"Recorded in mono, Pure Pleasure Records has re-mastered the tapes with unusual clarity and tone quality. The orchestra is full but nuanced and Lee's voice is mellow and alluring. Audiophile vinyl is the ideal medium for this genre." 4.5/5 — Robbie Gerson, Audiophile Audition
For her comeback to Capitol Records, Peggy Lee joined forces with long-time friend Frank Sinatra, who was then at the height of his popularity as a recording act. In these April 1957 sessions, Sinatra unofficially took on the role of producer. Officially, he was the conductor of all 12 performances.
Peggy Lee frequently discussed the scope of Sinatra's involvement in the production of the sessions and in the resulting album, which was aptly titled The Man I Love. The following comments have been pieced together from various sources, including Lee's autobiography: "He was my neighbor then, and came over and said, let's do an album … That was Frank's idea, the whole thing. It was his entire production. He came over with a list of about 40 songs, and they were all excellent songs — gems, you know — and said, Just choose from this … Bill Miller came over and set all the keys with me. Then Frank hired Nelson Riddle to write those lovely arrangements …. And then he had a beautiful orchestra. I thought that album probably would never pay for itself. But I always thought at the time, it doesn't make any difference; this is just so much fun …. And Frank did conduct … he was following the score and he knew every note in there … Frank thought of everything to the last detail, including putting menthol in my eyes so I'd have a misty look in the cover photograph …"
The Man I Love was Sinatra's third experience as an album conductor. His first try had been Frank Sinatra Conducts The Music Of Alec Wilder, a set of instrumentals which Columbia Records released in 1946. His second try happened ten years later (1956), when he conducted the very first sessions held at the Capitol Tower. Capitol Records released the fruits of those sessions in the LP Frank Sinatra Conducts Tone Poems Of Color, also a set of instrumentals. One year later, Sinatra chose Peggy Lee as the very first vocalist for whom he conducted an album.
Following The Man I Love album sessions, Sinatra would eventually embark in four more conducting projects. The next of them took place in 1959, when he conducted the Sleep Warm album sessions for Dean Martin, another friend.