Las Vegas Legends

LAS VEGAS LEGEND
DEAN MARTIN

 


"I drink because my body craves, needs alcohol. I don't drink, my body's a drunk."
- Dean Martin

 

 

Dean Martin photo ad for the Sands hotel in Las Vegas
Dean Martin first headlined at the Sands
Hotel in Las Vegas.

Dean's opening monologue from his Las Vegas act:

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Dean Martin magazine cover
Dean landed in the tabloids when his second marriage to a much younger woman fell apart publicly.

 

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Jerry Vale

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How Las Vegas Has Changed Since the 1970s

How Las Vegas Has Changed Since the 1960s

More on How Las Vegas Has Changed Over the Years

BONUS: Garry Shandling in Las Vegas

 

Dean Martin / Las Vegas Legend

"You wanna hear it straight, buy the album." - Dean Martin

Rat Pack BookHere's an excerpt from the book Beyond Our Wildest Dreams where former Rat Pack Golddiggers Maria Lauren & Linda Eichberg reveal what it was like to work with the immortal Dean Martin, probably the coolest crooner of the Rat Pack.

Dean ruled the Strip for decades with his swinging nightclub act. His opening act was The Golddiggers, a bevy of beautiful and talented ladies that whipped the crowd into a frenzy before Deano took the stage.

Maria: My first impression upon meeting Dean Martin was that he was very, very charming. He looked the same in person as he did on TV. I can’t say that about all the stars I’ve met. It was a pleasure to watch him interact with all us girls. He never made a vulgar or cheap comment or anything like that. He was fun loving, good natured and made you feel comfortable.

These were the days of the Women’s Liberation Movement and Greg Garrison was feeling pressure from the network. Instead of revealing outfits, the Golddiggers were clad in long gingham dresses to do our country music numbers on a segment called ‘Dean’s Music Country.’ I absolutely loved it. We danced and sang with the top country stars like Lynn Anderson, Conway Twitty, Ray Stevens, Buck Owens, Loretta Lynn, Crystal Gayle, Mel Tillis and Mac Davis. 100

Linda: The country set was like a breath of fresh air equipped with a barn, a plow and a miniature horse. We would sing a sweet ballad on stacks of hay, our colorful prairie gowns draped around us and then skip to the other side of the set to sing the next song to some guitar picking and fiddle playing. I grew to have a greater appreciation of country music singing songs like ‘I Was Raised on Country Sunshine’, ‘You Got a Friend’, ‘Tie a Yellow Ribbon’, ‘Houston’, ‘Jambalaya (On the Bayou)’ and ‘Country Roads’.

Maria and I were ecstatic when we saw in the script that we would be singing ‘I Believe in Music’ with Dean. We sang the verse while Dean joined us for the chorus and then the whole cast extended their harmonies for a reprise as the scene peaked for a big finish—then cut to commercial.

Maria: Another scene, another set, was the spot where Dean flirted with the girls at the bar. It was an on-going feature. He would make a suggestive comment with a little song like, ‘I’m in the Mood for Love’ and we would shoot him down with a funny comeback. Then Dean would try another line with the next girl. He had great comic timing, Dean could be subtle and just raise an eyebrow and we all got the joke. He was the ‘King of Cool.’

My very first TV taping.... I blew it. I decided I was going to use the Stanislavsky method of acting, so I was thinking of the motivation of my character and the back story. Well, when Dean walked up to me at the bar and gave me my cue I forgot my one line! This was in front of a live studio audience. Greg shouted, “Cut!” and I thought I would be fired for sure but he laughed and gave me a hug and told me to do it again. He put the mistake and the retake on the show. Greg liked to keep it loose. So did Dean.

Linda: That was Maria. It didn’t matter how small her part was or how big. She was always on, all the time, giving one hundred percent. Sometimes she was too much. Once Greg had to tell her to stop moving around so he could give her a close up. Performing in front of the camera required different techniques than what we had learned from being in musical theater and doing live shows.

Robin Hoctor-Horneff, Golddigger 1973-1974: I was so nervous for the first taping because we never really saw Dean Martin. We hadn’t rehearsed with him. It was strange because we were regulars; it was like you were a part of it but you really weren’t part of it. We prepared everything, we were involved in different skits, musical medleys, but Dean showed up to shoot the show and did everything right off the cuff, just did it right then.

Las Vegas Legend Dean MartinDean Martin Show producer Greg Garrison: We’re the only live show on the air. Of course, it’s on tape, but we rarely alter a thing—maybe we ‘blip’ a word or two once every ten shows. People like Dean the way he is, mistakes and all. Patti (Pivarnik) Gribow, Golddigger 1973-1985: My mom and all her friends were in love with Dean and, of course, his good looks. The persona, Dean Martin, appeared to be a cad and a real ‘player’ but in reality Dean was one of the nicest and genteel men I have ever met. He was exceedingly humble and once told me, “It’s so hard to be mean and so easy to be nice.” I will always carry that memory with me.

Lee Notling, Golddigger 1973-1974: Dean was shy, quiet, polite and, of course, very handsome. His special guests were kind and welcoming. Loretta Lynn was so very humble, she waited in line to get her make-up done and talked with any of us who started a conversation with her. She was a legend in country music but very unpretentious.

ORDER THIS RAT PACK BOOK NOW!

Dean Martin & Frank Sinatra in Vegas

"I've got seven kids. The three words you hear most around my house are 'hello,' 'goodbye,' and 'I'm pregnant."
- Dean Martin

 

Dean Martin photo
DEAN MARTIN

YOUR GO-GO HOST: Billy Ingram


Rat Pack Golddiggers
From the glory days of Las Vegas!

Las Vegas Legend Dean Martin


Monologue from The Bar - Frank Sinatra & Dean Martin live in the summer of 1977.

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Dean's second monologue from his Las Vegas act:

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Dean Martin was rarely seen at the Blackjack tables in Vegas but he would play golf every day.

 

 

 

   


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