The song of the day for Saturday, September 19, 2015 is “The Way You Look Tonight.”
About This Song
“The Way You Look Tonight” was written by Jerome Kern with lyrics by Dorothy Fields. The song was introduced by Fred Astaire in the 1936 film Swing Time; it won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for the year. Dorothy Fields remarked “The first time Jerry played that melody for me I went out and started to cry. The release absolutely killed me. I couldn’t stop, it was so beautiful.” Dorothy Fields was the first woman to win an Oscar for songwriting. It’s a magnificent love song that has found a strong position as a jazz standard, with recordings by Bing Crosby, Billie Holiday, Mel Tormé and Frank Sinatra.
About This Version
Tony Bennett has recorded “The Way You Look Tonight” several times, first in 1958 for the album Long Ago and Far Away and for Duets II (with Faith Hill) and Viva Duets (with Thalia).
But my absolute favorite recording, so far, of this song is from ca. 1997 and is a special version he and the Ralph Sharon Trio recorded for the movie My Best Friend’s Wedding, which was, to my great pleasure, included on one of the Rarities CDs included in the 2011 Complete Collection. It’s absolutely beautiful.
“The Way You Look Tonight,” as well as the other songs collected on Rarities, Outtakes and Other Delights, Vol. 2, is available from iTunes.
Today is YouTube Saturday and this week it’s very special! This is recording of today’s song with Tony and Bill Charlap, as recorded in 2008 for an Elvis Costello television special. I like to think of it as a bit of a preview of their album of Jerome Kern songs, The Silver Lining, which will be released on Friday, September 25, 2015. I can’t wait for my copy to arrive from Amazon, where the album has held the #1 ranking for vocal jazz since it became available for preorder.