Saturday, September 15, 2012

Frank Sinatra and "Once upon a time, the world was sweeter than we knew"

Last night, my husband and I attended a performance of The Chick Sings Frank  at our local castle.  Yes, we have a castle in the neighborhood.  Years ago, a wealthy Denverite, built a stone castle in the hills of Castle Rock.  This was modeled after a Scottish castle and built from rhyolite, a stone common here..  The last owner, "Tweet" Kimball, bought the castle and land and created a showcase where she put all of her treasures:  paintings, antiques, and family heirlooms.  After she died, she left her home to the county with the stipulation that the castle and 3,100 acres of  land not be sold but kept in perpetuity.  Now, the Cherokee Ranch Foundation uses the castle for all kinds of events to raise money to continue the work of the foundation. If you are fortunate enough to see them you may glimpse some of the  elk, bears, mountain lions, that roam the land and eagles and hawks that soar overhead. If you are in the Denver area,  it is a worthwhile visit.  Yes, I know, it's not like European castles, but. . . .

It was a cool, fall evening as we drove up the hill from our home, just minutes away.  A huge tent awaited the performance as we made our way into the castle for a tour and dinner.  Dinner among the paintings and the other memorabilia was perfect.  After dinner we walked  to the tent finding just the right seats.

Frank Sinatra was not from my era.  Here in Denver we had just heard of the Beatles, and in the years following in college, there were folk singers:  Judy Collins; Peter Paul and Mary; John Denver; the Smothers' Brothers; The Four Freshman; The Kingston Trio.  Rock and Roll was here and there, but not quite the hit  in the Midwest as both coasts had the latest music first.  But Frank Sinatra had a comeback with his movie roles and was having hit songs again.  All of us in the throes of those sweet first loves felt that his songs spoke to us.

 Lannie Garrett, a well-known  pop and jazz singer here in Denver, was introduced along with her accompanist/arranger. And then magic, as she began to sing songs Frank Sinatra had recorded or sung publicly,  from what she called, "The Great American Songbook."

"Once upon a time, the world was sweeter than we knew. . ."  so timely now..  I suppose every generation feels this looking back.   Another, "Last night when we were young, love was a song, a song unsung. . ,"  "Strangers in the Night,"  "Summer Wind,"  "They Can't Take That Away From Me."  On and on through the evening as the memories of my younger years washed over me.  The coming election, the burning of the American flag, the murders of our embassy personnel, the political rhetoric, the sad pictures of the hatred of young men storming our embassies, all vanished into the nostalgia of my younger world of my boys, school, work, and of the time when I had all those years ahead of me.


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  2. It's true...I am young but I can tell that the world's seen brighter days. It couldn't have always been this messy.

  3. Thanks, Jnana; I always enjoy hearing from you and reading your blog.