Country, My Way
Lee Hazlewood had his hands full with country music in 1967—the year he worked with Gram Parsons’ International Submarine Band and its pioneering country-rock album Safe at Home. He also took on Nancy Sinatra’s fourth solo album, enlisting a team of Nashville session musicians to keep a semblance of Music City authenticity. In the opening cover of Dale Noe’s “It’s Such a Pretty World Today,” Hazlewood’s production almost overdoes it; a group of backing choral singers are mixed louder than Sinatra’s voice to play like an exaggeration of the '60s Nashville sound. Their singing sits better in the following “Get While the Gettin’s Good,” cooing in the periphery of Sinatra’s commanding performance. When mixed well, Sinatra's voice fits Hazlewood’s interpretation of country like a well-tailored rhinestone suit. Sure, no cover of “Walk Through This World with Me” is as perfect as the George Jones original—but Sinatra’s silky timbre easily makes for the best female-sung rendition of this classic honky-tonk weeper. Her duet with Hazlewood on “Jackson” broke the pop Top 20.