FRANK SINATRA–“WITCHCRAFT”/ “TELL HER YOU LOVE HER”–1958

Hello,  Francis Albert Sinatra, “The Chairman of the Board” is one of the greatest hit makers of all time and regarded by many as the greatest popular singer of the 20th Century.  Frank Sinatra began his singing career with the Harry James Orchestra from 1939-1940.  He then became a featured vocalist with Tommy Dorsey from 1940-1942.  He began a solo career in 1942 and soon had the young ladies going wild over, not only him but his “crooning” vocal style that pulled a note and held it for a time.  His voice carried on romance during the World War II years and kept lovers close through his songs.  He charted 40 Top 10 hits between 1942 and 1954.

Frank Sinatra did not miss a beat as the rock era was beginning in the mid 1950’s.  Hits such as LEARNIN’ THE BLUES, a #1 hit in 1955, LOVE AND MARRIAGE in 1955 and (Love Is) THE TENDER TRAP also in 1955 were proof  that his music is timeless.  HEY! JEALOUS LOVER, #3 in 1956 and ALL THE WAY, #2 in 1957 were big hits with the young teen record buyers.

On January 20, 1958 Frank Sinatra’s first hit of the year made its Billboard Top 100 debut.  That song was WITCHCRAFT, a wonderfully composed song  by Cy Coleman, with lyrics by Carolyn Leigh.  Franks single on his long time label, Capitol Records became a huge hit.  Witchcraft climbed the Top 100 and reached #6, it remained on the pop chart for 16 weeks.  It was a huge radio hit and a best seller in an era of rock and roll.  The arrangement for the record was by the legendary Nelson Riddle.  Witchcraft is one of his most enduring songs and is considered “classic Sinatra” at his best.

Every 45RPM had a “B” side and Witchcraft had one of the best “B” sides you’ll ever hear…TELL HER YOU LOVE HER…this is Sinatra at his romantic best.  One of my favorite all-time Frank Sinatra songs.  Why this wonderful song did not chart, is hard to believe, because if you have ever heard it, you would wonder the same thing too.  This is romance at its best.  If all of us guys could sing, we would sing this one to that special lady.

Frank Sinatra charted 75 hits during the rock era.  In 1961 he would leave Capitol Records and begin his own label, Reprise Records, where he continued to chart hit after hit.  His first release for his own label was another Sinatra classic THE SECOND TIME AROUND.  I can remember my father saying to me as a young teenager, “someday you are going to like this kind of music and not just your rock and roll”.  What he didn’t know is that, I already liked it and loved the music of the great Frank Sinatra.

This then is dedicated to my Dad, who died in 1980 as a young man…the greatest influence in my life and my dearest friend.

Till the next time—Joe

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