Frank Sinatra

Sinatra & Strings

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Sinatra & Strings, Frank Sinatra's first album with arranger Don Costa, is an exquisite, romantic collection of ballads and one of his most sensual records. Costa has given the songs -- which consist entirely of standards -- exceedingly lush, heavily orchestrated arrangements that sound like updated, contemporary versions of Axel Stordahl's ornate charts. Sinatra responds with smooth, nuanced, yet powerful vocals that make these traditional songs sound fresh. The pair take some chances with their arrangements -- "Stardust" never reaches the chorus, for instance -- but Sinatra & Strings remains a definitive ballads album, complete with impassioned readings and endlessly rich, detailed arrangements.

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