Friday, March 09, 2007

Stardust Memories

Early this past morning I was unable to sleep. There was nothing worth watching on cable television, so I decided to watch some of my old VHS tapes.

First, I watched “To Have and Have Not” with Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. What a classic! Unlike many modern day movies, that have been adapted from novels, it was very true to Hemingway’s book. You see the characters on screen as Hemingway portrayed them in his novel. You view them as real people. It’s a great classic movie with top quality acting. Bogie has always been one of my favorite actors.

Next I watched Sleepless in Seattle, a “chick flick”, written by Nora Efron, who only writes chick flicks. What can I say, I like both Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan (actually, I’ve been lusting after Meg for years after first seeing her in Top Gun and then in When Harry Met Sally - the faking an orgasm scene is a classic). Usually I cannot stand Rosie O’Donnell (she is an abomination), but she acted well in this movie.

I enjoyed watching this movie again and didn’t fall asleep before it ended. I usually put on movies that will lull me to sleep. I turned off the television and finally closed my eyes shortly after 6 AM this morning.

I awoke shortly after the crack of noon today thinking what did these two movies have in common? Why did I choose to watch these two movies instead of the hundreds of others that I have on video tape?

What do these two movies have in common? After pondering that question for several hours this afternoon, I came up with the answer.

Hoagy Carmichael! Hoagy who?

Carmichael was a songwriter and popular Jazz musician in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Because of the popularity of the music that he had written he appeared in several movies including “To Have and Have Not”, as Cricket the piano player. His music has been featured on many movie soundtracks.

Hoagy's most popular tune is called “Stardust”. Hundreds of singers have covered this song, including Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Nat “King” Cole and Willie Nelson. I have both Cole’s (my Mom’s LP from the 50’s) and Nelson’s (a gift from a Pro Basketball Player, who was my neighbor in the late 1970’s) versions on Vinyl. Willie cuts out the intro to the song, so my favorite is still the Nat Cole version - which is also on the “Sleepless in Seattle” soundtrack.

I’m listening to this song now:
“Sometimes I wonder why I spend the lonely night, dreaming of a song. The melody haunts my reverie. And I am once again with you. When our love was new, and each kiss, an inspiration. But that was long ago. Now my consolation, is in the Stardust of a song."

It's a beautiful song which brings back very fond "Stardust Memories" of the past lovers in my life.

Check out the availability of these Movies and Albums (CD's) on You can click on the Amazon button in my right sidebar and do a search.

The Beach Bum