Friday, December 31, 2010

Tommy Dorsey: On the Sunny Side of the Street

On the Sunny Side of the Street, composed by Jimmy McHugh with lyrics by Dorothy Fields, was released in 1930. The song was first performed for the Broadway musical Lew Leslie's International Revue, starring Harry Richman and Gertrude Lawrence.

This recording by Tommy Dorsey, from 1945, is perhaps the most well-known version of the song. Other versions include those performed by Billie Holliday, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald & The Manhattan Transfer. If you give each version a listen, you will notice that each performance, although differing somewhat in style and tempo, gives a nice rendition of the song's inner meaning.

Such shows the beauty and importance of preference, personal interpretation and the freedom that music provides. As well, as has been said many times and in many ways, music brings people together. It is a unifying force of good.

So, in choosing this song as my last blog posting of 2010, I wanted the year, which has been difficult in many ways, to end on a positive note. hat sometimes we have to make a concerted effort to walk "on the sunny side of the street." I hope that everyone has a Happy New Year. And may 2011 bring you everything that your heart desires.

On the Sunny Side of the Street
By Jimmy McHugh & Dorothy Fields

Grab your coat and get your hat
Leave your worry on the doorstep
Just direct your feet
To the sunny side of the street

Can't you hear a pitter-pat
And that happy tune is your step
Life can be so sweet
On the sunny side of the street

I used to walk in the shade
With those blues on parade
But now I'm not afraid
This rover crossed over
If I'd never have a cent
I'd be rich as Rockefeller
Going to set my feet

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