Lee Hazlewood / Nancy Sinatra

Some Velvet Morning

Composed by Lee Hazlewood

Song Review by

Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood's final charting single, "Some Velvet Morning" is a completely cracked psychedelic-easy listening masterpiece, as bizarre and nihilistic as anything on Love's Forever Changes, an album that's a much closer musical comparison than many might think. The song is constructed of two entirely separate tunes edited together: Hazlewood's part of the song mines the same slightly aggressive, countrified pose that was his stock in trade, while Sinatra's is a delicate waltz that features the prettiest, least mannered singing of her career. In a particularly inspired touch, the final verse reprises the first two, edited together one line at a time so that the orchestral arrangement keeps shifting back and forth between 4/4 and 3/4, a couple of bars at a time. Trippy, man. As always, Hazlewood's lyrics are almost entirely opaque, but the general consensus seems to be that Sinatra is Phaedra, the mysterious girl Hazlewood keeps singing about, and that Phaedra is dead; Sinatra's parts of the song are, therefore, memories that keep intruding upon Hazlewood's tormented thoughts. Unsurprisingly, "Some Velvet Morning" got a second wind starting in the '80s as a favorite of the goths, shoegazers, and alt-country folks: Lydia Lunch, Slowdive, and Primal Scream are among the artists who have covered it over the years.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Movin' with Nancy 1968 Sundazed 3:39
The Hit Years 1986 Rhino 3:40
Lightning's Girl 1997 Raven 3:37
Greatest Hits 2000 Anima / Import 3:34
Essential Nancy Sinatra 2006 EMI Music Distribution 3:41
Revolutions in Sound: Warner Bros. Records - The First 50 Years 2008
Various Artists
Warner Bros. 3:39
I Got You Babe 2011
Various Artists
Starbucks
Hits PID / Ais
Not Fade Away [Music From the Motion Picture]
Original Soundtrack
ABKCO Records 3:43
blue highlight denotes editor's pick