Davi's three-night concert series at The Venetian in Las Vegas last week drew more than just a demographically diverse crowd. The actor/singer inspired raves from press outlets.
DAVI’S DYNAMITE DEBUT: I haven’t been to a first-night performance ever where the audience nearly refused to leave the showroom. Thursday night at singer and actor Robert Davi’s Frank Sinatra and the Great American Songbook tributes in the Venetian Showroom, fans wanted him to continue singing after nearly two hours of nonstop entertainment.
With applause and standing ovations, Robert told me that he was unable to sing his last four numbers because he was out of time. (He told the audience as they exited at 11 p.m., “Come back tomorrow for ‘New York, New York!’ I need to fill this room for two more nights.”) He will chop a couple of songs to add those tonight and Saturday.
No, Robert Davi is not merely “fine” or “fun.” Fully titled Davi Sings Sinatra: On the Road To Romance — A Tribute to Frank Sinatra, the Great American Songbook and America, his show is a performance by a master.
A classically trained singer with a long list of film and television credits as actor and director, Robert Davi 's first love is music and he is a student of Frank Sinatra and of American popular music.
Robert Davi is absolutely not an impersonator. He is a tribute artist in every sense of the word. He got his start in film with Sinatra in Contract On Cherry Street. He explains to the audience that he grew up in an Italian home “where we had two figures you looked up to — the Pope and Frank Sinatra.”
Davi says, “[Frank Sinatra] sang the kind of music that translates to any nationality and any age.” His repertoire of Sinatra’s music bears witness to that claim.
He is, as is clear early in the show, a student of Sinatra and the Great American Songbook. He not only talks about “Mr. Sinatra” (just about everyone I’ve ever met who knew him refers to him as “Mr. Sinatra”) but he gives the composers the proper credit and puts the songs in context, telling the audience about the background of the song where appropriate. Thus, we learned that Angel Eyes was recorded (in 1958), just after Sinatra’s break-up with Ava Gardner.
The full house at the show was made up of people from their 20s to, well, much older and, as Davi sang, almost no one was still. They embraced the music as if they were embracing old friends, smiling as they nodded along, quietly tapped their toes and, also quietly, mouthed the lyrics. It was a happy crowd indeed.