Thursday, April 09, 2009


Belated Happy Birthday to Sergio Franchi.
He was born April 6, 1926.
It's truly a belated greeting, since he died May 1, 1990.
A good reason for this late tribute and birthday greeting, is to toss "Laugh You Silly Clown" at you...which goes nicely with the William Shatner "Bozo" piece.
Franchi, was a perennial time-filler on "The Ed Sullivan Show," a dashing fellow who appealed to all the women who regularly flirted with their waiters and hairdressers. The rest of the Sullivan audience was probably waiting for a different Italian...Topo Gigio.
While he didn't have the hit singles other big-voiced singers did, from Robert Goulet to Frankie Laine, Sergio Franchi made some albums and played the nightclub circuit, right up to the disco era. Along with everyone from Cab Calloway to Ethel Merman, Sergio gave a shot at disco glory, and this is the result...a boogie-oogie take on Pagliacci.
It would be easy and unfair to comment on this particular track. Sergio was a nice guy, and he left behind a wife who keeps his memory alive and runs the non-profit "Sergio Franchi Scholarship." They gave away $35,000 last year to musicians, which is a good thing because "if you like it buy it" hasn't worked.
"Shine On, You Crazy Franchi." Come on, it's a better line than the title of his single: "Laugh You Silly Clown."


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