It’s cheating in a way to have a “Best of” album honored here, but that’s not exactly what “The Capitol Years” is all about. This isn’t a greatest hits album, but a compilation of 75 of the finest Sinatra recordings during his years with Capitol Records (1953-1961).
This was the era when Sinatra was at his very best. He had matured beyond the pop idol status he held during the big band era, and hadn’t become the
self-satisfied geezer that Saturday Night Live parodied. Here he was in full voice, with enough life experience to make his love songs credible, whether he sang about love gained or lost. And he had the benefit of amazing arrangements by the great Nelson Riddle and Billy May.
You can find the full 75-track listing elsewhere, but here are some of the notable highlights on the album:
“I’ve Got the World on a String” * “They Can’t Take That Away from Me” * “I Get a Kick out of You” * “Young at Heart” * “In the Wee, Small Hours of the Morning” * “Love and Marriage” * “(Love Is) The Tender Trap” * “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” * “The Lady is a Tramp” * “Night and Day” * “Witchcraft” * “Chicago (That Toddlin’ Town)” * “Autumn in New York” * “Come Fly with Me” * “Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out to Dry” * “Saturday Night (Is the Loneliest Night of the Week)” * “High Hopes” * “Almost Like Being in Love”