"I'm not one of those complicated, mixed-up cats. I'm not looking for the secret to life.... I just go on from day to day, taking what comes," is a quotation from “The Chairman of the Board,” but today is no average day, it’s what would have been the 99th birthday of the man that was anything but average or uncomplicated, Mr. Francis Albert Sinatra.
Frank’s 80th birthday celebration, just two years before his death, was a lavish affair broadcast on ABC in 1995 with the proceeds going to charity. The Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles was filled with stars as the likes of Ray Charles, Natalie Cole, Tony Bennett, Bono and even hip hop duo Salt-n-Pepa who sang a special-lyrics version of “Whatta Man,” to which Frank gave wife Barbara a “Marvellous” at their song’s conclusion.
Fellow New Jersey native, Bruce Springsteen sang “Angel Eyes” after a heartfelt introduction and folk legend Bob Dylan performed a very stirring “Restless Farewell,” a “My Way” type song, only folkier, delivering a “Happy Birthday, Mr. Frank” at its end. And did you know Dylan’s next album is covering Sinatra’s songs?
Ninety-nine years is a special number of sorts, a sum worthy of reflection partly because 100 will be such a huge celebration. Sinatra has definitely been penetrating the news stories as the centenary approaches and people realize the magnitude of this anniversary for such an important figure in American entertainment history.
I am ready and excited with Frank – A Musical Journey, my Las Vegas show that reflects and celebrates Sinatra’s 100 years. Bob Dylan said he was, “never brave enough to approach 30-piece complicated arrangements and refine them down for a 5-piece band,” but I love doing orchestrated big-band performances. There’s truly no other show like Frank – A Musical Journey and I hope you have the opportunity to take in a performance.