I Remember Tommy - 1961

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In March of 1961, Frank Sinatra attempted double duty, recording with Billy May at the Capitol Tower, then moving down the road a mere 1.7 miles to Radio Recorders to record a second same-day session with former Tommy Dorsey alum Sy Oliver for Reprise, and on 4-track tape for the first time.  This had to be a tiresome and frustrating exercise and, indeed, the sessions at Radio Recorders wound up producing zero material for the new Reprise album, and all the album tracks wound up being re-recorded two months later at the more-familiar confines of United Recorders.  (Whether the double-duty aspect impacted the decision to re-record is, to me at least, unclear.  It may have been strictly a dissatisfaction with the musical arrangements.)

One track, “In the Blue of Evening,” did wind up being released, finally, in 1993, as a bonus track on the second CD issue of I Remember Tommy.  It also appeared in the “suitcase” two years later, and then on the 2001 Reprise compilation, Greatest Love Songs. 

All three versions appear to stem from the one-and-only stereo mix, likely a digital one, and from the same digital source, as they do stay in sync with each other.  Furthermore, the 1993 and 1995 versions appear to be the same mastering, as the waveforms look identical, while the 2001 version is slightly compressed, being roughly 3 dB RMS louder overall than the 1993 and 1995 versions.

On the Road Again


Green = “The Suitcase” -- Purple = 1993 CD bonus Track


Purple = 1993 CD Bonus Track -- Red = 2001 “Greatest Love Songs” CD

Above (click the photo of Frank and Mia dancing): a 45-second clip that alternates in this order: 1993-2001-1993-2001.  To my ears, once volume-adjusted (as here), they are almost indistinguishable, but there is slight compression on the pictured version.  THANKS TO SH.TV MEMBER “BOB F” FOR THE CLIPS OF THE 1993 CD!  (Note: This particular song does not appear on iTunes, so access to the clip is password restricted. Sorry.)

Of interest is the layout on the 4-track machine, as follows.  (The actual track numbers are pure supposition, of course.)

•Track 1: Strings & woodwinds

•Track 2: Rhythm section.

•Track 3: Sinatra

•Track 4: Brass, harp

In the stereo mix, Track 1 is panned left; track 4 is panned right; tracks 2 and 3 are centered,  creating a very pleasing stereo image, with no “hole in the middle” effect.


Ever notice that all three of these 1920’s RCA-affiliated logos utilize the lightning bolt motif?

Click here to look at LP and reel--to-reel samples.  Please join the discussion of this album at the Steve Hoffman Music Forum.

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