I remember you

One of my favorite songwriters and lyricists of all time is Johnny Mercer (1909-1976). He wrote either the words or music (or both) for over 1,500 of the most popular songs of his time.

When I was last in Mercer’s hometown of Savannah, Sarah, Helen Estelle and I visited his gravesite at Bonaventure Cemetery, where you can see this self portrait caricature on a bench there.

Mercer’s music was so beloved, it is unsurprising that Bette Midler performed a song Johnny Mercer wrote with Harold Arlen as the last act on Johnny Carson’s farewell show—and it clearly choked up Carson, as you can see in this video:


Johnny Mercer received nineteen Academy Award nominations for the songs he wrote for films; he won four, the first one in 1946 for “On the Atchison, Topeka, and the Santa Fe,” which he wrote with Harry Warren for The Harvey Girls, performed here by the cast ensemble including Judy Garland:


Mercer’s songs were performed by many performers including himself. Here is a short clip of him singing “At the Jazz Band Ball” in a 1964 television appearance:


It’s so interesting to me to hear the many ways that artists have styled Mercer’s adaptable songs. Here, as today’s “Groove” selection, is one of my favorites performed in three very different ways.


Groove of the Day

“I Remember You”

As performed by Bjork…

As performed by Slim Whitman…

And as performed by Sarah Vaughan…


2 Responses to “I remember you”

  1. 1 Elizabeth
    November 21, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    I love the Groove of the Day. Music has alway been an important part of my life, because I love to sing, but the Grooves are wonderful reminders of how much the music we listen to makes our days and lives memorable. Thanks, thanks, thanks.

  2. November 22, 2010 at 4:58 am

    Thanks, thanks, thanks to you Elizabeth. I’m having a good time doing this, too!

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