Sunday, 19 June 2011

Kennedy & Sinatra - High Hopes

I enjoyed an absorbing 'Kennedys evening' of TV on BBC2 last night. Between family archive film footage, the second in the controversial 8-part Kennedys mini-series and an intelligent discussion on it and JFK's Presidency, I was glued to my sofa all evening.

I found The Kennedys fascinating. Though it plays in much part on historic licence and in some places has to be taken with a great heft of a pinch of salt, I found it compulsive viewing simply down to the excellent casting and acting (particularly Tom Wilkinson as the patriarchal Joe Kennedy Snr). It must be said that from what I have seen, the mini-series does seem set to play up on all of the personal negatives of the Kennedy clan of which of course there were plenty but doesn't seem destined to go into as great a depth with the actual politics of the era to which JFK would get more credit.

But despite these misgivings, it is because of the acting, a must watch mini-series.

What particularly struck me was the sound of Frank Sinatra's wonderfully upbeat and optimistic 1959 hit High Hopes. I hadn't heard the song in years so I decided to find it on-line and found both the original which he sang with school children which made it an even more infectiously catchy tune, and his 1960 adapted recording for JFK's Presidential election campaign.

Here are those two contrasting productions...

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