NELSON RIDDLE : Saving Sinatra


Nelson Riddle the legendary arranger/orchestrator/composer is largely responsible for what we think of as the sound of The Great American Songbook.

His arrangements and orchestrations for artists like Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee, Nat King Cole, Dean Martin, Judy Garland, Johnny Mathis, Rosemary Clooney, and Doris Day created for the Capitol label, defined the sound of the 40s, 50s, and 60s.

He is responsible for resuscitating Sinatra's career and turning him into the legend he became. Riddle is the creator of the "Rat Pack" sound, composing scores for Robin and the Seven Hoods and Ocean's 11 among dozens of other films.

He won an Oscar for the score of 1974's The Great Gatsby in addition to 3 Grammy awards, two of them for his album collaborations with Linda Ronstadt that revived his extraordinary career shortly before his death in 1985.

It's hard to overestimate his importance to American popular music.


Award winning actor Joe Mantegna will handle the narration. Joe has made over 200 film and TV appearances. He is also a producer, writer, and director, and is probably best known for his role   as Joey Zasa in the Francis Ford Coppola epic The Godfather  part three(1990), in which he stars alongside Al Pacino and Andy Garcia.

On playing Dean Martin in The Rat Pack (1998) “That might be in my top five characters I’ve   played. I had such admiration for him and respect, and loved the era and that music.”  Joe’s   work has been recognised with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.Type your paragraph here.


Johnny Mathis:       This legendary singer gives us a first hand account of working with Riddle on two hit albums.

Gary Puckett 

Tony Christie :        The two veteran pop stars talk of their love of  the Riddle big band charts.

Sue Raney               The acclaimed jazz diva recounts her time as a teenage vocalist and being tutored by Riddle on her hit single,                                 the Riddle arrangement of “When Your Lover Has Gone”, and being his go-to female vocalist for live                                                 engagements spanning over forty years.

Gayle Levant            The world-renowned harpist has worked with everyone from Streisand to Sinatra.

                               She was Nelson Riddle’s first-pick harpist.

                               An accomplished arranger in her own right she gives a first hand account of  the numerous times

                               she worked with Riddle.

Peter Asher CBE       Peter Asher was Linda Ronstadt’s manager when she declared, against Peter’s and her record label’s wishes,                                   she wanted to sing the standards and that she wanted Nelson Riddle to do the arrangements.

                               Peter gives an in-depth account of this unlikely but hugely successful collaboration.

Chris Walden           Star Wars re-arranger and Michael Bublé’s musical director provides the technical, yet entertaining analysis                                     on Riddle’s unique orchestrations.

Christopher Riddle
  Nelson’s musician son and the last remaining member of the Nelson Riddle Orchestra will provide first hand                                   accounts of shadowing his father from a very young age. Christopher recalls working with and getting to                                       know  Frank Sinatra, how his father invented Karaoke and taught actors Lee Marvin and Clint Eastwood how

                               to sing with an orchestra.