Monday, March 30, 2009


We'll chalk this one up to divine intervention...

You may be wonderin' how an otherwise relatively hip chick like me would become an adoring fan of such an old-timer...
Well, it was merely a matter of time.

My childhood experience of watching the classic musicals that my parents so adored created a subtle sense of nostalgia for the bygone days. However, my parents weren't nearly as cool as I in their musical tastes, preferring Yani (they call him that cuz it's what he makes you do!) and, what's that sax player's name? to the super style of my boys. My grandparents--really more of the Sinatra fan base peer group--were either into barbershop quartets (such as grampa the preacher) or old school country (such as granny the arkie). So where did the influence come from? I guess it might have been a gift from above...

As a bartender in Wichita, Kansas at the premier dead-head/biker bar, Downtown Wally Brown's, I was shooting pool in a local competition dive bar--i mean seedy!--when I stumbled upon a Sinatra CD in their juke box--is that cosmic placement or something? It was just like the Universe slipped it into that brief moment in time, just to change my life!--and decided, "what the heck; let's see what that era was all about!" I don't remember just what song it was... I've heard so many of his songs for years not even realizing who I was listening to, like the Married With Children theme song, Love and Marriage. Maybe it was World on a String. Whichever the case, it was like an immediately heart-melting moment, and I knew that no other man, not Jerry Garcia himself, would ever hold a candle to this one.

I returned to my own dive bar the next day and demanded that SOME album be taken off the jukebox so that SINATRA could be put on!

OK, so the bikers and the hippies gave me funny looks for quite a while after that, but man I tell ya, something otherworldly happened, and it caught on. Imagine the bearded, burly, bikers singing in unison,
I got the world on a string
Sittin' on a rainbow
Got the string 'round my fi-i-inger
What a world, What a life
I'm in love!

Then I discovered his theatrical line-up. He was really quite good. Check out my review of certain films, 3 posts down, called "what mood moves you?"
Lori, to you I recommend "High Society." It's a musical, if you can handle that! But Frank's performance is top notch. Plus, he sings some wonderful tunes.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Well folks, we've cast our votes and here are the results of SURVEY 2: WHO MAKES THE BEST MRS. SINATRA?

one of you (i know it's you justin) cast a vote (that's 16%) for the lovely Ava Gardner. She was quite a looker, was she not? And my, how she had Frank in a lovestruck way. In fact, long before they met, while playing with Dorsey, he pointed out Ava's photo and said "I'm gonna marry her someday." That must've been in the 30s. Of course, he had quite a list of ladies he'd like to get with, and likely managed to get 'em all... the ol' dog.
Dean-o once introduced him: "A man whose outlook is never narrow but who sees everything in terms of the broad."
three of you (that's 50% folks!) voted Barbara Marx. I know nothing of Babs, but that she was his late-in-life-love. Probably a pretty good bet that he'd have cooled a few degrees by then to make it last with her. In fact he showed her unending adoration, toasting to her whereever they went: "I drink to you, my love, because I adore you!" While dating, she'd receive wires from him daily as well as flowers, whereever he was. And he'd often call to say "I love you," and hang up with no further conversation. (sigh) what a romantic!
two of you, bless your hearts (that's a third) voted ME... and I do appreciate the astuteness. Ok, one of them was me, but that leaves one person that feels my love. While I've had many dreams about the man (not dirty ones, thank you very much), we never truly were married. Although, I do maintain that he's my boyfriend... we have a long distance relationship.
As far as Mia and Nancy? Nuttin'. Sorry sucka's!

resource: The Way You Wear Your Hat

Monday, March 9, 2009


The following is an excerpt from regarding his biography. I thought it was a poignant statement because many people are misled as to the life of the man, believing him to be a less righteous cat than he truly was! Read on...

"Many people overlook the generosity of Frank Sinatra throughout his life. He was a favorite of the media due to his alleged mob ties and the focus usually centered on what he did wrong instead of the many things he did right. In 1971, the Motion Picture Academy awarded him the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award for his many charitable deeds. He received the Kennedy Center Life Achievement Award in 1983 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1985. In 1987, Sinatra was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the N.A.A.C.P. If any of those accolades can be topped, they were in 1997 when Frank Sinatra received the highest honor the U.S.A. can bestow upon a civilian in a Congressional Gold Medal for his countless accomplishments as a singer, actor, and humanitarian."

Thursday, March 5, 2009


When it comes to Sinatra movies, it's all about mood.
What emotion are you looking to appeal to when you're going out to rent a Frank flick? Here's a quick rundown of potential movies for your potential moodies.


Definitely go for Anchors Aweigh. He's cute as a button, unassuming, and in love with the lady who loves another. He gets his comeuppance, though, and finds the perfect girl. This movie also features (sigh) Gene Kelly. If you've never seen a Gene Kelly movie, OMG, after this one you'll be a believer. He's the singularly greatest dancer/choreographer of all time. He's like Astair, only HOT!
Anchors Aweigh also features the very famous dance scene with Jerry the Mouse. This is the film that pioneered mixing real film with animation. The sequence with Jerry was the first to incorporate a cartoon character interacting with a filmed figure.


Robin and the Seven Hoods, all the way! This movie has Dean and Sammy in it too, as well as Bing Crosby. The musical numbers are glorious--especially "You either got or you haven't got style." The comedy is sheer hilarity! They make you want to be there having a good time with them, law-breaking, mob-dodging, and shooting pool.


Many of his films feature his voice, but for all intents and purposes, High Society rocks the boat! This Grace Kelly, Bing Crosby (and... what was that other gal's name... I don't remember, but I love her! ) film is a musical spin off of the Hepburn/Grant/Stewart classic The Philadelphia Story. I LOVE THIS MOVIE!! The songs are AWESOME! Including Porter's marvel, "What a swell party this is." Frank's journalist partner (I wish I could remember... OH YEAH), Celeste Holm, are magic together! And who doesn't swoon when watching the supremely graceful Grace Kelly?

As a side, Guys and Dolls is a great film with Sinatra as supporting actor alongside the wonderful Marlon Brando. Brando, I love you. But God bless him, he's just no singer. Somehow (cuz he's so dreamy), he got the lead role and the lead vocals on a Sinatra standard, "Luck be a Lady." Kinda infuriating, but I suppose Sinatra had a decent role nonetheless.


There's a tie here between Marriage on the Rocks and The Tender Trap. These two movies ('65 and '55 respectively) will truly offend the delicate feminist sensibilities. But that point is an interesting illustration of what was considered appropriate gender ideology of the time. Marriage on the Rocks features Deborah Kerr (From Here to Eternity) and Dean-o and makes bold statements about what a wife should be willing to accept. The Tender Trap costars Debbie Reynolds (from the alltime greatest, Singin' in the Rain) and the wonderful Celeste Holm, and tells the tale of a womanizer falling in love.
Whatever mood moves you to the movie store, check it out, there's a Sinatra gem that's just right for you.

Monday, March 2, 2009


Sinatra was a most noteworthy singer, incredibly prolific and wildly successful. He was also a movie star, equally prolific. The VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever lists 49 (what, couldn't belt out a 50th buddy?) between Strictly G.I. in '44 and Who Framed Roger Rabbit in '88.
Many of his films featured him purely for his voice, I'm sure. But the one that won him the most critical acclaim did not. In fact, he was but a supporting actor (the best that year, by Oscar's account) who was killed off much too early! oops. Maybe I shouldn't have given that one away. But come on, who here hasn't seen From Here to Eternity? Not the '79 Basinger remake. The classic '53 Lancaster/Clift chick or Rick flick.

Frank plays a part made for him: the scrappy-little-Italian-tough-guy that any girl would adore, whose continual trouble-making earns him black eyes. Oh, the character was fantastically easy to like, and he added the perfect amount of flare to an otherwise dangerously dramatic LOVE STORY.
But even with the Oscar, it wasn't From Here to Eternity that Frank felt deserved his award. Rather, a lesser known film with Kim Novak called The Man With the Golden Arm. Why was his arm golden? That is a cunundrum. It could be his marvelous talent for drums... or it could be his talent for dealing cards and always winning... or it could be his heroin addiction. At any rate, you want drama? You want to see Frank in a truly exceptional display of thespi? Check out this legendary addict performance! Pretty good for a Pretty Boy!

As for my personal favorite?

Anchors Aweigh.
Cuz it's got the singularly most perfect pair of man legs in all filmdom in it...
Gene Kelly... sigh.

OMG! I think I'll start up a Gene Kelly section for this blog!
Oh, And Frank sings and dances in a sailor uniform.
Support CC - 2008