“Basically, I'm for anything that gets you through the night - be it prayer, tranquilizers or a bottle of Jack Daniels.”

“Critics don't bother me because if I do badly, I know I'm bad before they even write it. And if I'm good, I know I'm good. I know best about myself, so a critic doesn't anger me.”

“The thing that influenced me most was the way Tommy played his trombone. It was my idea to make my voice work in the same way as a trombone or violin - not sounding like them, but "playing" the voice like those instrument- alists.”
Zitate von Sinatra

Um Sinatra gewissermaßen "in his own words" sprechen zu lassen, habe ich auf eine Übersetzung bewusst verzichtet - ich bin sicher, auch ohne besonders große Kenntnisse der englischen Sprache werden Sie den Sinn der Aussagen verstehen können. Andernfalls ziehen Sie, verehrte Damen und Herren, bitte einen Diktionär zu Rate.

...über Musikunterricht:
"I could have had piano lessons when I was a kid, but I was too impatient.Sit on a piano stool for an hour every day? Nothing doing! I had time to study then, but I wouldn´t. I could kick myself when I remember."

...über seine Popularität beim weiblichen Publikum in den 40er Jahren:
"Psychologists have tried to go into the reasons why. With all sorts of theories. I could have told them why. Perfectly simple: It was the war years, and there was a great loneliness. I was the boy in every corner drugstore, the boy who´d gone off to war."

...über die Art, zu seinem eigenen Stil zu finden:
"It was in 1940 when I really began developing a style of my own. I began to listen to other soloists. I bought every Jascha Heifetz record I could find and listened to his constant bowing where you never heard a break carrying the melody line straight on through just like Dorsey´s trombone. Why couldn´t a singer do that too? I decided to make my voice work in the same way as a trombone or violin - not sounding like them but "playing" the voice like those instruments. The first thing I needed was extraordinary breath control, so I began swimming in public pools, taking laps under water and thinking song lyrics to myself as I swam, holding my breath. Over six months or so I began to develop and delineate a method of long phraseology. Instead of singing only two bars or four bars at a time - like most of the other guys around - I was able to sing six bars and in some songs eight bars, without taking a visible or audiable breath. That gave the melody a flowing, unbroken quality, and that´s what made me sound different. When I started singing that way, people began taking notice."

...über die schlechten Zeiten Ende der 40er, Anfang der  50er Jahre:

"I didn´t despair. I understood that in our business it all has ups and downs. I didn´t get panicked about everything. I wasn´t paying enough attention to my job at the time. I think I was tired. That´s not an excuse, it´s a fact. I have worked tremendously for the years preceding that period. Worked constantly. Three hundred days a year or more, in many instances. And I was traveling constantly and just doing all kinds of work. When I was ready and I had enough rest and took time to have the cobwebs blown out of my head, I went back to work. I changed record companies, changed attorneys, changed accountants, changed picture companies and changed my clothes. And I just went right back to work again."

...über den Oscar für From Here To Eternity:

"I couldn´t even share it with another human being. I ducked the party, lost the crowds and took a walk. Just me and Oscar. I think I relived my entire life as I walked up and down the streets of Beverly Hills."

...über den Film The Man With The Golden Arm:
"I´ve said this many times, but I thought I won an Oscar for the wrong picture. I thought
in all fairness that I should have won it for The Man With The Golden Arm, for which I was nominated. I felt if I ever diserved a prize it should have been for that picture, because I did the finest work I ever did in my life on that film."

...über Bing Crosby:
"He was the father of my career, the idol of my youth and the dear, dear friend of my maturity."

...über Schallplatten-Aufnahmen:

"I adore making records. I´d rather do that than almost anything else.You can never do anything in life quite on your own - you don´t live on your own little island. Making a record is as near as you can get to it - although of course the arranger and the orchestra play an enormous part. But once you´re on that record singing, it´s you and you alone. If it´s bad and gets criticized it´s you who´s to blame - no one else. If it´s good, it´s also you. I myself can´t work well except under pressure. If there´s too much time available, I don´t like it - not enough stimulus. And I´ll never record before eight o´clock in the evening. The voice is more relaxed then."

...über John F. Kennedy:
"For a brief moment, he was the brightest star in our lives. I loved him."

...über Frauen:

"Women, I never met a man in my life who could give another man advice about women... I´m supposed to have a Ph.D. on the subject, but I´ve flunked more often than not. I´m very fond of women, I admire them. But like all man, I don´t understand them."

...über die Ehe:
"I don´t say that marriage is impossible, but if I would marry again it would have to be somebody out of showbusiness or who will get out of showbusiness I feel that I´m a fairly
good provider. All I ask is that my wife looks after me and I´ll see that she is looked after."

...über das Comeback nach dem Retirement:
"I was struggling, really fighting my way out of the doldrums. Because when I quit I let everything go. And it all fell down. It´s like somebody who lifts weights and then stops for a while - a matter of consistency, you have to do it every day. So I was having a tough time vocally, trying to do what I wanted to do. But I was working very hard on it and when I appeared at the Uris Theater it was purely like I was back in the very beginning of my career as a vocalist. I had to really concentrate hard."

...über seine musikalischen Vorbilder:
"I go back to Mabel Mercer, Billie Holiday, Bob Eberly - and Jack Leonard when he was with Tommy Dorsey. He did some marvelous pieces of phraseology that went on and on. It was fascinating to hear him do it. And Robert Merrill who is probably the greatest baritone I´ve ever heard."

...über die Auswahl des Konzertrepertoires:
"I choose the material that I think is best and also material that I think my audience wants to hear."

...über das Hören seiner eigenen Aufnahmen:
"I can´t stand that. If I´m out visiting someone, I say to them, "If you play my records, I´m going home". Because often I was a little impatient in making a record and I said: "That´s it press it, print it". And there was one little note in it that isn´t right. And every time I hear that record it comes back to me. If I´m in my car listening to the radio, I cringe before the note comes and I think to myself, Why didn´t we do it one more time? Just one more time."

...über sein Zielpublikum:
"I play to all people of any color, creed, drunk or sober."

...über bzw. zu aufdringlichen Journalisten:
"You´re dead. You´re all dead for me."

...über Rassismus:
"I´m no angel. I´ve had my moments. I´ve done a few things in my life of which I´m not too proud, but I have never unloved a human being because of race, creed or color...We are created equal! No one of us is better than any of us!"

Songs im Vergleich:

(With The Laughin´ Face)

3. Dez. 1944  (Columbia)
22. August 1945 (Columbia)
29. April 1963 (Reprise)
9. März 1977  (Reprise)

Sinatra hat den Song in etlich- en Versionen aufgenommen, am besten gesungen ist wohl (wie so oft, wenn mehrere zeit- lich weit auseinanderliegende Fassungen vorliegen) die erste Columbia-Version. Die zweite Columbia-Version steht der ersten Version kaum nach, ist ihr im Grunde ebenbürtig.

Die erste Reprise-Fassung, die man u.a. auf Sinatra´s Sinatra findet, halte ich auch für ziem- lich gelungen und sie ist in erster Linie wegen der ungleich besseren Tonqualität interess- ant. Dass sie aber vor allem stimmlich den Vergleich mit den Columbia-Versionen nicht standhält, ist eine Tatsache, die sich beinahe von selbst versteht. Sinatra´s Stimme befand sich zum Zeitpunkt der beiden Columbia- Fassungen gerade auf dem Höhepunkt.

Noch einige wenige Worte zu der (ungewöhnlich kurzen) Reprise-Version, die Sinatra im Jahre 1977 für das geplante Here´s To The Ladies- Album aufgenommen hat: Ich halte hier das Arrangement für ganz besonders gelungen, vor allem die Trompete im Hintergrund
ist sehr wirkungsvoll eingesetzt. Und Sinatra´s gesanglicher Vortrag... tja, was soll man da sagen... Von der Handvoll damals aufgenommener Ladies- Songs scheint mir der Sänger bei Nancy stimmlich noch am besten disponiert gewesen zu sein, andere Songs dieser Sessions wie Sweet Lorraine, vor allem aber Linda sind im Vergleich zu Nancy ganz erbärmlich gesungen, da wird wohl kaum jemand ernsthaft widersprechen wollen... Stimmlich kann Sinatra dennoch bei dieser jüngsten Aufnahme naturgemäß nur bitter enttäuschen.