Connie Francis rose to prominence with the release of “Who’s Sorry Now,” and had more hits in the 1960s with “Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool,” “Lipstick on Your Collar,” and “Heartaches by the Number.”
Despite the perks of celebrity, she was nonetheless burdened by sorrow.
Francis, the highest-selling female singer of the same decade, was fortunate to fall in love with adolescent hero Bobby Darin, who would go on to become the top male performer of the 1960s. He created some of her songs, and the two played together for many years, developing a love so strong that she still maintained that Bobby was her first and final love.
In an interview, Francis reflects on her vast love journey with Darin and the initial spark that activated his flight instinct.
Yet they were star-crossed lovers.
Francis’ Italian father, who was authoritarian and hot-tempered, did not approve of their growing romance and, while holding Darin at gunpoint, pushed him out of her life.
Darin died a legend in 1973, at the age of 37. He is known for his renditions of famous songs such as “Splish Splash,” “Mack the Knife,” “Dream Lover,” and “Beyond the Sea.” Darin, who was also an actor, won a Golden Globe for his debut film, Come September, in which he co-starred with another adolescent idol, Sandra Dee, whom he married in 1960.
Meanwhile, Francis was concentrating on her work under the strict supervision of her dad.
After providing her voice to actresses such as Jayne Mansfield in The Sheriff of Fractured Jaw (1958), Hollywood cast her in a prominent part in Where the Boys Are (1960), with her delivering the popular song of the same name.
Following then, she appeared in a few further films, the most recent of which was When the Boys Meet the Girls in 1965. Yet acting was not her forte.
She continued to hunt for love after Darin and was linked to comic Don Rickles, as well as becoming good friends with blue-eyed singer Frank Sinatra.
Francis was married and divorced four times, and the only relationship that lasted more than a year was with her third husband, Joseph Garzilli. During her performance in 1974, she was assaulted by a guy who broke into the New York hotel room where she was staying.
After the horrible encounter, Francis fell into a severe melancholy and became reliant on Darvon, spending the next seven years in complete solitude.
She had nose surgery in 1977 to treat a medical problem that prohibited her from singing in air-conditioned settings. She endured three additional procedures after exhibiting no indications of progress and was left without a voice for four years.
Just as she was about to make a return, her younger brother, George A. Franconero, a former district attorney who was serving as a government witness, was killed down in front of his house in what authorities describe as a “mob killing.”
Francis’s tell-all book, Among My Souvenirs, came out in 2017. In it, she talks openly about all of her accomplishments, which were tempered by a long list of bad things that happened to her.
Tony Ferretti, her 18-year companion with whom she recorded a duet of “You Made Me Love You,” died in 2022.
It is with heavy heart and sadness that I report the passing of Tony Ferretti, my dear sole companion of the past 18…Posted by Connie Francis on Saturday, 22 January 2022
With reference to her current life, she said that she wanted to be remembered not so much for the heights she has attained, as for the depths from which she has emerged.
The Jersey native, who now resides in Florida, also said that she wishes for her gravestone to say, “I hope I did okay.” She recently celebrated her 85th birthday in a navy-blue kaftan patterned with vivid yellow flowers, red lips, flawlessly coiffed hair, and a pair of sensible low-heeled shoes.
HAPPY 85th BIRTHDAY to CONNIE FRANCIS!! Career years: 1943 – 2018 Born Concetta Rosa Maria Franconero, American pop…Posted by Madhotcollectibles.com on Monday, 12 December 2022
Connie Francis did better than okay! in our opinion! She’d had such a horrible life, and she wanted to assist others who had been attacked, so she became a mental health champion.