The Swing era was considered the golden century of big bands. With artists such as Bing Crosby, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and many more taking on a new style of singing, which was much softer, personal and nuanced than their earlier successors; the “crooning” style of the early 20th century was slowly beginning to merge a “bel canto” ring to its traditional norm.
My childhood memories are brimmed with long road-trips where my father would put a cassette (there were no CD’s at the time!) of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley in the car to entertain me. Even until now, at the age of 28, when I listen to those artists, a smile forms on my face like a child who is hearing the music of an ice cream truck getting closer, and a sense of tranquility transits through my entire soul.
Landau Eugene Murphy Jr., Frank Dimitri and Sal (Salvatore) Valentinetti; three names; three generations; three cultures; three backgrounds and yet, they share one thing in common; all three of them are old souls when it comes to music.
I have to admit that it is quite stupefying seeing an unknown figure channeling the voices of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, specifically when that person has no intention on impersonating those legends. It is not only the voice that comes as a shock, but it’s also the attitude and personality that comes along with the sound. Their stage presence transports you back to the early 1950s where men were gentlemen and women were ladies; where the glitz and glamour existed on every corner; where rich men paraded their young “chicks in skins” (women in fur coats) on the streets and where the term “spaz” meant someone who is a clutz.