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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe

By Harold Arlen & E.Y. "Yip" Harburg
1940

The same duo that composed the score for The Wizard of Oz wrote this song the following year for another MGM musical, this time the first all-black musical committed to the silver screen. It was written for Ethel Waters, the dependable, matronly protagonist who must secure Eddie "Rochester" Anderson from the temptations of the beguiling Lena Horne.

Lyrics:

It seem like happiness is just a thing called Joe.
He's got a smile that makes the lilacs want to grow.
He's got a way that makes the angels heave a sigh
When they know little Joe's passing by.

Sometimes the cabin's gloomy and the table's bare,
But then he'll kiss me and it's Christmas everywhere.
Troubles fly away and life is easy go.
Does he love me good? That's all I need to know.
Seems like happiness is just a thing called Joe.

Recorded By:

Rosemary Clooney
Peggy Lee
Bette Midler
Ella Fitzgerald
Nancy Wilson

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