Frank Sinatra was an American singer and actor who was born on December 12, 1915. He is one of the best-selling musicians of all time, with over 150 million albums sold worldwide. He had a dazzling array of popular songs and albums in the 1940s and 1950s, and he went on to feature in numerous films, winning an Oscar for his role in “From Here to Eternity.” ‘Love and Marriage,’ ‘Strangers in the Night,’ ‘My Way,’ and ‘New York, New York’ are just a few of his legendary songs. Let us celebrate this historical figure today.
Francis Albert Sinatra
December 12, 1915
May 14, 1998 (age 82)
Francis Albert Sinatra was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, on December 12, 1915. Sinatra, the sole child of Sicilian immigrants, decided to become a singer as a teenager after seeing Bing Crosby perform in the mid-1930s. He’d already been a member of his high school’s glee club and began singing at local nightclubs. In 1935, he earned his first break as a member of the Three Flashes, a local singing trio that later became The Hoboken Four, with the inclusion of Sinatra. Due to his radio exposure, Sinatra was discovered by bandleader Harry James, with whom he recorded his first recordings, including ‘All or Nothing at All.’ Tommy Dorsey invited Sinatra to join his band in 1940. Sinatra chose to set out on his own after two years of chart-topping success with Dorsey.
In 1946, he launched “The Voice of Frank Sinatra,” his debut studio album, which reached number one on the Billboard chart and stayed there for the next seven weeks! He released “Songs by Sinatra” (1947), “Christmas Songs by Sinatra” (1948), “Frankly Sentimental” (1949), and “Dedicated to You” (1950) over the next several years (1950). None of these albums, however, were as successful as the first. During the 1940s, Sinatra tried his hand at acting in Hollywood, and in 1953, his film “From Here to Eternity” became a smash hit. His album “Nice ‘n Easy” was released in 1960. It lasted nine weeks at the top of the Billboard chart. He was nominated for Album of the Year, Best Male Vocal Performance, and Best Arrangement at the Grammy Awards. In 1965, he starred in “Von Ryan’s Express,” a World War II adventure film about a group of Allied P.O.W.s who attempt a daring mass escape after Italy signed an armistice with the Allies in September 1943. In 1970, he released “Watertown,” a concept album about a man whose wife abandons him, and his two children relocate to a big city. When the album was first released, it received mixed reviews. Sinatra declared his retirement in 1971. But he couldn’t stay away from his beloved job for long, and he was soon back in the spotlight. He proceeded to produce albums and featured in several films over the next few years, much to the delight of his adoring fans.
Sinatra married four times in his life. He had three children with Nancy Barbato, his first wife, whom he married from 1939 to 1951. From 1951 to 1957, he was married to actress Ava Gardner. Then, from 1966 to 1968, he was married for two years to Mia Farrow. In 1976, he married Barbara Marx for the last time. Until his death, the couple remained together. He lived a long life and struggled with health issues in his later years, including high blood pressure and bladder cancer. On May 14, 1998, at the age of 82, he died of a heart attack.
This comes when he and a local trio, The Three Flashes, audition separately for an appearance on “Major Bowes and His Original Amateur Hour.”
Sinatra makes his film debut performing in an uncredited sequence in “Las Vegas Nights.”
Sinatra gains success as a solo artist after he signs with Columbia Records.
“The Voice of Frank Sinatra” is released on Columbia Records, spending a total of 18 weeks on the charts.
Sinatra wins an Oscar award for ‘Best Supporting Actor’ for “From Here To Eternity.”
He is presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the U.S. by President Ronald Reagan.
C.B.S. launches a television miniseries based on Sinatra's life, titled “Sinatra.”
Why We Love Frank Sinatra
He invented the concept of an album
His first record, "The Voice of Frank Sinatra," was a boxed set of 78 rpm discs including eight songs about lost love, thanks to his enormous commercial appeal. Despite the costly packaging, it went on to sell in large volumes and was one of the first long-playing albums to be released on a 10" vinyl.
He is a style icon
It's easier to recreate Sinatra's famous image than it is to fully nail his voice, as Alexander Armstrong demonstrated in "Frank Sinatra: Our Way." Half the battle is a well-cut and ironed dinner suit, a bow tie, and impeccably shined shoes; the rest is all in the facial expression. The iconic Sinatra expression is one of easy glee, with raised eyebrows, a slack neck, and a confident grin. It's far more difficult to nail the voice.
Women admired him
Sinatra was a huge hit with the ladies. He was the 1940s idol, and he had a sizable following. The artist's concerts sparked mass hysteria, to the point where 30 thousand people outside a 1944 New York concert converted the venue into a combat zone, forcing the police to intervene.
5 Surprising Facts
He was in love with Marilyn Monroe
According to legend, the singer proposed to Monroe, who politely declined.
He was influenced by Bing Crosby
Crosby impacted him and after he graduated from school, he launched his singing career.
He led a thief gang
Raised as a poor suburban kid in Hoboken, New Jersey, he was the leader of the thief gang when he was young.
He almost died at birth
Not breathing when he was pulled out of his mother, the infant was laid on the kitchen counter while his grandmother picked him up and stuck him under some cold water until he wailed.
He inadvertently helped name Scooby-Doo
At least, according to Fred Silverman, a former C.B.S. executive who was inspired by Sinatra's signature “Scoo-Be-Do-Be-Do.”
Frank Sinatra FAQs
Why do people love Frank Sinatra so much?
By all accounts, Sinatra played a key role in shaping the musical and emotional direction of his albums, playing a more active role than singers had before him.
Why was Frank Sinatra important during WWII?
Though Sinatra was exempted from military service in World War II because of a perforated eardrum, he helped the war effort with his appearances in movies and benefits for soldiers.
Did Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin remain friends?
Yes, they became close again.
Frank Sinatra’s birthday dates