Album cover of the week: Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely

There’s a lot to love about Frank Sinatra’s classic 1958 LP, Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely. With its introspective, melancholy arrangements — credit famed music director and frequent Sinatra collaborator Nelson Riddle — and typically excellent vocals from Ol’ Blue Eyes, the album packs a real emotional punch. That’s probably no coincidence. Sinatra’s divorce from actress Ava Gardner was finalized during the sessions, and Riddle had recently lost both his mother and daughter.

So is it any wonder that the cover for this album looks like this?

This rendering of Sinatra as a sad, Pagliacci-esque clown was painted by Nicholas Volpe. At the first-ever Grammy Awards (held May 4, 1959), he won the award for Best Album Cover.

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