You Gotta Have Heart (Activities That Is)

More February Activities for Nursing Homes and Assisted Living

You Gotta Have Heart (Songs) on Valentines. Getty Images

In our earlier articles, we traced the history of Valentines Day and the progression of romance. Now let's look at some songs that continue our theme and activities you can use with them.

Love and Marriage

The ultimate conclusion for a good romance is “Love and Marriagel". It was made famous by Frank Sinatra and became known to many through the television show “Married With Children”.

The song has lyrics by Sammy Cahn and music by James Van Heusen.

It was introduced by Sinatra in the 1955 television production “Our Town. Our Town is a1940 film adaptation of a play of the same name by Thornton Wilder starring William Holden, Martha Scott, Fay Bainter, Beulah Bondi, Thomas Mitchell, Guy Kibbee and Frank Craven. The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.

  1. Rent or buy the movie “Our Town” and show it to residents. Ask them if they remember the play, the movie, its adaptations and actors.

Heart of My Heart

"Heart of My Heart" (sometimes referred to as "The Gang that Sang Heart of My Heart") was written by Ben Ryan in 1926. A version was recorded by The Four Aces on October 14, 1953 and was issued by Decca Records. It reached #7 on Billboard.

  1. This is such a classic sing-a-long that having residents sing the song will be a suitable activity for this selection.
  2. Have residents recall their own "gang of mine," the people they hung with when they were younger.

    I Left My Heart in San Francisco

    Continuing with the heart songs, this is a classic song by Anthony Benedetto, also known as Tony Bennett. Tony Bennett was born August 3, 1926 in Astoria, Queens in New York City. He attended New York's High School of Industrial Arts where he studied music and painting but dropped out at age 16 to help support his family.

    In 1949 Pearl Bailey spotted his talent and asked him to open for her in Greenwich Village. She had invited Bob Hope to the show. Hope decided to bring Tony on the road with him. In 1950 Bennett cut a demo and was signed to Columbia Records by Mitch Miller. His first big hit was "Because of You.

    In 1962 Bennett released "I Left My Heart in San Francisco". Although this only reached #19 it increased Bennett's exposure. The album of the same title was a top 5 hit and both the single and album achieved gold record status.
    After a career downturn, Tony’s son Danny took over his management. By 1986, Tony Bennett was re-signed to Columbia Records and released “The Art of Excellence. This became his first album to reach the charts since 1972. Danny Bennett felt strongly that younger audiences, although completely unfamiliar with Tony Bennett, would respond to his music if only give a chance to see and hear it. More crucially, no changes to Tony's appearance (tuxedo), singing style (his own), musical accompaniment (The Ralph Sharon Trio or an orchestra), or song choice were necessary or desirable.Tony Bennett had come all the way back.

    1. Have someone come in and do a travelogue about San Francisco.
    2. Ask residents who have been there to recall their memories of San Francisco.

    My Funny Valentine

    "My Funny Valentine" is a 1937 song written by Lorenz Hart & Richard Rodgers for the musical “Babes in Arms. The original performer of the song was Mitzi Green and the song was performed in the film by Judy Garland.

    1. Show the movie “Babes in Arms”.

    Achy Breaky Heart

    "Achy Breaky Heart" was a huge country hit for Billy Ray Cyrus (born August 25, 1961 in Flatwoods, Kentucky). You may familiar with his twerking daughter Miley

    1. Gather up the staff and demonstrate country line dancing. Another classic song to play is “Boot Scootin Boogie” by Brooks and Dunn.

    You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You

    So we come to the end of our journey. At the end of the story, isn’t it true that unless you are loved you are nothing? That’s what makes this song an appropriate end of your Valentine’s celebration. The song was recorded by Dean Martin in 1964.

    See our other articles detailing February activities.  Check out our other articles about February activities. The Origin of Valentine's Day. You Gotta Have Heart. Of Gigalos and Red Roses. Valentine's Blues as You Age.

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