june 2012


Judy Lives!

A 90th birthday tribute to a great American artist. Love never ends.

Fourteen-year-old Judy in the ‘Dear Mr. Gable’ scene from Broadway Melody of 1938, directed by Roy Del Ruth. Written by James V. Monaco with lyrics by Joseph McCarthy, additional lyrics were added to ‘You Made Me Love You’ by Roger Edens, and the young Judy actually sang the song for Gable at a birthday party thrown for him by MGM. Duly charmed by the lass’s performance, the MGM execs added the number to Broadway Melody of 1938. Her original recording was released on Decca, but MGM re-released it in 1939 as the flip side of ‘Over the Rainbow’ from The Wizard of Oz.

‘All God’s Chillun Got Rhythm,’ as recorded by 15-year-old Judy on August 30, 1937 with George Stoll & His Orchestra and released by Decca. Written by Gus Kahn, Walter Jurmann and Bronislaw Kaper, the song first appeared in the Marx Brothers film A Day At the Races, sung by Ivie Anderson, the vocalist in Duke Ellington’s band.

From the Busby Berkeley-directed Strike Up the Band (1940), Judy’s last film with Mickey Rooney. She sings ‘Nobody,’ written by Roger Edens, who had written the additional lyrics for ‘You Made Me Love You,’ Garland’s show stopping number in Broadway Melody of 1938 (see above).

A Garland classic, ‘The Trolley Song,’ written by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane and made famous by Judy in the 1944 film Meet Me in St. Louis, directed by Vincent Minnelli. Nominated for an Academy Award as Best Song in 1944. Blaine told two different stories about the song’s origins. On NPR in 1989 he said the song was inspired by a picture of a trolleycar in a turn-of-the-century newspaper. In another version he said he was told to write a song about trolleys for the movie, and was having a hard time coming up with inspiration. He finally came up with some lyrics when he went to the library and found a children's book with a picture of a St. Louis trolley car with the caption: ‘Clang, clang, clang went the jolly little trolley.’ In 2004, the American Film Institute ranked Meet Me In St. Louis at #26 on the 100 Greatest Songs in American Films list.

‘A lady of monumental style’: At the 1965 Academy Awards ceremony, Gene Kelly introduces Judy Garland’s performance of a Cole Porter medley in an Academy tribute to the late, great songwriter.

‘The Man That Got Away,’ another Garland classic, from A Star Is Born (1954, directed by George Cukor, produced by Sid Luft and starring Judy Garland and James Mason). Music by Harold Arlen, lyrics by Ira Gershwin.

The indelible moment: ‘Over the Rainbow,’ The Wizard of Oz (1939). Music by Harold Arlen, lyrics by E.Y. ‘Yip’ Harburg. From Wikipedia:The song is number one of the ‘Songs of the Century’ list compiled by the Recording Industry Association of America and the National Endowment for the Arts. The American Film Institute also ranked ‘Over the Rainbow’ the greatest movie song of all time on the list of ‘AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs.’ It was adopted (along with Irving Berlin's ‘White Christmas’) by American troops in Europe in World War II as a symbol of the United States--in fact, Garland even performed the song for American troops as part of a 1943 command performance. In April 2005, the United States Postal Service issued a commemorative stamp recognizing lyricist Yip Harburg's accomplishments. The stamp pictures the opening lyric from ‘Over the Rainbow.’

‘Smile,’ written by Charlie Chaplin for his film Modern Times (1936).

On her CBS TV show, Judy chats up and duets with Peggy Lee on the latter’s ‘I Love Being Here With You’ (written by Peggy Lee and Bill Schluger).

Another timeless moment from Judy’s TV show by way of a duet with Diahann Carroll on a medley of exquisite Harold Arlen-Richard Rodgers tunes.

Judy has a grand time with Lena Horne on TV

The complete legendary ‘Hooray for Love’ production number from Judy’s October 4, 1963 CBS TV show with Jerry Van Dyke clearing the stage for the entrance of Barbra Streisand, who engaged Judy in a medley of ‘Hooray for Love,’ ‘After You’ve Gone,’ ‘By Myself,’ George Gershwin’s ‘‘S Marvelous,’ ‘How About You,’ Dietz and Schwartz’s ‘You and The Night and The Music,’ concluding with ‘It All Depends On You.’

Judy’s 17-year-old daughter Liza Minnelli duets with her mother on this November 17, 1963 installment of Judy’s CBS TV show.

Now 18, Liza and mom Judy team up at the London Palladium, November 16, 1964, to duet on Jerry Herman’s ‘Hello, Dolly’ and, from Gypsy, Jule Styne-Stephen Sondheim’s ‘Together, Wherever We Go’

Judy and Fred Astair class it up on Irving Berlin’s ‘Easter Parade,’ from the like-titled, Charles Walter-directed film of 1948, the highest grossing film of that year.The film won the 1948 Academy Award for Best Original Music Score.

From Easter Parade, the deleted ‘Mr. Monotony’ scene, excised from the final version because studio execs thought it too risqué for a film supposedly set in 1912. Garland sports the tuxedo top and nylon tights she would also wear in 1950’s Summer Stock (see clip below), making of the outfit a personal trademark.

The ‘Get Happy’ sequence (with Judy in a tuxedo top and nylon tights a la Easter Parade) from Summer Stock (1950). Directed by Joe Pasternak, this was Garland’s final final pairing with Gene Kelly. At the end of filming MGM and Garland (who struggled with her reliance on prescription medication throughout the filming) severed their relationship, by mutual agreement. Prior to filming this sequence, Garland had taken two months off, returning noticeably thinner than in previous scenes, as she had lost nearly 20 pounds during her sabbatical.

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