Margaret Whiting passed away on January 11. She was 86. Margaret started singing in 1942 and her career lasted more than six decades. She was once asked in an interview what separates good singers from truly great singers. She answered, “Being a great actress, being very dramatic. Some people sing beautiful songs, but they don’t put all the meaning into them, and that’s the important thing. To read a lyric, to make the words come alive, that’s the secret.” Here is Margaret perfectly illustrating her point with the song “Time After Time” (Kahn, Styne 1947).
A beautiful song and by all accounts a beautiful woman. RIP Mrs Whiting.
Here’s a fun clip from a 1976 Bob Hope special. It features Sammy Cahn, Harry Ritz, Marty Allen, and Jan Murray.
Here is a Sammy Cahn composition called ‘Time After Time.” This is the first time I’ve ever heard this beautiful song. It was first introduced by Frank Sinatra in the 1947 movie “It Happened In Brooklyn.” Sammy Cahn also wrote “Three Coins In A Fountain” and “My Kind Of Town (Chicago Is)”
Chet Baker sings it beautifully. By the time this footage was shot in 1964 the effects Chet’s of addiction were already quite evident. He’s not looking terribly sober here and, at 35, the hollow look of his cheeks makes me think a lot of his teeth were probably already gone. I love his music but yeesh, just say no kids!
Today as I sat down to write this post I proclaimed that my body was worn out! That’s because, on top of my normal “keep ahead of the squalor” chore list, I also had to assemble a dresser for my daughter’s room. Many of my daughter’s friends here in the conservative “traditional family values” heartland were quite surprised to learn that women are allowed to purchase and operate hand tools without male supervision in this state but I assured them it was so. It was a pretty easy project but it was fiddly and time consuming which was why I declared that I was worn out when I sat down.
Of course my little Allen wrench fatigue is nothing like having a truly worn out body. Here is what Chet Baker looked like after 30+ years of heroin addiction:
I hope Chet’s getting a spa day in jazz man heaven!