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Sinatra and Me: The Very Good Years Paperback – November 9, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 326 pages
  • Publisher: Tantor Media (November 9, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0988349426
  • ISBN-13: 978-0988349421
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #450,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Consiglio, a friend from Frank Sinatra's New Jersey boyhood, was present during the star's formative years in his career. Before his death in 2008, he shared with Douskey intimate details of Sinatra's rise to fame, during which he accompanied the performer to nightclubs, Las Vegas casinos, and meanderings through the Hollywood scene. Although many of these accounts were previously the subject of rumor rather than verifiable anecdote, from hard times to success and excess, Consiglio reports on the women, the shady characters, and the foibles and generosity for which Sinatra was known. It is believed that in Sinatra's lifetime, "he raised more than a billion dollars for his charity work," while once he performed for free to help out a club owner in hock to the mobster Sam Giancana. Thanks to Sinatra's connections, Consiglio was a regular at the Kennedy White House and schmoozed with film stars like Ava Gardner. But it's not all glamour, as Consiglio reveals the internal struggles of Tommy Dorsey's band and the work Sinatra put in to maintain his voice. This isn't Hemingway, but for Sinatra fans and those who love a dishy story, this is a grand read. b/w photos (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/07/2013 --Publishers Weekly

About the Author

Consiglio, a friend from Frank Sinatra's New Jersey boyhood, was present during the star's formative years in his career. Before his death in 2008, he shared with Douskey intimate details of Sinatra's rise to fame, during which he accompanied the performer to nightclubs, Las Vegas casinos, and meanderings through the Hollywood scene. Although many of these accounts were previously the subject of rumor rather than verifiable anecdote, from hard times to success and excess, Consiglio reports on the women, the shady characters, and the foibles and generosity for which Sinatra was known. It is believed that in Sinatra's lifetime, "he raised more than a billion dollars for his charity work," while once he performed for free to help out a club owner in hock to the mobster Sam Giancana. Thanks to Sinatra's connections, Consiglio was a regular at the Kennedy White House and schmoozed with film stars like Ava Gardner. But it's not all glamour, as Consiglio reveals the internal struggles of Tommy Dorsey's band and the work Sinatra put in to maintain his voice. This isn't Hemingway, but for Sinatra fans and those who love a dishy story, this is a grand read. b/w photos (Sept.)- Publishers Weekly
Reviewed on: 01/07/2013

Customer Reviews

No chronological order and too many repeated ramblings.
Rita S
Too much of the time, I felt Mr. Consiglio was writing a book about himself - or perhaps I have already read all I needed or wanted to know about Sinatra.
dazey mai
The book is very well written and so interesting I couldn't stop reading.
barrelhead

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By barrelhead on November 29, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is very well written and so interesting I couldn't stop reading. When I get a good read I like to stretch it out a bit but not this baby. I ripped through it. The thing that jumps out at you is how much better it would have been if Tony would have told all. Frank was never drunk? Come on, Tony. We've seen pictures. Hope the book does well.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jason Freed on December 29, 2012
Format: Paperback
"There is no one who is closer to Frank Sinatra than Tony Consiglio."

quote from Walter Winchell

"Tony Consiglio remained with Sinatra for 50 years, and no one knows more about Sinatra than Consiglio."

from The New York Post

"Tony "The Clam" Consiglio was Sinatra's lifelong pal who knew all of Sinatra's secrets and tells all. "The Clam"
opens up about the fights, the bribes, the hookers for Kennedy and the only thing that Sinatra was scared of."

from the National Examiner

Regis Philbin wrote:

"I really love all your stories about Frank and all those colorful people.
Nobody tells a story like you."

PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY wrote:

Sinatra and Me: The Very Good Years
Tony Consiglio, as told to Franz Douskey. Tantor Media, Inc., $19.95 (303p) ISBN 978-0-9883494-2-1
Consiglio, a friend from Frank Sinatra's New Jersey boyhood, was present during the star's formative years in his career during which he accompanied the performer to nightclubs, Las Vegas casinos, and meanderings through the Hollywood scene. .... Consiglio reports on the women, the shady characters, and the foibles and generosity for which Sinatra was known. .... For Sinatra fans and those who love a dishy story, this is a grand read. b/w photos
Reviewed on: 01/07/2013

Wally Lamb wrote: "Frank Sinatra comes vividly back to life in Tony Consiglio's SINATRA AND ME."

This is the book that started it all. Tony Consiglio is the real deal. The book documents an amazing friendship between Mr. Consiglio and Frank Sinatra. The book is thoroughly documented and has more than 40 previously unpublished photos of Sinatra with Tony, Tony Bennett, Joe DiMaggio, Lou Gehrig, Joseph Kennedy, Martin and Lewis,etc.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By James R. Holland VINE VOICE on November 25, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Tony was in his eighties when he told me these stories. He told them as he remembered them. His thoughts came out in a wonderful stream of consciousness expanding upon whatever he remembered at the time. For this reason the book is not structured chronologically and does not reflect upon many specific dates. Tony will show you what it was like to spend each day with Sinatra. You will learn things that may surprise or disappoint you, but in the end you will understand why Frank Sinatra is and always will be a legend." Thus writes Franz Douskey in his introduction to the memoir.

The teller of this tale was a life-long friend of Frank Sinatra. They played hockey together as kids, skipped high school together and hung out in the Paramount Theater and then followed Frank's life-long destiny. Tony was his friend's valet, bodyguard and "gofer." He did all the boring dirty work for his friend whom he witnessed climbing unexpected career heights.

"In their thirty years of traveling together, Frank and Tony went from dining in low-budget cafeterias to dining with the rich and famous? Prince Rainier, the Kennedy's, Marilyn Monroe, Lady Astor, Ella Fitzgerald, Joe DiMaggio, Rocky Marciano, Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Pierre Salinger, mobsters Sam Giancana and the Fischetti brothers, and many more."

Tony was nicked-named "The Clam" by Sinatra because he could be depended upon to "clam up" and not talk about what he saw and heard. And Tony witnessed it all. Some readers will no doubt feel that Tony is still protecting his boss after all these years--even in this memoir that was published after his own death. There is probably validity to that theory because for a friendship that lasted that long, why would Tony ever betray his boss and friend?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kewlbreezes on June 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An interesting perspective from Frank's best friend. I've read several bios on Sinatra. This one made me appreciate him as a person as well as an artist. Some of the stories are repeated so there is some redundancy, but it's still a very entertaining book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By joyce canning on April 6, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I liked the book - a fresh look at Sinatra and his best buddy for years and years. I was surprised at how ingrained the rat pack was with the Kennedy White House and the mob, to some extend. Tony seemed very honest in his writing - there were some insights into Sinatra that were good and some not so good. Overall, it was a good fun read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By linda on January 7, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
wonderful book, would highly recommend, if you like Sinatra you will definetly enjoy this book and all its details, thank you
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J.C. on December 23, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Tony Consiglio was called "The Clam" by Frank Sinatra because he kept his mouth shut. But in this book "The Clam" opens up and tells all kinds of juicy stories about Sinatra that not many know about.
Frank cherished his privacy and Tony learned early on how to preserve it. We learn why Frank hated photographers and newspaper people because they were always trying to get a photo of him and then would write a story with half-truths or no truth at all.
Frank was also a prankster. He carried around cherry bombs and loved to set them off on unsuspecting friends. The story goes that if you were a friend of Frank's and he loved you, he'd set off cherry bombs when you least suspected them. Frank's close friends like comedians Jackie Gleason and Jimmy Durante both survived the cherry bombs as did the others.
Frank liked breakfast in the late afternoon because he got to bed in the wee hours of the morning and would sleep late. Tony would arrange black curtains in his bedroom to keep the light out. Frank liked Italian bread and butter dunked in his coffee.
Tony was his right hand man, his Mr. Fix-it, his concierge and his personal valet. If Frank needed his tuxes to be cleaned, Tony would arrange it and the shirts had to be on hangers with no wrinkles. One time a cuff was wrinkled and Frank let Tony have it. It never happened again.
Sinatra was a perfectionist and wouldn't even have to tell Tony what he wanted. Tony knew from a lot of experience having known Frank since their high school days that they spent truant. Frank and Tony never finished high school. Frank would carry around a dictionary with him and looked up words to learn their meaning.
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