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Frankie Laine , (born Francesco Paolo LoVecchio) was the first and biggest of a new breed of black influenced singers who rose to prominence in the post-WWII era, a harbinger of the rock ‘n’ roll music that was to come. As music historian Jonny Whiteside wrote: “In the Hollywood clubs, a new breed of black influenced white performers laid down a baffling hip array of new sounds … Most important of all these, though, was Frankie Laine, a big white lad with ‘steel tonsils’ who belted out torch blues while stomping his size twelve foot in joints like Billy Berg’s, Club Hangover and the Bandbox.
His 1946 recording of “That’s My Desire” (a pop AND R&B number 1) remains a landmark record signaling the end of the dominance of the big bands Often called the first of the blue-eyed soul singers, Laine’s style cleared the way for many artists who arose in the late 1940s and 1950s, including Kay Starr, Tony Bennett, Johnnie Ray and Elvis (who was initially described by critics as “a cross between Johnnie Ray and Frankie Laine”). Here then is just a selection of Frankie Laine’s phenomenal number of mega-hits. Every one a winner from one of the biggest hit-makers of the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s – and he’s STILL at it!. Laine has had more than 70 chart hit records, 21 gold records, and worldwide sales of over 250 million! Phwew!!
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