Here we are with another post and in this post, I will be talking about all of the members of the Rat Pack. I will also give a brief intro to all the members So, grab your snack and let’s go in.
Frank Albert Sinatra who was born on December 12, 1915 and weighed 13.5 pounds In Hoboken, New Jersey. He was the only child of Italians to his Mother Natalina Garaventa nickname Dolly and his father Antonio Martino nickname Marty. He also got his scar on his left cheek, neck and ear because of the forceps that had to use to pull him out, oh yes. It also seems that Frank got his energy and drive from his mother Dolly, who was a dominant factor in his life. She was also abusive to him as a child and use to knocked him around a lot. To make extra money his mother used to perform illegal abortions for catholic girls, and I’m not going to get into the details on why most of these Catholic girls needed the abortions, that’ll be on another video. Anyway, his mother also had a gift for languages and served as a local interpreter. Frank father was a boxer and he wasn’t very smart, and they were always needing money. So, later his father joined the fire department and worked his way up to captain. Now, considering his parents were some serious hustlers and hung out at Taverns and so on.
Therefore, Frank spent most of time in them dancing and singing songs and sometimes on top of a player piano for spare change. Apparently, he started to get a lot of attention so his mother, now this was during the great depression. She started buying him expensive clothes and earned him the reputation as the best dressed kid in the neighborhood. Now, because he spent most of time trying to make money, he got very skinny and some of the kids in neighborhood used to tease him, but it became a big hit on stage for laughs. Eventually, he developed an interest in jazz and he often listened to Gene Austin, Rudy Vallee, Russ Colombo, Bob Eberly and Bing Crosby. He got his first ukulele at the age of 15 and he started performing at family gatherings. He attended David E Rue Jr. High School and Demarest High School whereas he arranged the band and the school dances. He never graduated, because he got expelled for his rowdiness. So, later he started performing at comedy clubs and sung free on radio stations such as; WAAT in Jersey City. That is where he started singing for his supper or for cigarettes. To improve his speech, he began taking elocution lessons for a dollar each from a vocal coach, which is where he was notice for his vocal range. Later his mother convinced him to join the group the “3 Flashes”. Whom only let him join because he had a car and they used him as a chauffeur. Then later he learned that they were auditioning for “Major Bowes Amateur Hour” show and begged the group to let him in on the act. They ended up winning a 6-month contract to perform on stage across the US. He went from being the group flunky to the group lead singer, oh yes, another Jaleel White moment. Of-course that created jealously within the group. Especially when most of the female fans were attracted to Frank. They brought so much money and ratings Bowes asked them to return and perform under different names. That success parlayed to other solo gigs for Frank. It didn’t earn him much money, but he used to tell his friends and anyone who listen that one day he’s going to earn so much money that no one will be able to touch him. Anyway, one day a saxophone player Frank Mane heard him sing and convince him to record the song “Our Love” his first solo. Then Harry James heard him sing and signed him to a 2 year contract of $75 a week for one evening after a show at the Paramount Theatre in New York. It was with the James band that Sinatra released his first commercial record “From the Bottom of My Heart”. He eventually quit the group and went solo and his first hit was with Dorsey and they took off and he then started doing movies and had many fallouts with many movie, record and other companies and people. He also got married several times one of his marriages, and not to mention his vocal issues due to suffering a submucosal hemorrhage of the throat.[That forced him to borrow $200,000 from Columbia to pay back taxes after MCA refused to front the money they owed him. But it wasn’t just the connection he had with Columbia it was also the connections he had with the mob.
The FBI tracked Sinatra for over 40 years, amassing a dossier of thousand of pages about his movements, words, and friendships. The files, which were made public after Sinatra’s death in 1998, cover Sinatra throughout his career—and read like a thrilling account of a life he led “his way.” It seems that Frank managed to get out of being drafted to World War 2 by paying a doctor $40,000 to declare him medically unfit. With allegations for a punctured eardrum and psychological issues legitimate, rumors that he’d dodged the draft persisted throughout his lifetime and even hurt his career in the late 1940s. His excuse for not serving may have been watertight, but Frank’s ties to known Mafia members and a revolving cast of characters connected to the underworld weren’t as squeaky clean. Sinatra’s FBI file reads like a guide to the era’s organized crime figures, oh yes. Oh, I’m not done yet. Frank supposedly introduced Giancana to John F. Kennedy‘s campaign in 1960 in an attempt to deliver union votes to the future president. According to Sinatra’s daughter, Tina, he played a gig at Giancana’s Chicago club to repay the favor. Sinatra also introduced Kennedy to Judith Campbell Exner, Giancana’s girlfriend. During the years-long affair that followed, Exner allegedly acted as a liaison between Kennedy and Giancana, helping in a plot for the Mob to assassinate Fidel Castro. It never did, but Exner later testified before a Senate committee investigating JFK’s potential Mob ties, oh yes. Sinatra had other mafia friends to, many of whom can also be found in his FBI files, which contain headings like “associations with criminals and hoodlums” and “accusations of being a dope racketeer.”
There are accounts of gifts from Joseph and Charles Fischetti, brothers with the Chicago outfit who ran illegal gambling operations. There’s a Godfather-style appearance at an Atlantic City club as a favor for attendees of the wedding of the daughter of Philadelphia mobster Angelo Bruno. There’s even documentation of the Mob exerting pressure on Sinatra’s behalf to release him from a 1951 contract. FBI agents also watched Sinatra carouse with Detroit mobsters Anthony and Vito Giacalone. “It was like clockwork” “A few times a year, we’d trail the Giacalones to the airport to pick up Sinatra. They’d spend the weekend together socializing before and after his shows…. Almost every night, they’d shut the place down. And he didn’t make any apologies for it. Those were his friends. The fact that they were known hoodlums and murderers didn’t matter to him. He didn’t care, he was going to hang around with who he wanted to hang around with.” I mean, Sinatra flaunted his friendships with people connected to organized crime and took plenty of public photographs with known mobsters. His gangster friends shared his passions for gambling, women, money and they often met in casinos and nightclubs. Sinatra, however, offered to snitch on some of the criminals he hung around: In 1950, he sent an associate to J. Edgar Hoover to offer Sinatra’s services as an informant, perhaps in an attempt to protect himself from swirling rumors that he was involved with the Mob, even though he was. Of-course the FBI declined this. Then one of Hoover’s aides wrote “We want nothing to do with him” on a reported meeting.
You see, Sinatra was never prosecuted for his criminal behavior in connection to his many Mob ties. He was never brought before the House Un-American Activities Commission, either—but the FBI had him in sights for what they considered to be suspicious activity with possible ties to Communism. The FBI file is filled with accounts of Sinatra’s supposedly suspicious activities, from his support of anti-racist initiatives to his defense of people accused of being Communists. In addition to appearing on behalf of many liberal causes, Sinatra was also one of the founding members of the Committee for the First Amendment, a group that supported the so-called Hollywood Ten, screenwriters and directors who were blacklisted after refusing to divulge whether they were members of the Communist Party. “Sinatra’s FBI dossier reveals a dismaying situation.” However, at no time did it contain anything that even hints at an activity disallowed by the Bill of Rights. Sinatra also supported progressive causes and his public confrontation of things like racism and the McCarthy-era Red Scare. Heck. His FBI file is evidence of a government that perceived Sinatra as a threat. Chief FBI agent William G. Simons of Los Angeles and FBI Assistant Director Joseph Casper, had showed newsmen the money recovered with the capture of three men in connection with the Frank Sinatra, Jr. kidnapping. It seems that FBI didn’t always focus on the singer himself: Since Sinatra was such a high-profile star, he was regularly targeted by people who wanted to extort or blackmail him. In 1963, those seemingly random attacks became all too personal when three men kidnapped Sinatra’s son, Frank Sinatra, Jr. The FBI told Sinatra to wait for a ransom demand, then pay it so that the bureau could track down the money and the kidnappers. Frank Sinatra, Jr. was freed when the kidnappers became cagey about their crime, and the FBI soon caught the abductors. All three were convicted.
I mean, come on now, Sinatra knew the government was tracking his activities. Heck, he even requested and received his FBI file through the Freedom of Information Act. Although, his FBI file never ended up getting him in trouble, but it did reflect the power and influence that he had. Aside for his shady dealings and thuggish friends, he also spoke out against racism as I just said and on behalf of democracy. So, yes of-course his professional triumphs were enough to get him reported to the FBI: So, him being somewhat rejected in Hollywood and blackballed forced him to turn to Las Vegas, especially with his ties to the mob, who basically ran Las Vegas. That is where he started singing at the Desert Inn, and at the Riverside Hotel. Going back a little. Heck, before long he became a prominent figure in Las Vegas during the 50’s and 60’s. That is when the Rat Pack came into play, oh yes. Oh, and Frank was been married 4 times and he has a total of 3 children. Later Frank had suffered from heart, breathing problems, pneumonia, and bladder cancer, and he was also diagnosed with Dementia. He finally died with his wife by his side from a heart attack at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on May 14, 1998. Then the lights were dimmed in Las Vegas, and the casinos stopped spinning for one minute in his honor. He leaves behind a great legacy and was involved in many projects, movements, he really helped shape the history of music and more. May he rest in peace. Well that’s it, tell me your stories below, because I’m sure I’d missed somethings. Oh, don’t forget to stop and shop at my online merchant store, and also don’t forget to Subscribe, Like and Share. and also, don’t forget to follow my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook I post on them everyday, hope to see you all there, love you all bye…
Dino Paul Crocetti aka Dean Martin was born on June 7, 1917 in Steubenville, Ohio, he too was Italian. His father Gaetano Alfonso Crocetti who was a barber and his mother Angela Crocetti. He also had an older brother named William Alfonso Crocetti. His first language was Abruzzese a dialect of Neapolitan and he also played the drum as a hobby. He didn’t learn English until he started in school at the age of 5yrs old. He attended Grant Elementary School in Steubenville, whereas he was often bullied because of his bad English. He later attended Steubenville High School and by the 10th grade he dropped out because he thought he was smarter than the teachers. So, he started bootlegged liquor and worked in steel mill and also served as a croupier at a speakeasy, blackjack dealer and was a welterweight boxer. He called himself “Kid Crochet”, Well, while fighting her broke his nose, scarred his lip, broken many knuckles and of-course he bruised his body. He said out of 12 bouts he won 11.
While fighting he shared an apartment with Sonny King who was also started off in show business. The two used to charged people to watch them bare knuckle to one of them is knocked out, this is so stupid, anyway. He eventually gave up boxing and went back to gambling world. He worked as roulette stickman and croupier in an illegal casino behind a tobacco shop where he worked as a stock boy. While working he would often sing along to ballets calling himself Dini Martini after the Metropolitan Opera tenor Nino Martini, totally obliviously to how beautiful he sounded. He eventually got his break working for Ernie McKay Orchestra. Then he started singing for bandleader Sammy Watkins who suggested that he officially adopt the name Dean Martin. Now, considering this was in the 40’s and men supposed to be married. He met and married Elizabeth Anne McDonald aka Betty in October 1941, they had 4 children and with all the stress with him band hoping they divorce in 1949. But something good came out of it and he developed his own singing style. He flopped at the Riobamba nightclub in New York, whereas he followed Frank Sinatra in 1943. It was there whereas he attracted the attention of Metro Goldwyn-Meyer and Columbia Pictures, he didn’t get a contract but he did form a friendship with Jerry Lewis and they often sung together in a music-comedy show. They debut together in Atlantic City “500 club” but they weren’t that liked believe or not. By this time the owner gave them one last warning and told them to come up with a better act or they will be fired. They eventually decided to put their money on the line and do a clumsy act in ways of Jerry dressed as a busboy and Dean sung while chasing Jerry around. They did jokes and anything that came to mind. The audience loved it and that parlayed to acts across the eastern seaboard and culminating in a run at New York Copacabana. Their act consists of the Dean singing and Jerry constantly interrupting him and chasing each other around the stage. Upon being asked how they do it. They said they just forget the audience was there and have fun. The act reached the attention of the Ed Sullivan Show, that was called “The Toast of the Town”. It was then whereas they hired comedy writer Norman Lear and Ed Simmons to write their bits. With this they gain the attention to bigger audiences. They eventually signed a radio series deal with Paramount for a comedy relief called “My Friend Irma” they were only paid $75,000 for one year. Even though they made the radio, record company and so on millions. Especially for their skit “Dean and Me”. Dean got married again with Jerry being the best man. Of-course where there’s millions comes greedy people and critical critics who tried and separate and compared the two. That eventually led to many arguments and Dean going solo. That ended with Dean looking at his friend with watery eyes, whom has been by his side for 10 years in saying that, “he was nothing to me but a dollar sign”. And that was the end of their friendship. Well, things didn’t go so well afterwards for Dean, his solo film “Ten Thousand Bedrooms” was a box office failure. I mean he was still popular as a singer just not as an actor. But like most singers they want to be actors and vice versa. So, to prove himself he would take a pay cut. He eventually got his big break in war drama “The Young Lion” and that was the beginning of his comeback. He eventually became a triple threat. He then starred alongside Frank Sinatra in “Vincente Minnelli” and that led to many other movies and performances Dean was a diamond. Frank and He ended up teaming up a lot. That’s when the “Rat Pack” started to be formed. But before I go to the next one. There seems to be some controversy surrounding the lyrics to Dean Martin Christmas song “It’s Cold Outside” whereas it seems that he’s bragging about drugging a lady to get her to stay with him. This is what the lyrics say,
Now, just singing it seems like a nice song, but with a closer eye. You can clearly see, that he was trying to get the young lady to stay but she didn’t want her parents to worry. So, this clearly say that girl was underage. Then he tells her to put a record on while he pours her drink, that seems to be drugged. Because she starts to get woozy hints her eyes are like starlight now, and then he starts to make his move. And the rest is self-explanatory. Now, his daughter is saying that it was just liquor and they were having a good time. So, draw your own conclusion. Dean Martin was married 3 times and he has a total of 8 children. He died at his home of acute respiratory failure resulting from emphysema, also from lung cancer from years of smoking and drinking. He was interred at the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles, and the lights in Las Vegas were dimmed in his honor. He leaves behind a great legacy and he help shape music and television, may he rest in peace. Well that’s it, tell me your stories below, because I’m sure I’d missed somethings. Oh, don’t forget to stop and shop at my online merchant store, and also don’t forget to Subscribe, Like and Share. and also, don’t forget to follow my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook I post on them everyday, hope to see you all there, love you all bye…
Sammy Davis Jr.
Samuel George Davis Jr was born on December 8, 1925 in Harlem in Manhattan in New York City. His father Sammy Davis Sr was an entertainer and a stage performer. His mother Elvera Sanchez was an Afro-Cuban tap dancer. You see, his mother was part Puerto Rican and African American/Colored and was born in San Juan. But Sammy never claimed his both because he was afraid it would hurt his sales. Sammy was primary raised by his paternal grandmother, because his parents were always on the road. His parents finally separated when he was 3yrs old and his father took him on the road with him. It was then whereas he learns how to dance by his father and his uncle Will Mastin. Eventually he became a part of their act. Sammy was 7yrs old when he learned to act. He had a role in film “Rufus Jones for President,” in which he sang and danced with Ethel Waters and many others. Now, growing his uncle and his father shielded him from the racism. By saying that they were just jealous. However, later when Sammy served in World War 2, he was faced with racism. It was then whereas he quoted,
“Overnight the world looked different. It wasn’t one color any more. I could see the protection I’d gotten all my life from my father and Will. I appreciated their loving hope that I’d never need to know about prejudice and hate, but they were wrong. It was as if I’d walked through a swinging door for 18 years, a door which they had always secretly held open.”
Sammy trials didn’t end there because he got into an automobile accident, and that is where he lost his left-eye. For 6 months he wore an eye patch. Then later he was fitted for a glass eye. While in the hospital is whereas he became fond of Judaism, and he then decided to convert to Judaism. He said it was because of the passage “The Jews would not die. Three millennia of prophetic teaching had given them an unwavering spirit of resignation and had created in them a will to live which no disaster could crush.” It was when he became a well-known entertainer to a national celebrity. Later he received slack for his relationship with Kim Novak. Whom was white and was still under contract with Columbia Pictures. And they didn’t like the fact that he was black, and she was white. Sammy ended up getting kidnapped for a few hours and threatened a broken leg and lose of the other eye if he didn’t break off the relationship and marry a black woman. He agreed to marry Loray White to quiet the controversy. Sammy was so worried and inebriated at the wedding that he had to be helped into bed. Then later he was found with a gun to his head. It took $10,000 to convince Loray to marry him. Heck, after this he had a target on his head. He received a lot of hate mail and was force to not perform at Kennedy inauguration. But here’s the twist, he was told at the last minute. You all have to understand this was in the beginning of civil rights and racism and segregation was high. He didn’t make any better when he married May Britt whom he had a daughter by. Which is why he stayed so busy and barely spend time with her, they divorce in 1968. Rumor was he was seeing singer Lola Falana, and then later till his death Altovise Gore, who was a dancer in Golden Boy. Later he be-friended President Nixon and became the first African-Americans to be invited to dinner with a president. He only supported him because of the promises he made about Civil Rights. Later Sammy regretted supporting him, because he never fell through with those promises. Now, back to Rat Pack. After the army he went back to the family dance act, he also recorded blues songs for Capitol Records. Then he later appeared as the opening act for the headliner Janis Paige in Ciro’s. The act gained so much attention that Sammy ended getting his own act and also released several albums. He was also hired to sing “Sing Bridges to Cross” for a Universal Film. That is when he became part of the “Rat Pack”. Sammy also has a total of 4 children and he died in 1990 from cancerous tumor in his throat from years of smoking. I mean Sammy was known to smoke 4 packs of cigarettes a day. He was interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park, and in honor to his death the neon lights in Las Vegas were darkened for 10 minutes. Now, let’s move on to Peter Lawford. Sammy opened a lot of doors for people of color his legacy will never be forgotten may he rest in peace.
Peter Sydney Ernest Aylen was born on September 7, 1923 in London England. To the only child of Lieutenant General Sir Sydney Turing Lawford and May Somerville Bunny. Even though at the time she was married to Lieutenant colonel Dr. Ernest Vaughn Aylen, but they were separated, and she was secretly seeing Sydney who was married. All of this deception cause all of them to divorce. Then Sydney and May finally wed. All Peter life he spent it traveling, so therefore he never had any formal education. So, most of his education was from tutors with lessons of tennis and ballet. Then his mother saw that Peter had too much time on his hands. So, she made Peter learn Spanish and German as well. Because at the time he was only reading English and French studies. Before long Peter was solving high mathematic algebra problems in English and Latin. Now, because of his traveling Peter was exposed to many religious services in churches, cathedrals, synagogues and more. That led him to act in his first acting debut in “Poor Old Bill”. At the age of 14yrs old Peter had injured his right arm in an accident after going through a glass door. Because of the injury he had nerve damage and lost the use of his lower arm. He became a pro at trying to hide. And because of the injury he wasn’t able to enter in the arm forces. So, he decided to go full throttle with his acting career. In 1938 while traveling he was spotted by a talent scout, and that led to a film debut in Lord Jeff with Freddie Bartholomew. Now, because of World War 2, and their money being in Britain his family assets were frozen. So, for money Peter parked cars until he got enough money to return to acting. His first role was him playing a bully in A Yank at Eton. That led to many other movies. Heck, by 1943 his acting career was taking off, especially when he played in “The White Cliffs of Dover”. Of-course like many other stars back then he also did drugs and was a heavy drinker. He was also affiliated with John F Kennedy, heck he married his sister Patricia Helen Kennedy, which of-course led him to be involved in Kennedy’s campaign and election. Right along with the rest of the Rat Pack. Then he started playing leading roles and also got him a role in “Never So Few” and also in “Ocean 11”. Peter was married 3 more times after and he has a total of 4 children. He died on Christmas Eve at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles from cardiac arrest after suffering from kidney and liver failure from years of substance abuse. He was cremated, and his ashes were interred at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery. But because of a dispute, he was moved, and his ashes were later scattered into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California. Peter was involved in many projects and organizations may he rest in peace.
Joey Bishop Joseph Abraham Gottlieb was born on February 3, 1918 in Bronx New York to Anna and Jacob Gottlieb. They were Polish/Jewish immigrants. Even though he was born in the Bronx, he was raised in South Philadelphia. He married Sylvia Ruzga in 1941, they have one son, and she died in 1999 from lung cancer. Anyway, he got drafted into the World War 2 like many men back then. He rose to sergeant in the special services serving at Fort Sam Houston. Joseph began his career doing part of comedy stand-up with his elder brother. He later appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show and The Dinah Shore Chevy Show and many more. He also starred in The Joey Bishop Show. He later appeared in Ocean 11 with the rest of the Rat Pack members. And he became a member of the Rat Pack and they performed together, her mostly told jokes and wrote most of the acting material. He also appeared in many movies with them. Joseph was the only member of the Rat Pack to work either members of the Brat Pack.
His last was in “Mad Dog Time”. That was written by his son Larry Bishop. He died in 2007 from multiple organ failure. He was the longest-lived survivor of the Rat Pack. His ashes were scattered in the Pacific Ocean near his home near Newport Beach, California. There were also Shirley MacLaine who was also part of the group, she’s still living. Let me know below if you want me to do a video about her. Anyway, the group was known for their womanizing, drinking and political involvements. Although Frank, Dean, Sammy and Peter were never drunk during performances, they just act like they were. They were the main act in Las Vegas, oh and the women was at’em like white on rice. Many orgies, and hotel parties. Which is how many of them died with repercussions from it. The only one who stayed away from the parties was Joey Bishop, he was actually faithful to his wife, and didn’t do much drinking or smoking. Hence is why he outlived them all and was also married to the same until death. Well that’s it, tell me your stories below, because I’m sure I’d missed somethings. Tell me below.