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Thread: Frank Sinatra and Cole Porter

  1. #1

    Frank Sinatra and Cole Porter

    I've always wondered what were Siantra's views on Cole Porter and Vice Versca. I can deduce Sinatra enjoyed his work but I always wondered about what Porter felt about Sinatra's interpretation of his music.

  2. #2

    Smile Strange Story

    I had a messagre from Amazon that they sold a copy of Frak Sinatra sings Cole Porter. Interestingly enough, sorry to say, I do not own a copy of this CD. Finally got it straightened out.
    LEATRICE (LEE) Fort Myers, Florida, USA
    Sinatra, Sinatra,Sinatra! Pray for Robin!

  3. #3

    It's Delovely

    Just a few things I think I know off the top of my head...

    - Cole Porter was not fond of people altering his work

    - I've seen a picture of Cole Porter in the audience at one of Frank's Shows in Vegas

    - I think I remember seeing a late fifties TV show where Frank expressed his grief at Mr. Porter's passing.

    - I believe Frank visited him in his final days

    - Did Frank record more of anybody else's songs?


    "... it repeats, it repeats, it repeats..."

  4. #4
    He recorded more Rodgers and Sammy Cahn.

    Cole Porter came to the Rustic Cabin to hear Sinatra.

  5. #5

    I read somewhere

    that it was Porter's idea for Frank to sing "It's All Right with Me" as a ballad in the movie, "Can Can." It's a great recording.

    Ed S.

  6. #6
    There is two albums I saw on iTunes titled

    Frank Sinatra sings Cole Porter; and
    Frank Sinatra sings Gershwin

    They were released 2003, and I think some of the songs were used in the movie De-Lovely released recently. Obviously the Sinatra and Porter estates have no problem working together


  7. #7
    I was watching the recent movie about Cole Porter the other day and was surprised that there was no mention of Sinatra in the movie. Sinatra did so much to popularize Porter's music for such a wide audience that I thought there would be some mention of Sinatra in the movie. I guess I view everything with the emphasis on Sinatra so this stood out for me. While other etertainers have certainly performed Porter's wonderful songs, I don't think I would have ever been as familiar with those great lyrics and melodies had it not been for Sinatra.

  8. #8

    It's Still Delovely


    I have a feeling that Mr.S and Mr.P probably didn't share social spheres, and a 2 hour movie couldn't possibly include every singer who covered Mr. Porter"s songs.

    I did however find "I've Got You Under My Skin" significant in its absence.


    " Don't you know you fool, you never can win..."

  9. #9

    Sinatra & Cole Porter

    In '86 @ The Golden Nugget in Vegas, Frank reminisced about Porter and mentioned to the audience that Porter saw him initially @ The Rustic Cabin in Englewood, NJ...Frank dedicated "Night & Day" to Porter that evening & promptly forgot the words to the song. He laughed & said that, some years later, he met Porter, who recalled the incident...Frank then sang the Riddle uptempo arrangement of "Night & Day' and brought the house down...Like he always did...

  10. #10
    If they don't mention FS in the new Porter film...
    I don't want to see it.
    Like you say Kathy...It was FS who has kept Porter in the spot light.

  11. #11

    Cole Porter's Spotlight

    I am a #1 Sinatra fan. I worshipped him in high school when my peers were going crazy for the Beatles - but come on now Bret.

    You are free to view anything you wish, but the primary thing which keeps Cole Porter in the spotlight is his artistic brilliance.


    "Like the beat, beat, beat, of the tom-tom..."

  12. #12



  13. #13
    Well, yes Porter is brillant of course.
    But a whole lotta people probably would have never heard of him with out FS.
    That is all I meant.

  14. #14
    On February 11, 1967, Frank Sinatra was among the many stars that formed the board for the inauguration for the "Cole Porter Library" at the University of Southern California. This gala included a long mixed programme of discussions about Porter's life, works and career, plus several singers (including Sinatra, along with Ethel Merman, Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire and others, even James Stewart who was no singer yet introduced one of Porter's most famous songs "You'd BE So Easy To Love" in 1936) who had introduced Porter songs, singing some of his songs, accompanied by pianist Roger Edens.

    Sinatra took a vivid part in the discussions, and also read a short segment from Cole Porter's autobiography. He also told the Rustic Cabin/Night and Day story and some reminiscences about the making of "Can-Can" in 1959. I suppose for any study on how FS felt about Porter, this event, which was taped in its entirety, would be a prime source to check for.

    To my knowledge, there is no official release available of the recording of this gala night so far, but I understand that USC offers written transcripts of the discussion (moderated by Garson Kanin). Maybe the tape can still be listened to at USC for scholars?

    The whole evening makes a small footnote in the overall Sinatra songbook as well, because it seems to have been the only occasion when Sinatra sang "I've Got You Under My Skin" not up-tempo, but as a ballad accompanied by just piano.

    I think the match of Sinatra & Porter was simply genius meeting genius, and therefore double-genius were the results. Sinatra through his interpretative skills was among the very few singers who have so far been able to really *sing* all those many many "double-features" and witty-clever-ironic lines and rhymes that were so typical for Porter.

    I'm very happy about the recent "It's De-Lovely" movie, which is a well-made and funny musical film - no in-depth "problem study" of Cole's life but an overall enjoyable and very cleverly arranged sequence of "musical scenes from Porter's life". It sure brought the uncomparable artistry of this great American Composer-Poet back in the headlines, and won a new generation of Porter fans.


  15. #15
    I thought the movie about Cole Porter quite enjoyable. My point was (and continues to be) that I was surprised that there was no mention of Sinatra because Sinatra gave such life to those songs.

    Many great entertainers performed Porter's marvelous songs. There is no doubt that Porter is one of the most important names in the American Songbook.

    I think Brett's take is pretty much my own. Had it not been for Sinatra, he and I probably would not be able to recite/sing those great songs. Sinatra drummed them into our consciousness. And for that, I am supremely grateful to Frank Sinatra.

  16. #16
    Hi Kathy,

    the latter of what you wrote is certainly true for me as well. Sinatra was my "key" to open the world of Porter (and so many other great composers' worlds, of course) to me.

    Since the film follows the line of featuring all songs in newly recorded versions by contemporary artists, maybe it was the best thing to leave FS out completely, compared to a possible copycat posing/singing a la Frank, or featuring a FS recording lip-synched by whatever actor...

    A CD release I find highly recommendable is the one entitled "It's Delovely: The authentic Cole Porter collection", with great liner notes by Will Friedwald and a great mix of vintage recordings of Porter classics (no FS except for one track "Night And Day", the 1942 version, but many of the original recordings) plus a few songs sung by Porter himself mixed with newly recorded orchestration exactly following the orchestrations of the 30s. Great album, just got it the other day and it's really enjoyable.

    Check it out here:


    PS: Always nice to hear from you!

  17. < Since the film follows the line of featuring all songs in newly recorded versions by contemporary artists, maybe it was the best thing to leave FS out completely, compared to a possible copycat posing/singing a la Frank, or featuring a FS recording lip-synched by whatever actor... >

    Very good point, Bernhard.

  18. #18

    Good album

    I have it, too, and enjoy it very much. Great mix of kPorter recordings.

    Ed Spiegel

  19. #19
    Hi Bernhard,

    Thanks for the link. I've just listened to several of the snippets of recordings and ordered the cd in the link as well as the contemporary artists recording of "De Lovely."

    And it is always a pleasure to "talk" with you as well!


  20. #20
    Some of te comments on here have been truly insightful considering most of the knowledge I really have of Cole Porter comes from a 1945 Cary Grant Production and the new film "De-lovely".

    I was preplexed when I realized there would be no mention of "I've Got You under My Skin" in De-Lovely.