The song of the day for Wednesday, April 15, 2015 is “As Time Goes By.”
About This Song
“As Time Goes By” was written for the 1931 Broadway musical Everybody’s Welcome by Herman Hupfeld. It was a modest hit, with recordings by Rudy Vallee and Binnie Hale. All that changed in 1942, when it was sung by Dooley Wilson in the film Casablanca. Not only was “As Time Goes By” sung; it was a major point plot, as Rick (Humphrey Bogart) has told his pianist Sam (Dooley Wilson) to never ever play that song. Until Rick’s long-lost love, Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) comes to Casablanca and Rick’s American Bar asks Sam to play the song. The song provides one of the most misquoted lines in all of film. Bogart never says “play it again, Sam.” He says “if she can stand it, so can I. Play it Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By.’” The American Film Institute named “As Time Goes By” the second most important song in film, second only to “Over The Rainbow.” Note that Tony Bennett sings the verse for this song, which has seldom been heard, especially since the release of the film Casablanca.
About This Version
Tony Bennett recorded “As Time Goes By” for his first album released on his own Improv label in 1972: Life Is Beautiful. He is accompanied by the Torrie Zito Trio, with Zito on piano, John Guiffrida on bass and Chuck Hughes on drums. The album is currently available as part of the The Complete Improv Recordings collection.
I recently watched Casablanca on television (thanks to the wonderful Turner Classic Movies network) and was reminded, once again what a wonderful film it is and how much I love this song.
“As Time Goes By,” as well as The Complete Improv Recordings, is available from iTunes.