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Seth MacFarlane: No One Ever Tells You

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Four years ago, primetime animation kingpin Seth MacFarlane put his ardor for the Great American Songbook to the test, uniting with arranger and conductor Joel McNeely to record the breezy Music Is Better Than Words. The polished collection of Tin Pan Alley chestnuts and obscurities netted him a Grammy nomination.

MacFarlane and McNeely subsequently reunited for a platter of Christmas tunes. Though the press materials for this third teaming make no mention that the disc’s arrival coincides with Sinatra’s centenary, the timing can’t be accidental. The blueprint for these 17 tracks is clearly those mid-to-late-’50s classics-Only the Lonely, No One Cares, In the Wee Small Hours-that explored the somber flipside of Sinatra’s ring-a-ding-ding frivolity.

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