For an aspiring musician, having a famous last name is bound to open doors. But for Frank Sinatra Jr., being attached to his father’s legacy meant he had to work harder than everybody else to prove himself. Thankfully, show business careers run in the family’s DNA, and Sinatra Jr. wears his father’s mantle of talent and showmanship with grace, style, and that oh-so-familiar Sinatra twinkle in the eye.
Born in 1944, Sinatra Jr. knew from early on that he wanted to be a songwriter and musician. The multi-instrumentalist and vocalist started performing in clubs while he was still in his teens. By the time he was in his mid-twenties, he had performed in 30 countries, and spent considerable time learning the business under the wing of jazz legend Duke Ellington.
For the next twenty years, Sinatra Jr.’s career was filled with television and movie spots, touring, and recording albums, some of which spotlighted the singer/songwriter/bandleader in his element while others were either lost in misguided pandering to popular styles or overshadowed by Sinatra Sr.’s fame. In the 1980s, Sinatra Jr. returned to his first love – performing and touring with big bands – making him one of very few artists to be traveling with a big band in that decade.
Sinatra Jr. took a break from his own career in the late ‘80s to work as bandleader for his father, and didn’t reenter the spotlight until 1996, when he released As I Remember It, his first album in twenty years.
Sinatra Jr. now performs and packs houses under his own name while continuing to keep his father’s legacy alive with shows that feature big bands, orchestras, and Sinatra Jr. playing tributes to the legendary Frank Sinatra.
Frank Sinatra Jr.’s current show, Sinatra Sings Sinatra, comes to the magnificently restored California Theater in San Jose on Saturday, October 23 at 8:30pm. The event is a benefit for the Stroke Awareness Foundation, and features Sinatra Jr. and the 50-person Symphony Silicon Valley under the musical direction of conductor Terry Woodson. Tickets are $150/premier seating and $100/general. Tickets and more information at www.strokeinfo.org.