The Very Best Of The Rat Pack
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A new collection of chart-topping smashes from Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. featuring 18 studio hits from their golden Vegas period including 'Come Fly With Me,' 'Ain't That A Kick In The Head,' 'Too Close For Comfort,' 'Luck Be A Lady,' 'Volare,' 'Witchcraft,' 'Everybody Loves Somebody,' and more. Includes a previously unreleased Sinatra recording of 'I'm Gonna Live Until I Die' and new liner notes by noted Sinatra author Bill Zehme.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a great compilation of the best of Mr. Francis Albert Sinatra, Mr. Dino Crocetti, and Mr. Samuel George Davis Junior. If you have other Rat Pack compilations like Boys Night Out and Eee-O-11: The Best Of The Rat Pack, you will have most of these songs. That may be a little disappointing. But THE VERY BEST does include a couple of not-too-different "alternate versions" of a couple of Rat Pack standards. It also has the Rat Pack's theme song, "Ring-A-Ding-Ding."
Is this a GREAT album? You betcha. It's well worth the purchase price. I went through the bank drive through with the top down listening to this CD, and the pretty Latina teller started to do a little swaying. Then she asked me out on a date. Think this is a GREAT album now???
Sinatra's tracks are selected from his early Reprise years, and include the brash "Luck Be a Lady" and the title track from his label debut, Ring-a-Ding-Ding. The bulk of these are remakes of songs that Sinatra initially recorded for Capitol in the 1950s, including "I've Got You Under My Skin," "Come Fly with Me," "Witchcraft" and "I Get a Kick Out of You." These `60s performances find Sinatra in good voice, jazzily stretching out the rhythms, playfully punctuating his syllables and snapping his fingers on "Come Fly with Me," but they don't have the inventive vitality of the Capitol originals. The early Reprise-era Sinatra often sounds like an entertainer coasting on his top-of-the-world success rather than an artist brashly reinventing himself, as he had at Capitol.
Martin's tracks, borrowed from both the Capitol and Reprise libraries, include signature hits "Ain't That a Kick in the Head," "Volare," "You're Nobody `Til Somebody Loves You" and "Everybody Loves Somebody." Additionally, his 1962 single "Who's Got the Action?" pairs horn-heavy swing with a lyric of love and horseracing. The same year saw the release of the Vaudeville-styled duet, "Sam's Song," with Davis singing stagey counterpoint to Martin's crooning. Davis' solo tracks show off his brilliant theatricality as he caresses and belts Bye Bye Birdie's "A Lot of Livin' to Do," and his roots in blues and jazz come out for the Ocean's Eleven showcase "Eee-O Eleven" and a reprise of his own Broadway success with Mr. Lucky's "Too Close for Comfort."
Over the years, all three performers became such outsized media personalities that it's easy to forget the greatness of their recordings and live performances. Sinatra's reworking of his Capitol material is looser than the originals - more Sinatra doing Sinatra than being Sinatra - but they give you a good feel for his `60s ring-a-ding-ding swagger. Martin's sides are among his most loved, and Davis' proves just how skilled and soulful he was as a vocalist. This is a good sample of what these performers were doing in the studio, with a 16-page booklet filled with period photos and liner notes adapted from Bill Zehme's The Way You Wear Your Hat: Frank Sinatra and the Lost Art of Livin'. For a taste of the trio in action as a live act, check out the CD/DVD set The Ultimate Rat Pack Collection: Live & Swingin', or look for the hard-to-find The Rat Pack Live at the Sands and Summit in Concert. [©2011 hyperbolium dot com]
Still the talent shows through on all three singers. Sinatra's full-vocal sound, that is unmistakeable and why he was "Chairman of the Board", is constantly displayed throughout the CD. Martin always comes across with that "cool-water" voice that goes down like 20-year-old scotch. My favorites are: Ain't That A Kick In The Head (from Ocean's Eleven) and Volare (Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu). Last but not least is the most talented one of the Pack. Davis sings: Birth Of The Blues and Eee-O Eleven (from Ocean's Eleven).
After a hard day, I like to turn on CD player, open a beer, sit in the recliner, dim the lights, close my eyes,...and I'm back at the Sand's for the mid-nite show.
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