Better known as a villain on the big screen in such movies as License to Kill and The Goonies, actor Robert Davi takes on a new art form with the release of his crooner album full of 12 Frank Sinatra songs. At first listen, the loud, intricate instrumentals of the 30-piece big band orchestra blow you away. The orchestration is different for many of the songs, which is refreshing to hear.
As for Davi himself, he is a great crooner, and a real throwback to the rat pack era. His voice is very smooth, but deeper than Sinatra’s, and he does not employ the same kind of “drunk-like” timbre that Sinatra is known for. It is great to hear that Davi, an amateur singer did not try and do a karaoke album and imitate Old Blue Eyes.
Some highlights of the album include “All the Way,” “The Best Is Yet to Come” and Sinatra’s classic, “I’ve Got the World On a String.” Davi makes the song his own with different inflections, and little note changes, though he mostly sticks to the true form and spirit of the songs.
Unusually, Davi picks 12 diverse songs, with some obscure Sinatra songs that are nice to the ear including “Rainy Day” and “Mam’selle.”
It honestly is the selection of songs that is a downside of listening to this great collection of music. In theory, it is nice to hear some obscure Sinatra songs, but his picks are heavily weighed towards ballads, so the upbeat nature of Sinatra’s singing is lost in an attempt to remain unique. I also wish that Davi did a bit more to modernize the songs. Besides the different orchestration, Davi stuck with recordings very similar to the original versions.
“On the Road to Romance” is the perfect subtitle because Davi’s subtle, romantic take on Sinatra’s musical style is refreshing. Overall, this album is a great listen with superb sound quality, and highly recommended for any Sinatra or big band fans.The album hits stores and the Internet on October 24.