Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Coming on easy...


So it's just after supper and I feel like hell.

I'm blaming this cold. Won't go away. Head feels heavier than a Mack truck.

So I curl up in the easy chair and flip on the TV. Don't much care for the old movie on Turner. Flip it over to XM radio. Oh, good. Here's Jonathan Schwartz.

Sinatra is dreaming that same old dream. Then comes Dinah Washington. Now that woman had some pipes. I can't remember the song. Head still hurts.

Music is therapeutic, me thinks. Makes you forget the world awhile. Almost warms away the cold.

Almost.

It's difficult to get away from the Chairman of the Board, once you've heard a touch of that voice, and Nelson Riddle, and the lost art of it all. That cat could swing. Ring a ding ding.

So it's good-bye XM and a quick jaunt over to the CD player. "Songs for Young Lovers."

Well, wait a minute. Here's Torme. Damn that Schwartz.

OK, don't like the song. On to the turntable.

I've about decided this is my favorite Sinatra album. His musical biographer Will Friedwald favors "Songs for Swinging Lovers!", I suspect mainly for "I've Got You Under My Skin."

But, think of how it must have been, way back in '53, to chuck crap like "How Much Is That Doggie in the Window?" for The Voice, now with a deeper baritone, sporting that snazzy hat, warming the night with his funny valentine.

Stay, little valentine stay, Each day is valentine's day...


When I'm not in the mood for the romantic stuff, I switch to the later Reprise discs. Torch songs.

Look at me, I'm drinkin' again...

I still think nobody beats Frankie on that overrated Sondheim tune from "A Little Night Music."

Don't you love farce? My fault, I fear...

Somebody, maybe it was arranger Gordon Jenkins, says you hear Sinatra utter that one word -- farce -- and your life flashes before you, and you think of all those silly love affairs, and the gals that got away, and the one that broke your heart, and... well, you get the idea. It's difficult to argue. Been there.

Then I get tired of the whole darn thing and need a little Skynyrd.

What can I say? You can take Jake out of Halls, but you can't take Halls out of Jake...

Either way, it's coming on easy tonight. I've nearly forgotten the headache.

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