Growing up, I spent a lot of time with my grandparents. Some of my favourite memories include car rides with them. We didn’t need to be going somewhere special to have a good time — the trip itself was inherently special.
Pop had a collection of cassette tapes, which he’s slowly converted to CDs (and, most recently, records because “vinyl is back”), almost entirely made up of “oldies, but goodies.” There were some showtunes, which I’m sure attributed to my theatre phase and long-standing love of Broadway. There were tapes recorded from the radio, something that just overlapped with my own childhood, and his favourite, The Beatles. But my personal favourite was a tape of Frank Sinatra hits.
Unlike many, I didn’t fall in love with Ol’ Blue Eyes through “My Way” or “Fly Me to the Moon.’ It was this album in particular that cast the Sinatra spell — his ’68 Greatest Hits. Even now, these are some of my favourites: “Strangers in the Night,” “Somethin’ Stupid’ (with Nancy Sinatra), “Tell Her (You Love Her Each Day)” and, my most favourite of all, “Forget Domani.”
Even as a kid, I was perpetually anxious. Anyone who knows me now knows that that is still the case. I think something in this song’s promise of forgetting those worries, ignoring the inevitable movement of time. and the concerns that come with it, drew me in just as much as Frank’s enthralling voice. I’m sure the song’s Italian additions (“ah, che luna, oh che mare….”) played a part in my existing love for songs in other or multiple languages (though there’s now a lot more Shakira involved).
“I get so dizzy when you’re standing near,
It’s not the music that you hear,
My heart is beating like a jungle drum.
Let’s take the minutes as they speed away
And hope it’s true what people say:
When you’re in love, tomorrow never comes.”
To some degree, I think I’ve spent the years since those childhood car rides searching for just that, the sort of all-enncompassing romance that makes you forget about everything else, even if just for a little while. Is Frank Sinatra to blame for my being a hopeless romantic? Quite possibly.
I’ve learnt more Sinatra songs as time’s gone on, but this album holds a special place in my heart (and, likely, a few more song recommendations). I’ve since heard other versions of “Forget Domani” (if you haven’t heard the Connie Francis or Perry Como versions, do yourself a favour and check them out as well), but Frank’s is still my favourite. And still, when my worries get especially bad, I’ll sometimes find myself singing, “Oh, let’s forget about tommorrow….”
(Song recommendation by Juliette Sebock)