My Melancholy Baby

My Melancholy Baby

1920s sheet music cover

"My Melancholy Baby" is a

  1. ^ My Melancholy Baby. Library of Congress. Retrieved on 2010-12-06.
  2. ^ Soundtrack Listing for Birth of the Blues. IMDB. Retrieved on 2010-12-06.
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External links

Tommy Edwards MGM single of the tune reached #15 in the US Music Vendor charts, spring 1959.

In the 1959 comedy, Some Like It Hot, Marilyn Monroe's character, Sugar Kane is a big fan of the song, especially when played by a tenor saxophonist. She states, "All they have to do is play eight bars of 'Come to me My Melancholy Baby' and my spine turns to custard, I get goosepimply all over, and I come to 'em!"[4]

In 1958, William Frawley performed the song again on the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, in the "Lucy Goes to Sun Valley" episode shown on April 14. Frawley, as Fred Mertz, was asked by Ricky to perform "an old-fashioned ballad" for his band's appearance on a TV show. Mertz sang the song in the rehearsal scene for the musical number.[3]

Judy Garland sang it during the "Born in a Trunk" sequence in the 1954 movie A Star Is Born, after a drunk persistently shouted, "Sing 'Melancholy Baby'!"

The song appears both incidentally and in thematic background variations in the musical score of Fritz Lang's 1945 film Scarlet Street starring Joan Bennett and Edward G. Robinson. As a recording plays on a phonograph in several different scenes, the song becomes distorted, including disturbing repetitions when the needle gets stuck.

In the 1942 film Johnny Eager, the song was played during the opening and closing credits, as background music throughout, and as dance music by the band at Tony Luce's place. It was not credited.

The song was sung by Bing Crosby in the 1941 Oscar-nominated movie Birth of the Blues.[2]

The song can be heard often throughout the 1939 Warner Brothers gangster movie The Roaring Twenties, where a vocal rendition of the song is performed by co-star Priscilla Lane.

Ernie Burnett, who composed the music, was wounded fighting in the First World War, and he lost his memory together with his identity dog-tags. While recuperating in hospital, a pianist entertained the patients with popular tunes including "Melancholy Baby". Burnett rose from his sickbed and exclaimed: "That's my song!" He had regained his memory.

William Frawley—who later played Fred Mertz on I Love Lucy—claimed he was the first person to perform the song publicly, in 1912, in the Mozart Cafe at 1647 Curtis Street in Denver, Colorado. Frawley told this story during a May 3, 1965, appearance on the TV game show I've Got a Secret.

Notable performances