Irving Berlin said that he always preferred his songs to be sung by Fred Astaire because his straightforward, uncomplicated delivery allowed the melody and lyrics to speak for themselves. Well, this is exactly what Rod Stewart achieves here. The clarity of his diction, pitch perfect singing and simple accompaniments and arrangements make every single one of these tracks a joy to hear. I have recordings of all the items in the set by the 'greats' -Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughan, etc - but in a number of cases, the Stewart version compares favourably with any of them. Did you ever hear better interpretations of 'Embraceable You', 'Long Ago and Far Away' 'Time After Time' and 'S'Wonderful'? Even 'Manhattan', a superb duet with the inestimable Bette Midler, runs the Ella classic pretty close. All in all, if you want a complete review of the goodies from the golden age of American popular music, this is it!