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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I Gotta Right to Sing the Blues

By Harold Arlen & Ted Koehler
1932

A popular jazz and blues standard by the Arlen/Koehler team, which as far as I know was not part of their revues, but rather a stand-alone song. It was introduced by Louis Armstrong, but soon became more closely associated with Jack Teagarden, who made it his theme song. A great example of the knack the Jewish Arlen for bluesy, African-American styled melodies.

Lyrics:

I gotta right to sing the blues
I gotta right to feel low-down
I gotta right to hang around
Down around the river

A certain gal in this old town
Keeps draggin' my poor (old) heart around
All I see, for me is - misery

I gotta right to sing the blues
I gotta right to moan and sigh
I gotta right to sit and cry
Down around the river

I know the deep blue sea
Will soon be callin' me
It must be love - say what you choose
I gotta right to sing the blues

Recorded By:

Frank Sinatra
Benny Goodman
Billie Holiday
Art Tatum
Earl Hines

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