Sinatra on Columbia (Official/Authorized Releases)*

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by ShockControl, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. ShockControl

    ShockControl Bon Vivant and Raconteur! Thread Starter

    Lotus Land
    My taste in Sinatra leans toward his Capitol and (early) Reprise periods.

    When I listen to the Columbia stuff, I hear a young guy with a pleasant voice singing (overall) good material with nice arrangements.

    However, I can't really get into this stuff. It sounds like he's not finished yet. It's not really Sinatra. Then you spin "I've Got the World on a String" on Capitol, and there's Frank.

    I wonder what I'm missing, and/or if anyone else shares my opinion. I've been listening to this stuff for decades and decades, so it's not like I've just stumbled onto this stuff.

    I also wonder if there is some really amazing Columbia material that I may not have heard.

    Just curious.
  2. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Mastering Engineer Your Host

    I don't understand you, Frank was the biggest thing in show biz when he was still with Tommy Dorsey even before the Columbia contract.

    Perhaps you just don't like that 1940's style of music? Personally Sinatra on Columbia is my least favorite. His earlier stuff with Dorsey and Harry James to me is much better, a bit jazzier.

    So for me, DORSEY and then skip to 1953 Capitol and on....

    To each his own, yes?
  3. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    I love my Sinatra Blue Wooden CD Box set! My favorite period for Frank.:) The songs with The Pied Pipers especially (When Sun The Goes Down) are just wonderful...
  4. mr_mjb1960

    mr_mjb1960 I'm a Tarrytowner 'Til I die!

    You might want to look for the now OOP 12 CD set "The Complete Columbia Recordings"'s a great set! I have a copy myself of it-Look on both Amazon and E Bay!:righton:Lots of Unreleased Material on it!
    Marty T likes this.
  5. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Sagamore Beach, Ma
    I liked the VDisc material too.
    Marty T and CBackley like this.
  6. Mister Charlie

    Mister Charlie "Music Is The Doctor Of My Soul " - Doobie Bros.

    Aromas, CA USA
    The Columbia sides are what made him famous but I can see having a preference for his more matured latter period. Not unlike early vs. late Beatles, everyone has their own preference.
    WLL, CBackley and FritzL like this.
  7. Trashman

    Trashman Forum Resident

    I think the OP is looking for a compilation that will "turn on the light switch" and make him re-assess the Columbia era. I don't think he's looking to buy a 12 CD set, especially if the material he's already heard hasn't done much for him.

    Just sayin'
    Crawdad, Regginold31, Ere and 3 others like this.
  8. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    still a bit pricey...

    Attached Files:

  9. Chip TRG

    Chip TRG Senior Member

    There is indeed some gold in the Columbia catalog, but of course the CREATIVE climb began at Capitol and continued into Reprise. That's what I think, anyway.
    Regginold31 and McLover like this.
  10. Sean Keane

    Sean Keane Pre-Mono record collector In Memoriam

    I thought long ago that Sony would do well to produce a Sinatra CD that would contain only his most 'rocking' Columbia recordings. Sides like Walking In The Sunshine, Bim Bam Baby, Castle Rock, Tennessee Newsboy (he was in great voice on that), When You're Smilin', My Blue Heaven, It's A Long Way, American Beauty Rose, It All Came True, Five Minutes More, Bop! Goes My Heart, The Continental, Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy, It's Only A Paper Moon, My Blue Heaven, and The Coffee Song.
    BeSteVenn, peter1 and Tony Sclafani like this.
  11. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    Columbia/Legacy may be reissuing this soon as a 12-CD box set in Sony's "Complete Albums" series, in small cardboard sleeves.
  12. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    But it WAS a gag. :)

    Not to defend the song, but Mitch Miller had Sinatra's image (and sense of humor) in mind, actually. The reason for "Mama Will Bark" was that Frank and Dagmar were successful together as a comedy pairing on Sinatra's TV series. It was the flip side of a very respectable 1951 single, backed with the beautiful "I'm A Fool To Want You."
  13. paulmock

    paulmock Forum Resident

    Hollywood, CA
    With the latest "bell & whistles" in remastering, Bob?
  14. paulmock

    paulmock Forum Resident

    Hollywood, CA
    And they have been able to really clean up those old RCA recordings, Steve. I'd love to hear the entire catalogue redone the way they remastered that 2 CD set several years ago. Incredibly clean, crisp mono.
    CBackley likes this.
  15. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    Chuck Granata just mentioned this (resissue set possibility) yesterday at the SFF, and he was asked the same question. No answer yet. In the past, Chuck has stated that all the Columbia stuff has been remastered since the Big Blue Box was released in 1993. We've heard bits and pieces, but it would be a shame if Sony doesn't use all the newest transfers for a complete reissue package.
    CBackley likes this.
  16. stevelucille

    stevelucille Forum Resident

    Rochester, NY USA
    I might add Saturday Night (is the loneliest night) and Birth Of The Blues among others.
    CBackley, BeSteVenn, Hamhead and 2 others like this.
  17. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    Try listening to the Columbia/Legacy CD, Swing and Dance with Frank Sinatra. To my ears, there's little difference between late Columbia Sinatra of 1950–52 and early Capitol Sinatra of 1953–55 (except for the great Nelson Riddle charts).
  18. rangerjohn

    rangerjohn Forum Resident

    chicago, il
    I think that the OP has been exposed to all the essential Columbia stuff on the 4-CD set.

    If these titles, for instance, don't sell you on Columbia Sinatra, then nothing will:

    People Will Say We're In Love
    Body and Soul
    Sweet Lorraine
    Birth of the Blues
    Why Try to Change Me Now?

    I believe that all 5 were on that set.

    P.S. My former wife has stated that she wants only Columbia Sinatra to be played at her funeral. The sound of heaven.....
    CBackley likes this.
  19. noirbar

    noirbar Forum Resident

    San Antone

    Great news Bob. Guess I'll need to start my 2013 xmas fund a little early...
  20. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    Chuck has now answered the question in the negative: "They will be using the 1993 masters. Unfortunately, the cost of fully remastering the project would be prohibitive, although we could do a better job today."
    CBackley likes this.
  21. Batears52

    Batears52 Forum Resident

    Near Baltimore, MD
    That's a shame. Assuming that "better job" does not refer to "louder" - and I don't think that Chuck would be a part of that if it were the case.

    Sometimes - in my opinion - you need to think of the importance of the artist rather than the cost. If you can significantly improve the sonics of artist that is truly a legend, I think you have to do it regardless - for future generations.
    CBackley likes this.
  22. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Marysville, WA
    A couple of cool Columbia-era Kodachromes (lifted from this thread):
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    MMM and rangerjohn like this.
  23. Simon A

    Simon A Arrr!

    I've heard my first Sinatra song in the mid 80's in a key episode of the hit TV show Moonlighting. As soon as I heard All The Way, I knew I had to hear more from that mystery voice. I was 17 years old and my musical tastes were still somewhat limited and I was still content to listening to The Beatles, Queen, Van Halen and Duran Duran. No Jazz or Classic Pop played in our house so I was left to my own devices to discover anything recorded before Love Me Do and the content of Elvis' Golden Records, Vol. 3. I knew I was onto something big when I found a Capitol Special Markets Sinatra cassette for $5.98 at Woolco's (alas, it was not available on vinyl). It had All The Way and a bunch of other hits from his Capitol days. I played that cassette to death and this led me to discover Nat "King"Cole, Mel Tormé (whose name was being mentioned on almost every episode of Night Court) and countless others.

    For twenty eight years, I was quite happy with listening to Frank's Capitol popular material until a few months ago when I started visiting this place and started reading some of the Sinatra threads filled with so much love and respect for the Man and his musical legacy. I was reluctant to visit Frank's Columbia output because I am not a huge fan of music recorded before magnetic tape became the standard. I guess I had heard too many badly transferred 78s and foolishly concluded that everything recorded straight to disc sounded dreadful. So after reading something Bob or Paul wrote, I decided to take a leap of faith and purchased the A Voice In Time 4 CD set before Christmas. Well now I'm hooked! I guess I was ready and more open to hearing a younger Frank who was by then becoming much more than a Bing Crosby influenced crooner (not that there is anything wrong with Bing whom I've gotten to appreciate as much as Frank over the last few years).

    I'm playing a disc from this set right now and I'm blown away not only by the quality of the recordings, the playing and arranging but also by the stupendous mastering job that Sony undertook with the tracks on this set. I've Got A Crush On You is an example of the songs that sound extremely vivid. When the trumpet solo starts, you can hear and feel the room it's in. Frank is clearly in control of his voice but there is nothing in his delivery that is contrived or as done "by numbers". Absolutely gorgeous!

    Last night I pulled the trigger on the V-Discs 2 CD set and I might venture further shortly by getting the material he recorded with Tommy Dorsey and Harry James. I'm welcoming suggestions and I'm really enjoying discovering these gems. I'm also starting to dig into his Reprise catalog for which I too long had the misconception that it was filled with material much weaker than his Capitol output and now know how wrong I was to even dare think that. Boy, I'm in trouble now with so many albums to try to find (and buy) but I'm enjoying every second of it!

    To every one of you who have been sharing so passionately your knowledge of all things Sinatra, I thank you and I consider myself extremely fortunate to be in such classy company. You contribute to what makes this place so unique. I'll end this lengthy post by raising my Friday night glass of Bourbon and drinking to your health and to many more Sinatra discoveries.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2014
    peter1, 762rob, Bob Belvedere and 6 others like this.
  24. 905

    905 Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    I recently bought A Voice in Time.
    Thanks to that set I fell in love with the Columbia era after ignoring it for so long.
  25. paulmock

    paulmock Forum Resident

    Hollywood, CA
    Watch out for those switching channels on those mono recordings!!!:(

    Congratulations. Mr. S was so much more than the Capitol years.

Share This Page