Gay Talese’s $200 Frank Sinatra Book

Author will read tonight at the Gagosian Gallery from a most handsome 1966 Esquire article spinoff.

A Christmas season miracle? Not quite.

Nevertheless, when a monthly magazine article creeping up on 50 can, in this digital age, be expanded into a further showcase of the print form, it’s worth celebrating. And that’s just what Gay Talese will be doing tonight at New York’s Gagosian Gallery. The book, Frank Sinatra Has a Cold, based on Talese’s 1966 Esquire article of the same name, has a Taschen limited print run of 5000 and a price tag of $200. Each numbered copy is signed by Talese:

This Collector’s Edition, published in traditional letterpress with an introduction by Talese and facsimile reproductions of manuscript pages, correspondence and original storyboard, reveals the making of this New Journalism marvel. To complete the Sinatra picture, the text and archival material is interwoven with photographs of Sinatra from the legendary lens of Phil Stern, the only photographer granted access to Sinatra over four decades, as well as from top photojournalists of the ’60s including John Bryson, John Dominis and Terry O’Neill. Reproduced in rich duotone, the photographs compliment Talese’s character study by documenting the many complex facets of Sinatra: the voice, the showman, the doting father, the Hollywood magnet and the man with, in his own words, an “over-acute capacity for sadness as well as elation.”

The book is timed, exquisitely, to coincide with Sinatra’s 100th birthday, a topic trending over the weekend via the hashtag #Happy100th. Stern, who enjoyed a long and storied career photographing Hollywood celebrities and associated movie sets, passed away in 2014. Talese can also be heard reconnecting with his Esquire article on This American Life’s Sinatra centenary episode.

The Gagosian event details are here. A rep tells FishbowlNY that at press time, there are still places available. RSVP required.

Previously on FishbowlNY:
Gay Talese Still Not Sure Frank Sinatra Read That Esquire Piece
 
[Book materials courtesy: Taschen]