Frank Sinatra

Frank Sinatra

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Before Tim McGraw, Led Zeppelin, and even before Elvis Presley there was Frank Sinatra. The man some say "held the patent for the popular song". During his career
Ol' Blue Eyes had cut some 1,800 recordings, gathered nine Grammys, and was considered by many critics to be the preeminent singer of this century (CNN, N.Pag). Durring his long career he became on e of the most successful pop music figures of the century. Sinatra’s sophisticated musicianship was evident in his many recordings. (Columbia Encyclopedia). blah blah blah….
Frank Sinatra was born in Hoboken, New Jersey on December 12th 1915. (Encyclopedia Americana) He made it through Junior High school but only lasted forty-seven days in senior high. This could be partly due to his attitude toward school, Frank was quoted saying: "To my crowd, school was very uninteresting, and homework was something we never bothered with. The few times we attended class we, we were rowdy. So it isn’t surprising that a bunch of us were expelled." (Madigon 148) After dropping out of high school, Frank Sinatra got his first big break in the music industry with Major Boes and his "Amateur Hour" in 1935, singing in a group called the Hoboken Four. Four years later in 1939, Frank Sinatra got his first radio play on a station out of New York, WNEW. (enc world bio) After having his first Radio play, Frank Sinatra was ready to go after "the big guys". In 1939 He went after big-band leader Harry James, Taking note of Sinatra's slim build and huge ego, James remarked, "He considers himself the greatest vocalist in the business. Get that! No one's ever heard of him! He's never had a hit record, and he looks like a wet rag, but he says he's the greatest" (CNN, N.Pag). He then signed with Harry James for $75 a week. After seven months with Harry James, Frank Sinatra joined Tommy Dorsey and his orchestra (Enc world bio). With Tommy Dorsey, Frank’s singing career began to skyrocket, with the Dorsey band he had his first big hits, including "I'll never Smile Again" and "In the Blue of Evening" (Grolier Multimedia, N.Pag). These two songs topped the charts in 1943 (Reader’s Companion). The attention Sinatra was getting for his performances caught the eye of the movie industry, and he appeared in more than sixty films. Durring his “acting years” Frank Sinatra continued to sing as well, and landed at the top of the music charts.

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With band leaders and arrangers he had hits such as “Young at Heart”, “Love and Marriage”, “Hey Jealous Lover” and “Witchcraft”. After the end of World War II his career slowed considerably, and by the early 1950’s he no longer had record or movie contracts. In a daring gamble, Sinatra took a straight acting role in “From Here to Eternity” – He won an academy Award for his performance, witch revived his acting and singing careers Groiler). Along with reviving his career in the early 1950’s, he divorced his first wife and married actress Ava Gardner. After that marriage ended in 1957 he developed an image as a “swinger,” a man out on the town with a drink in his hand and a beautiful woman at his side (Groiler). When Rock music started to take hold in the late 1950s, Sinatra’s record sales started to slow again. His music became known as “middle of the road” but his ever-present style put him in a class by himself(Enc World Bio 247). By this time Sinatra was a regular performer in Las Vegas, and the so-called Rat Pack united around him. With its off-stage reputation of wild times, the group created a reputation of wild times(Groiler). Frank Sinatra received an honorary degree in 1976 from the University of Nevada at Las Vegas for his many appearances in the casinos and hotels of that state (Encyclopedia Americana). In the mid 1960s, Sinatra reached the top of the pop music charts again with hits such as “Strangers in the Night” and “That’s Life.” His personal life was also back in spotlight with his 3 year marriage to actress Mia Farrow – who was much younger than he (Groiler). After his famous recording of “My Way,” Sinatra made an ill-fated attempt to sing some of the lighter tunes of the lighter tunes of modern rock composers. This led to a brief 3 year retirement from entertainment, where he became a close friend of Ronald Regan and helped Regan in his later successful presidential campaigns. He came out of retirement in 1974 with a renewed interest in the middle of the road genre. He was married for the forth time in 1976 to Barbara Blakely. Sinatra returned to the spotlight with his famous recording “New York, New York” in 1980, as he entered his sixth decade of entertaining.
On May 14, 1998 Francis Albert Sinatra passed away at the age of 82. But stars like Frank Sinatra never die. They continue live on through their recordings. The man with the "Golden Voice" and the famous blue eyes may have left us, but he will always be remembered.

Works Cited
"Francis Albert Sinatra." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd ed. 1998.
"Sinatra, Francis." The Columbia Encyclopedia. 6th ed. 2000. Infotrac: General
Reference Center Gold. Jenison High School. 3 May 2005 .
"Sinatra, Frank." Encyclopedia Americana. 2005. 6 May 2005
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"Sinatra, Frank." Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. 2005. 12 May 2005
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"Sinatra: The Singer." CNN Interactive. CNN. 10 May 2005
.
Handy, Bruce. "Frank Sinatra." Time: American Legends 2001: 124-125
Madison, Carol O. When They Were Kids. New York: Random House, 1998.
Wiener, Jon. "Frank Sintara - Singer and Motion Picture Actor." The Reader's
Companion to American History (1991): 988. Infotrac: General Reference
Center Gold. Jenison High School. 5 May 2005     .

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