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Jerry Lewis Signed Letter to Frank Sinatra friend Eileen Barton

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Jerry Lewis
Signed Autographed Letter


Vintage 1958 Signed letter from Jerry Lewis on his personal stationary.  Letter to Eileen Barton, a close friend of Frank Sinatra's.   The letter same from the Eileen Barton estate which also included personal photos from Frank Sinatra, including a rare contract (also listed here on our website).    This letter was purportedly in response to a letter Ms Barton wrote to Mr Lewis about Frank Sinatra, and this was Mr Lewis's response back to her.   In part, "I quite agree with your feelings about this wonderful great man..."   Great vintage Hollywood piece!

Guaranteed Authentic for Life

Eileen Barton, singer: born New York 24 November 1929; died West Hollywood, California 27 June 2006.

The phrase for an unexpected guest, "If knew you were coming, I'd've baked a cake", has now passed into the language, but few would know that it originated with the singer Eileen Barton, who topped the US charts for three months with the song in 1950.

She was an excellent singer, working with Frank Sinatra, Buddy Greco and Nat "King" Cole, but, despite her father's being a successful music publisher, she never recorded enough strong original material and she will be best remembered for her cheerful novelty success.

Eileen Barton was born in Brooklyn in 1924 to Benny and Elsie Barton, who had a song-and-dance act in vaudeville. As soon as she could speak, her parents developed a routine for the song "Ain't Misbehavin' ", which led to her working two shows a day at the Palace Theatre on Broadway. When she was seven, she was featured as the mischievous child, Jolly, on Milton Berle's radio show for CBS and she appeared in the film Show for Sale (1937) as Eileen "Jolly" Barton. In 1941, she was in the chorus for the Broadway musical Best Foot Forward, and then toured in Angels in the Wings with Elaine Stritch.

In 1943, Ben Barton passed Frank Sinatra an exceptional new song, "Close to You", and suggested that Sinatra finance a publishing company with him in charge. Over the years, Barton Music published many of Sinatra's hits including "Nancy with the Laughing Face" and his signature tune "Put Your Dreams Away". Ben Barton's association with Sinatra helped Eileen's career, as she appeared on his Paramount shows in New York in 1944, and often sang with him on television and radio. They appeared together on the radio show Lucky Strike Presents Your Hit Parade, and several duets with Sinatra survive including "Together" and "Come Out Wherever You Are".

Bob Merrill, who was to write "How Much is That Doggie in the Window" and many Guy Mitchell hits, gave her "If I Knew You Were Comin', I'd've Baked a Cake". The record soared to the top of the charts and she beat off competition from Georgia Gibbs and Ethel Merman, but the best-selling versions in the UK were by Gracie Fields and Eve Young.

Barton followed her hit with "Dixieland Ball, "May I Take Two Giant Steps", "You Brought a New Kind of Love for Me" and "En-Thus-E-Uz-E-As-M (Enthusiasm)", but she didn't repeat that success. In 1951, she covered Johnnie Ray's "Cry" and did reasonably well in 1953 with "Sway (Quien Sera)"and "Pretend".

As with many singers, her career faltered with the advent of rock'n'roll. In 1962 she appeared in a dire Jayne Mansfield film, Promises! Promises! Shortly before she died, she assisted with a 2-CD set of her recordings...

NOTE:  I have collected and studied Jerry Lewis's signature for 30 years and most of the signed photos on the market do not match his in person signatures (as this letter has) and hence are most likely secretarial.  This signature is consistent with his in person examples and contracts and guaranteed authentic for life. 

Additional Bio:



Eileen Barkin on the 1950-51 Frank Sinatra Show video

Eileen Barkin video singing her smash hit