did dean martin drink

did dean martin drink

did dean martin drink

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For most of his career it was tea in his whiskey glass and it was an act. However, after the death of his son in an airplane crash it was whiskey.

I did many shows with Dean during that period including the roasts and he was usually sloshed. His act gave him license to be sloshed while

he was doing the show and he wound up taking full advantage. He was a real gentleman and a lovely man to work with as well as being an incredible

talent and amazing performer. Everyone loved Dean.

I worked with Dean briefly in 1968 at The 500 Club in Atlantic City, New Jersey as his opening act. Did he drink alcohol? Yes but not a lot and never while working.

Every show, I would introduce him “And now, Ladies and Gentlemen, direct from the bar – Dean Martin”, he would pour Mott’s Apple Juice into his glass, fake a drunk walk and come on stage. The usual next line would be for Dean to look out at the audience and say “How did all these people get into my room?”

did dean martin drink
did dean martin drink


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My last night performing in Las Vegas (at the lounge at The Flamingo Hotel, April 2, 1969), Dean, Sammy Davis Jr. and Joey Bishop crashed my show and the four of us spent 90 minutes on stage together. Dean had his apple juice and was cold sober. After the show, they took me out to eat and Dean had coffee with his meal, while Sammy and Joey and I all had mixed alcoholic drinks. The next morning they drove me to the airport, I flew back to my hometown of Philadelphia, PA and on April 4, 1969 I got sworn into the Army and left for Army Basic Training at Fort Dix, New Jersey.

A complete act. Dean always had Apple juice back stage to give the appearance of bourbon. Frank Sinatra was asked this question about his friend Dean Martin during an interview, Frank said “I’ve spilled more booze by accident than Dean has drank over the years”.

Martin picked up the drunk routine from others like George Jessel and Phil Harris. It was a gimick, something to identify with him in the wake of the Martin-Lewis break up.

It IS true that he began drinking more after the death of his eldest son (not his only boy as previously stated). After 1987 he greatly curtailed his live performances. He also had health issues prior to his retirement in 1991. Martin was not a drunk, however. When asked if he drank a lot during an interview at Wimbeldon in 1983, he said “YOU probably drink more than I do.”

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did dean martin drink
did dean martin drink

Rat Pack fans like myself were saddened when they learned Christmas Day 20 years ago that Dean Martin had died of acute respiratory failure at age 78. Though Frank Sinatra was my favorite Rat Packer, I had plenty of amore for Martin. As a kid I watched his NBC musical-variety series — remember Ken Lane, the Golddiggers and the Dingaling Sisters? — went to his films and totally enjoyed his songs.

A few years ago, I chatted with his daughter Deanna Martin, who is also a singer, about her dad. She noted that the whole “Dino” personality was a gimmick.

“When he started to redo his nightclub act, he started at the Sands Hotel and had some writers helping him,” she said. “It was like Jack Benny who had the violin thing and made fun about being cheap. Dad was so handsome, so debonair. They just thought, ‘We’ll put a drink in his hand and a cigarette.’ Every man wanted to be him, and every woman wanted to be with him.”

The truth of the matter, she said, was her father was swigging apple juice and not liquor when he performed. “He would be home for dinner every night,” Martin said. “He would come home, and he and mom would have their one cocktail at the bar. and He was kind. also He was so different from what everybody thought he was. There was no one who could do Dean Martin better than Dean Martin.”

did dean martin drink
did dean martin drink
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