Two Franks

The above photo was taken by my father while he was in the Army; stationed in Newfoundland, Canada in 1945.

And I can only imagine what tremendous excitement it gave him to finally meet his all-time favorite Hoboken, New Jersey, Italian-born singing idol, on the day that Frank Sinatra came to visit his military troop.

There are two things that my father had always wished about his life...

...to be able to sing.

...and that he had gone to school to become a dentist.

(a singing dentist, I guess)

My dad (who was also a Frank) loved listening to his treasure of Sinatra albums.

I have such vivid memories of LP's playing on Sunday afternoons, while smelling tomato sauce cooking in the kitchen and hearing such tunes as: Night and Day, The Way You Look Tonight, Witchcraft, and Come Fly With Me.

One day last week, while I was standing in line at Starbucks, I noticed that they were playing Sinatra songs, which immediately made me smile and think of my dad.

But what's interesting, is that I never appreciated or ever really felt Sinatra in my soul, until I got to the age of forty-one, and was ironically cast in a play in which my character and the character that I was romantically involved with, shared a scene together, where we danced to the music of one of Mr. Sinatra's songs.

The play also used various Sinatra songs that were musically woven between each of the scene changes, so that every performance for me was like experiencing Sunday afternoons in the Carnavil family.

Little by little throughout the rehearsal process, something shifted inside me, where I began to finally hear and connect to what it was that my father had always enjoyed.

About midway through the run of the play, I had officially become a full-fledged Frank Sinatra fan; finding myself singing his songs throughout my day.

And what was really touching for me, is that many times during that one particular scene in the play, I could literally feel my father onstage....dancing through me.

It was as if Frank Sinatra had magically brought my father and I together again...as we both shared a common love.

"So, thank you Mr. Sinatra."

"And Dad...I finally now know why the hell you loved him so much."





My father.....the other Frank.

32 comments

  1. Hey, Ron.

    This is why I love music. It has the power to evoke memories and emotions. As you know from my last post, ABBA reminds me of my father. I eventually grew to love the music for its fun nature, but it will always take me back to my youth. My dad would usually play the ABBA Gold tape whenever we went for car rides. It's something so simple, but riding in the car with my dad is one of my treasured memories.

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  2. Hello Ron,
    This is such a touching tibute to both your Dad & Mr Sinatra.
    That is a precious photo that your Dad took. Wow !! It's amazing to have heard stories about artists with the USO who would come & visit
    the troops.My Dad saw & few stars in his day.

    A lot of things change when we get up there in age. We see our parents differently and understand somethings about them that at 18 or 25 we brushed off.

    I can also see you in your Dad's face.

    Thank you for sharing, Ron.
    XX

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  3. What a beautiful post! Those memories of Sunday afternoons sound so wonderful.

    I never really appreciated Mr. Sinatra until I shared an office with a guy who strictly enforced "Frank Sinatra Fridays!" I was really into stuff like Pearl Jam at the time, and suffered through the first few Fridays seething and praying for 5:00. About a month into my sentence he was scheduled out of the office, and I was free to listen to whatever I wanted. I flipped through my cds and realized that all I really wanted to hear was The Way You Look Tonight. *sigh*

    Silly me. I got hooked.

    I hope your week is filled with love and laughter, Ron.

    xoxo
    ~vk~

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  4. Great story. There's so much to hear in Sinatra's singing, for musicians and non-musicians alike. I am a former jazz trumpet player (I still noodle around with it every now and again) and what I got musically from Frank was his fluidity with the melody. Never confined by the beat of the music.

    As a listener, he's just a great singer, with tons of passion. Send in the Clowns is a favorite of mine.

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  5. The way the music moves through you, Oh! how I know that!
    Mine is Nat king cole. Brings me tears every time I hear it!
    Your dad was just as cute as you!

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  6. Howdy Roberto!

    That's right...I DO remember reading that on your last post!

    Which BTW, I forgot to mention in my comment I left you...that I too love ABBA.

    (and have listened to Abba Gold)

    They say that the two most VIVID emotional memory triggers are SCENT and MUSIC. And I can believe it too!

    Thanks for sharing a memory on this post, Roberto!

    Enjoy your day!

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  7. It never ceases to amaze me how a certain song can evoke such strong memories and feelings. How lovely that Frank Sinatra's music was able to make you feel your Dad's presence Ron. :)

    Your father was a very handsome man - you must take after him m'dear. :)

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  8. Bonjour Barbara~

    Good afternoon, my friend!

    My stepmother found this photo in a box of old family memorabilia and asked me if I wanted it. I have it wrapped in small ziplock bag and should probably have it framed one day.

    Not only is it a great photo of Mr. Sinatra, but I love looking at the expressions on the faces of the solders in the background. The whole photo has such a cool energy to it.

    Yes...all my life people have shared that my father and I looked a lot alike. We both shared similar personalities too.

    Thanks a bunch for stopping by Barb!

    Always great seeing ya!

    XX to you and Didier!

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  9. Good Afternoon Vixen Kitten!

    OMG...what a great story you shared!!

    Isn't it funny how something just CLICKS with Sinatra and you end up getting hooked?

    Hey, you're not going to believe this, but the song that we danced to in the play that I spoke about was, "The Way You Look Tonight"!!!

    To this day...it's my favorite Sinatra song!

    Michael Buble' does a rendition that is FAAAAAABULOUS!

    Thanks for dropping by, sweet lady!

    Happy Monday to you and Pea!

    oxox

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  10. Helloooooo Lady Sorrow!

    Can I just tell ya how much I LOVE Nat King Cole too????

    Mr. Cole was also a voice you always heard in the Carnavil family.

    I have a few Nat King Cole songs that my brother burned for me on a CD, and every single time I hear him sing Mona Lisa....

    ....I get the "tears" too!

    His voice is as smooth as butter and as soulful as soulful could be.

    Thanks for stopping by, dearest lady!

    Love ya!

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  11. Howdy Chris!!!

    How are ya, bud?

    You are so RIGHT ON about his fluidity with the music!!!

    It's almost as if he sang IN BETWEEN the beat of the music. I have several different renditions of songs that he sang, and each one sounds completely different.

    *such as Night and Day.

    And I too enjoy his Send in the Clowns!

    What a wonderful voice, hu?

    Thanks for dropping by, Chris!

    Enjoy your Monday!

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  12. Good Afternoon Akelamalu!

    aaawww...thanks dear lady.

    I know my father just smiled after you said that!

    YES...OMG...music always hits me straight in the soul and transports me to another time. Music is one of those things, that even though it may even be sung in another language...the feelings are Universal.

    Thanks for dropping by!

    Happy Monday to ya!

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  13. It is lovely that you have such good memories from your childhood, long may you carry them with you.

    I love music there isn't any particular song or artist but I find it soothing and often hear messages in the music I hear. Quite often I hear something I have not heard for years but it is just right for that moment to give me the reassurance I need.

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  14. your Dad looks like a movie star!

    I love Sinatra, always have. Dean Martin even more so.

    great story sweet one

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  15. Unforgettable.... *sigh*

    Yup--definitely a Nat King Cole fan.

    And yup, been known to get stuck on a good Sinatra tune.

    Which.....*rolling eyes*

    Here comes "New York New York".....LOL
    Oh, I'll just blame you and hum anyway....cuz I can. :-)

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  16. That's so awesome that you finally felt the connection your Dad did. I just love how music takes you back to places and people you loved.

    Beautiful post... :-)

    P.S. I LOVE Michael Buble! So great to see someone young embracing this music.

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  17. I'm not a Sinatra fan but that is a beautiful post, Ron. Music always seems to stir memories, almost even more than scents do.

    Every time I hear In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida, I'm back at HS dances. Any song from Okalahoma, South Pacific or Flower Drum Song reminds me of my mother. Welcome to The Jungle, makes me think of my daughter and Santa Claus is Coming to Town of my son.

    Your post is so touching that when I hear Frank sing, I'll think about two Franks and a Ron.

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  18. Good Evening Lady in Red!

    It's funny, because the older I grow, the more I keep remembering little special moments from my childhood, and for the past year...I've been remembering more and more with my father.

    Me too...I'm not stuck to any type of music, I seem to enjoy a lot of different sounds.

    And how true...

    ....that's the magic of music.

    Each time we hear it, we hear something different!

    Thank for stopping by and sharing on this post, Lady!

    Always so nice seeing ya!

    X

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  19. Hellooooo Dianne!

    Thanks dear lady!

    My father had a very special "magnetism" about him. He was VERY funny and enjoyed sharing stories at family gatherings and parties.

    oooh...oooh...me too!

    LOVED Dean Martin. I have a few of his recordings also.

    He, Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Peter Lawford, and Joey Bishop....THE RAT PACK!

    And do you know that Shirley Maclaine was the only female to be included in The Rat Pack?

    Thanks for dropping by Dianne!

    Hope you had a wonderful day!

    P.S. I keep thinking about you and me KVETCHING about this DAMN HOT WEATHER!!!!

    OY!

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  20. Hiya Mel!

    "Unforgettable...that's what you are....

    ....unforgettable...though near or far"

    hahahahahaha!

    LOVE that tune!!!!

    And who could ever forget New York, New York??

    The ultimate!!!

    Great seeing ya, dear lady!

    Have a spectacular humming night!

    X

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  21. Hello Chrissy!

    Oh man...you said the magic words...

    ..Michael Buble'!

    I love to get a nice glass of red wine, put on my headphones, lay on the floor with a couple of throw pillows...and CHILL to voice to Mr. Buble'

    A guy at work introducted me to MB. And I'll be forever grateful.

    Thanks for stopping by Miss Burn Baby Burn!

    tee, hee

    X

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  22. Howdy Nirbyrd!

    You're so sweet...thank you!

    I believe you're right. Music can dig DEEP into the soul and stir emotions like nothing else.

    You mentioned SEVERAL of my favorite musicals. OMG...I love the song "I Love Being a Girl" from Flower Drum Song, don't you? And anything from Oklahoma makes me want to chew some straw and wear a cowboy hat!

    YEEEEHAWWWW!

    HAHAHAHHAAHHAHA!

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing on this post, Sista'!

    Love ya!

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  23. touching post ron. it was great your father got to meet someone he admired...that hardly happens in life. it's also great that you will always think of your father when you hear a FS song. i do that myself. certain songs or artists remind me of those i love.

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  24. Hey Ron - I've been enjoying Ol' Blue Eyes for the past eight years or so. As a child, I couldn't stand hearing any of the American Standards. During my late teens and early twenties, I "liked the idea" of Frank and his ilk, but still didn't have the patience to drop the alternative rock and explore new aural territory.

    Of course, these days I carry a huge respect for the crooners of old, especially Sinatra. There's an effortless swagger in much of his works than resonates crisply, especially when sipping a nice bourbon or scotch.

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  25. Hi Natural!

    So true!

    Not often do we get the opportunity to meet someone who we really admire, so I know my dad must have been in complete AWE of meeting Frank!

    Music has that magic ability to reconnect us with one another and knows no distance...

    Thank you for stopping by, Valerie!

    Enjoy your evening!

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  26. "When the moon hits your eye
    like a big pizza pie

    That's amorie"


    Cheers to Frank. . . da boat a yas

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  27. Hey MVD~

    aaahhh...Ol' Blue Eyes!

    Spoken like a true Sinatra admirer!

    Damn...you make me want to grab a scotch, light a cigarette and then swagger to the sounds of Night and Day!

    I was the same way in my twenties...

    ....more interested in David Bowie, Bette Midler, and Billy Joel.

    And then isn't it funny how our ears begin to enjoy something new...of something old.

    Even Bette Midler now croones to the tunes of Rosemary Clooney!

    Alway such a pleasure sharing with ya, bud!

    Thanks for stopping by!

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  28. Howdy Mr. Jeff!

    Hey...everytime I hear that song I think of the movie Moonstruck!

    "Snap out of it!!!!!

    Thanks for dropping by, bud!

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  29. This blog got tucked away in some other recent postings, so I am sorry to get to it so late.
    It was a great read - so many great Franks in that era, indeed. Thanks for putting this one up. Great photo of ol' Blue Eyes in Canada, too! Collectible...
    My father is named Ray. Hmmm.....Charles? Sugar Ray?

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  30. No worries Expat...it's always GREAT to see ya whenever you drop by buddy!

    Oh man...and do I the love the voice of Mr. Ray Charles!

    Do you remember when he used to do those soft drink commericals? I can't remember if it was for Pepsi or Coke...I think it was Pepsi.

    Anyway...thanks for dropping by!

    Hope you're having a great Tuesday and it's not as HOT as it is here!

    Wheeeew!

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  31. why ron, your dad looks just like you except you are a little cuter, maybe a little less dark....i tend to go for light men, as in northern euro, scandie types and no, i don't need to know what type you go for unless you want to share and then i'm all ears...you know don't you, my bro is just like you in his love interests and for some weird reason, and tell me why is this, that it's so much easier to talk to a gay man and it's nice you finally said it outloud, at least it's the first time little old me has seen it even tho i knew it from day one! probably bbecause of where i live...course...

    anyway, geez, i am so loopy tonight, it's something, like maybe pig flu? lol...this was a very sweet post ron and i can see why you were so moved to write it...thank you for sharing such a personal side of your life, and thank you for sharing a wee bit of your dad too...he is very good looking...


    love you
    xoxoxoxo

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  32. Hi Linda!

    Thank you for you sweet words, dear lady!

    For some reason I've been thinking about my father lately, so when I saw this Frank Sinatra photo, this post just came to me. Glad you enjoyed.

    I look like my father, only a lighter version of him. He was typical olive skin and dark hair, but I got my coloring from my mother's side. They were very light Italians.

    I really don't have a specific type of man that I'm attracted to. Although, I seem to look at darker hair and light skin. But I also love gray or salt and pepper hair. I love humor and a gentleness in someone.

    I don't know why that is...

    ...many women say the same thing about talking to a gay man.

    They say it's like talking to a girlfriend, but at the same time talking to a man. Most of my friends are women. I thoroughly enjoy the company of women, and I think most gay men will say the same thing.

    I've never share more openly about my sexual preference than I have in the past few months. I've gotten to the point where I want to start sharing more things about myself, and that may include stories about my sexual preference. So I just started to include it gradually into my posts, to get myself use to talking about it on the internet.

    To be honest, I've always just assumed that my readers knew and didn't care anyway. I have such a wonderful group of readers on this blog.

    And thank you for being one of them, dear lady!

    And thank you for stopping by for The Two Franks!

    Enjoy your evening!

    XOXOXOXOX

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