My dad loved jazz and classical music. He preferred female singers, his two favorites were Linda Ronstadt and Nina Simone. I loved when he let me go into the basement, open the closet he’d converted to house his extensive record collection, and choose the music for Sunday dinner.
I’m thinking about his musical tastes because today is Vera Lynn’s 100th birthday.
My dad was born int Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in 1931. Before his 8th birthday, Canada had entered World War II and remained at War until just before his 14th. His father left to join the army and was gone for most of that time. I remember Dad telling me that, as they grew up, he and his friends just expected that they would go to war too. It was that much a part of their formative years.
It was from my dad, and his wide-ranging musical tastes, that I first heard of Vera Lynn, The Forces Sweetheart. I loved her songs, so poignant and yet so full of hope. And so I leave you with one of my favorites.