Trump apparently tried to renegotiate a deal with Frank Sinatra. It backfired.

Frank Sinatra in 1990
(Image credit: Sharon Guynup/AFP/Getty Images)

In 1990, Frank Sinatra was scheduled to play at the opening of Donald Trump's Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City, but after Trump's Taj Mahal chief, Mark Grossinger Etess, died in a helicopter crash in 1989, Trump decided to renegotiate Sinatra's pending contract, according to a new book by Sinatra's longtime manager Eliot Weisman.

Trump's opening move was declaring the terms of Sinatra's 12-show agreement "a little rich," Weisman writes in The Way It Was, to be published later this month, and then he decided to cut Sinatra's supporting acts, Sammy Davis Jr. — just diagnosed with cancer — and Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé. When Trump asked, "Who's Steve and Eydie?" Weisman writes, he moved to strangle Trump by the tie before his son stepped in and held him back.

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