Sinatra-Basie: An Historic Musical First
Released: Dec 1962
Label: Frank Sinatra Enterprises
Count Basie was Sinatra's favorite bandleader. They had wanted to record together for years before finally doing so in 1962, and the results are completely worth the wait. Neil Hefti's charts are pitch-perfect, and top honors go to "Pennies from Heaven," "Please Be Kind" and a beyond-euphoric "I Won't Dance." Drummer Sonny Payne and saxophonists Frank Foster and Frank Wess dazzle (just listen to "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter"), and Sinatra is completely in sync with the entire band. You can't get any better than Sinatra singing with Basie.