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Richard A. Whiting
Smithsonian Collection of Recordings: Richard Whiting
(American Songbook Series)
Songwriters and singers are always supposed to be full of rivalry and jealousy. Not my father . . . . He loved people, he loved working with other writers, having them come over to the house, he loved it when Kern or Harold Arlen or Harry Warren would come over with something new they'd written and he could be the first to appreciate it. (Wilk, p. 95)
It's ironic how many of my father's songs became theme songs. For years Eddie Cantor used "One Hour with You." Fred Waring used "Breezing Along with the Breeze." How about "Hooray for Hollywood," Jack Benny's theme for twenty years--can you ever see anything about the movies where they don't strike up that song? For years Shirley Temple was associated with "On the Good Ship Lollipop," but he wrote that one for me; I always sat next to him at the piano, sucking a lollipop. And as for "Louise" and "My Ideal," Chevalier love those songs so much he used them every time he sang. (Wilk, p. 99)
Richard A. Whiting
Ethel Waters sings "True Blue Lou" (accompanied by Bob Effros - trumpet; Tommy Dorsey - trombone; Jimmy Dorsey - clarinet, alto sax; Ben Selvin - violin; Frank Signorelli - piano; Tony Colucci - guitar; Joe Tarto - string bass; Stan King - drums. Recorded June 7, 1929, New York City); music by Richard A. Whiting; words by Sam Coslow)
"True Blue Lou" was introduced in the Paramount film "The Dance of Life" (1929) by Hal Skelly. "With its tale of 'a dame' who stuck unerringly with her abusive man. The song is a feminist's nightmare, "Frankie and Johnny" without the retribution. Of it's many recordings Ethel Water's was the best --- perhaps because in real life Waters would have never taken the abuse Lou did." (quotation from "A Song in the Dark: The Birth of the Musical Film" by Richard Barrios) -- provided by bsgs98.
David Ewen. American Songwriters, An H. W. Wilson Biographical Dictionary. New York: The H. W. Wilson Co., 1987 (includes 146 bios of composers and lyricists). -- a wide selection of used copies is available at abebooks.com (entry pp. 431-435).
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Master List of Great American Songbook Songwriters
Names of songwriters who have written at least one song included in the Cafe Songbook Catalog of The Great American Songbook are listed below.
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