Nancy Sinatra Continues To Be Graceful Figure At 80

Nov 04, 2020 by apost team

Nancy Sinatra was a bombshell of the 1960s and beyond, but despite being the daughter of Frank Sinatra, her entry into stardom wasn't always the smoothest. Here, we look at her life and career, and how she looks now at 80!

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Frank Sinatra, Nancy Jr., Nancy (1942), (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Born on June 8, 1940, Nancy Sinatra was the eldest daughter of Frank Sinatra and Nancy Barbato Sinatra. While just a baby, the family moved to Hasbrouck Heights in New Jersey, although their idyllic house in the suburbs there wouldn't be for long. Nancy told The Guardian in an interview in 2008:

"We moved to Hasbrouck Heights and had a lovely little house there, but you could get to the windows from the street—once people knew he lived there, they would come to get a glimpse, which worried my mother because I was a tiny little toddler, and she didn't want anybody stealing me from the front yard."

Nancy Sinatra (1967), (Express/Express/Getty Images)

Following her father's footsteps, Sinatra made her debut as a singer in 1961 with her first single, Cuff Links and a Tie Clip, released by her father's record label, Reprise Records. The single went widely unnoticed, although subsequent songs of hers would make international charts in the years to come – failing, however, to make a breakthrough in the United States. As famous as her father might have been, Sinatra was adamant about making it in the music industry on her own. 

"Daddy has always been there if I needed advice, but he has never interfered. If the help I seek is something to do with work, naturally he gives professional advice. And, if it's a personal thing, he's a daddy."

The family had moved to California at this point so that Frank could be closer to Hollywood, which allowed Nancy to take dancing, acting, voice, and piano lessons. In the following years, she enrolled in college, dropped out after one year, was married and divorced, and was nearly dropped from Reprise Records. But her luck changed after songwriter Lee Hazlewood taught her how to sing in a lower tone, and she adopted a mod style popularized in London, known as the "Carnaby Street" look.

Nancy Sinatra (1960), (RB/Redferns/GettyImages)

In 1966, she had her most memorable hit, These Boots Are Made For Walking, which even featured a music video—a rare occurrence in the era before MTV. The song is still often played today, and at the time, reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart, as well as earning her three Grammy nominations.

Nancy followed this career highlight with other successful tracks, including Sugar Town and How Does That Grab You, Darlin'?, as well as starring in movies, where she played the lead role in The Wild Angels with Peter Fonda and Speedway alongside Elvis Presley.

Nancy Sinatra, Hugh Lambert (1970), (Bettmann/Getty Images)

However, after a while in the limelight, she stepped away in the 1970s to focus on family with her second husband, Hugh Lambert. Speaking to the Independent in 2004, the singer said continuing her career never seemed like an option for her. 

"It's what you did then," she explained. "You got married and concentrated on your family. I was raised as a Catholic and as an Italian so there was no question of doing it any other way." 

After raising her two daughters with him, Lambert tragically died of cancer in 1985.

Although Sinatra says she never regretted her decision, she admitted that staging a comeback later on proved extremely challenging, almost like starting again from square one. 

"The music industry is very ruthless, now more than ever," she said. "People forget extremely quickly. Rather than picking up where you left off, you have to start all over again."

Nancy Sinatra, Elvis Presley (1968), (FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)

That all changed for the better in the early 2000s, after renowned director Quentin Tarantino invited her to cover the song Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) to play during the credits of his film, Kill Bill Vol IThat following year, the singer released her comeback album, Nancy Sinatrawhich peaked at 94 on the UK Charts

The album marked a new era for Sinatra, with the singer adopting a more 'updated' style thanks to a collaboration with younger artists – at the advice of her daughter, AJ. 

"I like to tease her and tell her she is dragging me into the new century," Sinatra revealed. "She kept saying, 'Mom, you're making the wrong kind of music, you need to tap into a whole different age group. My first question when she started mentioning people like Jarvis and Bono was, 'What would they want to do with me?'"

Sinatra has since released several singles and albums, including the album Cherry Smiles: The Rare Singlesin 2009, which featured an array of previously unreleased songs. This year, the singer announce she is collaborating with Light in the Attic Records to release the Nancy Sinatra Archival Series, which will feature past albums, including Boots, as well as remastered versions of some of her classics. 

Nancy Sinatra (2015), (Dave J Hogan/Getty Images Entertainment/GettyImages)

Are you a fan of Nancy Sinatra? Let us know your favorite moment of hers in the comments! Then be sure to pass this on to any fans of hers you know!

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