Saturday, December 19, 2015


T.R.A.C.S at Timothy Plaza on River Island


A year is the orbital period of the Earth moving in its orbit around the Sun. Due to the Earth's axial tilt, the course of a year sees the passing of the seasons, marked by changes in weather, the hours of daylight, and consequently vegetation and fertility. In temperate and subpolar regions, generally four seasons are recognized: spring, summer, autumn and winter. In seasonal tropical and subtropical regions, the wet (rainy or monsoon) season and the dry season are generally recognized.

A calendar year is an approximation of the Earth's orbital period in a given calendar. The Gregorian calendar considers a calendar year to be either a common year of 365 days, or a leap year of 366 days (as does the Julian calendar). The average year length across the complete leap cycle of the Gregorian (modern) calendar is 365.2425 days. ISO 80000-3, in an informative (cf. normative) annex, proposes the symbol, a, (for Latin annus) to represent a year of either 365 or 366 days. In English, the abbreviations, y and yr, are used.

In astronomy, the Julian year is a unit of time, defined as exactly 365.25 days each of exactly 86400 SI seconds, totaling 31557600 seconds.

The word, year, is also used of periods loosely associated with but not strictly identical to either the astronomical or the calendar year, such as the seasonal year, the fiscal year or the academic year, etc. By extension, the term, year, can mean the orbital period of any planet: for example, a Martian year or Venusian year is the time in which Mars or, respectively, Venus completes its own orbit. The term can also be used in reference to any long period or cycle, such as the Great Year.


Snapshots made on December 12, 2015. With DJ Cat as our deejay.

Thursday, December 10, 2015


T.R.A.C.S at Timothy Plaza on River Island

My Way

"My Way" is a song popularized by Frank Sinatra. Its lyrics were written by Paul Anka and set to music based on the French song "Comme d'habitude" co-composed, co-written and performed in 1967 by Claude Fran├žois. Anka's English lyrics are unrelated to the original French song.
Paul Anka heard the original 1967 French pop song, Comme d'habitude (As Usual) performed by Claude Fran├žois, while on holiday in the south of France. He flew to Paris to negotiate the rights to the song. In a 2007 interview, he said, "I thought it was a bad record, but there was something in it." He acquired adaptation, recording, and publishing rights for the mere nominal or formal consideration of one dollar, subject to the provision that the melody's composers would retain their original share of royalty rights with respect to whatever versions Anka or his designates created or produced. Some time later, Anka had a dinner in Florida with Frank Sinatra and "a couple of Mob guys" during which Sinatra said "I'm quitting the business. I'm sick of it; I'm getting the hell out."
Back in New York, Anka re-wrote the original French song for Sinatra, subtly altering the melodic structure and changing the lyrics:
"At one o'clock in the morning, I sat down at an old IBM electric typewriter and said, 'If Frank were writing this, what would he say?' And I started, metaphorically, 'And now the end is near.' I read a lot of periodicals, and I noticed everything was 'my this' and 'my that'. We were in the 'me generation' and Frank became the guy for me to use to say that. I used words I would never use: 'I ate it up and spit it out.' But that's the way he talked. I used to be around steam rooms with the Rat Pack guys – they liked to talk like Mob guys, even though they would have been scared of their own shadows."
Anka finished the song at 5 am. "I called Frank up in Nevada – he was at Caesar's Palace – and said, 'I've got something really special for you.'" Anka claimed, "When my record company caught wind of it, they were very pissed that I didn't keep it for myself. I said, 'Hey, I can write it, but I'm not the guy to sing it.' It was for Frank, no one else." Despite this, Anka would later record the song in 1969 (very shortly after Sinatra's recording was released). Anka recorded it four other times as well: in 1996 (as a duet with Gabriel Byrne, performed in the movie Mad Dog Time), in 1998 in Spanish as (a Mi Manera) (duet with Julio Iglesias), in 2007 (as a duet with Jon Bon Jovi) and in 2013 (as duet with Garou).

Frank Sinatra recorded his version of the song on December 30, 1968, and it was released in early 1969 on the album of the same name and as a single. It reached No. 27 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and No. 2 on the Easy Listening chart in the US. In the UK, the single achieved a still unmatched record, becoming the recording with the most weeks inside the Top 40, spending 75 weeks from April 1969 to September 1971. It spent a further 49 weeks in the Top 75 but never bettered the No. 5 slot achieved upon its first chart run.
My Way

And now the end is near
 And so I face the final curtain
 My friend, I'll say it clear
 I'll state my case of which I'm certain
 I've lived a life that's full
 I've travelled each and every highway
 and more, much more than this
 I did it my way

 Regrets I've had a few
 But then again too few to mention
 I did what I had to do
 And saw it through without exemption
 I planned each chartered course
 Each careful step along the by-way
 And more, much more than this
 I did it my way

 Yes, there were times
 I'm sure you knew
 When I bit off more than I could chew
 But through it all when there was doubt
 I ate it up and spit it out
 I faced it all
 And I stood tall
 And did it my way

 I've loved, I've laughed, and cried
 I've had my fill, my share of losing
 And now, as tears subside
 I find it all so amusing
 To think I did all that
 And may I say, not in a shy way
 "Oh no, oh no, not me
 I did it my way"

 For what is a man, what has he got?
 If not himself then he has naught
 To say the things he truly feels
 And not the words of one who kneels
 The record shows I took the blows
 And did it my way

 Yes, it was my way

Frank Sinatra

Frank Sinatra is a voice for all generations. His showmanship and artistry have remained unmatched since he began performing professionally in the 1930s to his last recording 21 years ago. When you think Sinatra, you think of the greatest music ever performed. People have marked milestones in their lives to songs made famous by the legendary Frank Sinatra. 2015 marks a very special year as the most loved entertainer of all time Frank Sinatra will be celebrated around the world with a series of commemorative centennial events.
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra; December 12, 1915 – May 14, 1998) was an American jazz and traditional pop singer, songwriter, actor, producer and director, who was one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century. He is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 150 million records worldwide. Born in Hoboken, New Jersey to Italian immigrants, he began his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey. He found success as a solo artist after being signed by Columbia Records in 1943, becoming the idol of the "bobby soxers". He released his first album, The Voice of Frank Sinatra, in 1946. Sinatra's professional career had stalled by the early 1950s, and he turned to Las Vegas, where he became one of its best known performers as part of the Rat Pack. His career was reborn in 1953 with the success of From Here to Eternity and his subsequent Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He signed with Capitol Records and released several critically lauded albums, including In the Wee Small Hours (1955), Songs for Swingin' Lovers! (1956), Come Fly with Me (1958), Only the Lonely (1958) and Nice 'n' Easy (1960).

While Sinatra never formally learned how to read music, he had a fine, natural understanding of it, and he worked very hard from a young age to improve his abilities in all aspects of music. He did, however, learn to follow a lead sheet during a performance by "carefully following the patterns and groupings of notes arranged on the page" and made his own notations to the music, using his ear to detect semi-tonal differences. Charles L. Granata, in Sessions with Sinatra: Frank Sinatra and the Art of Recording, states that some of the most accomplished classically trained musicians soon noticed his musical understanding, and remarked that Sinatra had a "sixth sense", which "demonstrated unusual proficiency when it came to detecting incorrect notes and sounds within the orchestra". Sinatra was an aficionado of classical music, and would often request classical strains in his music, inspired by composers and Puccini and other Impressionist masters. His personal favorite was Ralph Vaughan Williams. He would insist on always recording live with the band because it gave him a "certain feeling" to perform live surrounded by musicians. By the mid 1940s, such was his understanding of music that after hearing an air check of some compositions by Alec Wilder which were for strings and woodwinds, he became the conductor at Columbia Records for six of Wilder's compositions: "Air for Oboe", "Air for English Horn", "Air for Flute", "Air for Bassoon", "Slow Dance" and "Theme and Variations". The works, which combine elements of jazz and classical music were considered by Wilder to have been among the finest renditions and recordings of his compositions-past or present. At one recording session with arranger Claus Ogerman and an orchestra, Sinatra heard "a couple of little strangers" in the string section, prompting Ogerman to make corrections to what were thought to be copyist's errors. Critic Gene Lees, a lyricist and the author of the words to the Jobim melody "This Happy Madness", expressed amazement when he heard Sinatra's recording of it on Sinatra & Company (1971), considering him to have worded the lyrics in the way that he had intended when writing them to perfection. 

Wednesday, December 9, 2015