"I will say that there are people that are gonna like you and people that don’t like you regardless of what business you’re in or what you do. You cannot please everyone."

(From Elvis: My Best Man, by George Klein, 2010)

Dean Martin had always been one of Elvis’s favorite singers - one of the few singers he’d ever cite as a personal influence on his own style. (In 1957) Dean was doing a show at a Hollywood Club called the Moulin Rouge (…). We saw a great Dino performance, and after the show Elvis asked me if I wanted to meet Dean. Cliff and Gene stayed at our table, while Elvis and I headed backstage. Dean and Elvis had met before when Elvis was in L.A., and Dean seemed very happy to see him again. They made some showbiz-style small talk, and then, right in front of Dean, Elvis turned to me and said, “You know, GK, Dean Martin gave me the best advice I ever got from anybody in Hollywood.” Dean kind of laughed, but Elvis was very serious, and he continued.

“Dean told me, ‘You and I are singers, not actors, and if we try to act we’re gonna be dead in the water. It’s gonna come off phony.’ Dean said that what I had to do was be as natural as possible in front of the camera and not try to do any real acting until I really learned how to act. Man, that got me through two movies.” Dean laughed again and I think he actually blushed a little. But it also seemed to me that he really appreciated the heartfelt gratitude Elvis was expressing. — George Kein.

Photo: Elvis and Shirley MacLaine celebrating Martin’s birthday on the set of the film “All in a Night’s Work”, June 7, 1960. 

Happy Birthday, Dean Martin!

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