Often called a “singer’s singer,” Jack Jones is one of the world’s greatest singers because of his musical perfection, vocal passion, phenomenal breath control and impeccable phrasing. All of that has given him a well deserved place in the music world with luminaries such as Tony Bennett, Mel Torme, Vic Damone and Frank Sinatra — who praised Jones and many decades ago gave him the great advice to “Take care of those pipes, kid.”
During the grand days of Las Vegas in the ’70s, I saw Jack Jones headline many times at the top showrooms. He didn’t need big production numbers to wow the crowd, just pure talent in front of a brassy Vegas orchestra. Back then, I also saw Jack perform with his dad Allan Jones, the popular opera singer best known for the Marx Brothers movie A Night at the Opera, and the 1936 film version of Show Boat. Allan had a magnificent voice, and Jack followed in his vocal footsteps. To see father and son sing together was a musical treat that was once captured for all to enjoy on an episode of The Love Boat. Of course, every baby boomer knows that Jack sings the Love Boat theme, and he belted it out for the fans at last year’s TV Land Awards.
Recently Jones was honored by the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters, and the PPB gave him a wonderful trip down memory lane, with friends and family surrounding him. Many recalled his successful recording career, along with Jack’s film credits and television roles. He had an internationally syndicated TV variety show The Palace Presents; several wonderful Bob Hope specials, plus performances at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center and the White House.
Among the Grammy-winner’s most popular songs are the classic pop tunes “Lollipops and Roses” and Bacharach/David’s “Wives and Lovers.” More recently Jack Jones Paints a Tribute to Tony Bennett was nominated for “Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance.” He was also nominated for “The Impossible Dream” and “Wives and Lovers.” His other hits include “Call Me Irresponsible,” “The Race Is On,” and “What I Did For Love.” In 1989 Jack was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His dad also has one.
Getting the PPB’s Art Gilmore Career Achievement Award was very emotional for the ever-handsome Jack, and he gave thanks to his wife Eleonora, and was pleased that his daughter Nicole was on hand. On the dais to gently roast and toast him was TV producer Sam Lovullo, composer Alan Bergman, singer-game show host Peter Marshall, comic Norm Crosby, funny man Jim MacGeorge, Frankie Randall, Johnny Magnus, Jim Long, Chuck Southcott, and the man with the golden voice — Gary Owens. Plus Jo Anne Worley made a surprise appearance, and mentioned playing the Sands Hotel with Jack during the fun days of Vegas. Pulling the great group together was PPB entertainment chairwoman Jeanne DeVivier Brown, who used to book Jack on game shows, as he was a very popular celebrity guest. She called the musical afternoon “a tribute to a good guy.” I’m sure his dad would be proud.
Say “Thanks, Dad”
Okay, with Father’s Day just around the corner, it’s time for everyone to think about celebrating dads and trying to get them, as well as all of the great guys in your life, to look their best. Fashionable ties will be the most popular accessory dads will be unwrapping, and there’s Eric Glennie Ties, designer neck-ware from a fellow known as “The Tie Guy,” that’s making a splash in Hollywood these days. The Harris brothers from Wow Creations have told me that the fashionable guys on ABC’s Bachelor Pad are sporting the Eric Glennie neckties. They can be found online, and they’ve also been seen on ESPN. What makes it unique is that the stripes in the knot are congruent with the tie. It makes a real fashion statement showing you’re in harmony. It’s a nice way to look confident and elegant, and say, “Thanks, dad.”