Admittedly, I jumped at the chance to review this new collection because my love and adoration for Dean goes way back. I grew up listening to him and watching his variety show and celebrity roasts with my grandparents. And the fact that I share a birthday with this fellow Midwesterner endeared him to me even more. So, when I learned that Capitol was releasing a brand new collection of Dean’s work -- conveniently coinciding with our birthday -- I knew I had to have it.
I was not disappointed.
The collection, “Dino: The Essential Dean Martin,” is comprised of two discs, each containing 18 classics, spanning nearly two decades. The classic singles are present, including “That’s Amore” and “Mambo Italiano” as is his signature tune “Everybody Loves Somebody” which became the theme song for his variety show.
The collection is nostalgic and blissful while making use of the technology available today. The songs have been remastered and sound as crisp and clear as they did in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Dean’s baritone hasn’t lost its beauty and old favorites, like “Sway,” seem to have had new life breathed into them. In addition, a tune previously though to have been lost to history, “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody," has been unearthed and restored. What a find!
If you were lucky enough to have enjoyed Dean in his heyday, then you will definitely not be disappointed in this collection. And, if you’re a newcomer to the Rat Pack and are looking for a great introductory album for Dean, then look no further. “The Essential Dean Martin” gives you a taste of 20 years’ worth of coolly crooned tunes. In short, Dean has never sounded better.
Happy belated birthday, Dino. To get your copy of this fantastic collection, visit Dean's official site.