When the Harry James Band recorded 'From The Bottom Of My Heart' in New York on this day in 1939, the new vocalist was a skinny youngster called Frank Sinatra, cutting his first single. He was on a two-year contract and paid $75 a week. The song was a flop, selling just 8,000 copies. Thankfully undaunted, Sinatra didn't stop there and went on to become one of the biggest-selling recording artists ever, notching up sales of more than 150 million records worldwide.
Despite his success as a recording artist and, to a lesser extent, a movie star (he won an Oscar for From Here to Eternity), Sinatra’s reputation will be forever tainted by his alleged connections to American gangsters. It has been said that John F. Kennedy's victory in the 1960 presidential election was swung by Sinatra. Under an alleged deal, the singer asked the mob to encourage their unionised workers to vote for the young Democrat. True or not, JFK's wafer-thin victory over Richard Nixon was with the crucial help of votes by union members.
Putting Sinatra's alleged shady past aside, I think today's soundtrack will include a little of his finest. As will this week's prompt. Enjoy!