Frank sinatra Term Paper

This essay has a total of 2924 words and 11 pages.

frank sinatra

Immortality is defined as eternal life. Frank Sinatra is one who will live forever. His
music, his movies, his attitude, his eyes, whatever it is you remember him for, all the
same, he IS greatness. Few people come along in the course of life that can be labeled
great, Frankie is the symbol of greatness. Tens of millions of recordings, nine Grammys
and two Academy Awards, over 60 films, worldwide tours, television specials, hundreds of
millions of dollars raised for charities. Sinatra passed the tests of time with grades
better than though could be achieved, this is his story…….

Sinatra was born Dec. 12, 1915, the only child of working-class Italian-American
immigrants, in a tenement at 415 Monroe St. in Hoboken. His father, Anthony, was a
boxer/fireman in Hoboken. His mother, Natalie "Dolly" Sinatra, worked as a barmaid who
loved to sing at family gatherings. Music always filled the Sinatra home. In high school,
he saw his hero, Bing Crosby, perform live. This was all the inspiration Sinatra needed to
set his goal as becoming a professional singer.

Sinatra, while working jobs at The Jersey Observer, sang with a neighborhood vocal group,
the Hoboken Four, He also appeared in neighborhood theater amateur shows, where first
prize was usually $10 or a set of dishes. His first professional gig was at the Rustic
Cabin roadhouse in Englewood Cliffs, where Sinatra sang, told jokes and emceed when he
wasn't waiting tables. At the request of his mother Frank enrolled in Hoboken's Stevens
Institute of Technology , but he soon dropped out after 1½ semesters.

In 1939 he was offered his first professional singing contract as the lead vocalist in
Harry James' new band. When Sinatra started performing with the "Big Bands" he acquired a
fierce following of young fans, which enabled him to later branch out as a solo artist. It
was at this time that Sinatra's career soared.

Sinatra was signed to a recording contract as a soloist by Columbia Recording Corporation.
Sinatra had developed a highly innovative style of singing and finally could make
decisions on how the band should play or how a song should be sung. If he wanted something
changed, it was changed. A talent agency marketing Sinatra advertised him as: "The Voice
That Thrilled Millions." This was later changed to "The Voice." This would be on of his
many labels for life.

Having the ability to entertain one person is an achievement in itself, but thousands is
another story. He could entertain anyone, any place, any time. In September 1942, Sinatra
decided to go solo. A year later, he had his first lead movie role, in the musical "Higher
and Higher," but he didn't stay put in Hollywood. Instead, he toured as part of a concert
series devoted to movie music; did two radio shows a week, including "Your Hit Parade,"
and performed up and down the West Coast.

In November 1946, Columbia estimated that Sinatra was recording an average of twenty-four
songs a year, enabling them to release one new Sinatra record a month. Not a single band
today can produce hit albums at the pace Sinatra did. A successful band today would be
expected to produce three records a year; Sinatra did four times that amount. In 1946 his
records were selling at an annual rate of ten million per year. He had a successful radio
program and a film contract with M.G.M. He was at the peak of his popularity. "He's the
one who made it possible for the singer to be the star of the band," says jazz singer Jon
Hendricks of Lambert, Hendricks and Ross.

During the World War II years, Sinatra ( who was exempted from service by a punctured
eardrum ) and Axel Stordahl, his chief arranger and conductor, introduced "Nancy (With the
Laughin' Face)." Originally presented to Sinatra's oldest child on her fourth birthday, it
became one of his signature tunes in a period when he was king, that also brought forth
"When Your Lover is Gone," "The Song Is You," "Fools Rush In," "Begin the Beguine"and
"I've Got a Crush on You."

By December 1946, Sinatra wanted to be taken more seriously as an artist, and not as a
teen sex symbol. Sinatra banned teenagers from attending his radio broadcasts. He went
back to the ways he had learned Crosby and Dorsey, he began popularizing slower but still
swinging arrangements..

Sinatra preached the virtues of racial tolerance and national unity in the 1945 short
film, "The House I Live In," which won a special Academy Award the following year. Sinatra
was finally getting artistic respect. "He was the greatest interpreter of lyrics that ever
lived," said pop singer Dionne Warwick. "He could sing the telephone book and make you
believe it."

Even the greatest have their downfalls, but its all about getting back up from them that
makes them even greater. Linked by gossip columns to both the Mafia and the Communist
party, Sinatra was constantly defending himself against allegations of wrong-doing. He was
spotted in Havana with renowned mobster Lucky Luciano. He was questioned by the committee
on Un-American Activities. Sinatra denied any corrupt dealings. The accusations continued,
however, and Sinatra's personality and quick temper just got him into more trouble. In
1949 he was fired from his radio show and his live New York concerts were disasters. His
personal life was falling apart as fast as his career. Sinatra's image as an adoring
husband and father to his wife, Nancy, and their three children was destroyed with the
discovery of his scandalous affair with Ava Gardner. Their divorce and Sinatra's antics in
public did not help his declining popularity. Columbia Records wanted him out, M.G.M.
dropped him, as did his own agent, MCA. It appeared that Frank Sinatra was finished at
thirty-four years of age. Sinatra was broke and depressed. His career was in shambles and
his personal relationships were strained. Sinatra's friends, such as restaurateur, Toots
Shor, tried to talk sense with him and pleaded with the singer to get a grip on himself.
As it turned out, Frank Sinatra saved Frank Sinatra. He read James Jones' war novel, From
Here to Eternity, and knew that the part of Maggio, the tough little Italian who refused
to be broken, could have been written for him. He went to see Buddy Adler, a producer at
Columbia Pictures, and asked to be tested for the part. Adler was not impressed with the
arrival of Sinatra and informed that there were five other actors to be tested ahead of
him. Sinatra then went to Henry Cohn, the head of Columbia Pictures, to sell himself for
the role. Sinatra did win the role of Maggio (it was widely speculated that "Johnny
Fontaine," the character featured in the Godfather movies, was based on the real Frank
Sinatra, and that the role in From Here to Eternity was obtained through his Mafia
connections rather than any talent of Sinatra's). Sinatra settled for a salary of $8,000
for his role in the movie even though he had previously commanded $150,000 per picture.
You could say Sinatra was a desperate man at this point, but Sinatra was just being
Sinatra. He knew that this role could make him a major star again. As a matter of fact, he
probably would have paid them for the part because he knew he would be able to command
even higher salaries if he was right and his "Maggio" was a hit. Sinatra had complete
confidence in himself so he just went in and did what he believed he could do better than
all the rest. He labored several hours a day in military training to prepare for his
performance as Montgomery Clifts's war-time chum. Sinatra won an Oscar in 1953 for his
portrayal of Maggio in From Here to Eternity. After a struggle, Frank was back on top. I
think its best said in his song "That's Life", the lyrics read as follows: That's Life,
that's what all the people say, Your riding high in April, shot down in May, but I know
I'm gonna change that tune, when I'm back on top in June, that's life…………..but I
don't let it get me down, because this fine old world it keeps on spinning around." True
Frankie attitude.

His triumph led to a second career as a mature movie star, playing Nathan Detroit opposite
Continues for 6 more pages >>




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