Bubblegum Girl, Vol. 2

Bubblegum Girl, Vol. 2

Bubblegum Girl, Vol. 1 boasted some rare singles that preceded Nancy Sinatra’s breakthrough 1966 debut album, Boots. The counterpart collection Vol. 2 continues to spotlight the songs she recorded before teaming with Lee Hazlewood. These selections here also find Sinatra embracing her sex-kitten persona with a confidence only hinted at in the flirty parts of Vol. 1. This is apparent right from the opening track, where she coos and purrs into a cover of “I’m Walkin’.” Up until then (and probably well after), nobody had really made a Fats Domino song sound sexy. She turns Paul Anka’s “Put Your Head on My Shoulder” into an alluring serenade wrought with a palpable yearning in her vocal performance. Though it’s one of the collection’s brightest gems, it was first released as a b-side to “I See the Moon” in 1963. Sinatra's playfully nymphal rendition of Billy Rose and Lee David's “Tonight You Belong to Me” is another standout, especially if you happened to like Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters’ version of it in the 1979 film The Jerk.

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