This will be my first Father's Day since losing my dad.
Thankfully, I have my two beautiful young sons, my beautiful wife and her loving and rather attractive family -- as well as a pending family tennis round robin at the club -- to help keep me busy this particular year.
Still, it is unavoidable and perhaps only fitting that I woke up this morning and sensed a new and, for me, profound void. So here's the playlist I put together in order to help fill that void a little.
You may notice that there is no "Dance With My Father" or "Papa, Can You Hear Me?" That's because as much as I loved -- and love -- the guy, I never actually wanted to dance with him, and I'm pretty sure he heard quite enough of my ramblings in his lifetime. My father Stanley Wild never even knew his own father, and as a dad, he always kept things very real. So I will try and do the same here.
I put this out there for my family and for anybody else fortunate enough to have known the privilege of having had a real dad or even the blessing of being a dad.
"So Long Dad" -- Randy Newman
"Your Daddy Loves You" -- Gil Scott-Heron
"My Father's Gun" -- Elton John
"That Silver-Haired Daddy Of Mine" -- The Everly Brothers
"Papa's Got A Brand New Bag, Part 1" -- James Brown
"Brooklyn Roads" -- Neil Diamond
"Footsteps of Our Fathers" -- Pat Green
"Had A Dad" -- Jane's Addiction
"My Father's Eyes" -- Eric Clapton
"Father And Son" -- Cat Stevens
"Daddy's Come Home" -- Gary U.S. Bonds
"It's For My Dad" -- Nancy Sinatra
"My Heart Belongs To Daddy"-- Eartha Kitt
"Papa Was A Rolling Stone" -- The Temptations
"So Long Dad" - Harry Nilsson
Then late at night, I'll play "My Way" by Frank Sinatra in his honor. A little maudlin? Perhaps. But that really was my father's favorite all-time song. When I managed to mention this personal fact about him in the liner notes that I wrote for Frank Sinatra's "Duets" album, my Dad called me up right away as openly emotional as I ever heard him and said, "Kid, you just paid me back for college."
Yet ultimately, there are some debts in life that you just can't erase.
So Long Dad.