The song of the day for Friday, August 25, 2017 is “That Old Black Magic.”
About This Song
Today’s song, “That Old Black Magic,” was written in 1942 by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer. It was first recorded that same year by Glenn Miller. It was also used in the 1942 movie Star Spangled Rhythm. It’s been recorded many times and used in several films, including the 1956 film Bus Stop, where it was sung by Marilyn Monroe.
About This Version
Tony Bennett made three recordings of the song, all in 1962. The first was for On The Glory Road, which was held back from release at the last minute. The other two are live recordings: one and Carnegie Hall in June and the other at the White House Seminar American Jazz Concert on August 28, 1962, at the invitation of President John F. Kennedy.
Jazz Times magazine announced:
One of the great lost treasures of American musical history, the Tony Bennett-Dave Brubeck White House Seminar performance came about when the artists-each already on the bill with his own ensemble-agreed to seize the moment with an impromptu set. While the Bennett-Brubeck recording of ‘That Old Black Magic’ had surfaced on the occasional compilation (Brubeck’s 1971’s out-of-print LP, Summit Sessions, and 2001’s Vocal Encounters), the rest of the Bennett and Brubeck performances-an hour’s worth of music-were a mythical lost object in the Sony Music Entertainment vaults until finally surfacing through a fortuitous discovery last December, just weeks after Brubeck’s passing on December 5, 2012 (one day shy of his 92nd birthday).
Bennett/Brubeck-The White House Sessions, Live 1962 was released in May 2013. This recording from that impromptu improv session with Tony Bennett, Dave Brubeck, , Eugene Wright on bass, and Joe Morello on drums.
“That Old Black Magic,” as well as Bennett/Brubeck: The White House Sessions Live 1962, is available from iTunes.