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Thursday, January 27, 2011

After You've Gone

By Turner Layton & Henry Creamer
1918

A major hit of the World War I era, this tune would eventually become enormously popular with jazz musicians, due to the ease upon which it can be improvised. It was first recorded by Marion Harris, and would also be used as the theme song a BBC TV series of the same name. It remains one of the most familiar standards prior to the 1920s.

Lyrics:

Now won't you listen dearie while I say,
how could you tell me that you're goin' away?
Don't say that we must part, don't break my aching heart
You know I've loved you truly many years, loved you night and day
How can you leave me, can't you see my tears?
Listen while I say

After you've gone, and left me crying
After you've gone, there's no denying
You'll feel blue, you'll feel sad
You'll miss the dearest pal you've ever had.

There'll come a time, now don't forget it
There'll come a time, when you'll regret it
Some day, when you grow lonely
You heart will break like mine and you'll want me only
After you've gone, after you've gone away.

After I'm gone, after we break up
After I'm gone, you're gonna wake up
You will find, you were blind
To let somebody come and change your mind.

After the years, we've been together
Their joy and tears all kinds of weather
Someday, blue and downhearted
You'll long to be with me right back where you started
After I'm gone, after I'm gone away.

Recorded By:

Ella Fitzgerald
Frankie Laine
Bessie Smith
Fiona Apple
Nina Simone

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Isn't This a Lovely Day (To Be Caught in the Rain)?

By Irving Berlin
1935

One of several American pop classics to have been derived from the sublime Berlin cinematic musical Top Hat, this number was of course written for Fred Astaire, who sings it for Ginger Rogers in the film. Since then, it's gently lilting melody and warm, carefree lyric have made it an unquestioned standard, favored by purveyors of light/piano jazz in particular. The essence of Astaire and Rogers, from the best of their RKO days.

Lyrics:

The weather is frightening,
The thunder and lightning
Seem to be having their way,
But as far as I'm concerned,
It's a lovely day.
The turn in the weather
Will keep us together
So I can honestly say
That as far as I'm concerned,
It's a lovely day and everythings ok.

Isn't this a lovely day to be caught in the rain?
You were going on your way,
Now you've got to remain.

Just as you were going,
Leaving me all at sea,
The clouds broke, they broke,
And oh what a break for me.

I can see the sun up high,
Though we're caught in a storm.
I can see where you and I could be cozy and warm.

Let the rain pitter patter,
But it really doesn't matter
If the skies are grey.
Long as I can be with you,
It's a lovely day.

Recorded By:

Tony Bennett
Ella Fitzgerald
Diana Krall
Jeri Southern
Oscar Peterson

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Most Beautiful Girl in the World

By Richard Rodgers & Lorenz Hart
1935

The classic songwriting duo of Rodgers & Hart originally composed this tune for their stage production, Jumbo, in which it was introduced by Donald Novis and Gloria Grafton. It is the epitome of the 1930s standard--a warm, poignant expression of loving awe from a man to a woman. As with all the best Rodgers & Hart compositions, the lilting Rodgers melody blends perfectly with the witty, layered Hart lyric. This is songwriting at its very best.

Lyrics:

We used to spend the spring together
Before we learned to walk;
We used to laugh and sing together
Before we learned how to talk.
With no reason for the season,
Spring would end as it would start.
Now the season has a reason
And there's springtime in my heart.

The most beautiful girl in the world
Picks my ties out,
Eats my candy ,
Drinks my brandy-
The most beautiful girl in the world.

The most beautiful star in the world
Isn't Garbo, isn't Dietrich,
But the sweet trick
Who can make me believe it's a beautiful world.

Social-not a bit,
Nat'ral kind of wit,
She' d shine anywhere,
And she hasn't got platinum hair.

The most beautiful house in the world
Has a mortgage-
What do I care?
It's goodbye care
When my slippers are next to the ones that belong
To the one and only beautiful girl in the world!

Recorded By:

Frank Sinatra
Dorsey Brothers Orchestra
Sonny Rollins
Les & Larry Elgart
Percy Faith

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