Tagged: Oscar Hammerstein II Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • mistermuse 12:00 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , I've Told Every Little Star, , , Old King Cole, Oscar Hammerstein II, stars   


    “How far away the stars seem, how far our first kiss, and ah, how old my heart.” –William Butler Yeats

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    Since my last post (A CONSOLATION OF STARS), it occurred to me that the realm of the Golden Age of Popular Music begot a ‘title wave’ of Star songs — so why not give it its just due and do another post along similar lines? Then along comes the birthday (June 9, 1892) of fabled old king Cole Porter, and it further occurred to me that such a prolific composer must have written at least one serenade to the stars…..but none came to my mind. So I searched the night sky and found that he did indeed compose one — and only one — such song:

    I’m not so starry-eyed as to contend that the above song is Porter’s best love song — far from it — but it does serve to set the tableau, if you’ll pardon my French. So let us now turn to a song higher in the pantheon of great romantic songs, composed by the great team of Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II:


    I hadn’t intended to stop here, but I’ve come to a point where my outdated browser is causing problems beyond what my old head can handle (until my daughter does a Father’s Day fix). Looking back, a suspension of posting (pending a fix) was as inevitable as night follows day….or should I say: It Was Written In The Stars.


    *after the “fix” I’m in is fixed






    • calmkate 12:57 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      hey that’s two posts I didn’t expect 🙂

      and you are not able to click ‘like’ … I had noticed!

      So huge progress … we will expect masterpiece posts after Father’s Day 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 7:08 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Huge progress in one area, huge regress in another, Kate. I started writing this post several days ago and was able to copy the “It Was Written In The Stars” video. Over the next few days, I tried unsuccessfully to copy additional “Stars” song clips, and each time my old browser wouldn’t let me — that’s why I couldn’t complete this post. My daughter assures me that the new browser she will install will solve the problem. If not, I’ll be (star) crossed as hell!

        Liked by 1 person

        • calmkate 7:12 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink

          lol you will get there slowly but surely … no point in rushing these things MrM 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

    • blindzanygirl 1:27 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I hope that your fix gets fixed. I’d be in a fix without you. Love the starry theme.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 7:19 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, Lorraine. The stars at the top was a last-minute idea to ‘complete the picture’ which I probably wouldn’t have thought of if I’d been able to ‘complete the post’ as I’d intended, Glad you like/love it.

        Liked by 1 person

        • blindzanygirl 7:51 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink

          I have a penchant for stars as may be obvious in some of my postings lol. Xx

          Liked by 1 person

    • mlrover 7:47 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I LOVE Porter, but the first song that came to mind is Hogie’s Stardust.
      We all feel your pain when it comes to computer issues. Hang in.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:24 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        I had Louis Armstrong’s rendition of STARDUST in my previous post. Of course, Hoagie wrote it (as well as recorded it), but Satchmo does it better than anyone, in my opinion.

        As for my computer issues, I’m counting on a new browser to resolve most of them. If it doesn’t, even my techie daughter may be stumped, leaving me up a tree.


    • masercot 8:46 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Dream a Little Dream of Me

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:54 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        I know the song, which has “Stars” in the lyrics, but my continuation of this post after Father’s Day will stick to songs with Star(s) in the title, as there are many to choose from. Nevertheless, your comment leads me to think of doing a “Dream(s)” song post post-Stars, so, though I may not dream a little dream of you, I’ll probably include a little clip of it in a future post.


    • tubularsock 11:50 am on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Ahhh, simpler times yet love was still complex. “And why haven’t I told you?”
      Most interesting to hear THAT sound again. Tubularsock is going to work on making a rap song out of it.
      (relax, just kidding!)

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 12:38 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        I used to think love was complex until computers and the Internet came along. Now I think love is simple — it’s people and computers that are complex (which, I suppose, is why I’ll never understand why they do some of the things they do)..

        Liked by 1 person

    • Elizabeth 5:30 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      “Are the stars out tonight? I can’t tell if it’s cloudy or bright. Cause I only have eyes for you dear.” One of my dad’s favorites.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 5:51 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Elizabeth, I Remember It Well (which, as you may know, is the title of a song from GIGI).


    • magickmermaid 6:40 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      You’re a star, Mister Muse! I wasn’t familiar with either of these songs. I like the second one the best. My house was built in 1928 so whenever I play one of the tunes you feature, I can just imagine the original owners dancing in the parlour. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:17 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, mm, but I’m more like a dwarf star when it comes to technology. Assuming my daughter can get me back in the loop, I’ll be back SWINGING ON A STAR before you can say “Bing Crosby” (who sang that Academy Award winning song in the 1944 film GOING MY WAY).

        Liked by 1 person

    • annieasksyou 8:00 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Not sure how, but I wound up with a Bury Bacharach/Dionne Warwick multiplicities of pleasure, including What the World Needs Now (Is Love Sweet Love), which couldn’t be more true. So a serendipitous thank you for that! Best of luck with your new browser. Hope your experience is better than my switch, which doesn’t always let me pick up photos and videos. Anyway, you set a lovely tableau, mistermuse!

      Liked by 1 person

      • annieasksyou 8:00 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Obviously, Burt; sorry for graveyard typo.

        Liked by 1 person

        • mistermuse 10:51 pm on June 9, 2020 Permalink

          Annie, your typo reminds me of what Mark Twain said when his obituary was mistakenly published: THE REPORTS OF MY DEATH ARE GREATLY EXAGGERATED. So I’m sure that any distress the typo may have caused Burt is greatly mitigated by virtue of now joining such esteemed company in premature burial. 😉


    • Silver Screenings 3:15 pm on July 5, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve been listening to the music you’ve posted while catching up on blog reading. Your choices are a fabulous soundtrack for a Sunday.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 5:36 pm on July 5, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        One of the few advantages of growing old is that I know so many old songs, SS. The disadvantage of being old is that it’s getting harder to remember them all. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:01 am on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Hello Beautiful, Hello Bluebird, Hello Young Lovers, , , , , Oscar Hammerstein II, , Rodgers and Hammerstein   


    [Composer Richard] Rodgers was particularly annoyed by what seemed to him Hammerstein’s dilatory attitude when it came to writing lyrics. So his way of dealing with the situation would be to punish his partner with silence when the long-awaited lyrics finally arrived. One of the most difficult songs Hammerstein ever wrote was “Hello, Young Lovers,” a poignant musing about a past love that is one of the high points of THE KING AND I. It took him five weeks of struggle, but he eventually had something he felt proud of. He sent the lyrics by special messenger to Rodgers, with instructions to wait for an answer, but no answer came. After four days, Rodgers called on another matter and, at the very end, said that, by the way, the lyrics were fine. Then he hung up. They were four of the most painful days of Hammerstein’s life. –from SOMEWHERE FOR ME, A BIOGRAPHY OF RICHARD RODGERS, by Meryle Secrest

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    Of all the pre-R&R songs in popular music with “Hello” in the title, no doubt the one with the most staying power has been Rodgers and Hammerstein’s HELLO, YOUNG LOVERS. Thus, it is with that evergreen that we begin this selection of “Hello” songs:

    Next, we turn from ever green to avian blue:

    We close with a question (or two or three) for all you lovely ladies out there (but you must play the song to hear the questions):

    • Garfield Hug 12:39 am on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      The King and I is a classic and I have watched the original cast in an old video with Yul Brynner as King of Siam. Good share Mistermuse! Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 9:19 am on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      “Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera…” That’s my Yul Brynner impression. But if we say hello then well sometimes we must be going. From one of your favorite movies.

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 9:58 am on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Don, you must be reading my mind to come up with this — Animal Crackers is indeed one of my favorite Marx Brothers movies (after DUCK SOUP and A NIGHT AT THE OPERA). This is the one in which Groucho shot an elephant in his pajamas, and “How he got in my pajamas, I’ll never know!”


    • tref 2:01 am on March 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I was listening to KCEA (a little jazz station out of high school in Menlo Park, CA) and they played an obscure little ditty by the Andrew Sisters called, Heartbreaker. Loved it! How have I not heard this one before?! If you have not all ready heard it, here is the link from youtube.

      By the way, Whispering by the Comedian Harmonists has been on repeat for several days now. Thanks for the recommendation!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:25 am on March 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for the clip, Tref — I remember “Heartbreaker” and may even have it among the dozens of old 78rpm Andrews Sisters records in my 3,000+ record collection. Did you know that they started their career as imitators of The Boswell Sisters, an even jazzier group from New Orleans which disbanded in 1936? Here’s an example of their great swinging harmony:

        Liked by 1 person

    • Mél@nie 2:53 am on March 21, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      ah, Joséphine Baker… who chose to live in France:”j’ai deux amours… mon pays et Paris!” 🙂


  • mistermuse 3:59 pm on June 28, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , June Is Bustin' Out All Over, , , Oklahoma, Oscar Hammerstein II, , South Pacific, The Lady Is A Tramp, The Sound of Music   


    I don’t believe that a writer does something wonderful spontaneously. I believe it’s the result of years of living, of study, reading, his very personality and temperament. At one particular moment all these things come together and the artist ‘expresses’ himself. –Richard Rodgers

    • * * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Of all the songs Richard Rodgers wrote, first with Lorenz Hart and then Oscar Hammerstein II, few are more obscure than one of Rodgers & Hart’s earliest, Wasn’t It Great? Yet, as I surveyed the list of their far better known titles: Manhattan, My Heart Stood Still, Thou Swell, Blue Moon (their only one published as a popular song, not for a Broadway show or movie score) and hundreds more, no title seemed more fitting to remember his 113th birthday (June 28, 1902) than Wasn’t It Great?.

    Richard Rodgers wasn’t just another songwriter coming of age in that dynamic era of social, cultural and artistic change known as the “Roaring Twenties.” When composer Rodgers and lyricist Hart first teamed up in 1919, American popular music was mostly “a thing of trite phrase and cliché, of cloying Victorian sentiment, a tired and hackneyed commodity” (to quote biographer Frederick Nolan). “Moreover,” as Hart said in a 1928 interview, “the old love song….of the then popular waltz was usually a quiet exemplification of innocent amatory music; but today the barbaric quality of jazz dance music demands expressions of love that are much more dynamic and physical.”

    Over the evolving years, Rodgers composed songs for 42 Broadway musicals, of which 19 film versions were made. Even a partial list of shows is beyond impressive: THE GARRICK GAIETIES, SPRING IS HERE, LOVE ME TONIGHT, BABES IN ARMS, PAL JOEY, OKLAHOMA!, SOUTH PACIFIC, CAROUSEL, THE KING AND I, STATE FAIR (which included the 1946 Oscar-winning song It Might As Well Be Spring). As much as any composer from the 1920s to 1960s, Richard Rodgers WAS the Sound of Music.

    It is especially worth noting that Rodgers accomplished all this despite the completely different styles and personalities of his two principal collaborators. Of Lorenz Hart (who died in 1943), Rodgers said, “Larry was much gayer and lighter than Oscar. He was inclined to be cynical, where Oscar never was. Oscar was more sentimental and so the music had to be more sentimental. It wouldn’t have been natural for Larry to write ‘Oklahoma!’ any more than it would have been natural for Oscar to write ‘Pal Joey’.”

    And so I close with a Richard Rodgers song written with each collaborator (the first with lyrics by Hart):


    • Michaeline Montezinos 1:04 am on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      mistermuse, I tried to watch and listen to Frank and Ella sing the Lady is a Tramp. I must tell you it was a strange video since it seemed to have an echo of the same song while they performed. I do not think it was my computer but then who knows. I will attempt to view and hear the second video link right now.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Michaeline Montezinos 1:23 am on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Well, this is odd. I could hear what I think is Ella is singing the “scat” versoin of a song. Then Frank Sinatra was on singing another song. Not June is Bustin’ Out All Over although I could see the orchestra and the members playing. Maybe Youtube was playing a true “mix” of Frank and Ella’s songs. Now I can hear Ella singing solo with an orchestra behind her. I know it is not April fools Day but I am a little confused.

        I enjoyed reading the stories behind the composers of Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein II and Lorenz Hart. I had no knowledge of Frederick Nolan before but I think his opinion of music of that time period is very accurate. Now I hear the song about the Yellow Basket which is the one song my Daddy sang to me while I sat on his lap at a tender age. One of my favorite songs since the memory of that experience is still with me after many years. Thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 6:09 am on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I just listened to both videos again and noticed nothing wrong, so I assume any problems are at your end, Michaeline. You might try getting your hubby to listen to the videos – as they say down Mexico way, two heads are better than Juan.

      Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 9:45 am on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Barbaric quality of jazz…how quaint.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 1:06 pm on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      If the strange new music called jazz sounded barbaric to 1920s ears, one can only imagine what hip hop and rap would have sounded like. They might have thought jazz wasn’t so barbaric after all.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Michaeline Montezinos 3:30 pm on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        I believe you are correct in saying it is my computer that did not work correctly. But I did get to hear both of the songs and I enjoy them. Did you happen to read my second comment? I wrote to thank you for all the information about the duo of Rogers and Hammerstein. I learned about Frederick Nolan and Lorenzo Hart.. Maybe my demon computer did not let you read my second reply. It has been a strange week of lost or misplaced items. I gave my husband two cards to mail. However, after putting them both in the car he came upstairs to check with me. Apparently my brother’s birthday card had vanished. After looking everywhere, including the car, our apartment and the parking lot, it seemed to have vanished.. Finally he gave up and went on to the store. Next to disappear was my new little flashlight. Again we searched every drawer and underneath all of our furniture and in the corners. No flashlight! Same thing had happened with small kitchen items that were nowhere to be found.
        did anyone write a song about missing stuff?

        Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 6:27 pm on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I don’t know of a song about missing items, but I wrote a poem titled THE CASE OF THE MISSING SOCK which I posted on May 9. As for missing stuff in general, I think the older we get, the more we tend to forget where we leave things, which probably accounts for 99% of “vanished” items. You’ll get used to it by the time you’re my age, Michaeline.

      As for Frederick Nolan, I got his quote from his book titled simply LORENZ HART, a biography which I’m sure you can buy online, if interested.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Michaeline Montezinos 6:47 pm on June 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        mistermuse thank you for reminding me that I am getting older. How old can you be? I think there are not many years between your birthday and mine.Are you claiming to be the descendant of Methusalah? Hee! Hee! Hee!

        Liked by 2 people

        • Michaeline Montezinos 7:10 pm on June 29, 2015 Permalink

          Well thumbs up for my computer! I tried to watch the videos again and this time it worked. Yes, indeed, and I enjoyed Ella and Frank singing THE LADY IS A TRAMP… I also listened to Tony Bennett and Marianna do a lively version of the tramp song. June is Bustin’ Out All Over was stupendous. I recognized the women sopranos and one of the tenors from the British opera company based in London. Yes, I like opera and do not fall asleep while attending these magnificent events. Thank you again, mistermuse for your wonderful contributions to our musical library. 🙂

          Liked by 2 people

    • Don Frankel 6:08 am on June 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Interesting point is how Rodgers changed his music to fit his lyricist. I never would have thought anyone ever did that or could.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:39 am on June 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      That’s something Cole Porter never had to deal with because he wrote both the music and lyrics. Of course, Irving Berlin did the same, but Porter’s lyrics were wittier, like Hart’s, whereas Berlin’s lyrics were more sentimental, like Hammerstein’s.

      Liked by 1 person

    • BroadBlogs 1:33 pm on June 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Interesting to get more background on these great talents.

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 3:15 pm on June 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I applaud you for being interested in the music (and its makers) of a time which has been left in the dust of our own times, but has not been diminished by circumstances beyond its control.

      Liked by 1 person

    • scifihammy 10:36 pm on July 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I enjoyed reading this about Rodgers – lots I didn’t know. 🙂 Songs were just so much more musical back then!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, MCC, SCAC 10:19 pm on January 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      As I have a moment (or need to take one), I will be back to troll your archives. Please don’t make it mean anything other than competing to-dos if I “like” but do not comment. ALL of your stuff is wonderful.
      (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
      ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder
      “It takes a village to educate a world!”

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 12:13 am on January 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you, and no problem with “like” but not comment. I often have to do the same, as there just aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything.


  • mistermuse 12:47 am on March 20, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , George Marion Jr., , , , , , , lyricists, Oscar Hammerstein II, , , 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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