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4.4 out of 5 stars
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4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 10 November 2010
One of my favourite of all Sinatra's albums from the 60's and the first under his new Reprise label. In addition to using his established arrangers such as May, Riddle and Jenkins, Sinatra opted to use other top arrangers of the time, in this case the excellent Johhny Mandel and not Nelson Riddle as suggested in another review.

Stepped in the world of jazz having arranged in the 40's for such luminaries as Artie Shaw, Mandel brings his own style to tried and tested standards. The scoring for the sax section is particularly fluid and really swings and provides a oontrast to the wonderful arrangments of Nelson Riddle, although there seems to be a bit of a nod to Billy May in the intro 'Be Careful With My Heart'.

Suffice to say Sinatra is at the top of his game, certainly in this reviewers opinion the best of his work probably coming in the late 50's through to the early 60's.

If not already in your collection an excellent addition. Also well worth purchasing 'Sinatra With Swinging Brass' his first outing with Neil Hefti.
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on 1 June 2004
Ring-A-Ding-Ding was Sinatra's first album for his own Reprise label, after nearly a decade of recording unsurpassable albums for Capitol.
Tipping a wink to his former label this album finds Sinatra recording a swinging, big band collection of mainly mid-tempo numbers, conducted and arranged by Nelson Riddle (enough said). As such the album is very similar to those recorded in the preceeding years, such as "Songs For Swinging Lover", "Sinatra's Swingin' Session" etc. Which is not a bad thing - in fact it is a positively good thing. Later Reprise albums would find the quality of material and singing decline, especially as the 1960s ended.
The newer versions of previously recored classics ("Foggy Day") don't beat the Capitol originals, a trend that continued on subsequent Reprise recordings. There are enough other new songs however to make this an enjoyable album and, basically, if you liked swinging Sinatra at Capitol then you'll like this. The arrangements are slightly brasher, the scope of songs more eclectic (Coffee Song) and the recording quality slightly inferior to that offered by the later Capitol records (is it me or do some of those late-era Capitol recordings sound better - in pure hi-fi terms - than most of the music recorded today?)
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on 9 October 2004
"Ring a Ding Ding" was Frank Sinatra's first album for Reprise, his own label. The album, made during the heyday of the Rat Pack (hence the title, one of Sinatra's favorite pet phrases during this period), is different from Sinatra's Columbia records in that there is no attempt at thematic unity. The main arranger is Johnny Mandel, the former trombonist for not only Jimmy Dorsey but also Count Basie, who was a hot young jazz-based arranger and conductor. Mandel does most of the arrangements (Skip Martin, Nelson Riddle, and Dick Reynolds do the rest). What is being sold here are not saloon songs or swing music but rather pure and simply Sinatra at the top of the heap. Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen wrote the title track just for Sinatra and it sets the brassy, swaggering (okay, outright arrogant) tone of the album. For me the quintessential Sinatra song on the album is the Gershwin tune "A Foggy Day." I also like both of the Cole Porter covers, "In the Still of the Night" and "You'd Be So Easy to Love," which display the same cool assurance. This explains why the man would even try singing "When I Take My Sugar To Tea." "Ring a Ding Ding" made it to #4 on the Billboard Pop Charts. All things considered this ends up being an above average Sinatra album from the Reprise years when he was in his prime, although it falls short of being a true classic (i.e., good but not on my list of 10 essential Sinatra albums). Be aware that there is also a reissue version of this album with three bonus tracks.
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on 22 July 2010
"Ring a ding ding" represented the first album of Sinatra's new Reprise label in 1961. For his Reprise debut Sinatra wisely decided to record an album of mid tempo swingers rather than kick off the new label with a ballad set. Whilst not being the best swing album Frank ever recorded this is a respectable debut for his Reprise Tenure. Another reviewer stated that Nelson Riddle arranged the album..he didn't,the arrangements are largely handled by Johnny mandel. To be fair,by listening to the album it's an easy mistake to make as mandel's arrangements and style are very similar to that of Riddle's, much more so than other arrangers Sinatra worked with over the years.

The title track written by the dream team of Van huesen/Cahn is a great swing track and although not as good as some of their best tracks it's a catchy upbeat number which gets better with every listen. "Let's fall in love" and "Be careful it's my heart" "Ive got my love to keep me warm" and "The Coffee song" are also great tracks.

For interest Johnny mandel would later on in the 70's and 80's go on to work with another Sinatra cohort in Quincy jones - working on albums by Michael Jackson and George Benson with mandel writing melodies and handling arrangements !

Whilst not being amongst the most essential Sinatra albums, iIt's far from the worst albums Sinatra ever recorded - "Ring a ding ding" is definitely worth adding to your collection !
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on 4 March 2016
I already have the original issue of this vinyl album released in 1961. The original mastering was truly awful and there is much debate online which confirms. Therefore purchased this newly released version which has been extremely well remastered in stereo. ( original was mono) setting aside stereo there is much improved clarity and depth and there is absolutely no surface noise or clicks and pops.This is one of the many vinyl re releases of Sinatra!s recordings on Capitol & Reprise albums to celebrate his centenary.This was his first issue on his newly formed Reprise label and arrangements / orchestration were by Johnny Mandel. All songs are up tempo and generally good but there were much better things to come.
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on 31 December 2014
Frank is in great voice and clearly enjoying himself on this record. The voice is not as strong as in some of the earlier recordings. He tries to avoid holding a note by adding words and doing a bit of ad lib. 'It happened in Monterey' is not as good as the recording I knew, I think from Come fly with Me, but is still a good if not outstanding performance. The title song nevertheless is a classic performance with real swing. There is not a bad song on it, and whilst not at his best it is an album worth adding to your collection.
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on 16 January 2016
Having already got the Original C.D, I bought this out of curiosity for the outakes. The studio album is amongst the best of his recorded swing albums with The Still Of The Night being the outstanding track athough the others are of a tremendously high standard. Contrary to another review I prefer this
rerecorded version of A Foggy Day to that on Songs For Young Lovers as it has a bounce and swing about it. With regard to the outakes C.D it's interesting that although previously chronicled it proves Sinatra did very few takes of these songs.This spontaneity comes through, which I believe enhances this disc. It's interesting that by contrast the issued track of Nice'n'Easy was a hyrbrid of two takes one being the twentieth or so take.If you contrast this album with Come Swing With Me recorded three months later he sounds far more spontaneous and exuberant .Was this due to his work load or Capitol's recording policy?
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on 7 August 2014
The second biggest selling recording singer in the world after Elvis Presley - Mr Sinatra worked very hard to be so succesful - 80 Grammy Awards - 50 cinema films and three Academy Awards - over 50 recorded albums and numerous International tours - I saw him four times in concert in London at the Albert Hall ( three times) and Festival Hall (Once) and I am so grateful for that opportunity as other times tickets were sold out. This album , with the Johnny Mandell orchestra ,shows how Swing should be done.
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on 22 March 2010
FRANK SINATRA'S FIRST REPRISE ALBUM RECORDED IN 1961 HAS HELD UP REALLY WELL OVER THE YEARS. JOHNNY MANDEL'S JAZZY ARRANGEMENTS FIT WELL WITH MR SINATRA'S ADVENTUROUS APPROACH TO A DOZEN STANDARDS. IN FACT THERE ARE SOME CLASSICS HERE THAT COMPARE FAVOURABLY WITH SINATRA/RIDDLE COMBINATIONS. THE VOICE STILL HAS THAT YOUTHFUL BLOOM TO IT THAT WAS SOON TO FADE (THE RINGING CLIMAX TO 'BE CAREFUL, IT'S MY HEART' IS A GOOD EXAMPLE) AND SOME OF THE BREATH CONTROL IS A MARVEL BUT NEITHER FACT INTERFERES WITH SINATRA'S SUPERB PHRASING. I FEEL THAT ONLY THE PUNCHY DELIVERY OF THE LYRICS IN FOR EXAMPLE 'THE COFFEE SONG' LIFT IT TO UNDESERVED HEIGHTS - HERE MANDEL'S SETTING IS AN UNSUCCESSFUL MIX THAT HINDERS RATHER THAN ENHANCES. HOWEVER, SOME OF THE NUMBERS ARE A SUPERB COMBINATION OF BAND AND SINGER - 'LET'S FALL IN LOVE', 'IN THE STILL OF THE NIGHT', 'YOU'D BE SO EASY TO LOVE', AND SO ON...ALL TOP STUFF AND THE FINAL 'I'VE GOT MY LOVE TO KEEP ME WARM' IS A REAL GEM. WATCH OUT FOR THE EXTENDED EDITION WHICH HAS 3 ADD ON TRACKS. BOTH 'ZING! WENT THE STRINGS OF MY HEART' AND 'THE LAST DANCE' WERE RECORDED FOR BUT OMITTED FROM THE ORIGINAL LP.THE FORMER IS A SLIGHTLY UNEVEN THOUGH ENTERTAINING PERFORMANCE WHILE THE LATTER JUST DOESN'T WORK WHEN COMPARED WITH THE 'COME DANCE WITH ME' VERSION. FINALLY, THERE IS A STATELY 'THE SECOND TIME AROUND'TO CONCLUDE. VERY CLOSE TO BEING A CLASSIC SINATRA ALBUM, IT'S CERTAINLY WORTH ADDING TO YOUR COLLECTION AS YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF HOW SINATRA DID THESE THINGS BETTER THAN ANYONE ELSE.
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on 13 May 2013
I bought the original LP of Ring-A-Ding-Ding when it first came out, and loved it. I still have the LP but am considering selling it, and I wanted the same great album on CD to play at home and in the car. This CD fits the bill - no question
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