Michael Feinstein himself returns to the Nikko this Thursday through Sunday with his salute to “The Crooners”—Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. While Michael’s performances will be chockful of little known stories behind the songs and their singers, we know that our most devoted clubgoers are big fans of Great American Songbook trivia.
So, as a warm-up for this weekend’s shows—a limited number of tickets are still available—we put together a little quiz about the four gentlemen being showcased by Michael. If you missed the challenge yesterday, check it out here.
And the answers are…
Bing Crosby (5, 8, 11)
The most recorded musical performer ever, Crosby was featured on over 2,000 records and 4,000 radio programs.
In 1931, Crosby was featured on 10 of the year’s 50 bestselling songs, including “Out of Nowhere” (solo) and “Just One More Chance” (with Victor Young)
According to the Guiness Book, Crosby’s 1942 rendition of “White Christmas” is the best selling recording of all time
Frank Sinatra (4, 7, 12)
Sinatra’s wives was married four times; to actresses Ava Gardner and Mia Farrow (both Golden Globe nominees as best movie actress) along with Nancy Barbato and Barbara Blakely.
“New York, New York” was written by the legendary songwriting team of Kander and Ebb for Liza Minelli to record as the theme for Martin Scorsese’s film of the same title. In 2015, a snippet of the tune is played, ironically, during a car chase through Rome in the 007 film, Spectre.
Sinatra was turned down for military service during World War II due to a punctured eardrum. (Weighing 13.5 pounds at birth, he almost died during birth due to his large size. The doctor used forceps, which ripped and scarred his ear, cheek and neck, and punctured his eardrum.)
Dean Martin (2, 3, 9)
Before becoming a musician, he boxed as a welterweight, using the sobriquet “Kid Crochet”
In 1983, his video rendition of “Since I Met You Baby”—a previous Billboard #1 on both the Country (Sonny James, 1969) and R&B Charts (Ivory Joe Hunter, 1956)—was placed in regular rotation on MTV.
In 1966, Martin won a Golden Globe for Best Television Actor (Musical or Comedy) for his variety show, which ran from 1965 to 1974.
Sammy Davis Jr. (1, 6, 10)
In 1972, Sammy guest-starred in an episode of All in the Family. In the episode Archie makes several racist remarks, and Sammy remains collected. At the end of the episode he kisses Archie’s cheek on the way out the door.
John F. Kennedy asked Sammy Davis Jr. not to participate in the 1961 Presidential inauguration because Davis’ wife, May Britt, was white, and the President-Elect was worried that the sight of the interracial couple would anger Southerners.
Sammy Davis Jr. made his Broadway debut in the 1956 musical, Mr. Wonderful, in which he co-starred with Chita Rivera.