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A headline on the front page of the New York Post recently showed Russian Premier Vladimir Putin and the wording “Russia Declares War.” Shocked, on closer examination I found myself tickled pink. He declared war on rap. Hard to believe Russia devoid of rap music and all its ugly lyrics? Brilliant, no?

Music is one of life’s most precious commodities. Is there anything more rewarding than music played by a great band or orchestra? All great NYC hotels featured outstanding bands way back. I used to frequent them. Try YouTube now if you still crave good music. Pull up songs and lyrics of the past. Not just the Dorseys, Sinatra or gifted musicians of recent times. Try '20s and '30s bands led by people you never heard of. Try Myth Mold, Blue Baron, Smith Ballew, Elmer Feldkamp, Isham Jones, etc. Guy Lombardo videos are embellished with great memories, one such of Clark Gable in scenes with his beautiful first ladies.

I loved "Dancing with the Stars" till all its gyrations, gymnastics and pyrotechnics lost me as an audience. Women were questionably clad, even males naked to the waist. I admire women of elegance, whose mere presence command respect, dressed with taste and an element of innocence. Go to YouTube and try a Johnny Mathis song I'm sure you've never heard, “Warm and Willing.” Fixate not just on his singing but the lyrics and marvel at the gifted dancing of Fred Astaire as he glides with beautiful lithesome Joan Leslie.

You can keep rap music. Likewise, all the screaming that passes nowadays for singing. And, while you're at it, you can keep those screeching electric guitars as well. Let’s tweet Trump to include this junk with the border wall, won't cost billions. Whatever happened to great music?

Gene Casella, Queensbury

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