Sinatra Vs. Other Male Interpreters of the Great American Songbook

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by ShockControl, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. paulmock

    paulmock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    You and Jolie...I love it! He was something alright.
     
  2. Frank in "High Society": "Don't dig that kinda croonin', chum!!!"
    Bing in reply: "You must be one of the newer fellas!!!":biglaugh:
     
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  3. ShockControl

    ShockControl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Al Jolson is HORRIBLE. He never deserved to have a career. Awful, simply awful singing.
     
  4. frankfan1

    frankfan1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Western Tennessee
    Loving this thread.

    Frank Sinatra may not have been the absolute best when it came to the technical side of singing, but I think he's the absolute best when it comes to that emotional punch.

    I remember about 25 years ago, during a rough breakup, I saw and bought a copy of "Wee Small Hours." Indeed...he knew exactly what I was going through. He went through it, too.

    There would never have been a Frank with Bing, technically marvelous but not as personal, Russ Colombo, and others. Frank changed the game, using the newest technologies in mics and recordings.

    Tony Bennett, too, is technically awesome. But as an interpreter I would place Mel Torme ahead of him.

    And then Perry Como, almost in danger of being forgotten, stuck in public domain land.
     
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  5. Ronald Sarbo

    Ronald Sarbo Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, NY, USA
    Paul: "Flamingo" was made famous by Herb Jeffries who is now 100 years old. He is the LAST of the Big Band Singers and the Big Baritones.

    This is also the centennial year of the birth of Billy Eckstine. That to date Mr. B does not have a box set to his name is a gross injustice. Mr. B. was the leader of the big band that was the incubator of modern jazz and was singing romantic ballads while Nat King Cole was still leading a trio and singing novelties.

    Dick Haymes was the "Ballad Singer Supreme" and David Allyn and Bob Manning were his disciples...both excellent singers.
     
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  6. paulmock

    paulmock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    Thanks for the correction , sir!!! My bad.
     
  7. 3rd Uncle Bob

    3rd Uncle Bob Forum Resident

    This is how I feel about Tony Bennett. A couple of songs by him are OK, but there's seems to be no heart or soul in it.
     
  8. Get2Me

    Get2Me Well-Known Member

    Perry Como is severely underrated probably because everyone remembers his very vanilla MOR/easy listening recordings from the late '60s/early '70s. As a direct disciple of Bing Crosby's vocal style, though, Perry, like his "teacher," had the chops to sing with a jazzy bent. However, he rarely utilized this style once he hit upon a successful formula.

    Look at some of his 1950's, uptempo recordings, such as "It's A Good Day."

    The lively beat, coupled with Perry's smooth but assured vocals, makes for quite an interesting contrast. If there was ever any doubt about his complete command as a performer, this song alone should quiet the critics.
     
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  9. john greenwood

    john greenwood Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC
    Got the DVD last week.
     
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  10. john greenwood

    john greenwood Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC
    How about his albums with Bill Evans? Those and the Sinatra tribute album are all I own.
     
  11. jabbo5150

    jabbo5150 Active Member

    Love the albums he did with Bill Evans. He's probably my second favorite after Sinatra, but really, I have Frank at the top and then everyone else.
     
  12. oates

    oates Well-Known Member

    Matt Monro Sings Hoagy Carmichael (1962) is a serious contender in this field! Frank put Monro in his top 3.
     
  13. Get2Me

    Get2Me Well-Known Member

    Matt Monro is another favorite of mine. Seriously, he's like the British Sinatra as both singers have a similar timbre to their voices. However, Matt possessed a smoothness that middle-period Sinatra lacked. Come to think of it, Matt's got a little of Perry Como's silkiness in his vocals. Yeah, I'm definitely a Matt Monro fan!
     
  14. getitgoin

    getitgoin Active Member

    Location:
    LA, CA, US
    Those back-up singers are unfortunate.
     
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  15. DLant

    DLant The Dap-Gort Staff

    Location:
    Upstate New York
    In addition to my previously posted list; I do enjoy Harry Connick, Jr. His vocals sound classic, yet modern. Writes a lot of great material, arrangements, and plays great piano. I'd have to list him right under Nat Cole.

    One of my favorite Connick tunes:

     
  16. zen

    zen Forum Resident

    I'll listen to Ray Eberle over Frank Sinatra.
     
  17. Ronald Sarbo

    Ronald Sarbo Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, NY, USA
    The difference between Sinatra and Tony Bennett comes in how they handled "contemporary" songs. Sinatra was superior when it came to interpreting the lyrics of Jimmy Webb and John Hartford etc. Como was superior to both of them when it came to covering the songs of the early 70's.
     
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  18. Ronald Sarbo

    Ronald Sarbo Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, NY, USA
    Bobby Darin said in an interview in the early 60's that he believed he was "in the realm of the good singers like Sinatra, Peggy Lee and Nat Cole. Anybody who believes Dean Martin is a good singer is crazy." Darin drew a distinction between good singers and good entertainers. He considered Sammy Davis Jr. to be a good "entertainer".
     
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  19. frankfan1

    frankfan1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Western Tennessee
    I think it's particularly interesting to see how Capitol seemingly tried to fill the void when Sinatra left Capitol with recordings with Vic Damone and Bobby Darin. I love Vic Damone's voice...a technical marvel.

    I also have grown addicted to Dick Haymes' Capitol recordings. I love the timbre of his voice and how it was recorded.

    Regarding Perry Como, I wonder if I'm on the right track if I say that Como wasn't interested as much in the charts as Sinatra, as his recordings seems a bit more consistent to me.
     
  20. Stan

    Stan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago
    Van Morrison deserves to be on any great male vocalist who's done americana music list.
     
  21. Ronald Sarbo

    Ronald Sarbo Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, NY, USA
    Como had more charted hits than Sinatra in the 50's. Mr. C failed to make the top 10 in the 60's but made his comeback with in the 70's with "It's Impossible". Como attributed his reign on the charts in the 50's to television.
     
  22. frankfan1

    frankfan1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Western Tennessee
    I'd be interested, too, to see what forum members think of Johnny Mathis when it comes to this discussion.

    After Johnny returned to Columbia after his stint at Mercury, he focused heavily on covers of popular songs. But I think his 1989-present discography, except for the Diane Warren album, is excellent. I love the Ellington Album, Broadway album, the "Isn't it Romantic" album. With Mathis, sometimes it's hard to separate the wheat from the chaff...but there's a lot of good stuff there.
     
  23. nancybrooke

    nancybrooke Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle, WA, USA
    Frank is at the top for me, but I've listened to him so much that these days I'm more likely to reach for something by Jack Jones, Scott Walker, Matt Monro or Mark Murphy. Scott didn't do a lot of the Great American Songbook but he had a nice way with a ballad.

     
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  24. ShockControl

    ShockControl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    The other difference is how they handle ballads.
     
  25. Sneaky Pete

    Sneaky Pete Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC USA
    There are great soul and blues singers that I love but they are not covering the same ground as Frank. Likewise there are Country and Folk Singers that can out sing Sinatra within their genres but not on Frank's territory.

    I think Nat, is Frank's equal but he didn't have all the great arrangements. I like Nat's jazzier sides best. Tony Bennett, Bobby Darin and Perry Como come close.

    Tom Jone's is one singer that I think could kill the Great American Songbook but he hasn't ever really attacked it.
     

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