James hired Sinatra, and the new singer made his first recordings on July 13, 1939.At the end of the year, Sinatra accepted an offer from the far more successful bandleader Tommy Dorsey, jumping to his new berth in January 1940.Over the next two and a half years, he was featured on 16 Top Ten hits recorded by Dorsey, among them the chart-topper "I'll Never Smile Again," later inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.
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He was able to take the work of great theater composers of that period, such as Jerome Kern, Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, and Richard Rodgers, and reinterpret their songs for later audiences in a way that led to their rediscovery and their permanent enshrinement as classics.
On records and in live performances, on film, radio, and television, he consistently sang standards in a way that demonstrated their perennial appeal.
The son of a fireman, Sinatra dropped out of high school in his senior year to pursue a career in music.
Frank Sinatra was arguably the most important popular music figure of the 20th century, his only real rivals for the title being Bing Crosby, Elvis Presley, and the Beatles.
In a professional career that lasted 60 years, he demonstrated a remarkable ability to maintain his appeal and pursue his musical goals despite often countervailing trends.
He came to the fore during the swing era of the 1930s and '40s, helped to define the "sing era" of the '40s and '50s, and continued to attract listeners during the rock era that began in the mid-'50s.
He scored his first number one hit in 1940 and was still making million-selling recordings in 1994.
In September 1935, he appeared as part of the vocal group the Hoboken Four on Major Bowes' Original Amateur Hour.
The group won the radio show contest and toured with Bowes.