1955 Frank Sinatra – Same Old Saturday Night
Frank Sinatra’s career really got started when he joined the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra in the early forties, recording for RCA Victor. When he decided to go solo, he moved to Columbia Records in 1943 and recorded singles that routinely got into the top ten or two twenty. His success began to fade in the early fifties, and he relocated to Las Vegas with the Rat Pack and began recording for Capitol Records in 1953.
Frank’s biggest single in over seven years came with the release of Young At Heart, a single that reached #2 on the Hot 100 in 1954. A few more hit singles followed, including the chart-topping single Learning The Blues in 1955.
Rather than simply collect singles for an album, Frank decided to record what was arguably the first concept album. Frank’s first marriage was doomed by his extra-marital affairs, most noticeably with the woman who became his second wife, Ava Gardner. That marriage quickly fell apart as well, and the album In The Wee Small Hours appears to have been Frank’s response to the emotions he struggled with as the relationship faded and he faced being alone.
The title song from the album showed a new depth of feeling and vulnerability for Frank’s vocal performances, and all the songs hung together around the theme of the album. There were no singles released from the album, but the album still reached #2 on the Billboard album chart. Sales of the album exceeded a half million copies. The album has received significant critical acclaim, with even Rolling Stone magazine including it on their top five hundred albums list (it came in at #101 in 2012).
Frank did release a few more singles that year. The first was Same Old Saturday Night. That melancholy single found Frank at loose ends when it came to enjoying life on the weekends, but was too upbeat to be a good fit for his album. The record peaked at #13 on the Hot 100. He lightened up on two more singles later in the year that each reached the top ten, Love And Marriage (which became the theme song for Married With Children) and (Love Is) The Tender Trap from the film The Tender Trap.
By early 1958, Frank’s career ran out of gas again, and he became a stranger to the charts. That all ended when Strangers In The Night catapulted him back to the top of the charts in 1966.
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