Sammy Davis Jr.

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Sammy Davis Jr.
Sammy Davis Jnr Allan Warren.jpg
1986 portrait by Allan Warren
Samuel George Davis, Jr.

(1925-12-08)December 8, 1925
DiedMay 16, 1990(1990-05-16) (aged 64)
Cause of deathThroat cancer
Resting placeForest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California
OccupationSinger, tap dancer, actor, musician
Years active1933–1990
Loray White (m. 1958–1959)

May Britt (m. 1960–1968)

Altovise Davis (m. 1970–1990)
Parent(s)Sammy Davis, Sr.
Elvera Sanchez

Sammy Davis Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990) was an American entertainer. He was a dancer, singer and instrumentalist (playing vibraphone, trumpet and drums), comedian and actor. He was born in Harlem, New York City. Davis became hugely successful as a stage singer and recording artist and when asked to play at segregated places (where African-Americans were not allowed) he refused. Because of this some popular venues began to allow African-Americans to attend just so they could have Davis and other popular black musicians play. Before that black singers like Davis and Nat King Cole could play at the hotels and casinos but not stay or gamble there.

Davis led an unhealthy lifestyle of drinking, smoking and cocaine use but was one of the most popular musicians and actors of the time. He converted to Judaism[1] while in the hospital in 1954 and 1955. He was also a member of the Rat Pack with friends Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.

The Kennedy Center honored Davis in 1987.[2]

Davis died of throat cancer in Beverly Hills, California.

References[change | change source]

  1. Jewish Virtual Library
  2. "List of Kennedy Center Honorees". Retrieved 2010-01-07.

Other websites[change | change source]