90 Years of Sinatra
edited: Tuesday, October 10, 2006
By James Musler
Rated "G" by the Author.
Posted: Tuesday, December 13, 2005
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A birthday tribute for Sinatra's 90th.
On December 12, 1915 an approximately ninety-two pound mother birthed a twelve and three quarters pound baby in a near tragedy which left the baby with scars upon his neck and face, then nearly left him dead. Thankfully, his quick thinking grandmother grabbed him and dipped him into cold water and “got some blood moving around”. That baby did live and from that moment on Francis Albert would “Live each day like it may be the final day”.
Today, on the day marking Frank Sinatra’s 90th birthday, one must ask: where have all the old crooners gone? A crooner, for those too young to remember, is defined as “a singer who favors slow songs, especially ballads, and whose style is generally sentimental”. A crooner is a smooth singer, a person who, when singing, could compete with Shakespeare, Wordsworth or Byron in expressions of passion. A crooner was a sentimentalist. He was a man who believed in romance, manners and style.
So where are the old crooners? In a day when music favors aggressiveness and belligerence, one may tend to think of sentiment as old school but should it be? Emotion, passion, fervor and zest for life are some of the elements which cause man to strive to become better, to endeavor for greatness. It prompted Edison to invent the light bulb, Franklin to harness electricity and Columbus to strike out on a voyage ending on American soil.
In a society focused on sexuality, have we forgotten the ideals of sensuality? Have we overlooked the importance of passion and its progeny: love? Love for others is paramount to most of the major religions. Passion has developed more great plays, poems and sonnets than simply rage or complaint.
Most great self help books promote understanding rather than being understood. In his book “How to Win Friends & Influence People”, Dale Carnegie prompts us to woo people, to win them over rather than attempting to change them. In “The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People”, Stephen R. Covey almost immediately works to convince us to see things from another’s paradigm.
Sure, on what would be his 90th birthday, we could focus on Frank’s temper or belligerence but that was never when he sang. When he sang, Frank showed his heart to the world. When he sang, he believed in allowing his nerves to show through; he was honest when he sang. Happy 90th Frank. Thank you for showing us your passion and love; thanks to you for all the years of crooning.
© Copyright 2005 by T. James Musler