When I got home from work today, Amazon had delivered the DVD of Johnny Mercer: The Dream’s On Me. I’ve been watching it and so we absolutely have to have a Johnny Mercer song.
The Song of the Day for October 24, 2012 is Blues In The Night.
About Blues In The Night
Blues In The Night was written by Mercer and Harold Arlen for the 1941 film of the same name. The script called for a blues song to be sung by a prisoner. They set out to write an authentic blues number. Harold Arlen related:
When Mercer wrote “Blues in the Night”, I went over his lyric and I started to hum it over his desk. It sounded marvelous once I got to the second stanza but that first twelve was weak tea. On the third or fourth page of his work sheets I saw some lines—one of them was “My momma done tol’ me, when I was in knee pants.” I said, “Why don’t you try that?” It was one of the very few times I’ve ever suggested anything like that to John.
It became an instant jazz classic and has been recorded many times, including Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong. Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, Artie Shaw, and Mercer himself.
About This Version
Today’s version of Blues In The Night is from Tony Bennett’s second jazz album, the 1957 The Beat Of My Heart. This album featured several of the world’s greatest percussionists. Blues In The Night featured Chico Hamilton.