Bing Crosby vs. Frank Sinatra -- contemporary stature.

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Garbanzo, Dec 11, 2014.

  1. John B Good

    John B Good Forum Hall Of Fame

    NS, Canada
    This is so cool

    I first heard it on the Rhino Beat Generation box
  2. YooperGlen

    YooperGlen Forum Resident

    Escondido, CA
  3. EasterEverywhere

    EasterEverywhere Forum Resident

    That guy does a great Dean Martin.
  4. Wade

    Wade Well-Known Member

    Anywhere but here
    Not saying he did or didn't outsell Michael Jackson, but Bing did have almost 400 hit singles....
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2014
  5. Wade

    Wade Well-Known Member

    Anywhere but here
  6. Price.pittsburgh

    Price.pittsburgh Forum Resident

    At the end of the day, Sinatra was a much more diverse vocalist. There may be no one on his level overall.
  7. the sands

    the sands Forum Resident

    Oslo, Norway
    It's easier to listen to Sinatra because he was at his peak when recording fascilities was getting better, in the 50s-60s. With Crosby you go back to the 20s-30s-40s. It's an acquired taste.
    Karnak likes this.
  8. John B Good

    John B Good Forum Hall Of Fame

    NS, Canada
    I ended up buying a cd of Crosby last year - SEASONS - after sampling from the old vinyl of it from the $1 bin.
    illinoisteve likes this.
  9. Bing Crosby II

    Bing Crosby II New Member

    Frank is more popular because he still has people like his daughter to promote his work, mainly because of the royalties she gets. No one really does that for Bing, his kids are already Rich and succsesful, ones an actor and one a retired pro golfer, they don't need to make money of his records, not to meantion the fact that Bing was the richest singer alive when he died and most of that money went to his kids.
  10. Price.pittsburgh

    Price.pittsburgh Forum Resident

    Bing was only an old school Crooner and no better at it than Frank was with Columbia.
    Frank developed into a great stylistic vocalist.
  11. George C.

    George C. Forum Resident

    Littleton, CO
    "I used to tell Sinatra over and over," said Tommy Dorsey, "there's only one singer you ought to listen to and his name is Crosby. All that matters to him is the words, and that's the only thing that ought to for you, too."
    Price.pittsburgh likes this.
  12. Bob F

    Bob F Senior Member

    Recommended web page:

    The Swooner vs the Crooner -- Bing Crosby Internet Museum --
    This was the quote which greeted visitors to the Sinatra Centennial exhibit at Lincoln Center two years ago.
    teag likes this.
  13. Marc Bessette

    Marc Bessette The King of Somewhere Cold

    Kind of like comparing Jagger to Manilow
  14. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    Thoughts ?
    Sinatra is the better singer imo, much better catalog. Crosby the better golfer.
  15. Tom Daniels

    Tom Daniels Forum Resident

    Crosby was more important. Along with Louis Armstrong, he brought a more natural, personal, conversational tone to music. And he was a great singer and stylist. It is almost impossible for us today to hear how radical Crosby was because every singer who followed him was influenced by him, directly or indirectly. Eventually, as with every performer, at some point styles changed and he didn't and he seemed a bit moldy, but that doesn't change what he did.

    Sinatra came up copying Bing, down to the hat. The first third of his career was practically an homage. But then came the fifties and Sinatra carved out his own niche. He went beyond Bing. Bing once said, "he's the kind of singer who comes along once in a generation. Why'd he have to come along in mine?"

    To a modern listener Sinatra has more resonance. And it isn't the Rat Pack image crap. It is the MUSIC. Bing is from an earlier time. More of a museum piece (as Sinatra will eventually be too). But he showed the way.
  16. Price.pittsburgh

    Price.pittsburgh Forum Resident

    First things first.
    Sinatra sang better.
    Not an insult.
    RSteven and Yfncl223 like this.
  17. zen

    zen Forum Resident

    Bing Crosby did some great stuff with the Boswell Sisters, Les Paul and the Andrews Sisters, need I say more.

    [​IMG] [​IMG][​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2019
    RSteven likes this.
  18. Yfncl223

    Yfncl223 Well-Known Member

  19. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road

    No insult to either, both good at what they do.
    I was never into crooners ... not sure why, I just felt unmoved and uninspired by crooners
  20. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Brookings, Oregon
    I could never get into Bing Crosby's music outside of his Christmas material, which I am a little embarrassed to admit as my Aunt was very good friends with him and his wife, Kathryn. I still manage some property that they originally purchased together many moons ago. Now, I think part of the problem was that so much of Bing's music was recorded before the major innovations in recording technology came about so it makes his music seem almost prehistoric by comparison to Sinatra's best stuff.

    I really like his Christmas album recorded in the 1970's that features a lot of original material as the recording sounds nice. The funny thing is as much as I like Christmas music, I find his iconic version of White Christmas to be one of my least favorite versions. Is that blastemy or what? I do admire what he accomplished and how much he influenced the singers that followed him like Sinatra.
    mark winstanley likes this.
  21. BluesOvertookMe

    BluesOvertookMe Forum Resident

    Houston, TX, USA
    David Lee Roth, for one.
    RSteven likes this.
  22. Greenalishi

    Greenalishi Forum Resident

    San Francisco

    Also, Sinatra had theme albums. Which translate i think to today. And Sinatra had an image that translates to t shirts and liquor bottles. Like Elvis. Bing did many of the same songs and both started with big bands as a singer. Sinatra moved on musically to much more variety than Bing.

    I love Bing a lot. I saved his local newspaper writer epitaph when he died. Bing really was a first in so many ways. Plus his voice is just so cool. And his love of jazz translates well for me just like Sinatra. Both so great. Sinatra has more to choose from music wise i think and his symbology, rat pack, gangster stuff just creates more of a Elvis , Cash thing.

    Great idea for a discussion!!!
    RSteven likes this.
  23. PhilCo

    PhilCo Well-Known Member

    san jose
    Tom is absolutely right. There is a direct line between Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley, (followed perhaps by Como but I think more importantly by Tony Bennett) all of whom were vocally influenced by the one(s) coming before.
    Crosby came along right at the time of the development of radio and of Microphones. Because of the Mic, rather than a megaphone, he could be closer to the recording medium (essentially direct to disc lacquer) and therefore could sing more softly, leading to a sweeter, more intimate sound coming out of this strange new thing called a radio. Rudy Vallee had to shout, but Crosby could purr, he sounded like we all think we sound in the shower.

    But beyond that, Crosby's interest and understanding of technology lead him to adapt something that had been found in Germany that became the tape recorder. The fact that we all listen to recorded music can be traced back to Crosby. Whether he was critical or just crucial in getting Ampex to start making tape recorders and tape is almost irrelevant (but he ws an early investor).
    "American audio engineer John T. Mullin and entertainer Bing Crosby were key players in the commercial development of magnetic tape", quoted from Wikipedia on Tape Recording:
    Tape recorder - Wikipedia .

    Crosby's importance to American Music cannot be overestimated, everyone after him felt his presence whenever they opened their mouths
    illinoisteve, Greenalishi and RSteven like this.
  24. Neil Anderson

    Neil Anderson Forum Resident

    Portland, Oregon
    I'm a Crosby fan. check out his version of "Thanks for the Memories." Very intelligent reading of the lyric. when he gets to the lines,

    "No tears, no fuss, hooray for us
    Strictly entre nous, darling, how are you?
    And how are all those little dreams that never did come true?"

    the way he expresses the bitterness is so subtle, and so devastating. He was a master.
    RSteven and Greenalishi like this.
  25. Kiss73

    Kiss73 Forum Resident

    Funny this thread popped up as I have this very conflict with myself in my head frequently. I have a large collection of both artists, and yet the argument always lands in favour of Crosby.

    Of course Sinatra was the better vocalist - tremendous range and control. Incredible technique....and yet (and I know this is my opinion only).....Bing was no sloppy singer......try singing a Crosby song...never as easy as you expect it to be......and Bing had more soul.....also had more natural swing and rhythm. It always felt Sinatra had to put in effort to achieve these.

    Bing also had the ability to take a very average song and lift it..make it special....If Sinatra found a song average, it was absolutely telling in his performance and for all is ability to excite, he could equally bore the socks off you.

    as @Tom Daniels notes above......between Armstrong and Crosby, they influenced every vocalist thereafter......right up until today and including Sinatra....

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