Hey pallies, likes the word of the day is MASSIVE! Today's Dino-devotion is taken from the blog "FRESH INDEPENDENCE" and likes is the most marvelous massive missive of pixs and prose all scribed in honor of the 97th anniversary of our Dino's descent to earth! "The post tagged "EVERYBODY LOVES DEAN MARTIN" has somethin' for every Dino-lover out there 'specially those new to the Dean scene.
This hugest of huge homage of our highest of high honorable man is likes a wonderful mix of the life, times, and teachin's of our Dino.....includin' major facts and figures, a run down of the various ages and stages of his life and work, with tons of his teachin's thrown in as well. Likes as we say, it is a great great gatherin' of Dino-information in one place to help pallies to grow deeper and deeper in their knowledge and devotion to our most beloved Dino.
ilovedinomartin salutes the folks at "FRESH INDEPENDENCE" for sharin' with their readership this huge huge honorin' of our Dino in remembrance of the anniversary of his comin' to our planet. To checks this out in it's original source, simply clicks on the tag of this here Dino-message. Dino-delightedly, DMP
EVERYBODY LOVES DEAN MARTIN
Dino Paul Crocetti
7 June 1917, Steubenville, Ohio
25 December 1995, Beverly Hills, California
“I once shook hands with Pat Boone and my whole right side sobered up.” - Dean Martin
“Dean Martin (June 7, 1917 – December 25, 1995) was an American singer, film actor and comedian. Martin’s hit singles included “Memories Are Made of This”, “That’s Amore”, “Everybody Loves Somebody”, “Mambo Italiano”, “Sway”, “Volare” and “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head?”. Nicknamed the “King of Cool”, he was one of the members of the “Rat Pack” and a major star in four areas of show business: concert stage/night clubs, recordings, motion pictures, and television.
Martin was born Dino Paul Crocetti in Steubenville, Ohio to Italian immigrant parents, Gaetano and Angela Crocetti (née Barra). His father was an immigrant from Abruzzo, Italy, and his mother was an Italian of part Neapolitan and part Sicilian ancestry. Martin was the younger of two sons. His brother was called Bill. Martin spoke only Italian until he started school at the age of five. He attended Grant Elementary School in Steubenville, Ohio and took up the drums as a hobby as a teenager. He was the target of much ridicule for his broken English and ultimately dropped out from Steubenville High School in the 10th grade because he thought that he was smarter than his teachers. He delivered bootleg liquor, served as a speakeasy croupier, wrote crafty anecdotes, was a blackjack dealer, worked in a steel mill and boxed as welterweight. He grew up a neighbor to Jimmy the Greek.
At the age of 15, he was a boxer who billed himself as “Kid Crochet”. His prizefighting years earned him a broken nose (later straightened), a scarred lip, and many sets of broken knuckles (a result of not being able to afford the tape used to wrap boxers’ hands). Of his twelve bouts, he would later say “I won all but eleven.” For a time, he roomed with Sonny King, who, like Martin, was just starting in show business and had little money. It is said that Martin and King held bare-knuckle matches in their apartment, fighting until one of them was knocked out; people paid to watch.
Eventually, Martin gave up boxing. He worked as a roulette stickman and croupier in an illegal casino behind a tobacco shop where he had started as a stock boy. At the same time, he sang with local bands. Calling himself “Dino Martini” (after the then-famous Metropolitan Opera tenor, Nino Martini), he got his first break working for the Ernie McKay Orchestra. He sang in a crooning style influenced by Harry Mills (of the Mills Brothers among others. In the early 1940s, he started singing for bandleader Sammy Watkins, who suggested he change his name to Dean Martin.
In October 1941, Martin married Elizabeth Anne McDonald. During their marriage (ended by divorce in 1949), they had four children. Martin worked for various bands throughout the early 1940s, mostly on looks and personality until he developed his own singing style. Martin famously flopped at the Riobamba, a high class nightclub in New York, when he succeeded Frank Sinatra in 1943, but it was the setting for their meeting.
Martin repeatedly sold 10 percent shares of his earnings for up front cash. He apparently did this so often that he found he had sold over 100 percent of his income. Such was his charm that most of his lenders forgave his debts and remained friends.
Drafted into the United States Army in 1944 during World War II, Martin served a year stationed in Akron, Ohio. He was then reclassified as 4-F (possibly due to a double hernia; Jerry Lewis referred to the surgery Martin needed for this in his autobiography) and was discharged.
By 1946, Martin was doing relatively well, but was still little more than an East Coast nightclub singer with a common style, similar to that of Bing Crosby. He drew audiences to the clubs he played, but he inspired none of the fanatic popularity enjoyed by Sinatra.
A biography on Martin entitled Dean Martin: King of the Road by Michael Freedland alleged he had links to the Mafia early in his career. According to this book, Martin was given help with his singing career by the Chicago Outfit who owned saloons in the city, and later performed in shows hosted by these bosses when he was a star. The mob bosses were Tony (“Joe Batters”) Accardo and Sam Giancana. Freedland suggests Martin felt little sympathy for the Mafia and only did them small favors if it was not inconvenient for him. While in Las Vegas Martin was friendly with many mobsters, though not in business with them. Many Vegas entertainers knew the wiseguys and were cordial with them personally, without criminal involvement. Another book, The Animal in Hollywood by John L. Smith, depicted Martin’s longtime friendship with Mafia mobsters “Handsome Johnny” Roselli and Anthony (“The Animal”) Fiato. Smith suggests that Fiato did Martin many favors, such as getting back money from two swindlers who had cheated Martin’s ex-wife Betty out of thousands of dollars of her alimony.
Martin attracted the attention of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Columbia Pictures, but a Hollywood contract was not forthcoming. He seemed destined to remain on the nightclub circuit until he met a comic named Jerry Lewis at the Glass Hat Club in New York, where both men were performing. Martin and Lewis formed a fast friendship which led to their participation in each other’s acts and the ultimate formation of a music-comedy team. More than a few people dubbed them “The Organ Grinder and the Monkey”.
Martin and Lewis’ official debut together occurred at Atlantic City’s 500 Club on July 24, 1946, and they were not well received. The owner, Skinny D’Amato, warned them that if they did not come up with a better act for their second show later that night, they would be fired. Huddling together in the alley behind the club, Lewis and Martin agreed to “go for broke”, to throw out the pre-scripted gags and to improvise. Martin sang and Lewis came out dressed as a busboy, dropping plates and making a shambles of both Martin’s performance and the club’s sense of decorum until Lewis was chased from the room as Martin pelted him with breadrolls. They did slapstick, reeled off old vaudeville jokes, and did whatever else popped into their heads at the moment. This time, the audience doubled over in laughter. This success led to a series of well-paying engagements on the Eastern seaboard, culminating in a triumphant run at New York’s Copacabana. Patrons were convulsed by the act, which consisted primarily of Lewis interrupting and heckling Martin while he was trying to sing, and ultimately the two of them chasing each other around the stage and having as much fun as possible. The secret, both said, is that they essentially ignored the audience and played to one another.
The team made its TV debut on the very first broadcast of CBS-TV network’s Toast of the Town Program (later called the Ed Sullivan Show) with Ed Sullivan and Rogers & Hammerstein appearing on this same inaugural telecast of June 20, 1948 . A radio series commenced in 1949, the same year Martin and Lewis were signed by Paramount producer Hal B. Wallis as comedy relief for the movie My Friend Irma.
Martin liked California which, because of its earth tremors, had few tall buildings. Suffering as he did from claustrophobia, Martin almost never used elevators, and climbing stairs in Manhattan’s skyscrapers was not his idea of fun.
Their agent, Abby Greshler, negotiated for them one of Hollywood’s best deals: although they received only a modest $75,000 between them for their films with Wallis, Martin and Lewis were free to do one outside film a year, which they would co-produce through their own York Productions. They also had complete control of their club, record, radio and television appearances, and it was through these endeavors that they earned millions of dollars.
Martin and Lewis were the hottest act in America during the early 1950s, but the pace and the pressure took its toll. Most critics underestimated Martin’s contribution to the team, as he had the thankless job of the straight man, and his singing had yet to develop into the unique style of his later years. Critics praised Lewis, and while they admitted that Martin was the best partner he could have, most claimed Lewis was the real talent and could succeed with anyone. However, Lewis always praised his partner, and while he appreciated the attention he was getting, he has always said the act would never have worked without Martin. In Dean & Me, he calls Martin one of the great comic geniuses of all time. But the harsh comments from the critics, as well as frustration with the formulaic similarity of Martin & Lewis movies, which producer Hal Wallis stubbornly refused to change, led to Martin’s dissatisfaction. He put less enthusiasm into the work, leading to escalating arguments with Lewis. They finally could not work together, especially after Martin told his partner he was “nothing to me but a dollar sign”. The act broke up in 1956, 10 years to the day from the first official teaming.
Splitting up their partnership was not easy. It took months for lawyers to work out the details of terminating many of their club bookings, their television contracts, and the dissolution of York Productions. There was intense public pressure for them to stay together.
Lewis had no trouble maintaining his film popularity alone, but Martin, unfairly regarded by much of the public and the motion picture industry as something of a spare tire, found the going hard. His first solo film, Ten Thousand Bedrooms (1957), was a box office failure. He was still popular as a singer, but with rock and roll surging to the fore, the era of the pop crooner was waning. It looked like Martin’s fate was to be limited to nightclubs and to be remembered as Lewis’s former partner.
The CBS film, Martin and Lewis, a made-for-TV movie about the famous comedy duo, starred Jeremy Northam as Martin, and Sean Hayes as Lewis. It depicted the years from 1946-1956.
Never totally comfortable in films, Martin wanted to be known as a real actor. Though offered a fraction of his former salary to co-star in a war drama, The Young Lions (1957), he agreed so he could learn from Marlon Brando and Montgomery Clift. Tony Randall already had the part, but talent agency MCA realized that with this movie, Martin would become a triple threat: they could make money from his work in night clubs, movies, and records. Martin replaced Randall and the film turned out to be the beginning of Martin’s spectacular comeback. Success would continue as Martin starred alongside Frank Sinatra for the first time in a highly acclaimed Vincente Minnelli drama, Some Came Running (1958). By the mid ’60s, Martin was a top movie, recording, and nightclub star, while Lewis’ film career declined. Martin was acclaimed for his performance as Dude in Rio Bravo (1959), directed by Howard Hawks and also starring John Wayne and singer Ricky Nelson. He teamed up again with Wayne in The Sons of Katie Elder (1965), somewhat unconvincingly cast as brothers.
In 1960, Martin was cast in the motion picture version of the Judy Holliday hit stage play Bells Are Ringing. Martin played a satiric variation of his own womanizing persona as Vegas singer “Dino” in Billy Wilder’s comedy Kiss Me, Stupid (1964) with Kim Novak, and he was not above poking fun at his image in films such as the Matt Helm spy spoofs of the 1960s, in which he was a co-producer.
As a singer, Martin copied the styles of Harry Mills (of the Mills Brothers), Bing Crosby and Perry Como until he developed his own and could hold his own in duets with Sinatra and Crosby. Like Sinatra, he could not read music, but he recorded more than 100 albums and 600 songs. His signature tune, “Everybody Loves Somebody”, knocked The Beatles ”A Hard Day’s Night” out of the number-one spot in the United States in 1964. This was followed by the similarly-styled “The Door is Still Open to My Heart”, which reached number six later that year. Elvis Presley was said to have been influenced by Martin, and patterned “Love Me Tender” after his style. Martin, like Elvis, was influenced by country music. By 1965, some of Martin’s albums, such as Dean “Tex” Martin, The Hit Sound Of Dean Martin, Welcome To My World and Gentle On My Mind were composed of country and western songs made famous by artists like Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, and Buck Owens. Martin hosted country performers on his TV show and was named “Man Of the Year” by the Country Music Association in 1966. “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head”, a song Martin performed in Ocean’s Eleven that never became a hit at the time, has enjoyed a spectacular revival in the media and pop culture (which can be traced to its usage in 1993′s A Bronx Tale).
For three decades, Martin was among the most popular acts in Las Vegas. Martin sang and was one of the smoothest comics in the business, benefiting from the decade of raucous comedy with Lewis. Martin’s daughter, Gail, also sang in Vegas and on his TV show, co-hosting his summer replacement series on NBC. Though often thought of as a ladies’ man, Martin spent a lot of time with his family; as second wife Jeanne put it, prior to the couple’s divorce, “He was home every night for dinner.”
As Martin’s solo career grew, he and Frank Sinatra became close friends. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Martin and Sinatra, along with friends Joey Bishop, Peter Lawford, and Sammy Davis Jr. formed the legendary Rat Pack, so called by the public after an earlier group of social friends, the Holmby Hills Rat Pack centred on Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, of which Sinatra had been a member.
The Martin-Sinatra-Davis-Lawford-Bishop group referred to themselves as “The Summit” or “The Clan” and never as “The Rat Pack”, although this has remained their identity in the popular imagination. The men made films together, formed an important part of the Hollywood social scene in those years, and were politically influential (through Lawford’s marriage to Patricia Kennedy, sister of President John F. Kennedy).
The Rat Pack were legendary for their Las Vegas performances. For example, the marquee at the Sands Hotel might read DEAN MARTIN—MAYBE FRANK—MAYBE SAMMY. Las Vegas rooms were at a premium when the Rat Pack would appear, with many visitors sleeping in hotel lobbies or cars to get a chance to see the three men together. Their act (always in tuxedo) consisted of each singing individual numbers, duets and trios, along with much seemingly improvised slapstick and chatter. In the socially-charged 1960s, their jokes revolved around adult themes, such as Sinatra’s infamous womanizing and Martin’s legendary drinking, as well as many at the expense of Davis’s race and religion. Davis famously practiced Judaism and used Yiddish phrases onstage, eliciting much merriment from both his stage-mates and his audiences. It was all good-natured male bonding, never vicious, rarely foul-mouthed, and the three had great respect for each other. The Rat Pack was largely responsible for the integration of Las Vegas. Sinatra and Martin steadfastly refused to appear anywhere that barred Davis, forcing the casinos to open their doors to African-American entertainers and patrons, and to drop restrictive covenants against Jews.
Posthumously, the Rat Pack has experienced a popular revival, inspiring the George Clooney/Brad Pitt “Ocean’s” trilogy. An HBO film, The Rat Pack, starred Joe Mantegna as Martin, Ray Liotta as Sinatra and Don Cheadle as Davis. It depicted their contribution to JFK’s election in 1960.
In 1965, Martin launched his weekly NBC comedy-variety series, The Dean Martin Show, which exploited his public image as a lazy, carefree boozer. (The drinks he consumed, as in his Rat Pack days, were apple juice.) It was there that he perfected his famous laid-back persona of the half-drunk crooner suavely hitting on beautiful women with hilarious remarks that would get anyone else slapped, and making snappy if slurred remarks about fellow celebrities during his famous roasts. During an interview he stated, and this may have been tongue-in-cheek, that he had someone record them on cassette tape so he could listen to them; this is evidenced by his comments to this effect on the British TV documentary ‘Wine, Women and Song’ which was aired in 1983.
The TV show was a success. Martin prided himself on memorizing whole scripts – not merely his own lines. He disliked rehearsing because he firmly believed his best performances were his first. The show’s loose format prompted quick-witted improvisation from Martin and the cast. On occasion, he made remarks in Italian, some mild obscenities that brought angry mail from offended, Italian-speaking viewers. This prompted a battle between Martin and NBC censors, who insisted on more scrutiny of the show’s content. The show was often in the Top Ten. Martin, deeply appreciative of the efforts of the show’s producer, his friend Greg Garrison, later made a handshake deal giving Garrison, a pioneer TV producer in the 1950s, 50% ownership of the show. However, the validity of that ownership is currently the subject of a lawsuit brought by NBC Universal.
Despite Martin’s reputation as a heavy drinker — a reputation perpetuated via his vanity license plates reading ‘DRUNKY’ — he was remarkably self-disciplined. He was often the first to call it a night, and when not on tour or on a film location liked to go home to see his wife and children. Phyllis Diller recently confirmed that Martin was indeed drinking alcohol onstage and not apple juice. She also commented that he while not being drunk was not really sober either but had very strict rules when it came to performances. He borrowed the lovable-drunk shtick from Joe E. Lewis, but his convincing portrayals of heavy boozers in Some Came Running and Howard Hawks’s Rio Bravo led to unsubstantiated claims of alcoholism. More often than not, Martin’s idea of a good time was playing golf or watching TV, particularly westerns – not staying with Rat Pack friends Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. into the early hours of the morning.
Martin starred in and co-produced a series of four Matt Helm superspy comedy adventures. A fifth, The Ravagers, was planned starring Sharon Tate and Martin in a dual role, one as a serial killer, but due to the murder of Tate and the decline of the spy genre the film was never made.
By the early 1970s, The Dean Martin Show was still earning solid ratings, and although he was no longer a Top 40 hitmaker, his record albums continued to sell steadily. His name on a marquee could guarantee casinos and nightclubs a standing-room-only crowd. He found a way to make his passion for golf profitable by offering his own signature line of golf balls. Shrewd investments had greatly increased Martin’s personal wealth; at the time of his death, Martin was reportedly the single largest minority shareholder of RCA stock. Martin even managed to cure himself of his claustrophobia by reportedly locking himself in the elevator of a tall building and riding up and down for hours until he was no longer panic-stricken.
Martin retreated from show business. The final (1973–74) season of his variety show would be retooled into one of celebrity roasts, requiring less of Martin’s involvement. After the show’s cancellation, NBC continued to air the Dean Martin Celebrity Roast format in a series of TV specials through 1984. In those 11 years, Martin and his panel of pals successfully ridiculed and made fun of legendary stars like Bob Hope, Jimmy Stewart, Jack Benny, Lucille Ball and Ronald Reagan, to name a few. For nearly a decade, Martin had recorded as many as four albums a year for Reprise Records. That stopped in November 1974, when Martin recorded his final Reprise album – Once In A While, released in 1978. His last recording sessions were for Warner Brothers Records. An album titled The Nashville Sessions was released in 1983, from which he had a hit with “(I Think That I Just Wrote) My First Country Song”, which was recorded with Conway Twitty and made a respectable showing on the country charts. A followup single “L.A. Is My Home” / “Drinking Champagne” came in 1985. The 1975 film Mr. Ricco marked Martin’s final starring role, and Martin limited his live performances to Las Vegas and Atlantic City.
Martin seemed to suffer a mid-life crisis. In 1972, he filed for divorce from his second wife, Jeanne. A week later, his business partnership with the Riviera was dissolved amid reports of the casino’s refusal to agree to Martin’s request to perform only once a night. He was quickly snapped up by the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, and signed a three-picture deal with MGM Studios. Less than a month after his second marriage had been legally dissolved, Martin married 26-year-old Catherine Hawn on April 25, 1973. Hawn had been the receptionist at the chic Gene Shacrove hair salon in Beverly Hills. They divorced November 10, 1976. He was also briefly engaged to Gail Renshaw, Miss World-U.S.A. 1969.
Eventually, Martin reconciled with Jeanne, though they never remarried. He also made a public reconciliation with Jerry Lewis on Lewis’ Labor Day Muscular Dystrophy Association telethon in 1976. Frank Sinatra shocked Lewis and the world by bringing Martin out on stage. As Martin and Lewis embraced, the audience erupted in cheers and the phone banks lit up, resulting in one of the telethon’s most profitable years. Lewis reported the event was one of the three most memorable of his life. Lewis brought down the house when he quipped, “So, you working?” Martin, playing drunk, replied that he was “at the Meggum” – this reference to the MGM Grand Hotel convulsed Lewis . This, along with the death of Martin’s son Dean Paul Martin a few years later, helped to bring the two men together. They maintained a quiet friendship but only performed together again once, in 1989, on Martin’s 72nd birthday.
On December 1, 1983 while gambling at the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City, Martin and Sinatra intimidated the dealer and several employees into breaking New Jersey laws by making the dealer deal the cards by hand instead of by a shoe, as is required by law. Although Sinatra and Martin were implicated as the cause of the violation, neither was fined by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission. The Golden Nugget, on the other hand, received a $25,000 fine and four employees including the dealer, a supervisor and pit boss were suspended from their jobs without pay.
Martin returned to films briefly with appearances in the two star-laden yet critically panned Cannonball Run movies,. He also had a minor hit single with “Since I Met You Baby” and made his first music video, which appeared on MTV. The video was created by Martin’s youngest son, Ricci.
On March 21, 1987, Martin’s son Dean Paul (formerly Dino of the ’60s “teeny-bopper” rock group Dino, Desi & Billy) was killed when his F-4 Phantom II jet fighter crashed while flying with the California Air National Guard. A much-touted tour with Davis and Sinatra in 1988 sputtered. On one occasion, he infuriated Sinatra when he turned to him and muttered “Frank, what the hell are we doing up here?” Martin, who always responded best to a club audience, felt lost in the huge stadiums they were performing in (at Sinatra’s insistence), and he was not the least bit interested in drinking until dawn after their performances. His final Vegas shows were at the Bally’s Hotel in 1990. It was there he had his final reunion with Jerry Lewis on his 72nd birthday. Martin’s last two TV appearances both involved tributes to his former Rat Pack members. In 1990, he joined many stars of the entertainment industry in Sammy Davis Jr.s 60th anniversary celebration, which aired only a few weeks before Davis died from throat cancer. In December 1990, he congratulated Frank Sinatra on his 75th birthday special. By 1991, Martin had unofficially retired from performing.
Martin, a life-long smoker, died of acute respiratory failure resulting from emphysema at his Beverly Hills home on Christmas morning 1995, at the age of 78. The lights of the Las Vegas Strip were dimmed in his honour.
In 2005, Las Vegas renamed Industrial Road as Dean Martin Drive. A similarly named street was christened in 2008 in Rancho Mirage, California.
Martin’s family was presented a gold record in 2004 for Dino: The Essential Dean Martin, his fastest-selling album ever, which also hit the iTunes Top 10. For the week ending December 23, 2006, the Dean Martin and Martina McBride duet of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” reached #7 on the R&R AC chart. It also went to #36 on the R&R Country chart – the last time Martin had a song this high in the charts was in 1965, with the song “I Will”, which reached #10 on the Pop chart.
An album of duets, Forever Cool, was released by Capitol/EMI in 2007. It features Martin’s voice with Kevin Spacey, Shelby Lynne, Joss Stone, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Robbie Williams, McBride and others.
His footprints were immortalized at Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1964. Martin has not one but three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: One at 6519 Hollywood Blvd. (for movies), one at 1817 Vine (for recordings) and one at 6651 Hollywood Boulevard (for television).
In February 2009, Martin was honored with a posthumous Grammy award for Lifetime Achievement. Four of his surviving children, Gail, Deana, Ricci and Gina, were on hand to accept on his behalf. In 2009, Martin was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame.
Martin was married three times. Martin’s first wife, Betty McDonald, tried by all accounts to be a good wife and mother to their four children, but her efforts were ultimately undone by her alcoholism. It remains a matter of speculation whether her alcoholism led to the failure of the marriage, or whether Martin’s infidelities led to Betty’s alcoholism. Subsequent to their divorce, Martin gained custody of their children; Betty lived out her life in quiet obscurity in San Francisco. Their children were Stephen Craig (born June 29, 1942), Claudia Dean (March 16, 1944 – 2001 from breast cancer), Barbara Gail (born April 11, 1945) and Deana (Dina) (born August 19, 1948).
Martin’s second wife was Jeanne Biegger. A stunning blonde, Jeanne could sometimes be spotted in Martin’s audience while he was still married to Betty. Their marriage lasted twenty-four years (1949–1973) and produced three children. Their children were Dean Paul (November 17, 1951 – March 21, 1987; plane crash), Ricci James (born September 20, 1953) and Gina Caroline (born December 20, 1956).
Martin’s third marriage, to Catherine Hawn, lasted three years. One of Martin’s managers had spotted her at the reception desk of a hair salon on Rodeo Drive, then arranged a meeting. Martin adopted Hawn’s daughter, Sasha, but their marriage also failed. Martin initiated divorce proceedings.
Martin’s uncle was Leonard Barr, who appeared in several of his shows.
His son, Dean Paul Martin (Dino), was killed in a plane crash in March 1987.
Member of the “Rat Pack” with Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop. All appeared in Ocean’s Eleven (1960).
Father of Gail Martin, Craig Martin, Claudia Martin, Deana Martin Gina Martin, Ricci Martin and Dean Paul Martin.
Grandfather of Alexander Martin.
Born at 11:55pm-CST
Interred at Westwood Memorial Park, Los Angeles, California, USA.
His parents were Gaetano and Angella Crocetti. Although born in Ohio, he spoke only Italian until age 5.
He had a fear of elevators and a love of comic books, which he read his entire life.
His career as a boxer was described by him as follows, “I won all but 11 fights.” When asked how many he’d fought, he’d reply, “A dozen.” In reality, he fought 36 bouts and won 25 of them under the name Dino Crocetti. He reportedly fought under the nickname Kid Crochet, although no records of fights have been found under that name.
Died exactly 29 years to the day (25 December 1995) after his mother, Angela Crocetti (25 December 1966).
Nephew of actor/comedian Leonard Barr.
Father in law of Carole Costello. She was married to Craig Martin, his oldest son & was the daughter of Lou Costello.
From 1973 to 1984, he was the host of the “Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts.” In one of the most classic television series of all time, Dean and his panel of actors and comics would shower the guest of honor with insults. This series contained the most famous names in the history of entertainment, such as Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra, Lucille Ball, George Burns, James Stewart, Orson Welles, Jack Benny, Phyllis Diller, Milton Berle, Gene Kelly, Don Rickles, Rich Little, John Wayne, and Foster Brooks.
Dean’s TV career began in 1950 with The Martin & Lewis Show on The Colgate Comedy Hour, which ran through 1955. He hosted various other shows before reluctantly taking the 1965 gig which turned into a 19-year success under various names.
Dean is one of few actors who have received not just one, but three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: one for Motion Pictures at 6519 Hollywood Blvd., one for Television at 6651 Hollywood Blvd, and a third for his recording career.
Underwent rhinoplasty when he was 27. The procedure was rumored to have been paid for by Lou Costello among others.
Son-in-law was the late Carl Wilson of The Beach Boys (married to Dean’s daughter Gina).
Has a street named after him in San Antonio, Texas.
“Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime” – words written on his tombstone, after his signature hit.
Starred (with Jerry Lewis) on NBC Radio’s “The Martin and Lewis Show” (1949-1953).
He and Frank Sinatra were best friends, a fact he held very dear to his heart. The two didn’t speak much, in the years after Dean quit the “Rat Pack Reunion” tour, but they did reconcile a few months before his death, over dinner – and a breadroll fight.
His friends often described him as easygoing and good natured, loving to laugh and make others laugh. They also said that he was sometimes quiet and liked to spend time alone, and that they seldom knew what he was thinking.
He and former wife Jeanne Martin maintained a friendship after their divorce, and consulted each other on family matters. When his health declined, Jeanne encouraged him not to worry about facing death, and to look at it as the chance he longed for, to be reunited with their son Dean Paul Martin, and with his parents.
His style of singing was initially influenced by Harry Mills of The Mills Brothers.
When 20th Century-Fox fired Marilyn Monroe as his co-star in Something’s Got to Give (1962) and then attempted to replace her with Lee Remick, he reminded the studio that he had contractual approval of his co-star, and refused to continue the project without Monroe. His act of loyalty eventually got Marilyn re-hired, but she died of a drug overdose before shooting on this never-finished film could resume.
Although he had almost 40 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 charts between 1951 and 1968, only three went to number one: “That’s Amore” (Capitol: 1953), “Memories Are Made of This” (Capitol: 1956), and his theme song, “Everybody Loves Somebody” (Reprise: 1964).
Despite the legend that he and comedy partner Jerry Lewis always despised each other, the two were actually quite close friends and the tension between the two began in 1956, when “outside people” (as Lewis called them to Peter Bogdanovich) began to “poison” Martin against Lewis. Frank Sinatra eventually staged a public reunion over 20 years after they stopped speaking to each other. Over the next 10 years they became close again.
Is portrayed by Michael Daymond in Power and Beauty (2002) (TV), by Joe Mantegna in The Rat Pack (1998) (TV), by Jeremy Northam in Martin and Lewis (2002) (TV) and by Danny Gans in Sinatra (1992) (TV).
He and the other members of the Rat Pack were banned from Marilyn Monroe’s funeral by Joe DiMaggio
Following his diagnosis of lung cancer at Cedars Sinai Medical Center on 16 September 1993, Martin finally quit smoking and even managed to perform briefly, and rather jauntily, at his 77th birthday celebration in June 1994. He declined to have major surgery on his liver and kidneys which doctors told him was necessary to prolong his life, and succumbed to respiratory failure on Christmas Day 1995.
He and Jerry Lewis recorded a radio spot promoting their film The Caddy (1953), and noticing the tape was still rolling, decided to improvise additional radio spots, with Jerry slipping profanities into his dialog. The unedited master recording was surreptitiously taken from the studio and made into a “bootleg” record that sold briskly among collectors.
Although Martin was a Republican, he supported Frank Sinatra’s campaign to elect John F. Kennedy as President in 1960.
Had a night-club in North Bay Village, Florida in the late 1970s and early 1980s called Dino’s. It was next to Jilly Rizzo’s club, Jilly’s.
He declined to participate in the March on Washington in August 1963.
Dean was so distraught over the murder of his The Wrecking Crew (1969) co-star and friend Sharon Tate that he abandoned the next already-announced “Matt Helm” motion picture series installment (to be titled “The Ravagers”), and never played the character again.
Although he made out to be a heavy drinker on stage, he mostly used apple juice, but off stage was a Jack Daniels man.
Martin did not party all night with the rest of the “Rat Pack” crew – actually calling themselves “The Clan”. He usually went to bed early so he could play golf the next morning. He was obsessed with golf, and once stated in an interview that he would have preferred to be a professional golfer than an entertainer.
He was a close friend of John Wayne and Gary Cooper.
At 16, Dean Martin was a welterweight boxer who compiled a record of 25-11.
One of his favorite hobbies during his reclusive final years was watching westerns on television – the older the better.
In 1962, Martin left Capitol Records and signed with Reprise, the label started and owned by Frank Sinatra. In 1964, he recorded his blockbuster hit, “Everybody Loves Somebody”, which beat The Beatles to become the No. 1 hit in America for one week. It became the theme song for his television variety series, “The Dean Martin Comedy Hour” (1965), which ran on NBC for eight years. Martin followed this with “The Dean Martin Comedy World” (1974), which ran from 1973 to 1974. An indelible part of Martin’s television shtick was his comedic portrayal of life as a lush, which many viewers never realized was just an act.
After being drafted into the United States Army and serving a stateside year (1944-45) in Akron, Ohio, during World War II, Martin was classified 4-F and was discharged.
Has 8 children: Stephen Craig Martin (b. June 29th 1942), Claudia Martin (b. March 16th 1944 – died 2001 (breast cancer), Barbara Martin (b. April 11th 1945 and Deana Martin (b. August 19th 1948) with first wife Elizabeth McDonald. Dean Paul Martin (b. November 17th 1951 – died March 21st 1987 (plane crash), Ricci Martin (b. September 20th 1953) and Gina Caroline Martin (b. December 20th 1956) with second wife Jeanne Martin and adopted daughter Sasha Martin with third wife Catherine Hawn.
He was a close friend of Montgomery Clift. Martin was always grateful for the help Clift had given him while filming The Young Lions (1958) – Martin’s first major dramatic role – and he would accompany him to parties after the rest of Hollywood had disowned him due to his increasing addictions to drugs and alcohol.
Although Jerry Lewis was often made out to be the short guy in their act, he was actually the same height as Martin and used to cut the heel off of his shoe to achieve the effect.
Martin’s variety show contract was utterly remarkable in how little he was required to participate. Martin felt he performed better cold and took notice of Fred MacMurray’s long-standing 65-day “on the set” contract for producer Don Fedderson for My Three Sons. He succeeded in reaching a new plateau on that one by only be contractually required to appear on the set during the taping. All guest stars, no matter how “big” were required to rehearse with stand-ins. As a result, Martin would often happily flub his lines, to the delight of his audience. More often than not, he’d leave the stage and be seen driving off the studio lot in his sports car before taping concluded.
He was awarded 3 Stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Motion Pictures at 6519 Hollywood Boulevard, for Recording at 1617 Vine Street, and for Television at 6651 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California.
Godfather of Tori Spelling.
The line “Everybody loves somebody sometime” is written on his grave.
If people want to think I get drunk and stay out all night, let ‘em. That’s how I got here, you know.
I’ve got seven kids. The three words you hear most around my house are ‘hello,’ ‘goodbye,’ and ‘I’m pregnant.
To those who felt he joked his way through songs during concert and nightclub appearences: “You wanna hear it straight, buy the album.”
Upon filing for divorce from his second wife: “I know it’s the gentlemanly thing to let the wife file. But, then, everybody knows I’m no gentleman.”
I drink because my body craves, needs alcohol. I don’t drink, my body’s a drunk.
On Joey Bishop: Most people think of Joey Bishop as just a replacement for Johnny Carson. That’s NOT true. We in show business know better: we don’t think of him at ALL.
On Phyllis Diller: Phyllis is the women of about whom Picasso once said, “Somebody throw a drop cloth over that.”
On Frank Sinatra: In high school, Frank never participated in extra-curricular activities, like nature study, paintings or ceramics. Frank’s hobby was a most interesting one: he was an amateur gynecologist.
On James Stewart: There’s a statue of Jimmy Stewart in the Hollywood Wax Museum, and the statue talks better than he does.
On Orson Welles: What can you say about Orson Welles that Don Rickles hasn’t already said about him?!
On Bob Hope: As a young boy, Bob didn’t have much to say. He couldn’t afford writers then.
On Don Rickles: Don’s idea of a fun evening is to show home movies of the attack on Pearl Harbor…with a laugh track.
On Johnny Carson: Johnny Carson is a comedian who is seen every night in millions of bedrooms all over America…and that’s why his last wife left him.
On Milton Berle: Milton Berle is an inspiration to every young person that wants to get into show business. Hard work, perseverance, and discipline: all the things you need…when you have no talent.
On his tee-total friend Pat Boone: “I once shook hands with Pat Boone, and my whole right side sobered up!”
I’d hate to be a teetotaler. Imagine getting up in the morning and knowing that’s as good as you’re going to feel all day.
I can’t stand an actor or actress who tells me acting is hard work. It’s easy work. Anyone who says it isn’t never had to stand on his feet all day dealing blackjack.
Motivation is a lotta crap.
“Someone else, would have laid around, feeling sorry for himself, for a year. But Duke, he just doesn’t know, how to be sick … he’s recuperating the hard way. He’s two loud speaking guys in one. Me, when people see me, they sometimes say, ‘Oh, there goes Perry Como.’ But there’s only one ‘John Wayne‘, and nobody makes any mistakes about that.” – On The Sons of Katie Elder (1965)
[On Shirley MacLaine] Shirley, I love her, but her oars aren’t touching the water these days.
[On singer Eddie Fisher] The reason I drink is because, when I’m sober, I think I’m Eddie Fisher.
[On Frank Sinatra] When he dies, they’re giving his zipper to the Smithsonian.
[On Jerry Lewis] At some point, he said to himself, “I’m extraordinary, like Charles Chaplin”. From then on, nobody could tell him anything. He knew it all.”