When Frank Sinatra died, the journalists at the National Enquirer
probably got out the Jack Daniels in celebration. No longer need they
fear the retaliatory ’break his legs’ being growled from a shuttered
room in some Palm Springs hospital.
Sinatra underground must have looked like a pretty rich seam to the
celebrity gossip sheet that makes Hello! look like the Times Literary
In the past it’s kept us updated on Cher’s, Demi’s and Hugh’s anatomical
’jobs’ and it also lifts the three- inch shag pile in Hollywood’s
bedrooms and reports on what scurries away.
But how does it handle the delicate area of the tribute? No-one’s shag
pile was thicker than Sinatra’s and the Enquirer’s ’tribute’ dutifully
lists his affairs. We also have the obligatory mob references with
Sinatra rubbing the very broad shoulders of Big Paul, Jimmy the Weasel
and the rest of the wiseguys. The whole thing is topped and tailed by
’his first love’ and ’his last frantic hospital battle’. Yet somehow the
Enquirer has failed to dish the dirt.
It’s not too surprising, really, for no-one succeeded in exposing or
exploiting the unsavoury Sinatra better than, well, Sinatra. That’s
because, like other of this century’s ’greats’, he realised it wasn’t
enough to be the best, he had to be different. And Sinatra knew it was
the regular glimpses of his dark side that kept him in the
The truly shocking revelation would have been that Sinatra was, in fact,
a teetotal, monogamous fitness fanatic of Welsh extraction. That’s the
only story that might have made him spill the heavenly Jack Daniels
he’ll be pouring himself this evening.