Let’s Take A Moment Day 505

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

Aug 2021 blog

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day. And if this helps anyone else, even better.

Today the man born Anthony Dominick Benedetto turns 95 years young. The legendary performer better known by his stage name, Tony Bennett, was born on August 3, 1926 in Queens, NY. Frank Sinatra called him “the best singer in the business”. Pretty hard to argue with the Chairman Of The Board. Bennett released today’s song, his signature tune, in February of 1962. Nearly 60 years later, it remains as timeless as the singer himself. Here’s to 100 more birthdays for the great Tony Bennett.

The loveliness of Paris seems somehow sadly grey
The glory that was Rome is of another day
I’ve been terribly alone and forgotten in Manhattan
I’m going home to my city by the Bay
“.

Tony 1

Tony 2

Top: Tony Bennett circa 1964. Bottom: Bennett circa 2004. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Tony Bennett: “I Left My Heart In San Francisco” (1962, written by George C. Cory Jr. and Douglass Cross).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 140

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

Charlie Brown No Music No Life

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day.  And if this helps anyone else, even better.

Our first birthday of the new month belongs to the one and only Tony Bennett who turns 94 today.  Born and raised in Astoria, New York he started singing early in life but did not start his professional career until he served in the army for two years at the end of WWII.  According to his website the first time he sang in a nightclub was in 1946.  In 1949 Bob Hope saw Bennett perform and invited him to Paramount Studios.  The website also states it was Hope who came up with Bennett’s stage name because Hope did not like the one Bennett used at that time, which was Joe Bari.  Bennett’s first hit came in 1951 with “Because Of You” which means he has been recording songs for 69 years in seven different decades.  That is astonishing.

With that many years of music to choose from, you might think it was a daunting task for me to pick only one to share.  But it really wasn’t as today’s song is timeless like Bennett himself.  This tune began as an instrumental in 1936 but by 1954 lyrics were added to the beautiful music.  That same year Nat King Cole did an absolutely stunning version of his own with Bennett recording his in 1959.  That is a great rendition as well, but I really love the updated one he did in 1965 which was included on his record, “The Movie Song Album”, released the following year.  The production is prettier and includes a truly gorgeous string arrangement.  Add to that Bennett’s nearly perfect voice and it is just my absolute favorite performance of this song ever.

Continued health, love, happiness and success to you, Anthony Dominick Benedetto.  You are an absolute gift to anyone who has ever heard you sing and to music & life itself.

Tony

 (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Tony Bennett:  “Smile” (1965, written by Charlie Chaplin (music, 1936) and Geoffrey Parsons and John Turner (lyrics, 1954).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

25 Days Of Christmas Music 2019: Day 9

Welcome back to the countdown!!!

Here’s another gorgeous vintage Christmas image from Pinterest.  What was life before Pinterest?!?!   🙂

day 9

Original source unknown.  

Irving Berlin could not have possibly known how many people would go on to record one of his most famous songs.  He wrote several and lived to be 101 years old, but I still think he could not even imagine how many versions of this Christmas classic would be out there one day.  And there are new ones being recorded each year.  Berlin wrote it imagining Christmas in his home state & city of New York as opposed to the west coast state of California he was working in.

When it was first released in 1942, service men & women facing their first Christmas away due to their tours in World War II saw it as a dream of home.  For the rest of us, it invokes cherished memories of the Christmases we knew as children or before life happened to us.  The version of this song I like best is by a fellow Italian, a fellow native New Yorker and painter who has been singing for 70 years.  Not a bad gig.

Tony Bennett

Anthony Dominick Benedetto a/k/a Tony Bennett:  “White Christmas” (1968, written by Irving Berlin in 1942).

And for a great female take on this classic, here is one of my favorites:

Martina White Christmas.jpg

Martina McBride:  “White Christmas” (1998, written by Irving Berlin in 1942).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing some things that I love with you  🙂

What are some of your favorite Christmas songs?

Until next time, happy listening!!!