The song of the day for Thursday, April 30, 2015 is “Trav’lin’ Light.”
About This Song
Today’s song, “Trav’lin’ Light,” was written by two musicians: Trummy Young and Jimmy Mundy. Young was a trombonist who played with many of the great swing bands, including Earl Hines, Jimmie Lunceford and Benny Goodman. He also played with Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie in the mid-1940s and then joined the Louis Armstrong All-Stars in 1952, where he stayed until 1964. Jimmy Mundy played tenor saxophone in the same era and was also a noted arranger. Together, they wrote the melody for “Trav’lin’ Light” in 1942 with lyrics from Johnny Mercer. Billie Holiday made the first recording of this song, but it has been relatively widely recorded, by artists including Chet Baker, Carmen McRae, Queen Latifah, Ella Fitzgerald and Anita O’Day.
About This Version
I have to start out by saying that I absolutely adore this song. The first time I listened to Tony Bennett sing this song, I listened to it constantly for days. I may be one of the few people in the world who not only have a “Trav’lin’ Light” playlist on their iPod, but listen to it regularly. Tony Bennett’s recording of this song is one of the most beautiful songs he’s ever recorded. I hope you like it too.
“Trav’lin’ Light,” as well as Tony Bennett On Holiday, is available from iTunes.
About Billie Holiday’s Version
Billie Holiday recorded “” several times, beginning with the first recording of the song June 12, 1942 with the Paul Whitman Orchestra. I’m not always a huge fan on Whitman, but this recording is astounding. It was released as single and also as a V-disc. Mundy did the arrangement and Trummy Young played trombone on this recording. Lester Young also played on this recording.
“Trav’lin’ Light,” as well as Billie’s Blues, is available from iTunes.