's a big one--is that this flawless masterpiece doesn't include Billy Strayhorn's "Lush Life," which truly belongs here; Sinatra put it into an already overcrowded recording schedule and, when fatigue and the difficulty of the song defeated him after a couple takes, he gave up and never attempted it again. We got the chillingly lovely "Willow Weep For Me" instead, so I'm really not complaining--but that just adds to the pang of loss that this album expresses so vividly. Drink up! --Jim Emerson

Customer Reviews

Nelson Riddle noted that this was his best arranged album and Frank Sinatra, Jr.
Dan Slater
This is an album to listen to when your spouse has dumped you, your boss has fired you or a love affair has busted up.
Candace Scott
Even in my saddest moments, I can listen to these songs and feel the emotions his singing pours out.
Barbara Woodin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

94 of 98 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Lovitt HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on January 28, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This album was recorded over several days in late May and June of 1958, and I've been listening to it almost ever since. I've always been a Johnny Mercer fan, too, and a couple of his best songs are recorded on this album: the rueful "One for my Baby;" and the darker, angrier "Blues in the Night."
In my opinion "Only the Lonely" is Sinatra's greatest album. It is a collection of twelve ballads (plus two additions on the CD: "Sleep Warm"; and "Where or When") that Sinatra turns into dramatic monologue supported by music. The individual notes supporting each logical phrase in a song are seamlessly bound together--"He sings with such a beautiful legato!" the music critic Virgil Thomson once remarked.
In general, I'm not a popular music fan, being more inclined toward opera where this singer's reedy baritone would be out of place. But what Sinatra sings, he sings perfectly. Opera singers who attempt to go the other way and record popular ballads generally end up embarrassing themselves, especially if their songs were previously interpreted by Sinatra.

His golden age truly began in the 50s when he signed a contract with Capitol Records, hired Nelson Riddle as his chief arranger, and recorded a series of 'concept' albums that included this album on the loneliness of love.
A singer achieves stardom only to the extent that he succeeds in expressing his personality through music. Sinatra's ability to do this is most especially evident here where he personifies the lover who is unlucky in love. He is by turn rueful, melancholy, self-pitying, and sometimes a little angry---and if you're anywhere above the onset of puberty, I think you will understand exactly what he means.
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63 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Mark Blackburn on April 28, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I like to make friends laugh, but like the proverbial clown who is 'crying on the inside' (and as the singer is depicted here on the original album cover) -- I feel most in tune with life's poignant moments . . . the ones cynics like me usually dismiss as 'wallowing in self-pity.'

I've identified with Johnny Mercer's protagonist in "One For My Baby" since I first saw Frank Sinatra perform it on black and white TV, 45 years ago. But it's the Sammy Cahn classics on this album -- especially the title track --- that resonate, most deeply in my heart.

I close my eyes and listen in amazement to what many consider the single most beautiful ballad-recording Frank Sinatra and arranger Nelson Riddle ever created together --- Sammy Cahn & Jule Styne's "Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out to Dry." I listen and see in my mind's eye the girl who broke my heart, in that 'very good year, when I was 21.'

Shortly after my youngest son (now teaching English in Japan and in love again) had his heart broken for the first time, he "discovered" his favorite Sinatra recording, among his dad's CDs -- "Only the Lonely."

Like his father, he prefers up-tempo Sinatra -- and singles out "I Thought About You" as his favorite 'swing' tune (mine too). But "Only the Lonely" he considers the "best song about lost love." (We agree on so few things!)

The same version of this song, on the 3-CD "Capitol Years" box set, opens with an additional 25 seconds of Sinatra giving expert instruction to Felix Slatkin -- who actually conducted the Riddle orchestra, that night of May 29, 1958.

The heartfelt liner notes, penned by Pete Welding, seem to speak to me personally.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Brian Pirnat on March 12, 2000
Format: Audio CD
In our lives all of us understand what it means to be lonely. These recordings of Frank Sinatra, put into words how that feels. The album starts off with "Only The Lonely" a very sad song which with the beautiful vocal performance of Sinatra, truely shows what it means to have lost everything, and be lonely. "Angel Eyes" and "What's New" are again wonderful performances by Sinatra, and show the sadness of lost love. Performances which only he could give. There are many other great recordings on this album, such as, "Willow Weep For Me" "Good-Bye" and "Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out To Dry." But the real treasure on this album is Sinatra's recording of "One For My Baby." Sinatra classified himself as a saloon singer, and this song is definately the greatest saloon song of all time. Sinatra is there by himself with just a piano backing his fantastic vocals. This album is essential to any Sinatra fan, and to any Sinatra collection.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Candace Scott on July 8, 2000
Format: Audio CD
For anyone who doubts Sinatra's vocal genius, sit down and listen to this record. This is Sinatra' Jr.'s favorite album and no wonder: the pathos, agony, gloom, despair and gut wrenching emotion Frank puts to this recording are legendary. This is an album to listen to when your spouse has dumped you, your boss has fired you or a love affair has busted up.
The theme throughout is, of course, loneliness. Frank articulates the emotion with an amazing array of vocal weapons, most of them so subtle you can't detect them, but you feel it deep down in your soul. Only a man who has lived Sinatra's type of life (and who else has?) can bring such an arsenal to the microphone. Somehow he brings an understated intensity to this record that is awesome.
This album is so good that you could legitimately say, "It's the best ever" and not be laughed out of the room. This is Sinatra and Riddle at their apex.
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