January 28, 2010 – 2:09 pm

Sinatra retains his position at the top of the pop charts with Strangers In The Night.

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

Strangers In The Night Sessions [no label, 1CD]

Studio sessions on May 11 and 16, 1966 in Hollywood studios. Ex- SBD stereo.

Most fans tend to forget Frank Sinatra’s pop appeal once the ’60s got underway. But actually, Sinatra was always there. In 1960, he hosted the Timex TV special that reintroduced Elvis, returned home from the Army. He was also in Hollywood making Ocean’s 11 and The Manchurian Candidate and right there at the beginning of the equal rights movement, performing at benefits for Martin Luther King Jr.

When it was time to leave Capitol Records, Sinatra started his own label, Reprise, which signed contemporary singer-songwriters, notably Neil Young. In 1965, Sinatra was 50 and recorded his reflective album, September Of My Years, which was that year’s Grammy album of the year. It was a wave goodbye.

To make one more stab at recording a popular album for a new audience, Sinatra tried a new arranger, Ernie Freeman, to record his next single, Strangers In The Night. The album of the same name became his biggest selling album of all time and sold one million copies in the U.S. and returned him to the top of the U.S. album chart.

The two-day sessions have never been officially released but at least an hour’s worth leaked into the hands of fans and collectors. It includes all the tracks save the title track and You’re Driving Me Crazy! On it are a mix of old style ballads and two Tony Hatch tunes - Downtown and Call Me, both songs associated with Petula Clark, the English pop singer. Sinatra practically runs them to the ground, offering a dispassionate performance. He seems particularly unimpressed with Downtown. The closest to a “rock out” would be the uptempo The Most Beautiful Girl In The World, with Sinatra belting it out.

But it’s still the romantic ballads that hold up best with the title track, Summer Wind, On A Clear Day and Yes Sir, That’s My Baby, that make for repeated listening. It was a generation gap that just wasn’t worth bridging. Sinatra would make one final attempt to reach this new generation when he recorded the Duets album in 1993. Some might call that a folly.

This was received in a trade. Many thanks to the trader. This sounds like the raw, unvarnished recording, a bit trebly but definitely worth listening.
- Professor Red

Note: Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (these are high quality MP3s - sample rate of 192 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. Summer Wind [takes 1-7]* (12.5MB)
Take 1,2 flubbed
Take 3 complete
Take 4 incomplete
Take 5 complete
Take 6,7 flubbed

Track 02. All Or Nothing At All [takes 1-3]* (14.2MB)
Take 1 First attempt fails after first verse
Take 2 complete
Take 3 Fails after first verse, restarts and complete

Track 03. Call Me [takes 1-6]* (10.1MB)
Take 1,2,3 flubbed at the very first verse
Take 4 incomplete
Take 5 complete
Take 6 announced

Track 04. On A Clear Day You Can See Forever [takes 1-8]* (16.4MB)
Take 1 Sinatra stops the music and speaks to the musicians
Take 2 flubbed after first line
Take 3 complete
Take 4,5 flubbed
Take 6 complete
Take 7 stopped
Take 8 incomplete

Track 05. My Baby Just Cares For Me [unidentified take] + (3.5MB)

Track 06. Downtown [takes 1-4]* (8.4MB)
Take 1 incomplete, breaks down but Sinatra said it was great
Take 2 flubbed
Take 3 stopped, Sinatra unhappy with the instrumental arrangement, restarts to complete
Take 4 announced

Track 07. Yes Sir, That’s My Baby + (3.1MB)
Take 1 complete (omitted - released on the Strangers In The Night Expanded Edition?)
Take 1 intercut (incomplete)
Take 2 intercut (with vocals)

Track 08. The Most Beautiful Girl In The World [takes 1-8]+ (12.8MB)
Take 1-2 (?) complete
Take 3 incomplete
Take 4 incomplete
Take 5 incomplete
Take 6 complete
Take 8 complete (fast version)

Track 09. Radio promo spots (948k)

Track 10. Call Me Irresponsible (recorded for his 1963 Reprise album Sinatra’s Sinatra) (16.0MB)
unidentified take complete
unidentified take music only partial
unidentified take partial
unidentified take music only partial
unidentified take, false starts, incomplete (slow version)

NOTE: Missing are the sessions for the title track and You’re Driving Me Crazy! (recorded May 11, 1966). The title song Strangers In The Night was recorded first on April 11 with Ernie Freeman arranging and conducting. The rest of the sessions were helmed by Nelson Riddle.

+ recorded May 11, 1966.
* recorded May 16, 1966.

Sinatra’s Strangers In The Night is his only non-compilation album to sell one million copies in the US. It is his final album with conductor Nelson Riddle. The title track was a worldwide hit and reestablished Sinatra’s popularity with radio. An Expanded Edition of the album, which includes three bonus tracks, was released on January 26, 2010. Click on the link to buy Strangers In The Night [Expanded Edition].

Arguably the best account of Frank Sinatra’s recording sessions by a man who has heard all the studio sessions is Charles Granata’s Sessions With Sinatra: Frank Sinatra And The Art Of Recording published in 1999 and reprinted in 2003. It covers the entire scope of Sinatra’s career from his Columbia recordings right up to the Duets album. The book was published after Sinatra passed away the previous year. Click on the link to buy Sessions With Sinatra.

  1. 14 Responses to “ONE NIGHT OF SINATRA”

  2. Thank you sir, these are priceless. Deepest appreciation. (more please!!)

    By Erik Dias on Jan 28, 2010

  3. Exquisite. A true fly on the wall glimpse into the professional world of one of the most seriously professional singers of humanity.

    By Timmy on Jan 28, 2010

  4. I think Glen Campbell was part of the sessions. Thing I liked about his work ethic was keeping studio time to a minimum, and you had to be at the top of your game. Not a lot of people have that kind of bravery of “doing it live” in one shot. Barbra Streisand and Van Morrison are about it.

    There’s one session tape I’d want to hear that I’m sure is lost and forgotten - the Watertown sessions. One of the “Jersey Boys” (Bob Gaudio of the Four Seasons) working with THE Jersey Boy.

    By Danny on Jan 29, 2010

  5. Awesome !
    It’s an absolute priviledge to ‘be present’ when Frank is recording.
    Thank you.


    By Jack on Jan 30, 2010

  6. Ol Blue Eyes doing Downtown. Wow!!!

    By Matt on Feb 3, 2010

  7. Just Fantastic, thank you so much

    By Pat on Feb 25, 2010

  8. Just Fantastic, Appreciate your great work, Thank You

    By Pat on Feb 25, 2010

  9. A sensational new find of 25 tapes of Sinatra on radio 1943-1945,studio [email protected] capital &repose concerts usa,london aust.timex shows,defence shows[radio]Treasury,live recording accepting freedom medal by presedent Reagon etc.etc.These are old tape to tape recordings,possibly original or master tapes that have been stored in air cond.conditions over the past 30-60 years &are in near mint cond.Found in a suitcase in a dump in QLD.AUSTRALIA 1 MONTH AGO.COULD BE SOME NEW EXITING MATERIAL FOR SINATRA FANS IN STORE SOON!WILL KEEP YOU POSTED AS RESEARCH CONTINUES.

    By tony karu on Apr 19, 2010

  10. would like to see the pictorial session of summer wind is it available on the internet? advise.

    By joe trovato on Sep 2, 2012

  11. I just want you tknow that many alternate takes are more enjoyable to hear. Sinatra started in a lower tempo, you know, to taste the song in recording, before the final, commercial take, usually in a faster way. I bet that his trying on Saddest thing of all, for instance, could have been much nicer, since i found this recording a bit fast to my taste.I wish we could get ALL alternate takes, then we all have Mr. Sinatra beyong forever. thanks

    By Alex from Brasil on Jan 16, 2013

  12. Great stuff! This is better quality than the my previous version. I remember reading that Sinatra recorded Summer Wind all in a single take… Guess not! A pro’s pro, what a legend. No sweetening, click tracks or auto tune here! THANKS for posting.

    By Johnny G on Jul 21, 2013

  13. hello…just stubled on this page by accident and so happy i did!

    anyone know of other sites to dl Sinatra stuff?

    thanks so much:)

    By tomz on Jul 26, 2013

  14. Any reason why the .exe files for the two tracks?

    By frankie on Jan 17, 2014

  15. Replying to Danny, the Watertowm album was pre recorded in New York on 14/15/16/17 July 1969 & FS “overdubbed” in Los Angeles on 25/26/27/31 August & on 31October 1969

    By Stuart Edgar on Feb 3, 2018

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