The song of the day for Sunday, September 3, 2017 is “The Man That Got Away.”
About This Song
“That Man That Got Away” was written by Harold Arlen and Ira Gershwin for Judy Garland to sing in the 1954 version of A Star Is Born, with James Mason. Her performance of this song is legendary in film history, with 27 takes in three days, three separate sessions, and two different directors. The filmed scene is brilliant and made the song a huge hit for Garland, who sang it in most of her concerts.
About This Version
If you told me you were going to stick me on a desert island and I could only take two Tony Bennett albums with me, this would definitely be one of them (the other would be the 1962 Carnegie Hall concert album).
Tony Bennett tells this story in his autobiography The Good Life:
I always wanted to be unpredictable, and so for my next project, I decided to go in the opposite direction from the big orchestral albums I’d been doing lately and cut an intimate piano-vocal album with Ralph Sharon. We booked time in the studio and pored through music books, trying one tune after another. The arrangements were spontaneous, and we finished each song in one or two takes. In one afternoon we laid down sixteen tunes— which must be some kind of record— twelve of which made it onto the album, which became 1961’s Tony Sings for Two, Mitch Miller showed up at the start of these sessions, furious that I was really going through with it. When he saw that there was no dissuading me, he turned to Frank Laico and said, “I’m leaving. I can’t support this.” Tony Sings for Two turned out to be one of my finest records ever.
And today’s song is my favorite from a favorite album.
“The Man That Got Away,” as well as Tony Sings For Two, is available from iTunes.