The song of the day for Saturday, August 2, 2014 is “Fly Me To The Moon.”
About This Song
“Fly Me To The Moon” was written in 1954 by Bart Howard. The original title was “In Other Words,” but the song was not doing that well, in spite of several recordings. In 1962, Howard renamed the song to “Fly Me To The Moon,” and the song began to catch on. Tony Bennett’s 1965 recording for If I Ruled The World was a big hit for Bennett. There have been many recordings of the song, including those by Frank Sinatra, Kaye Ballard and many more. However, Bart Howard told Bennett that his 1965 recording was “the definitive performance of this song.”
About This Version
Tony Bennett recorded “Fly Me To The Moon” on February 18, 1965 at the CBS 30th Street Studio. The song was released that year on the album If I Ruled The World: Songs for the Jet Set, released that same year. The arrangement is by Don Costa. Other than the live recording of the MTV Unplugged concert in 1994, Mr. Bennett has never recorded this song since. But how can you possibly improve on perfection?
This author first saw Tony Bennett in concert in Seattle, Washington in September, 2007. By the time I bought my tickets, there were no orchestra seats left and I could only get tickets in what was (optimistically) called the mezzanine. At that time, I didn’t know that at certain concert halls, Mr. Bennett sometimes sings this song a capella, without a microphone. Towards the end of the concert, he put down his microphone and started to sing “Fly Me To The Moon.” Even in back of the house, his voice filled the auditorium. All of us hung on every note, never wanting this beauty to ever end. I’ve since heard him do the song without a microphone, but nothing could have prepared me for that first moment. It was, and remains, a moment of pure magic.
“Fly Me To The Moon,” as well as the album If I Ruled The World: Songs for the Jet Set, is available from iTunes.
And, from his MTV Concert in 1994, is Tony Bennett singing “Fly Me To The Moon.”