Fresh off a fantastic show in Maryland, I’m heading to Hammond, Indiana, a part of metropolitan Chicago; it’s the city that greets you as you enter the Hoosier State. We’re ready for another performance of Drinkin’ – Singin’ – Swingin’ and I know this will be a special crowd. Whether you’re talking Chicago, Hammond, or simply Indiana, Frank Sinatra had special connections to this neck of the woods.
It doesn’t matter if you’re listening to My Kind of Town or that fun little number, Chicago, the Windy City was close to Ol’ Blue Eyes’ heart. The former number was a Sinatra single from the 1964 Rat Pack musical, “Robin and the 7 Hoods” that was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song , a Grammy Award, and went on to be one of those Sinatra signatures.
I’ll be performing at the Pavilion at Wolf Lake, a beautiful venue born from an 1895 Frank Lloyd Wright concept. Right next door to Hammond, in Gary, Frank was asked to speak at Froebel School, where integration was taking place rather tumultuously in 1945. The Voice cancelled a $10,000 gig to attend, further cementing his reputation as someone sticking up for minority rights.
Just down the road, in Madison, the 1958 blockbuster film “Some Came Running” was shot. With Dean Martin and Shirley MacLaine – who won an Academy Award for her performance, which she credited to Frank – Sinatra leads the cast through a critically acclaimed tragic journey. In case you haven’t seen this gem, I won’t spoil the ending.
We’ve been graciously welcomed by Hammond’s Mayor, Thomas M. McDermott, Jr. and wholeheartedly look forward to delivering the best Drinkin’ – Singin’ – Swingin’ numbers that will continue the 100th anniversary celebration of Frank Sinatra’s birth, so if you’re in the area, stop by and say hi!