Dean Martin’s 100th Birthday!

Dean Martin would have celebrated 100 years on June 7th. His wit, humor, talent and style are renowned around the world. And his talent and fame still transcends the generations.

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Dean Martin with two of his Golddiggers, the Alberici Sisters, backstage at the MGM.

Some of you may already know I had the honor of working with Dean Martin as one of his “Golddiggers” for almost two decades. And yes, he was a cool as he appeared to be on television.

The Vegas Years

When The Golddiggers we were not making TV appearances with Dean, we were touring the world with our stage act. Some of our first gigs were at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, where we opened for Petula Clark and then again for Steve Lawrence and Edie Gorme. I still remember how extremely protective Edie was of Steve when we were around. I don’t know what she was thinking but her reaction was pretty funny. After all, we weren’t those kind of gold diggers.

In the 1970’s, in between taping television shows, we were frequently head-liners with Bobby Goldsboro at the Thunderbird Hotel. The Golddiggers were also the opening act for Joan Rivers and regulars at the MGM Grand with Dean.

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The “king of cool” was always charming and generous in sharing his funny banter with us.

 

Vegas was very hip and glamorous in those days. In the 1980’s Dean Martin and The Golddiggers became a regular act at Bally’s Las Vegas, breaking box office records. More than just work partners, like a family we shared special occasions like birthdays and Christmas together, even some heartbreaking times.

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Celebrating Dean’s birthday about 32 Years ago! Dean Martin and The Golddiggers at Bally’s, circa 1985 – 86. From left to right: Patti Gribow, Maria (Alberici) Lauren, Dean Martin, Robyn Whatley and Linda (Alberici) Eichberg

 

Dean’s Softer Side

Dean was sensitive and caring. When we were performing at Bally’s in the 1980’s, I had a medical emergency and had to be hospitalized. Dean was so sweet; he surprised my mom and my husband, who had to fly in and stay with me in Vegas, by paying their hotel bill. He also called and sent me the most beautiful red roses, two dozen! He was a gentleman, a class act all the way. The Golddiggers were too, what pros! Twenty minutes before show time they found out I was on my way to the hospital. In that short time they were able to re-choreograph the show and cover my solo’s. No one in the audience was the wiser.

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The phrasing and delivery of Dean’s quips are so clear in my mind. He had the perfect comedic timing!

 

The Dean Martin Show Years

We put together some television clips of songs from The Dean Martin Show along with some of our fondest photo memories. I hope our heartfelt birthday tribute to Dean brings a smile to your face! Enjoy a look back at a sweet time in television history.

 

Happy 100th birthday Dean!

Love, Linda and “Your Golddiggers”!

Dean Martin & The Golddiggers backstage at the MGM with the Alberici Sisters

Dean Martin and The Golddiggers, circa 1975

 

Read about our adventures with Dean Martin, The Golddiggers and the ‘Legends of Las Vegas’ in our book Beyond Our Wildest Dreams, available on Amazon!

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Grateful Life Quotes From Frank Sinatra

Frank Sinatra was born on December 12, 1915. He had a birthday this week and it got me thinking about him. In the summer of 1977 I had the privilege of touring with Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Frank was one of the most unusual men I have ever met, he was in a class of his own.

Happy birthday Frank Sinatra!

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Ava Gardner and Frank Sinatra share birthday cake

“I’m for decency — period. I’m for anything and everything that bodes love and consideration for my fellow man.” ~ Frank Sinatra, 1962

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Traveling Buddies – Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra

“If you don’t know the guy on the other side of the world, love him anyway because he’s just like you. He has the same dreams, the same hopes and fears. It’s one world, pal. We’re all neighbors.” – Frank Sinatra, 1962

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Fun times with Frank and his pal Dean

When Frank Sinatra accepted the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, he had this to say:

“I’ve been thinking about why you have to get famous to get an award for helping other people. If your name is John Doe, and you work night and day doing things for your helpless neighbors, what you get for your effort is tired. So, Mr. and Mrs. Doe, and all of you who give of yourselves, to those who carry too big a burden to make it on their own, I want you to reach out and take your share of this. Because if I have earned it, so too have you.” – Frank Sinatra

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“If power doesn’t mean that you have the opportunity to work with the people that you love , then you haven’t really got any.” – Frank Sinatra

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“My greatest teacher was not a vocal coach, not the work of other singers, but the way Tommy Dorsey breathed and phrased on the trombone.” ~ FRANK SINATRA, quoted in Music: A Book of Quotations 

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“People often remark that I’m pretty lucky. Luck is only important in so far as getting the chance to sell yourself at the right moment. After that, you’ve got to have talent and know how to use it.” – Frank Sinatra

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“I love all those girls the same as they love me. I get thousands of letters a week from girls who love me…. Every time I sing a song, I make love to them. I’m a boudoir singer.” ~ FRANK SINATRA, quoted in His Way: An Unauthorized Biography of Frank Sinatra

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On the set of the Dean Martin Variety Show, Frank and Dean with the Dingaling Sisters

“Whatever else has been said about me personally is unimportant. When I sing, I believe. I’m honest.” ~ FRANK SINATRA, quoted in And I Quote

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“Don’t hide your scars. They make you who you are.” – Frank Sinatra

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“A friend is never an imposition.” ~ Frank Sinatra

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Good Friends – Frank, Sammy and Dean

“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.” – Frank Sinatra 

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Sinatra family, the early years

“I would like to be remembered as a man who had a wonderful time living life, a man who had good friends, fine family – and I don’t think I could ask for anything more than that, actually.” ~ Frank Sinatra

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Frank loved to laugh and he loved his friends. When we toured together, he traveled with a large entourage of people. Among them were some of the best musicians in the world. Sinatra was a pretty intense guy to work with because he demanded excellence in his music. I’m extremely grateful to have watched and learned from his musical genius and to have met some of the members of his family. It was a blessing.

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Backstage with Frank Sinatra and The Golddiggers, that’s me on the top right.

In our book “Beyond Our Wildest Dreams”, my sister Maria and I share stories about our time with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and The Golddiggers. We also give insight into what is was like to work with the ‘Stars’ on Dean’s TV Show, The Tonight Show and more. Dozens of musicians and entertainers contributed to the book. Read the inside stories from people who were there.

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BEYOND OUR WILDEST DREAMS by The Alberici Sisters is available on:

Amazon & Barnes and Noble

For more info visit – www.BeyondOurWildestDreams.com

With gratitude to God,

~ Linda

“I will be fully satisfied with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you”. – Psalm 63 :5

 

© All rights reserved. Content within this blog may not be use without expressed written permission. 

Life Like Jazz – The Gratitude Life

“It is jazz music that called me to be a musician and I have always sang the songs that moved me the most.” – Harry Connick, Jr.

The month of April was Jazz Appreciation Month in honor of jazz as an original American art form and I have been spending time basking in some fine jazz music. Not that I need an excuse to appreciate or sing jazz, I love it. Give me a jazz song with a sultry sax, a funky bass or marvelous piano solo and I’m transported along with the artists!

I relish the unexpected twists and turns in jazz. It’s free and adventurous. I remember discovering Al Jarreau and his music many years ago and thinking, “he can do that with his voice, awesome.” His vocal acrobatics fascinated me but Al also has tremendous pop crossover appeal.

Ella Fitzgerald has a stamina for riffing that is incredible. Her recording of “How High the Moon” from the highly acclaimed “Ella in Berlin” album is considered one of the best jazz scat solos ever. Her “One Note Samba” live scat is pure genius!

Dianne Reeves is another favorite jazz singer of mine, amazingly talented, her vocal artistry shades and colors her songs beautifully.

“In memory everything seems to happen to music.” ~ Tennessee Williams

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David Sanborn

Music recreates the feelings that marked significant moments in my life. The album, “A Change of Heart” from 1987 brings back bitter sweet memories and emotions. I loved that David Sanborn album. Besides David’s smokin’ hot sax and the R&B jazz fusion, “Chicago Song” was my favorite cut off the album. Another reason this album stands out in my mind is because it was playing a lot during a difficult time for me and it helped lift my spirits.

After the disappointment and pain of having two miscarriages, one of them being a life threatening ectopic pregnancy, I turned in a different direction and put together and performed my first solo show at the “Gardenia” in Hollywood. The show was very well received, a dream come true, but as fate would have it God chose that time for me to finally become pregnant with my beautiful daughter, Lindsay. I abandoned my musical dreams for a while for a new vision of raising a family, a very joyful prospect.

Improvising Life

That particular season of life taught me to be flexible, improvise and go with the flow. It also taught me to be alert and ready. Life, like jazz is unpredictable but when I seek God, He provides the grace and strength for all life’s ups and downs.

As a child, when I got stuck or out of tune, my parents would say, “change the channel.” In other words, we create our own internal ‘radio station’ by the music we make in our heart. What music is playing in the soundtrack of your life?

“Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.” – Chick Corea

The bible says, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks.” Life is a continual prayer and my life is a prayer of thanksgiving set to music. I’m a Christian so there’s a lot of praise music playing in my heart for the gift of Jesus and his amazing grace but there’s jazz too, and friends and family, whose wisdom guides me and keeps me grounded.

“It’s taken me all my life to learn what not to play.” – Dizzy Gillespie

Gratitude for the New Generation of Jazz

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Esperanza Spalding

“Jazz is reborn” with the stellar Esperanza Spalding. I don’t know  of any young ladies that can play a stand up bass the way she does. Love her raw, earthy vocals. She is positively energizing! Her uniqueness is a treasure.

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Dirty Loops

Dirty Loops is a favorite young jazz fusion band of mine. They created a cool new sound but you can hear their roots to the jazz greats that came before them. They do an amazing job reinventing, “Rolling in the Deep.”

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Jane Monheit

With a voice is as smooth as silk, Jane Monheit with Les Paul Trio does a fantastic job with this standard, “East of the Sun (West of the Moon).” I had the good fortune to hear her perform live recently in Hollywood, a very sweet and talented lady.

A play list with links to the music of the artists I mentioned will be at the end of the blog. There are some outrageous improvisational grooves on it! Be sure to check it out!

“I hate straight singing. I have to change a tune to my own way of doing it. That’s all I know.” – Billie Holliday

This Moment in Music

In addition to being a wife, mom, a fitness instructor… today, I am glad to be singing with the LA Winds Jazz Band along with my sister Maria Lauren. Our group consists of men and woman of all ages from their twenties into their sixties. We’re a diverse group of musicians with a mutual passion for jazz, big band swing and a desire to support music education.

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Alberici Sisters: Linda Eichberg & Maria Lauren

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Marianna Riccio

Maria’s daughter, singer-songwriter, Marianna Riccio also lends her dynamic vocals to the group from time to time.

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A friend of ours helped put together this short Youtube. It’s a fun collection of video clips from some of our performances starting with a Dean Martin Show TV Special, taped in the late 1970’s (a parody of the ‘Roaring Twenties’), to our recent performance at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza with the Pierce Jazz Band under the direction of John Mitchell.

Life is like jazz with interesting and unpredictable changes. Some chords are dissonant and some ring true. Whether we’re taking chances or playing it safe, it’s all music to God ears when gratitude for His infinite and wonderful love prevails.

Stay jazzy with a song in your heart to God. ~ Linda Eichberg

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Link to a play list of the jazz greats noted in this blog. (Click on the playlist tab to see the separate artists & titles.) Enjoy!

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My prayer for you:

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1Thessalonians 5: 16-18

“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

“Sing to the Lord with grateful praise; make music to our God on the harp.” Psalm 147: 7

DISCLAIMER: This is a personal blog, reflecting my personal opinions and its contents are not intended to offer personal advice. All content is copyrighted. Photo credit is given when know but some photos of unknown origin may appear on this blog. Please contact me if you have additional information about photo credits.