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Bobby Darin

There's been considerable discussion about whether Bobby Darin should be classified as a rock & roll singer, a Vegas hipster cat, an interpreter of popular standards, or even a folk-rocker. He was all of these and none of these. Throughout his career he made a point of not becoming committed to any one style at the exclusion of others; at the height of his nightclub fame he incorporated a folk set into his act. When it appeared he could have gone on indefinitely as a sort of junior version of Frank Sinatra, he would periodically record pop/rock and folk-rock singles whose principal appeal lay outside of the adult pop market. At one point he started calling himself Bob Darin and recorded songs with vague anti-establishment overtones that could be said to be biting the largely bourgeois hands that fed his highest-paying gigs. It may be most accurate to say that Darin was, above all, a singer who wanted to do a lot of things, rather than make his mark as a particular stylist. That may have cost him some points as far as making it to the very top of certain genres, but also makes his work more versatile than almost any other vocalist of his era.

When Darin had his first hits in the late '50s, he was a teen idol of sorts, albeit a teen idol with much more talent and mature command than the typical singer in that style. The novelty-tinged "Splish Splash" was his breakthrough smash, followed by "Queen of the Hop" and the ballad "Dream Lover." There was a slight R&B feel to Bobby's delivery that may well have influenced R&B-pop/rock singers such as Dion, though it would be an exaggeration to call Darin a blue-eyed soul man. In late 1959, he found a new direction when the swinging "Mack the Knife," a tune from Brecht-Weill's Threepenny Opera musical, made number one. The song came from an album of pop standards, heralding his move toward light big band jazz, which was consolidated by the Top Ten success of "Beyond the Sea" in 1960.

In the early '60s, Darin had mostly abandoned rock for the adult pop market, becoming a huge success on the Vegas-nightclub circuit, and moving into the all-around entertainer mode with starring roles in movies (including one as a non-singing jazz musician in John Cassavetes' Too Young Blues). He also continued to score regular hits with the likes of "You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby," "Things," and "Lazy River." To keep people guessing, there was also a hit cover of "What'd I Say" and some country tunes (one of which, "You're the Reason I'm Living," made it to number three on the pop charts). Around 1963, he put a folk section into his nightclub act that employed guitarist Roger McGuinn, then a couple of years away from fame as the leader of the Byrds.

Darin didn't make the expected retreat into Rat Pack land when his records stopped making the upper reaches of the charts in the mid-'60s. In 1965, there was a rather nice self-penned jangly folk-rocker, "When I Get Home," that become a British hit for the Searchers. Another 1965 flop, "We Didn't Ask to Be Brought Here," was an unexpected antiwar tune. When he made his return to the Top Ten in late 1966, it was with a cover of a gentle Tim Hardin folk-rock song, "If I Were a Carpenter." His final Top 40 hit the following year, "Lovin' You," opted for material by another major folk-rock composer, John Sebastian.

Darin may indeed have been far hipper and more politically aware than the average nightclub act, covering tunes by Dylan and the Rolling Stones, participating in a 1965 civil rights march to Alabama, and penning some Dylan-influenced songs of his own in the late '60s. It doesn't seem accurate to say that this was the true Bobby Darin, shedding his show-biz skin for something that came to him more naturally; in 1967, the same year he covered Jagger-Richards' "Back Street Girl," he also recorded material for an album entitled Bobby Darin Sings Doctor Dolittle. By the early '70s he was working Vegas and similar joints again, exchanging his blue jeans for a tuxedo, and hosting a TV variety series. In a much odder turn of events, he was now recording for Motown, though these efforts met little success.

Afflicted with a rheumatic heart, Darin was always aware that his time might be limited, and he died near the end of 1973 during open-heart surgery. He left behind a considerable quantity (and diversity) of recorded work, and underwent a critical reevaluation of sorts, especially among rock critics, which might have aided his election to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990. A 1996 four-CD box set, divided into thematic discs, attempted to put his wide-ranging efforts into perspective. In 2004, actor Kevin Spacey starred as Bobby Darin in the feature film biography Beyond the Sea. Spacey also directed the film and sang Darin's songs for the film, which were released as the film's soundtrack. ~ Richie Unterberger, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

KEVIN SPACEY DOES A GREAT JOB
He can sing okay
I saw Bobby in London, he was the best act from America i ever saw.
I have seen the very best he was #1.
romancegirl1 9 6 3
He was a such a tortured soul, but his voice was great. Too bad he died so young. Swing on, Bobby!
julimartinez 0 4
6f
Mack the Knife!
''Fly Me... to the Moon''

There is NOTHING, YOU...can ever do, achieve or even buy

That will Outshine--Th e PEACE, JOY and HAPPINESS

Of Being in...COMMUNI O N , with the Partner--YOU . . . L O V E :-)(-:
1. Kiss your left hand
2. Say your crushes
3. Close your hand
4. Pick a school day
5. Post this on 15 different songs and get asked out
Love love love this song.
Poop
Man, this song is so cool.
I am very glad that I lived at the time that these great singers were
There will never artists like these . They delivered their musicyou.the y did not sing
Many have sang this song!- More famous than him!!!- But he's the only only one that made it his own!
All of these are my favorite songs
Jo Stafford & Gordon MacRae
Loved Bobby!
ANOTHER GREAT ONE WE LOST WAY TOO SOON!!! REST IN PEACE BOBBY.
BOBBY D. HOW. SWEET. COOL IT WAS MY BROTHER! STYLE. YA THINK
I love bobby Darin, and I'm aware that this song was not written by him, but isn't it disturbing that the song clementine is about a little girl drowning?
Not trying to be picky but how can you write a short bio of someone and not include the birth date? And, no, I'm not going to look it up. Just wondering how old he was when he died.
Hey ladies want to lose weight fast? Check this out! http://e0387 5 m 8 a y g k 4 v 1 n s g 9 g j g o y b 4 . h o p . c l i c k b a n k . n e t /
I love you Bobby!!!! You are a big inspiration to me and the music I make! <3
I like how this song was featured in the video game Bioshock. I don't think I could ever get tired of this song, especially since it's so laid back right from the first verse. Somewheeeere , beyond the seeaaa, soomewheeeer e waiting for meee.
Linda Ann. Love his voice and was a great actor too.
Dream Lover reminds me of being in outer space, I don't know why. Spacey sound
Love bobby darin
Always one of my favorites!! Especially 'Beyond the Sea'
1 kiss your left hand
2 say your crush's name
3 close your hand
4 pick a school day
5 say your name
6 post this on 15 more songs and on the day you picked your crush will ask you out
I'm a Bobby Darin fan!
Smooth
I saw Bobby perform Thanksgiving 1968 at The Riverboat Supper Club in Manhattan. I got close- 10th row......wit h my Mom and Uncle.....I was 11 and I remember it like yesterday. The songs were great and he worked that room like a Vegas Pro.....I was blown away! I became a Rock and Roll DJ 11 years later in Vegas, LA, San Diego and back home in Boston....Di c e Martin- Las Vegas Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
All of Me??? What would I do without your smart mouth
Drawing me in, and you kicking me out
You got my head spinning, no kidding, I can't pin you down
What's going on in that beautiful mind
I'm on your magical mystery ride
And I'm so dizzy, don't know what hit me, but I'll be alright

All of You : That could be interesting.
dav27
Want to play songs of the 40's and 50's.
lucydrew
Love Dream Lover
Bobby is still hip, man!
Bobby Darin is one of the best entertainers ever!
Hello, Dolly. : I love Bobby Darin's music.
Rip Bobby......b e y o n d the sea....Mac the knife.....XO X O
Roland Cassotto
This is the first part of the Bobby Darin health story. Darin suffered from poor health his entire life. He was frail as an infant and beginning at age eight was stricken with recurring bouts of rheumatic fever that left him with a seriously weakened heart.<1> In January 1971, he underwent his first heart surgery in an attempt to correct some of the heart damage he had lived with since childhood, where two artificial heart valves were implanted in his heart. He spent most of that year recovering
On the evening of December 19, a five-man surgical team worked for over six hours to repair his damaged heart. Shortly after the surgery ended in the early morning hours of December 20, 1973, Darin died in the recovery room without regaining consciousnes s . He was 37 years old.
There were no funeral arrangements ; Darin's last wish in his will was that his body be donated to science for medical research. His remains were transferred to UCLA Medical Center shortly after his death. It's interesting
We're studying about Bobby Darin's death in college. Here's the Info: In 1973, after failing to take antibiotics to protect his heart before a dental visit, Darin developed an overwhelming systemic infection (sepsis). This further weakened his body and affected one of his heart valves. On December 11, he checked himself into Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for another round of open-heart surgery to repair the two artificial heart valves he had received in January 1971. On the evening
Yea like it
RIP Bobby!!!!!!! ! ! !
bobby darin never got the credit he deserved - i love his music and if he had lived longer he would have surpassed frank = beyond the sea
i named my son darin after him
Love his voice!
bobby darin has never been given half the credit he deserves. gone way too soon what a talent - dream lover
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