Thursday, December 24, 2015

Danny G's Special Dino-Winter Month Christmas Eve Serenade: "Memeories Are Made Of This"

Hey pals!
This is DEF I NATE LY a last minute Dino Serenade... but is DEF I NATE LY perfecto to add to today's Dino Winter Month bloggin'!
Couldn't resist sharin' this warm & truly awesome dedication on the day before our Dino's departure 20 year anniversary.
Hopes youse all enjoy & hopin' DMP don't minds me jumpin' in here! Haha!!

Merry Christmas to ALL & to ALL a good night!

Dean Martin: the man whose voice captured Christmas

Dean Martin died on Christmas Day 1995
Dean Martin died on Christmas Day 1995

When Elvis Presley was introduced to Dean Martin's young daughter Deana, the singer leaned in and whispered: "They call me the King of Rock and Roll, but your dad is the King of Cool."
The King of Cool, who died on Christmas Day 20 years ago, had a spectacularly successful recording career. Martin had 40 Top 10 singles between 1950 and 1969 and three of them – That's Amore (1953), Memories are Made of This (1955) and Everybody Loves Somebody (1964) –were million-sellers.
There were a lot of trials and tribulations before the man born Dino Paul Crocetti on June 17, 1917, in Steubenville, Ohio, made it to the top. Martin, the son of an Italian immigrant barber, was a reluctant performer as a teenager, believing also that he would make more money as a prize-fighter and cardsharp. But after a spell labouring in a steel mill, and at the urging of enthusiastic friends, he began singing at weekends in small clubs.
At 21, he was spotted performing in a bar by a jazz bandleader named Sammy Watkins, who was impressed by his lush delivery of songs. At that time, the youngster was calling himself Dino Martini (after the popular Italian opera star Nino Martini) but Watkins renamed him Dean Martin and a showbusiness legend was born.

Dean Martin
Martin imitated the smooth baritone vocals and phrasing of Bing Crosby, also emulating the cheerful casualness in the way Crosby sang his lyrics. This relaxed delivery is what makes Martin songs such as Volare and Return to Me so charming.
Despite immediate acclaim, Martin doubted his own ability. He couldn't read music and believed that the fact he had never had singing lessons showed. Jerry Lewis, his comedy partner for the act Martin and Lewis, once said: "Dean could never ever sing and do it with a full heart because he wasn’t clear about his worth. He would kid the singing and never allow it ever to get serious. He did not have self-esteem of any kind."
Martin publicly acknowledged his debt to Crosby and added self-deprecatingly: "I am no singer. I can carry a tune and I have an easy style but we crooners get by because we're fairly painless."

Dean Martin with Sammy Davis Jr and Frank Sinatra
Dean Martin with Sammy Davis Jr and Frank SinatraCredit:Rex Features
He was under-selling himself, of course, because Martin has one of the warmest voices in popular music, something you can hear so clearly on feelgood songs such as Memories Are Made of This.
Martin also downplayed his film career – which included a Golden Globe nomination in 1959 for Who Was That Lady? – and remained a reluctant celebrity, despite becoming America's highest-paid television star in the Sixties. The Dean Martin Show was the most-watched programme in 1965 and 1966 and Martin ended up being paid $283,000 an episode, plus being given shares in NBC’s parent Company, RCA.
The show, which sometimes featured fellow Rat Pack friends Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, was overseen by Jimmy Bowen, a respected producer of country music. Martin always had a soft spot for Nashville music and his son has said that the only time his father ever put on records at home they would be those of country singer Eddy Arnold.
Under the name Dean "Tex" Martin, he also recorded songs written by Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard and Buck Owens, and he was named 'Man Of the Year' by the Country Music Association in 1966.
To the public Martin was the stylish and humorous Rat Pack man, but even to close friends his character was hard to pin down. There was talk a few years ago of Martin Scorsese making a Dean Martin biopic but the celebrated film director gave a revealing explanation about why such an interesting project never happened. "We really tried, but the story of Dean Martin is very difficult," said Scorsese. "It’s very difficult because ultimately he pulls back in life. He pulled back and seemed to be passive and that was part of what was appreciated about him from Sinatra and everybody else."

Dean Martin had three million-selling singles
Dean Martin had three million-selling singlesCredit:Rex Features
Even so, Martin's children were left with happy memories of a father who would amuse his young children with jokes, such as his repeated trick of spreading butter all over his giants hands, as if he was buttering bread.
For the rest of us, we have the fabulous music, especially at Christmas. Martin, who was awarded a posthumous Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009, had the perfect voice for festive songs. His version of Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! in 1959 is the best and most popular adaptation of a classic song about snow. It amused Martin that his hit song about snow was written in California by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne on America's hottest day of 1945.
Martin was 78, and somewhat drink addicted, when he died on December 25 1995 of acute respiratory failure, at his home in Beverly Hills. How strange that a man of festive song fame should die on Christmas Day, just as his maternal grandmother Angela had done in 1966.
Film director Peter Bogdanovich said: "That Dean Martin died on Christmas Day was the kind of black joke he might have made. It didn’t seem real to me until I heard that all the casinos on the Vegas Strip had turned off their lights for one minute to commemorate Dino’s passing. You could almost hear Dean saying, in amazement, 'One whole minute? I must have been a big shot.'"
He was a big shot. And the King of Cool.


Always On Watch said...

Excellent tribute, Danny G!

Our Dino always undersold himself. The greats always do that, you know.

Happy DinoMas to all here at the best Dean Martin web site on the Internet.

dino martin peters said...

Hey pallie, likes Danny-o, thank you for sharin' his. We would likes our readership to know that this tremedous tribute was scribed by Mr. Martin Chilton, the culture editor for the online presence of the Brit newpaper "The Telegraph," and as usual, if you clicks on the tag of the post, we have made it possible for you to locate it in it's original source.

BlueisCoool said...

A wonderful and heart felt tribute to one of the greatest entertainers of all time. A wonderful read and music as well. Thank you Danny G. for your wonderful blog post.