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Nancy Sinatra News

“The years flash by in an instant…”: “NS 2004” at 10

August 26th, 2014 by Andrew

Nancy Sinatra

On September 28, 2014, ten years will have flashed by since the release of Nancy’s ultra-cool Nancy Sinatra CD. The brainchild of Nancy’s older daughter, AJ, the project grew from a series of collaborative homages to become one of Nancy’s most acclaimed works.

“It’s a concept designed by my daughter, AJ.
She gathered performers and songwriters
who believe they were influenced by or are fans of my music.”

“I think you will like this collection.
It’s interesting personally speaking, to see – through their music –
how these people feel about me.
Very enlightening.”

Nancy’s younger daughter, Amanda, provided the stylish artwork (cover concept and photo) for the album, as well as the highly collectible U.S. CD-single of “Let Me Kiss You” (displayed later in this post).

“Amanda took the pictures for the cover.
It [is] very nice.”

Nancy Sinatra

“All I can say is my daughters are the absolute best people I know –
creative, supportive, talented and generous of spirit.”

“I am the world’s luckiest mom.”

AJ Lambert Nancy Sinatra Amanda Erlinger

Nancy and AJ were featured on CBS News Sunday Morning (February 27, 2005) in a segment conducted by correspondent Elizabeth Kaledin.

Echoing the New York Times review (“Ms. Sinatra has made her finest album”), host Steve Edwards complimented Nancy on her then-recent release when she appeared as a guest on Fox’s nationally broadcast Good Day Live on October 18, 2004. Nancy shared how she felt about being honored by the artists who had contributed to her CD:

“I was completely surprised and humbled and thrilled”

 

the tracks ns 2004

Having been tentatively called To Nancy, With Love, the album’s title was changed to Nancy Sinatra, two months prior to its release.

“I just feel that people should know it’s me
and then discover all of the contributors from the music and the booklet.
Like opening a surprise package.”

“The reason I like this album is each song represents
a different facet of my professional persona.
This is not ego talking although it may seem so.
It is about something very personal.”

The following credits are not a complete list of the album’s personnel, but rather a representation of the guest artists’ contributions. See the CD booklet for complete details.

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Calexico: Joey Burns, John Convertino,
Paul Niehaus, Jacob Valenzuela, Martin Wenk & Volker Zander

Written by Joey Burns
Additional production by Joey Burns, John Convertino and JD Foster
String arrangement by Sam Bardfeld & Joey Burns
Drums: John Convertino
Acoustic and electric guitars: Joey Burns
Pedal steel: Paul Niehaus
Trumpet: Jacob Valenzuela
Trumpet: Martin Wenk
Electric bass: Volker Zander

“We recorded a song by Calexico. It’s absolutely stunning.
What a great band.”

“It is a wonderful song that paints a different picture for everyone listening to it. As I was singing it I thought about my daughters
and how I would feel if they ran away.”

“Burnin’ Down The Spark”

Nancy is pictured with Joey Burns.

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Jon Spencer
Vocals, guitar, percussion: Jon Spencer

“Meet Jon Spencer who almost singlehandedly
put New York back on the map of blues and rock music.
His band, The Blues Explosion, started a whole new trend
paving the way for a lot of today’s biggest rock bands.”

“He didn’t write ['Ain't No Easy Way'].
It was an unreleased track and my voice was already on it.”

“Jon put two guitar tracks and a vocal on the song.
He is multi-talented and very generous with his time and energy.
Thanks, Jon!”

“Ain’t No Easy Way”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Jarvis Cocker & Richard Hawley of Pulp,
as well as Dennis Diken of The Smithereens

Written by Jarvis Cocker
Additional production by Jarvis Cocker & Richard Hawley
6 and 12-string guitars, baritone guitar, vibraphone, enchanted lyre, percussion: Richard Hawley
Percussion: Jarvis Cocker
Drums, percussion: Dennis Diken

“We recorded the Jarvis [Cocker] tracks at WATER studio in New Jersey [in the] fall [of 2003] with Jarvis and Richard Hawley co-producing with AJ and Matt. These songs were written for me and they are perfect for me.
Richard is an awesome guitarist. WOW!”

“Jarvis is amazing.”

Rehearsing the song for a performance on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross 

“Keys: Don Randi, Acoustic: Jarvis Cocker (wrote the song,)
Drums: Pete Thomas, Bass: Trent Stroh, Electric guitar: Richard Hawley.”

Nancy Sinatra

… and playing the song on the show’s October 1, 2004 BBC-1 broadcast.

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Pete Yorn
Written by Pete Yorn
Drums, bass, guitars, harmonica, claps, background vocals: Pete Yorn

At the recording session for Pete Yorn’s song, “Don’t Mean Nothing,” Pete, Nancy, AJ, and engineers Dan Hoal and Keith Barrows are pictured at Sonora Studios in Los Angeles.

“Don’t Mean Nothing”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth
Written by Thurston Moore
Drums: Thurston Moore

“I’ve never asked Thurston Moore about what the lyrics mean to him;
I didn’t want to. I think it’s better to form your own opinion
based on the feelings you have while listening to the song.

“I do believe Thurston was doing two things: firstly, he saw me that way.
The purpose of the c.d. was to have the contributors,
who said they were influenced by my music,
write something based on my body of work.
Thurston chose the tough side.

“Secondly, the song fits exactly in his ‘bag’ to use an old term.
He writes and performs songs that ARE disturbing, dissonant
and make people think.

“He seems to have accomplished this.”

Like the artists represented on this album, Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore’s wife and Sonic Youth bandmate (pictured below, with Nancy), has declared her respect for Nancy’s work. The article “Nancy Sinatra, Rock Goddess,” published in the September 26, 2004 issue of The New York Times, reveals Nancy’s inspiration for her breathy vocal on “Momma’s Boy,” as she discloses,

“She deliberately sang ‘à la Kim Gordon’.”

“Momma’s Boy”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Morrissey and Alain Whyte
Written by Morrissey & Alain Whyte
Guitars: Alain Whyte
Backing vocals: Morrissey & Alain Whyte

“About Morrissey

“He is a special man with a huge heart and I adore him.
I met him in London in 1995 when he came to visit me at my hotel.
He was seeking autographs on his collection of c.d.s and l.p.s
- and we’ve been friends ever since.

“I felt as though I knew him because I had ‘lived’ with him on a Smiths’ poster that my daughter had in her room for years.”

Nancy Sinatra

“Both my kids introduced me to his fabulous songs early on
so I was familiar with his music when he knocked on my door.
It was Kismet.”

Nancy Sinatra

As Nancy mentioned in her Good Day Live interview, Morrissey’s gift of “Let Me Kiss You” had also been “Kismet.”

“Morrissey gave me this gift, dragged me out of obscurity
and back to the charts.”

“This is exactly what Morrissey told me would happen
when he sent me ‘Let Me Kiss You.’
I shouldn’t have doubted him.”

In Morrissey’s 2013 Autobiography, he reflects on Nancy, personally and professionally:

“We have become good friends, and she is desperately generous and humble.
She has recorded my song
Let Me Kiss You,
and it is to be released as a single,
and I am dumb-struck with excitement
at the fullness and strength of the final mix.
There is a flickering sensuality to Nancy’s voice that is unique…”

“Let Me Kiss You”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contribution from Steven Van Zandt
Written by Steven Van Zandt

“I think you can see how close we are through these pictures.
He is one of my dearest friends.”

Nancy Sinatra

“Thank you, Steven for always being there for us.
There is no way we will ever be able to repay you –
not in a million years.”

“Baby Please Don’t Go”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Tom Lilly & Lanny Cordolla of the K.A.B.
Written by Tom Lilly & Lanny Cordolla
Bass, keyboards, background vocals: Tom Lilly
Guitars, background vocals: Lanny Cordolla

Tom Lilly (“The Tominator”) & Lanny Cordolla of Nancy’s band, The K.A.B. …

“What a privilege to work with these guys.
They are soooo good.”

Nancy Sinatra

“About A Fire”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Reno: Andy Holt & Phil Burns,
as well as Richard Hawley

Written by Andy Holt, Phil Burns, AJ Lambert and Matt Azzarto
Instrumental track recorded and produced by Andy Holt & Phil Burns
Bass, guitars, keyboards, drum programming: Reno
Harmonica: Richard Hawley

“The Reno track was the first one we did.
They sent their songs in which they sample my music to AJ
and she had the idea to write a song to one of their other instrumental tracks.

“We recorded that one WAY back [in the] summer [of 2003]
and sent the tracks to Reno in the UK for their approval and input.
Long story short, they added stuff and we added stuff.
This is a GREAT song!”

Nancy Sinatra
Nancy and AJ performed “Bossman” on the “Chasing It” episode of The Sopranos (airing on HBO: April 29, 2007).

“Here we are with the band being coached by Stevie Van Zandt.
That’s Southside Johnny in between Stevie and Me.”

Nancy Sinatra

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from Jarvis Cocker & Richard Hawley of Pulp,
as well as Dennis Diken of The Smithereens

Written by Jarvis Cocker
Additional production by Jarvis Cocker & Richard Hawley
Bass: Richard Hawley
Guitar: Jarvis Cocker
Drums: Dennis Diken

“Jarvis Cocker (Pulp) wrote it and ‘Don’t Let Him Waste Your Time.’

“I didn’t ask him what he was thinking when he wrote it,
but for me it’s about someone
(a soldier, sailor, marine or national guardsman or coast guardsman,)
who is in harm’s way and may be coming home — alive — or in a coffin.

“For me it is an anti-war song and that’s why I love it so much.
I have done a few of those in my career:
‘Cruel War,’ ‘Home,’ ‘It’s Such a Lonely Time of Year’ and ‘Congratulations.’
‘Baby’s Coming Back To Me’ fits right in.

“The people who wrote songs for me for the latest c.d.
wrote because they were influenced by my music when they were kids.
I believe Jarvis wrote to the anti-war part of me.”

“['Baby's Coming Back To Me' is] my mom’s favorite on the c.d.
She sings it too!!”

Backed by her band, Nancy sang the song on the December 3, 2004 episode of The Tony Danza Show.

 

Nancy Sinatra

Contributions from U2: Bono, The Edge, Larry Mullen & Adam Clayton
Music by Bono & The Edge
Lyrics by Bono
Drums: Larry Mullen
Bass: Adam Clayton

Nancy Sinatra

“Bono and The Edge of U2 wrote the song for my dad about my dad.
My dad did hear it, but unfortunately did not get to record it.
And so I asked Bono…
I mustered all my courage up…
I said could I use the song for my new album?”

Nancy delivered a moving rendition of the song, along with a video montage of her dad, on the Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon in 2003.

Nancy Sinatra

“I like having a Sinatra be part of the telethon every year.
It’s a fine tradition.”

“It’s just [pianist] Don Randi and me this time.”

 

“Making this album has been a true adventure.
In the beginning, my kids said there were musicians out there today
who admired, and were influenced by my records.
I was flattered.
I had enjoyed their music, but had no idea the feeling was mutual.
When I heard that such talented people would consider working with me,
I was honored.
As each idea to record a song went from ‘what if?’ to ‘where and when?’,
it grew more and more exhilarating.
Now, when I hear the music we’ve made together,
I picture this big family at the console and in the live rooms,
and I’m over the moon.

“Many thanks to all the friends old and new
who contributed so generously toward making this album happen,
especially Morrissey and my two daughters,
who keep me moving forward.

“Love,
Nancy”

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Beyoncé Samples Nancy

August 19th, 2014 by Andrew

Promoting Beyoncé & Jay Z’s upcoming On The Run Tour HBO special with a film noir-style trailer, Beyoncé samples Nancy’s original 1966 track, featuring the inimitable Billy Strange, for a 2014 version of the Sonny Bono-penned “Bang Bang.”

Regarding her own interpretation, Nancy credits her arranger and guitarist, Billy Strange.

“Billy Strange made it work with his haunting guitar.”

“My recording, like so many of the others that really struck a chord with people, was a stick-on after an album session.
I asked Billy Strange to do something wonderful with his guitar, and he did!
It’s his lonely guitar that makes our record memorable.”

Nancy Sinatra Billy Strange

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Flyin’ with Nancy: Don Lanier’s “Here We Go Again” and the AstroStereo Programs

July 30th, 2014 by Andrew

Nancy Sinatra

“I love Here We Go Again. What a beautiful song.”

“I don’t know why every singer on earth didn’t record it.”

“A country gem, this is beautifully arranged and produced by Billy Strange.
One of the writers was our friend, Don Lanier.
His nickname was ‘Dirt.’ I still have no idea why.”
 

Here We Go Again

Songwriter, musician, session contractor and record label executive Don “Dirt” Lanier passed away on July 23rd.

Initially a country guitarist, Lanier became a musicians contractor, booking players for recording sessions, through his association with friend and former Rhythm Orchids bandmate Jimmy Bowen. Bowen would emerge as Reprise Records’ head of a&r (artists and repertoire) and be responsible for the professional union of Nancy and Lee Hazlewood.

Pictured at one of Nancy’s 1960s sessions are Don Lanier, producer Lee Hazlewood, arranger Billy Strange and Nancy.

“Dirt was one of the good guys.”

Nancy Sinatra

Cherished by Nancy and her fans alike, her recording of “Here We Go Again” carries an especially interesting history, which includes its aerial incarnation at 30,000 feet in October 1969. The song originally made a significant impression on the record-buying public as a 1967 chart hit for Ray Charles. Six years earlier, one of Ray’s 1961 shows at the Zebra Lounge had made a significant impression on Nancy.

“It was the night of my 21st birthday and my then husband, Tommy Sands, [...] planned a surprise party for me at a club in downtown Los Angeles.
[...] it was a small funky place that was mostly a bar.

“So we are sitting there waiting for the show to start and somebody says, ‘What’s going on? Where is Ray?’ It seems Ray was outside in his car waiting for his money before he would go on. There were grumpy people left
but we stayed until the man came on.
It was worth every minute of fidgeting.
He was so good I cried.
My mom loved him too.”

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Nancy Thinks Young: “For Those Who Think Young” Turns 50

July 7th, 2014 by Andrew

Nancy Sinatra

This summer marks the golden anniversary of Nancy’s silver screen debut. Released in June 1964, the collegiate romantic comedy For Those Who Think Young signaled the birth of what Nancy has humorously called her epic film career.”  Six more motion pictures would follow, culminating in two big box office hits: The Wild Angels (with Peter Fonda) and Speedway (with Elvis Presley). The latter two would make Nancy the “Top Female Box Office Personality” in 1967 and 1968 respectively, according to the motion picture exhibitors’ organization.

…I was definitely a Hollywood kid–my feet firmly rooted in celluloid,
in glorious Technicolor.”

Nancy began her acting career in 1963, with guest roles on two recently launched television series: a singing barmaid on The Virginian (pictured, left) …

I was scared to death because it was my maiden voyage as an actress.
I sang a song called,
‘If I Had Tears’ and, since I played a barmaid,
I was supposed to drink shooters like a sailor might.
(No offense to the US Navy.)

“It was a disaster!

… and a secretary on Burke’s Law (pictured, right). Coincidentally, Nancy had briefly attended Speedwriting/secretarial classes after her time at the University of Southern California.

Nancy Sinatra

“When I graduated from high school, I enrolled in college–at USC. I loved school except for one problem familiar to so many students–the subjects that I wanted to take had so many prerequisites that I had to take two years of garbage in order to get to my major. I wanted music appreciation, but I ended up dissecting frogs and wondering what I was doing in college.
I left school in my first semester to pursue a career as a singer.”

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