Tagged: Jimmy Stewart Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • mistermuse 12:17 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Dick Smith, doo wop, , It's Wondereful, , Jimmy Stewart, , Maxine Sullivan, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, , Peter Minturn, , , Smith Brothers, songwriters, Stuff Smith, The Sheik of Araby   


    By all accounts, SMITH has long been the most common surname in America. On the other hand, SMITH has been one of the least common surnames among popular songwriters. Take the example of when, in 1939, Mr. Jimmy Stewart Smith goes to Washington and becomes a sen-sation, rather than going to Tin Pan Alley to become a song-sation. We can surmise why mistermuse goes to Word Press in 2009 but doesn’t become a pun-sation; misterstewartsmith could’ve had A Wonderful Life acting like a songwriter in Hollywood musicals.

    During the period with which I am most musically in tune (1920s-1950s), I can count on one hand the number of songsmiths named Smith whose compositions achieved contemporary hit status (much less,¬†lasting status as standards). Compared to the percentage of Smiths in the overall (or, for that matter, the underwear) population, there were fewer Smiths of note in music than in the Hollywood Senate — which, for better or verse, leads us to the first of our handful of Smiths, Chris Smith, composer of….

    Next, time to rise and shine with Billy Dawn Smith, composer of….

    Next next, we turn to lyricist Harry Bache Smith for the words to this somber classic:

    Speaking of serious stuff, Stuff Smith composed this wonderful ballad. It may not be your cup of tea, but I can say without fear of contradiction that It’s Wonderful:

    We close with a song written by Dick Smith. Yes, THAT Dick Smith. If you don’t believe me, look him up and ask him.



    • calmkate 1:26 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      well I think you are pun-tastic! Some great classics here, thanks for sharing ūüôā

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:52 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Kate (speaking of Smiths), here’s a song that’s a real classic:

        Footnote: GOD BLESS AMERICA was written by Irving Berlin in 1918 (near end of WWI) for a show, but it was never published or recorded and was filed away by Berlin “to use someday on the right occasion” (quoting him). That occasion occurred after Neville Chamberlain appeased Adolph Hitler in 1938, leading to WWII. Kate Smith introduced the song on her CBS radio show on Nov. 10, 1938.

        Liked by 2 people

        • calmkate 7:17 pm on October 1, 2019 Permalink

          lol we look nothing alike and I can’t sing a note … a bit too much for me at breakfast time thanks MrM ūüėČ

          Liked by 1 person

    • smbabbitt 10:15 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Out of a generic name, a delightful assortment of songs.

      Liked by 1 person

    • masercot 12:13 pm on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Leon Redbone did a great version of Sheik of Araby…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Elizabeth 12:50 pm on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      There are certainly plenty of singers named Smith. Clever of you to realize that there are not too many songwriters with the name.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 3:11 pm on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        Having little or no interest in today’s music, Elizabeth, I don’t know how many Smith singers OR songwriters there are now….but I do find it interesting that historically, there have been relatively few songwriters among the millions of Smiths in America over the past 100 years.

        Liked by 1 person

    • magickmermaid 2:26 pm on October 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      Mistermuse is definitely a pun-sation! ūüôā

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 6:05 pm on October 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        It’s easy to sea that you are no mere-maid and have pun-tastic judgment, mm.

        P.S. I’ve forgotten — how much was it that I agreed to pay you for that comment?

        Liked by 1 person

    • Ricardo 2:06 pm on October 7, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      I’d bring to your attention The Smiths, a popular band in the ’80’s whose songs featured ramblings about death, depression and dissatisfaction in love, except that I couldn’t stand them and I’m glad I never hear their music anymore.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 2:57 pm on October 7, 2019 Permalink | Reply

        The Smiths sound like a good(?) example of why I haven’t listened to popular music since the 1970s, Ricardo. If I missed anything, Ignorance is bliss (so they say).


    • America On Coffee 10:57 pm on October 29, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      A very interesting selection, some I am not familiar with. I really appreciate all of them. Thanks for sharing.‚̧ԳŹ‚̧ԳŹ‚̧ԳŹ‚̧ԳŹ‚̧ԳŹ

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:04 am on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Angel Eyes, , , , , Jimmy Stewart, , , ,   



    “Sex is sacred,”
    some humans say —
    but they still do
    it anyway.

    Why they do so
    beats us above….
    They’re not, you know,
    so easy to love.

    Yet angels know
    man needs no shove,
    dreams¬†you’d be¬†so….
    How does it go?

    Oh,¬†yes! It’s —¬†so….


    • arekhill1 1:24 pm on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Humans may be hard to love, Sr. Muse, but they’re easy to fuck. Many a song has been written about that, too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 5:12 pm on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Unfortunately, even Cole Porter couldn’t get away with writing a song titled “Easy To Fuck” (though he did write one called “Love For Sale”). I guess that’s why he settled instead for “”Easy To Love.” Even so, the puritanical Hayes Office censored the lyric “so sweet to awaken with” in the Jimmy Stewart clip.


    • Don Frankel 5:12 pm on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      While this does not belong here musically, it just makes a point about how someone can look like an angle, talk like an angel and yet…

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 6:18 pm on February 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Don, I’ll see your DEVIL IN DISGUISE and “raise” you one with ANGEL IN DISGUISE, which was written in 1940 and became a Marine favorite in the Pacific theater in WWII:

        P.S. The vocalist is Ann Sheridan from the soundtrack of IT ALL CAME TRUE (1940) (among her co-stars in the film was Humphrey Bogart).


  • mistermuse 12:47 am on March 20, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , George Marion Jr., , , , Jimmy Stewart, , , lyricists, , , , Spring Is Here, spring songs, , There'll Be Another Spring   


    It’s spring again / And birds on the wing again / Start to sing again / The old melody.¬† ¬†from I¬†LOVE YOU (lyrics and music by Cole Porter)

    Yes, fellow (and gal)¬†music lovers, it’s¬†spring again — the season¬†which usually¬†comes unusually late or early every year¬†and seems to inspire the romantic¬†poet in¬†every song writer….or at least it did when the world was more¬†melodic, and¬†composers were Cole¬†Porters at heart.¬†It has been said of Porter that “even in the absence of his melodies, his words distill an unmistakable mixture of poignancy and wit that marks him as a genius of light verse.”*

    I think the same can be said, though¬†not always¬†to¬†the same¬†degree of genius, of many song writers¬†from¬†America’s Golden Age of popular music. No matter their individual personalities, their¬†songs —¬†not least,¬†their “spring songs” —¬†betray them as “rank sentimentalists” beneath the surface (in the manner of¬†Captain Renault seeing through¬†Rick in CASABLANCA).

    To the point, here’s a sampling of such songs (and their lyricists)¬†from that¬†lost¬†world, followed by clips of¬†recordings sung by voices¬†which¬†may sound¬†strange to generational¬†“foreign-ears,” but as Jimmy Stewart once¬†said of his singing Porter’s EASY TO LOVE in the film BORN TO DANCE, the song’s so good, even he couldn’t mess it up:

    SPRING IS HERE (Lorenz Hart) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFiNQObPxEk

    THERE’LL BE ANOTHER SPRING (Peggy Lee) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h1utcGFiXu8

    SPRING WILL BE A LITTLE LATE THIS YEAR (Frank Loesser) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbwRgQ-I_ms

    IT SEEMS TO BE SPRING (George Marion Jr.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Svi45srqhgM

    IT MIGHT AS WELL BE SPRING (Oscar Hammerstein II) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-JLbac6EVE

    SPRING, SPRING, SPRING (Johnny Mercer) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZT6RHkYViOc

    *quoted from the dust jacket of Cole Porter, selected lyrics, Robert Kimball, editor

    • Don Frankel 7:11 am on March 21, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Great music and the perfect day for it as it finally got warm in New York. I don’t mean to belabor the point but it is also…. “Springtime for Hitler” but we’ve already played that clip.


    • mistermuse 7:44 am on March 21, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks, Don. Of all those “spring songs” and lyricists, the least known (even to old music lovers) are undoubtedly IT SEEMS TO BE SPRING/George Marion Jr.
      Marion was primarily a screenwriter of such great films as LOVE ME TONIGHT (Maurice Chevalier & Jeanette MacDonald) and THE GAY DIVORCEE (Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers), but he also partnered with Richard Whiting (father of Margaret Whiting) to write the lyrics for some very good songs. Listen closely to IT SEEMS TO BE SPRING – in the words of one author, “the song is an ideal illustration of the high standard of popular songwriting of this era.”


    • Don Frankel 6:35 am on March 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Every once in awhile I’m forced to admit to someone of my generation that I don’t know very much about the Beatles. I mean they seem like 4 rather nice fellows. It’s not like I have anything against them. It’s just that I don’t own a single one of their albums.

      I often wonder just how much the song writers of this era influenced us? I mean the tight construction, the vivid images, the wit. It couldn’t not have done anything but aide us immensely.


    • mistermuse 10:10 am on March 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I couldn’t agree more, Don, if by “us” you mean those of us of a certain age. I fear that the ability to appreciate the qualities you cite has been increasingly lost “as time goes by.” Few young people today understand that if they had grown up decades ago, they would’ve been as much “into” that era’s music as they are into today’s. In a sense, they are prisoners of their culture without realizing it.

      As for the Beatles, having already “fallen in love” with the work of the above songwriters and their contemporaries by the time the B-boys came along, they didn’t impress me originally, but I eventually came to appreciate some of their songs. Still, the combination of wit and romance in such oldies as IT SEEMS TO BE SPRING has never been surpassed.


    • Don Frankel 4:49 pm on March 23, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      You’re right Muse. I don’t mean to say anything bad about the Beatles and there is always Sinatra singing ‘Something in the way she moves’.

      But then there is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJpGHR6ofus

      and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAdM7fEZ-zY

      I’m kind of glad we got born when we did.


    • mistermuse 6:22 pm on March 23, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Likewise, Don.

      For those who don’t know, the songs you kindly provided clips for were written by Frank Loesser and Cole Porter (two of the few “Golden Age” composers who wrote both the lyrics and music of their songs).


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