Our Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list takes a look at a legendary singer, actor and comedian. He was known as the “King of Cool.” He gained fame as a member of the group Martin & Lewis. He teamed up with Jerry Lewis and they performed in clubs. They also appeared on radio, television, and movies. In 1956, Martin pursued a solo career as a singer and an actor. He recorded numerous albums and singles. Some of his big hits include ”That’s Amore,” “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head,” “Memories Are Made of This,” “You’re Nobody till Somebody Loves You,” “Everybody Loves Somebody,” “Sway” and “Volare.” He appeared in several movies. He was also known as a member of the “Rat Pack” with legends such as Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop. Martin hosted The Dean Martin show for about nine years. Let’s get to know Dean Martin a little better.
Dean Martin was born Dino Paul Crocetti on June 7, 1917 – December 25, 1995. Believe it or not, Martin became a boxer before he was an entertainer. He was an amateur boxer for a while. He gave up boxing to become a singer. He got his big break when he was hired to work with the Ernie McKay orchestra. By late 1940s, he sang for a bandleader named Sammy Watkins. Watkins suggested he change his name to Dean Martin. He was with Watkins for about three years. He was drafted into the military and fought in World War II.
His life changed once he met comedian Jerry Lewis. They formed a music comedy team called Martin & Lewis. They appeared on television, movies and radio shows together. Martin did the singing while Lewis provided the comedy during their shows. They broke up their act in 1956 because they had problems working together. Martin and Lewis were arguing over the quality of their work. Martin ended up going solo and the rest was history. Martin appeared in movies as well as recorded albums once he went solo.
Dean Martin’s debut album Dean Martin Sings was released in 1953. It features the singles “That’s Amore,” “With My Eyes Wide Open I’m Dreaming,” “Louise,” “I’m Yours” and “Just One More Chance.” In 1955, he released Swingin’ Down Yonder. The album features the singles “Carolina Moon,” “When It’s Sleepy Time Down South,” “Mississippi Mud,” “Alabamy Bound,” “Dinah” and “Georgia on My Mind.”
He released Pretty Baby in 1957. It features the singles “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” “You Belong to Me,” “Only Forever,” “Maybe,” “Pretty Baby” and “Once in a While.” Sleep Warm was released in 1959. The album features the singles “Dream,” “Sleep Warm,” “Cuddle Up a Little Closer,” “Good Night Sweetheart,” “All I Do Is Dream of You” and “Dream a Little Dream of Me.”
In 1959, Dean Martin released A Winter Romance. The album features some love songs as well as Christmas songs. It peaked at number 61 on the Billboard 200 charts. This Time I’m Swingin’ was released in 1960. The album features the singles “Ain’t That a Kick in the Head,” “I Can’t Believe That You’re in Love with Me,” “True Love,” “On the Street Where You Live” and “Imagination.”
Dean Martin released Dino: Italian Love Songs in 1962. The album peaked at number 73 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “Just Say I Love Her,” “Arrivederci Roma,” “My Heart Reminds Me,” “You’re Breaking My Heart” and “There’s No Tomorrow (O Sole Mio).” Dean “Tex” Martin: Country Style was released in 1963. This was Martin’s first country album. The album peaked at number 109 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” “Things,” “Room Full of Roses” and “Walk the Line.”
He released Dream with Dean in 1964. The album peaked at number 15 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “I’m Confessin’ (That I Love You),” “Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear to Tread),” “Blue Moon,” “Everybody Loves Somebody” and “I Don’t Know Why (I Just Do).” The album sold over 500,000 copies. He released The Door Is Still Open to My Heart in 1964. It peaked at number nine on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “I’m Gonna Change Everything,” “The Door Is Still Open to My Heart,” “You’re Nobody till Somebody Loves You” and “Will Sing in the Sunshine” The album sold over 500,000 copies.
(Remember Me) I’m the One Who Loves You was released in 1965. The album peaked at number 12 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “(Remember Me) I’m the One Who Loves You,” “King of the Road,” “Walk on By,” “Here Comes My Baby” and “Bumming Around.” The album sold over 500,000 copies. The crooner released Houston in 1965. The album peaked at number 11 on the Billboard 200 charts. The project features the singles “Houston,” “I Will” and “Detour.” The album sold over 500,000 copies.
He released The Dean Martin TV Show in 1966. The album peaked at number 34 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “If I Had You,” “What Can I Say After I Say I’m Sorry,” “It’s the Talk of the Town” and “Baby Won’t You Please Come Home.” The hitmaker released Happiness Is Dean Martin in 1967. The album peaked at number 46 on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “Nobody’s Baby Again,” “(Open Up the Door) Let the Good Times In” and “Lay Some Happiness on Me.”
Welcome to My World was released in 1967. The album peaked at number 20 on the Billboard 200 charts. The album features the singles “In the Chapel in the Moonlight,” “Little Ole Wine Drinker Me,” “Welcome to My World” and “Green, Green Grass of Home.” The album sold over 500,000 copies. Gentle on My Mind was released in 1968. The album peaked at number nine on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “Gentle on My Mind,” “Honey,” “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” and “Not Enough Indians.” He released several albums and singles throughout the rest of his career.
Dean Martin wasn’t just a singer. He was a multifaceted performer. He could do it all. He got his start in the comedy duo Martin & Lewis, but he also went on to make a name for himself as a solo artist. He proved he could be successful as part of a duo as well as a solo act. He was successful in every venture he pursued. He also did the Dean Martin Celebrity Roast later in his career. He always knew what to do to keep the money rolling in for himself. He had a long career so narrowing down his songs to just 10 tracks was a challenge. This Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list will feature his best songs.
# 10 – Volare
The first song on our Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list is “Volare” from the album of the same name. The song has a pop and standard sound to it. This romantic song is about a couple in love. The song is a cover of an Italian track originally performed by Italian singer Domenico Modugno. The music is cool and breezy. It’s perfect for Dean Martin’s styling with the song. He sings it in a cool manner. The music doesn’t overpower his voice. It has a slight tempo to it that allows you to snap your fingers to it and bop your head to it. The string section is breathtaking. The orchestral swell gives the song a big band feel.
Dean Martin cleverly combines English and Italian lyrics together. He starts the song in English and switches to Italian by the second verse. The Italian lyrics give Martin a chance to pay homage to his Italian roots. It’s a challenge to understand the Italian lyrics if you aren’t familiar with the language, but he sings it in a way that you can enjoy what he’s saying. Let’s talk about his vocals on the track. Martin’s voice is mind blowing. He proved why he was the “King of Cool.” He sings both parts effortlessly. He makes the Italian lyrics sound just as romantic as the English parts of the song.
# 9 – Return to Me
The next song on our Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list is “Return to Me” from the Dino: Italian Love Songs album. The song has a traditional pop sound to it. This gut-wrenching song is about a man who wants the woman he loves to come back to him. The music is somber and mellow. The music starts with a soothing violin section that will make the listeners feel emotional. There’s people singing with the music and it makes it sound angelic.
The only thing missing from the music is a drum section to give the song more tempo other than that, it’s perfect for the mood. The music is smooth enough to give listeners a chance to focus on Martin’s sonorous vocals. He performs runs while he sings the verses. He shows some versatility because he does go up an octave while he’s singing. He sounds vulnerable without sounding desperate for the woman to come back. He sings the second verse in Italian. He may be hard to understand, but he sounds romantic. It’s too bad the song is short because it’s easy to get lost in the lyrics and then it’s done.
# 8 – You Belong to Me
This emotional song is from the Pretty Baby album. The track has a jazz, pop and easy listening beat to it. This is a yearning song about a man reminding a woman that he loves that he would be there for her no matter what happens. The music is beautiful and enchanting. It has a classic sound to it. It’s perfect for big band radio. It may have a classic sound, but the music is timeless. It has a sensual saxophone solo that is definitely worth a listen. The resonant piano chords are amazing. The violinist will leave the listener hypnotized.
The musicians do an excellent job with the music. Dean Martin’s vocals are outstanding on this track. He sounds smooth and tranquil. He may have been known as the “King of Cool”, but this song proved he was the “King of Romance.” He’s the best person to sing a song like this. Someone else may have sounded like a stalker singing the lyrics. He manages to make them sound passionate. He sounds convincing while he sings about wanting the love of his life back with him.
# 7 – Mambo Italiano
The unique song is from the Story of Music (Only Original Songs) album. The song has a pop sound. This novelty song is about Mambo music. This song is closely tied to Rosemary Clooney so there are a couple of questions that come to mind. Should Dean Martin have remade a song that’s so closely linked to another singer? Did he pull off the song? The answer to the first question is probably not. The answer to the second question is that he pulled it off. The song has an Italian and jazz beat to it. It has the right amount of tempo to have you moving around.
The song starts off slowly and picks up the tempo after the first couple of lines. Martin races through the lines without even taking a breath. He makes it sound effortless. He sings the song with his Italian accent so some of the lyrics are hard to understand. You may need to read the lyrics to understand what he’s saying. Other than that, he does an excellent job with his vocals. Even though the song is a novelty song about music, he makes it sound like more than that. Martin’s version of the song is just as good as Clooney’s version of it.
# 6 – Ain’t That a Kick in the Head
The mysterious song is from the This Time I’m Swingin’ album. It has a swing sound. The song was featured in his movie Ocean’s Eleven. The metaphoric song is about comparing love to being kicked in the head. It sounds like a bad thing, but it isn’t bad at all. He enjoys the feeling that he’s describing in the song. The musical arrangement is magnificent. It has a loud big band sound to it.
The instrumentation is heart pounding. The band members sound like they are having a ball playing their instruments. It has just enough tempo to get you on the dance floor. It’s a song recorded years ago, but the music can still be appreciated today. It sounds classy without sounded dated. Martin sings in a higher register. He belts throughout the song. He holds notes in the song and turned it into a mini power ballad. The loud music gave him a chance to vocally soar in the song. The only flaw with the song is that it’s not long enough. Other than that, the song is very good.
# 5 – Sway
The next song on our Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list is “Sway” is from the album Hey, Brother, Pour the Wine. It has a big band and pop sound. The dance friendly song is about someone being in love with his dance partner. The theme is unusual, but it works. The lyrics fit with Martin’s style. It’s a different way to describe falling in love. The music is sensual and sultry. It’s also rhythmic and playful. It has enough tempo if you want to do the Tango.
The string section will blow your mind and send chills down your spine. The music also features a Spanish guitar that really sets the music off. Martin’s cool vocals are excellent for the track. He sings the lyrics in a laid back way and it makes him sound even cooler. He sings every lyric passionately. His phrasing is impeccable. His timing is great. He sings each lyric in time with the music without missing a beat. Other people have covered this song, but Martin’s version is one of the best.
# 4 – You’re Nobody till Somebody Loves You
The exquisite song is from the This Time I’m Swingin’ album. It has a pop, jazz and adult contemporary beat to it. The meaningful song is about love being the most important thing in the world. He wants you to know that “you’re nobody until somebody loves you.” The song will teach you that no matter how big you are you’re nothing unless you have love in your life. It has a deep message behind it and it will help you open your eyes to what really matters in life.
The song was written decades ago and still resonates today. The song has a killer beat. It sounds jazzy and rhythmic. The horn arrangement drives the music. The music is good for dancing. The musical pause is relaxing. It will give you a chance to appreciate the music. It’s just as good as the lyrics. His voice is smooth and velvety. His sonorous vocals are absolutely fire. He sounds soulful and commanding on this track. Martin sings in time with the music and that makes the song sound even better.
# 3 – Memories Are Made of This
The nostalgic song is from the Dino: The Essential Dean Martin album. It has a traditional pop sound. The throwback song is about taking a stroll down memory lane. It’s about a couple that falls in love for the first time. This song is one of Martin’s signature songs. It has a breezy sound to it. The guitar section drives the music. The music is pure magic and fits with the theme of the song.
Dean Martin earned his nickname “King of Cool” with this song because he sounds cool and refreshing. The song sounds like a faster version of “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” His vocals are smooth and melodic. He sounds energetic while he sings the track. You can practically hear him smiling while he’s recording the song. He croons each line effortlessly. He sounds similar to Elvis Presley on this track. His deep vocals will send chills up and down your spine.
# 2 – Everybody Loves Somebody
The optimistic song is from the Dream with Dean album. It has a traditional pop sound. The positive song is about anyone being able to find love in their lives. He wants people to know that there is someone for everyone. The lyrics give people hope that there’s someone out there for everyone. Here’s some trivia about the song. The song was written for his friend Frank Sinatra, but the song wasn’t a hit when he recorded it. This song would go on to be one of Martin’s signature songs. The music is upbeat and bouncy. The musicians do a superb job supporting Martin.
The string section is out of this world and a highlight in the song. The drumbeat is subtle, but is just enough to give the song some tempo. The pounding piano sends chills up your spine. Martin’s vocals are remarkable. He sounds believable as he tells the listeners that there’s someone for everyone. The background singers do an excellent job supporting him in the background. They all sing the enjoyable chorus to perfection. The chorus will stay in your head after it’s finished. This song could have easily been number one if it didn’t lose the coin toss.
# 1 – That’s Amore
The number one song on our Top 10 Dean Martin Songs list is “That’s Amore” from the Dean Martin Sings album. The song has a pop sound. The quirky song is about comparing Italian food to love. This massive hit is one of the crooner’s signature songs. The music is laid back and breezy. It sounds like it has an Italian arrangement to it. If you close your eyes, you will feel like you’re in Italy. It features an accordion, bass, guitar, and drums.
The combination was perfect for the song. The music is energetic and uplifting. Martin’s voice is excellent on the track. He sells the lyrics convincingly. His deep vocals blended well with the music. He sounds witty as he describes each Italian comparison to being in love. The background singers are outstanding and they belt in the chorus, which adds to the enjoyment of the song. They do an excellent job without trying to outshine Martin. It’s not a surprise that the song was a big hit and deserves the number one spot on our list.
Top 10 Dean Martin Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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