July 7, 2009 / 11:04 PM / 10 years ago

Maroon 5 covering Sinatra for iTunes set

Lead singer Adam Levine performs with Maroon 5 at the "Idol Gives Back" show at the Kodak theatre in Hollywood, California April 6, 2008. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

NEW YORK (Billboard) - When Apple asked Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine if he and his band would be interested in recording a classic Frank Sinatra tune, the singer jumped at the chance.

“He’s definitely one of my all-time favorites,” Levine told Billboard.com recently. “He’s one of those guys that’s just kind of larger-than-life. I always was a huge fan, ever since I was probably about 15 years old.”

The resulting M5 version of “The Way You Look Tonight” is one of 13 Sinatra songs that Apple commissioned for “His Way, Our Way,” an exclusive collection of covers and originals that went on sale Tuesday at the iTunes Music Store. Other artists who have their way with Ol’ Blue Eyes favorites include the Kooks, John Rich, Seether, the Morning Benders and the Kills. An iTunes “His Way, Our Way” page has been created which features the covers and originals side by side.

The collection, which iTunes created with the support of Frank Sinatra Enterprises, aims to introduce a newer, younger audience to the Sinatra songbook while introducing longtime Frank-o-philes to new artists.

Levine and M5 keyboardist Jessie Carmichael worked with producer David Campbell on the arrangement, and the cover was even recorded at the Capitol Records studio in Hollywood, site of many of Sinatra’s greatest moments. For Levine, there’s more than a little Sinatra in his own singing style.

“I think Sinatra had such amazing taste,” Levins said. “He never overdid it. He was always pretty understated in his singing which is interesting because he wasn’t understated in his lifestyle. That juxtaposition is really kind of an interesting thing because he was very tasteful when it came to choosing certain melodies and almost didn’t embellish at all actually. Kind of stuck to the plan, which I thought was very cool.”

Levine and his bandmates are currently ensconced in a Swiss recording studio with producer Mutt Lange, in the beginning stages of the next Maroon 5 album. “I’ve got a lot of great material that I’m really excited about,” he said. “I’m more excited about this record than I’ve been about anything.”

Editing by DeanGoodman at Reuters

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