The Lonely Hours, Sarah Vaughan's contribution to the genre of saloon song LPs, doesn't have a stellar selection of material -- although of course nearly anything recorded by one of America's foremost jazz interpreters is worth hearing. Add to that the special treat of Benny Carter -- the seminal altoist who'd been contributing charts to the hottest big bands since 1928 -- occupying the arranger's chair, and The Lonely Hours becomes a very intriguing proposition. Carter's refined arrangements and ensemble playing don't exactly reinforce the isolation of the title, but Vaughan sounds excellent on "I'll Never Be the Same," "These Foolish Things," and "If I Had You," lightly caressing the notes. For "You're Driving Me Crazy" and "What'll I Do," she cleverly mirrors the comic frustration embodied in Carter's flügelhorn/tuba ensemble. Hopefully, Carter wasn't responsible for the occasionally canned sound of the strings; The Lonely Hours is a solid match of vocalist and arranger in most respects, with only the quality of the material weighing it down slightly.
AllMusic Review by John Bush