The song of the day for Saturday, April 7, 2023, is “Trav’lin’ Light.”
The Year of Tony Bennett honors Eleanora Fagan (known as Billie Holiday), born on April 7, 1915, in Philadelphia PA. Although born in Philadelphia, she grew up in Baltimore. Much has been written about the hard life she had. But today I want to think of her as Tony Bennett did:
People often focus on the negative aspects of Billie’s short and tragic life, on her sad songs. But I want to concentrate on the optimistic side of her legacy. She was truly the Goddess of Style, and she changed music forever.
About This Song
“Trav’lin’ Light” was written in 1942 by Trummy Young and Jimmy Mundy, with lyrics by Johnny Mercer. This wonderful song was first recorded by Paul Whiteman with Billie Holiday on vocals. It’s a wonderful, classic Mercer lyric and the tune is lovely. In addition to this recording, this song has been recorded by Anita O’Day, Peggy Lee, Queen Latifah, Shirley Horn, and Sonny Rollins.
About This Version
Tony Bennett recorded “Trav’lin’ Light” in June 1996 for Tony Bennett On Holiday, which was released in 1997. Jorge Calandrelli wrote the arrangement.
Tony Bennett On Holiday won the 1998 Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance.
“Trav’lin’ Light,” as well as Tony Bennett On Holiday is available on Apple Music.
Here’s Lady Day’s original recording of “Trav’lin’ Light” with Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra: