12/17/15 - NNHS Newsletter - I'll Be Home for Christmas“Christmas is the keeping-place for memories of our innocence.”
- Joan Mills
“I am not alone at all,
I thought. I was never alone at all. And that, of course,
is the message of Christmas. We are never alone. Not when the night is darkest,
the wind coldest, the word seemingly most indifferent.
For this is still the time God chooses.”
Dear Friends and Schoolmates,
Today's Newsletter theme is one which seems to get my tears ducts working, no matter where or with whom I spend Christmas. Somehow there always seems to be some one or other missing.
Of the very many
versions of this Christmas song, I have collected almost all of them over the
years, and Frank Sinatra's version is by far, in my humble opinion, a
spectacular standout among them all - the very best of the best.
BONUS #1 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFGfCn5rKIM - I'll Be Home for Christmas - Bing Crosby, 1943
BONUS #2 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pk-SLQPYJ0 - I'll Be Home for Christmas - Frank Sinatra, 1957
BONUS #3 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jg200MLmbXY - I'll Be Home for Christmas - Josh Groban - "...dedicated to all the families that have someone serving in the military ..."
|"I'll Be Home for Christmas" is a
song, written by
In 1943, this song joined "White Christmas" to become one of America's most popular Christmas songs. The recording by Bing Crosby shot to the top ten of the record charts that year and became a holiday musical tradition in the United States. The idea of being home for Christmas originated in World War I when soldiers at first thought that the war would be quick and they would return by Christmastime. This inevitably did not happen, hence the line "if only in my dreams".
A song titled "I'll Be Home for Christmas" was first copyrighted on August 24, 1943, by Kent (music) and James "Kim" Gannon (lyrics). The two revised and re-copyrighted their song on September 27, 1943, and it was this version that was made famous by Crosby. The label on Crosby's recording credits "I'll Be Home for Christmas" to Kent, Gannon, and Ram. Later recordings usually credit only Kent and Gannon. The discrepancy arose from the fact that on December 21, 1942 Buck Ram copyrighted a song titled "I'll Be Home for Christmas (Tho' Just in Memory)"—that song bore little or no resemblance, other than its title, to the Crosby recording.
According to Ram, who was primarily a lyricist, he had written the lyrics as a 16-year-old, homesick college student. Prior to his publishers planned release, he had discussed the song with two acquaintances in a bar. He left a copy with them, but never spoke to them about it again. Both he and his publisher were shocked when the song was released by a competing publishing house. Per news articles of the day, Ram's publisher, who had been holding the song back a year because they were coming out with "White Christmas," sued Gannon and Kent's publisher and prevailed in court.
On October 4, 1943, Crosby recorded "I'll Be Home for Christmas" with the John Scott Trotter Orchestra for Decca Records. Within about a month of Kent and Gannon's copyright the song hit the music charts and remained there for eleven weeks, peaking at number three. The following year, the song reached number nineteen on the charts. It touched a tender place in the hearts of Americans, both soldiers and civilians, who were then in the depths of World War II, and it earned Crosby his fifth gold record. "I'll Be Home for Christmas" became the most requested song at Christmas U.S.O. shows in both Europe and the Pacific and Yank, the GI magazine, said Crosby accomplished more for military morale than anyone else of that era.
THIS WEEK'S BIRTHDAYS:
Happy Birthday today to Norma Helmick Burks ('63) AND Tom Oxner ('65) of AR!
Happy Birthday tomorrow to James Strickland ('57)!
Happy Birthday this week to:
19 - Durwood Adams ('57) AND The late Suzie Bauz ('63) (deceased 11/03/14);
20 - Ellen Carney Manson ('63) of SC;
21 - Ray Stinnette ('63) of VA;
22 - Kitty Norman Haskins ('57) of VA AND Elliott Schlosser ('63) AND Dottie Pegram Daniels (NNHS / George Washington HS - '64) of WV AND Harry Barritt ('64) of VA AND Dale Mueller ('64) of VA AND Bill Rash ('67) of VA;
23 - Tom Flax ('64) of VA AND Joyce Lawrence Cahoon ('65) of VA AND Holly Hill Campbell (Hampton Roads Academy - '72) of VA;
24 - James Gay ('57) AND Ann W. Hutcheson ('57) AND Malcolm Davis ('65) of VA AND Sandye Jordan Frost ('67) of NC!
Many Happy Returns to You All!
From Bill Lee (Warwick HS - '54) of NC - 12/16/10 - "December 17, 1944":
|On the night of
December 17, 1944, Pier 8, one of the largest covered piers on the
Newport News waterfront caught fire and burned uncontrollably throughout
the night; lighting up the sky for miles. A stiff breeze fanned the
flames, and wind-borne sparks endangered nearby structures and piers, as
well as private property outside the port area's security boundaries.
Telephone calls from frightened citizens flooded the local newspaper
office, but, incredibly, for twelve hours the military denied that there
even was a fire!
The local fire
department was allowed to enter the security perimeter to assist, but
reporters and photographers were turned away at the gate. A resourceful
Daily Press photographer went to the
Warwick Hotel, the tallest and nearest public vantage point that
overlooked the port area. Photos were taken and included in the next
morning’s edition of the Daily Press, along with information gleaned
from civilian dockworkers and firefighters.
YOWZERONI-WOWZERONI! Thank you again so very much for sharing this exciting story with us, Bill!
150 YEARS AGO TODAY:
|December 17, 1865 - First performance of the Unfinished Symphony by Franz Schubert.|
|THIS DAY IN WWII:|
|December 17, 1939 - Battle of the River Plate – The Admiral Graf Spee was scuttled by Captain Hans Langsdorff outside Montevideo.|
From My Friend, Daniel, of UT - 12/15/14:
|“He came into the
world . . . clothed with double power---power to die, which He derived
from His mother; and power to resist death, if He had so willed it,
which He had inherited from His Father. Thus He had power both to live
forever and also power to pass through the ordeal of death, that He
might suffer it for all men, and come forth out of the grave to a
newness of life-a resurrected being, to be clothed with immortality and
eternal life, that all men might come forth out of the grave unto life
Thanks so much, Daniel!
From Woodrow Wagner ('66) of VA - 12/15/15:
|Christmas will soon be here, everyone. So
during this festive Yuletide season, say something to every person
to make himself or herself feel good about themselves.
EXCELLENT IDEA! Thank you so much, Woodrow! Then perhaps it will become a habit, and we can do it every day!
BAH HUMBUG POLL:
From the Incomparable Charis Bean Duke (Governor Thomas Johnson HS, MD - '85) of PA - 12/16/15 - "RE: Top Five Most Annoying Christmas Songs":
|I hate, hate Vince
Guaraldi's "Christmas Time is Here." Always have. I'm with you,
Carol. It's the most depressing song I've ever heard, descending
minor thirds in the melody, droopy jazz 7ths underneath. At best,
it's tedious, at worst, it's straight-jacket material.
Thank you, Charis!!
It's been driving me nutso for 50 years now. At last I feel
vindicated by an expert!
From My Daughter, Adrienne Harty (Hillsboro HS, IL / American School, IL) of NC - 12/16/15 - "RE: Top Five Most Annoying Christmas Songs":
Anything by Mariah Carey... Absolutely anything.
Oh, my, yes! Adrienne, thanks! Find me a lasso. If we could catch her and tie her down long enough to stay on the same note for a while, we might be able to enjoy her beautiful voice and phenomenal range; doesn't seem likely, though. Too bad.
From the Incomparable Charis Bean Duke (Governor Thomas Johnson HS, MD - '85) of PA - 12/16/15:
|Now here's my
favorite Christmas song (secular, of course). Snoopy's Christmas by
the Royal Guardsmen. What's not to love?
Ah, those World War I songs get me right here! Thanks again, Charis Dear!
From Jerry Blanchard ('62) of VA - 12/16/15:
From My Friend, Kim, of NC - 12/15/15:
I hate mornings. Especially when they come in
the middle of the night.
It should be illegal to have to get up before the sun.
AGREED! Thanks, Kim!
you're gonna be two-faced at least make one of them pretty.”
Thank you so very much, Tammy!