Sunday, May 13, 2007

Make it one for my baby...

Got Sinatra on the player tonight.

It's the classic album, too -- even better than "The Wee Small Hours."

Yep, you guessed it. "Only the Lonely."

"The songs I know, only the lonely know..."

Don't read anything into that. I'm not that blue tonight.

Been reading a new biography on the Chairman of the Board; I wanted to hear him during his peak.

Capitol. Late '50s. Frankie and Nelson worked magic together --- especially on this one.

You can smell the smoke. You can hear the ice tumbling in the glass. You can see him sitting there, alone. It's 2 a.m. He's ducked into the place trying to find some relief.

She's left. He's hurt. He's sharing it with us. It's that simple.

No, not really. Sinatra puts us there because he was that good.

All the classics are here. Matt Dennis' fine "Angel Eyes." ("Excuse me while I disappear...")

"What's New?" sung like he means it. "Ebb Tide," without the bombastic vocals of somebody like Bobby Hatfield.

The expanded CD includes one of my favorites. Rodgers and Hart's classic.

We looked at each other in the same way then. But who knows where. Or when?

Oh, but then comes that last number.

Just Bill Miller's piano at first; then the voice.

"It's a quarter to three. There's no one in the place 'cept you and me..."

Forget "My Way." Don't even mention "New York, New York." This is Sinatra's shining hour, the moment when the man and the music became linked. All those lonely nights getting over Ava, all the pain and the agony and the ecstasy come together to form that most elusive of species --- a perfect pop record.

That's enough for tonight. Careful, or I might get the blues for real.

Oh, let's listen to it one last time. Just once more for my baby.

And another for the road...

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