Saturday, January 30, 1988

INXS top the chart with “Need You Tonight”

Need You Tonight


Writer(s): Andrew Farriss, Michael Hutchence (see lyrics here)

Released: September 23, 1987

First Charted: October 24, 1987

Peak: 11 US, 11 CB, 11 RR, 73 RB, 12 AR, 1 CO, 2 UK, 1 CN, 3 AU, 5 DF (Click for codes to singles charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, 0.4 UK, 0.44 world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 45.4 video, 282.19 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

INXS had been around for a decade when “Need You Tonight” became their one and only U.S. chart-topper. In the early ‘80s, they started gaining attention on college rock with songs like “Don’t Change” and “Original Sin.” They landed squarely in the pop arena with the #5 hit “What You Need” in 1985, which set them up for their 1987 Kick album to be the biggest of their career. In addition to the success of “Need You Tonight,” the album generated three more top-10 hits in America.

While it has “arguably become the band’s signature song,” WK it didn’t reach #1 in INXS’s native Australia where their only #1 was “Original Sin.” In the UK, the song climbed to #2, but only after the release of a remix a year later. In its original run, it stalled at #58.

The lyrics, written by Michael Hutchence in one night, were “basically a musical booty call.” SF The song’s famous riff also came quickly. Andrew Farris was about to catch a taxi to the airport when it came to him. He asked the cabbie to wait while he recorded the riff. The driver was not happy when it took an hour. WK

The video combined “Need You Tonight” with “Mediate;” the first segued into the other on the album. It combined different forms of animation with live action with visual effects creating by cutting up 35mm film and relayering photcopied images over the original footage. The video portion for “Mediate” is an homage to “Subterranean Homesick Blues” by Bob Dylan, in which the artist flips cards showing the song’s lyrics. At the 1988 MTV Video Music Awards, the video took home Video of the Year and four other awards.


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First posted 10/23/2020; last updated 9/25/2022.

Friday, January 29, 1988

50 years ago: Bunny Berigan charted with “I Can’t Get Started”

I Can’t Get Started

Bunny Berigan

Writer(s): Vernon Duke, Ira Gershwin (see lyrics here)

First Charted: January 29, 1938

Peak: 10 US (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): --

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, -- video, -- streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

Bob Hope believes this song got him a film contract. TY1 He and Eve Arden sang it in a scene from Ziegfeld Follies of 1936. The revue opened in January of that year and was notable for Fanny Brice’s last appearance and choreographer George Balanchine’s first Broadway appearance. SB

The song got its start because composer Vernon Duke “literally couldn’t get started.” SB He had written a melody for the song “Face the Music with Me,” and passed it on to lyricist Ira Gershwin when, as Duke said, “nothing had happened to that version.” SB Gershwin added words about a man who’d “done almost anything anyone could want to do in life, including flying around the world in a plane and even selling short just before the stock market crash,” TY1 but couldn’t get the attention of the woman he desired – in other words, he couldn’t get started with her.

Duke’s “dapper melody” MM “feels more like Tin Pan Alley than Broadway” MM and fit with Gershwin’s lyrics “like a glove – topical and slangy” MM on this “lighthearted standard.” MM Some of Gershwin’s references, such as to Franklin D. Roosevelt and Greta Garbo tied the song to a certain era, but they had such “clever, endearing charm that only a brave singer will dare to replace them.” WK

Hal Kemp recorded the song in 1936, taking it to #14. PM Two years later, trumpeter and singer Roland Bernard “Bunny” Berigan tackled the song after jazz clarinetist Johnny Mince brought him the sheet music, suggesting it “would be perfect for him to record.” SS

Berigan was born in Hilbert, Wisconsin in 1908. He became a trumpet star in the dance band era, playing with the Dorsey Brothers, Benny Goodman, Kemp, and Paul Whiteman before launching his own band. PM His take on “I Can’t Get Started” “is a virtuoso work that defines the range” WK of the trumpet with his “mastery of expression, of emotional nuance, beyond what most trumpet players can only dream of.” WK It became Berigan’s theme song DJ and is “one of the most famous trumpet showcases and ballad vocals ever.” SS

Chet Baker, Nat “King” Cole, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Erroll Garner, Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, Billie Holiday, Louis Jordan, Charles Mingus, Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, Frank Sinatra, Dinah Washington, Lester Young are among the artists to do the song, turning it into a standard. WK


First posted 1/29/2013; last updated 3/31/2023.

Friday, January 22, 1988

Today in Music (1938): The Andrews Sisters “Bei Mir Bist Du Schöen” hit #1

Bei Mir Bist Du Schöen (Means That You're Grand)

The Andrews Sisters

Writer(s): Sholom Secunda (music), Jacob Jacobs (Yiddish lyrics), Sammy Cahn and Saul Chaplin (English lyrics) (see lyrics here)

First Charted: January 1, 1938

Peak: 15 PM, 12 HP, 14 GA, 16 SM (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): 1.0 US, -- UK, 14.0 world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, -- video, 11.11 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

During the 1930s, the Andrews Sisters – Patty, Maxene, and LaVerne – started out in vaudeville shows and then, with their parents chaperoning, started singing anywhere they could get hired. NRR Their father was frustrated that they weren’t going anywhere and gave them a year to make it or they would return home to Minneapolis. Dave Kapp, head of Decca Records, heard them on a New York radio station and hired them. NRR Their first record didn’t go anywhere, but their second was their first of 90 chart hits from 1938 to 1951 and their first of six #1 songs. PM

The A-side of the second single was originally “Nice Work if You Can Get It,” a Gershwin song which had been featured in the Fred Astaire film A Damsel in Distress. The B-side was “an obscure Yiddish love song called ‘Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen,’ often translated as ‘To Me, You Are Beautiful.’” NRR It first appeared in I Would if I Could, a 1932 Yiddish musical comedy, NRR under the title “Bay Mir Bistu Sheyn” and was sung by Aaron Lebedeff. SS

Sammy Cahn and Saul Chaplin wrote English lyrics for the song after, according to Cahn, he heard it performed by African-American singers Johnny & George in 1935 at Harlem’s famed Apollo Theater. SS However, Vic Schoen, the arranger for the Andrews Sisters, claimed he discovered the song in a lobby shop of a Yiddish theater. NRR Meanwhile Lou Levy, who shared an apartment with Cahn, said he bought the song. NRR

When the song was released, it was “Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen” that attracted record buyers flooding record stores with requests for “Buy a Beer, Monsieur Shane,” “Mr. Barney McShane,” “My Dear Mr. Shane” and “My Mere Bits of Shame.” NRR The song became so popular that Life magazine published a story about the song’s history. NRR By the end of January, it had sold 250,000 copies NRR and would eventually become the first gold record awarded to a female group. TY2 By year’s end, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) named it the most popular song of 1938. NRR


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First posted 1/21/2024.

Saturday, January 16, 1988

Today in Music (1938): Benny Goodman performed at Carnegie Hall

Complete Legendary Carnegie Hall Concert

Benny Goodman

Recorded: January 16, 1938

Charted: December 20, 1952

Peak: 18 US, -- UK, -- CN, -- AU

Sales (in millions): 0.5 US, -- UK, 0.5 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: jazz

Tracks, Disc 1:

Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks). Chart information is for original studio releases. Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Benny Goodman Introduction (recorded 1950) [0:22]
  2. Don’t Be That Way (Edgar Sampson, Benny Goodman, Mitchell Parish) [4:12] (3/12/38, 1 US)
  3. Sometimes I’m Happy (Vincent Youmans, Irving Caesar, Clifford Grey) [4:13] (9/14/35, 12 US) *
  4. One O’Clock Jump (Eddie Durham, Buster Smith) [6:47] (3/12/38, 8 US)
  5. Applause; transition to Twenty Years of Jazz [0:41]
  6. Sensation Rag (Edwin “Eddie” Edwards) [1:12]
  7. I’m Coming Virginia (Will Marion Cook, Donald Heywood) [2:15]
  8. When My Baby Smiles at Me (Bill Munro, Andres Sterling, Ted Lewis, Harry Von Tilzer) [0:52]
  9. Shine (Cecil Mack, Ford Dabney, Lew Brown) [0:55]
  10. Blue Reverie (Duke Ellington, Harry Carney) [3:32]
  11. Applause, transition back to Goodman Orchestra [0:22]
  12. Life Goes to Party (Harry James, Benny Goodman) [4:05]
  13. Setting Up for Jam Session [0:40]
  14. Honeysuckle Rose (Thomas “Fats” Waller, Andy Razaf) [16:42]
  15. Applause; setting up and tuning up for BG Small Groups [1:00]
  16. Body and Soul (Johnny Green, Edward Heyman, Robert Sour, Frank Eyton) [3:10] (9/7/35, 5 US)
  17. Applause as Lionel Hampton enters [0:27]
  18. Avalon (Vincent Rose, B.G. DeSylva, Al Jolson) [4:04]
  19. The Man I Love (George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin) [3:35] (9/11/37, 20 US)
  20. I Got Rhythm (George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin) [4:51]

Tracks, Disc 2:

  1. Blue Skies (Irving Berlin) [3:14] (8/17/46, 9 US)
  2. Loch Lomand (traditional) [3:04] (12/18/37, 12 US)
  3. Applause: Benny Goodman’s ‘No Encore’ announcement [1:14]
  4. The Blue Room (Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart) [2:36]
  5. Swingtime in the Rockies (Jimmy Mundy, Benny Goodman) [2:38] (8/15/36, 2 US)
  6. Applause: Martha Tilton returns to stage [0:21]
  7. Bei Mir Bist du Schön (Scholom Secunda, Jacob Jacobs, adapted by Sammy Cahn & Saul Chaplin) [3:54] (1/29/38, 4 US)
  8. Applause: setting up for BG small groups [0:32]
  9. China Boy (Dick Winfree, Phil Boutelje) [4:45] (6/27/36, 9 US)
  10. Stompin’ at the Savoy (Edgar Sampson, Benny Goodman, Chick Webb) [5:55] (7/11/36, 11 US)
  11. Applause: BG Quartet continues but changes program [0:24]
  12. Dizzy Spells (Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Teddy Wilson) [5:37]
  13. Applause; transition back to Goodman orchestra for finale [0:41]
  14. Sing Sing Sing with a Swing (Louis Prima) [12:02] (4/9/38, 7 US)
  15. Applause until encores [1:03]
  16. If Dreams Come True (Edgar Sampson, Benny Goodman, Irving Mills) [2:34] *
  17. Big John’s Special (Horace Henderson) [3:41]

* unique to Complete Legendary Carnegie Hall Concert

Total Running Time: 101:04


4.650 out of 5.00 (average of 4 ratings)

Quotable: “One of the greatest concerts ever captured on record.” This “belongs in every serious music library.” – Scott Yanow, All Music Guide

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

Band leader and clarinetist Benny Goodman, “touted as the ‘King of Swing’ at his peak,” NRR was “the first real jazz musician to capture a mass bourgeois white audience in America.” AZ He was also the first to stage a full jazz concert at Carnegie Hall. SY His publicist, Wynn Nathanson, initially suggested it as a publicity stunt, but after “his film Hollywood Hotel opened to rave reviews and giant lines, he threw himself into the work.” WK It sold out its capacity 2,760 seats at the then-high top price of $2.75 a seat. WK

This “belongs in every serious music library, capturing Benny Goodman and the swing era in general at its height.” SY His “fantastic performance at Carnegie Hall” AZ started with three contemporary numbers, then played a history of jazz, and then a jam session on Honeysuckle Rose, “which found sidemen of the orchestras of Duke Ellington and Count Basie interacting with Goodman's star.” SY Later some “trio and quartet numbers were well-received and a vocal on Loch Lomond by Martha Tilton provoked five curtain calls.” WK

“This concert has been regarded as one of the most siginificant in jazz history” WK and “one of the greatest concerts ever captured on record.” SY This was “a turning point in the way jazz is judged by outsiders.” SY It had “finally been accepted by mainstream audiences.” WK “It is hard to believe that tapes of this momentous event were kept in a closet, forgotten until rediscovered by accident in 1950” SY by Benny’s sister-in-law in a closet in his apartment. WK

The performance “captures Goodman and his orchestra at the peak of their performance.” AZ He is “fronting top performers and appearing before an energetic audience.” NRR His “stellar bandsmen were joined by Lionel Hampton and members of the Count Basie and Duke Ellington ensembles for this famous festival of jazz during the height of the swing music era.” NRR

“There are many, many high points, including exciting versions of Don’t Be That Way and One O’Clock Jump, a tribute to the 20 years of jazz that were then on record; …exciting performances by the Trio and Quartet; and, of course, Sing, Sing, Sing with Gene Krupa’s creative (if not too subtle) drumming and Jess Stacy’s remarkable ad lib piano solo.” SY

Three of these songs are featured in the DMDB book The Top 100 Songs of the Pre-Rock Era, 1890-1953, albeit not the versions by Goodman. Ben Selvin had a chart-topper with Blue Skies in 1927, Red Nichols took I Got Rhythm to #5 in 1930, Coleman Hawkins had a #13 hit with Body and Soul in 1940.

Notes: When issued on CD in 1999, the original Carnegie Hall Jazz Concert was expanded (track listing reflects that) and retitled The Legendary Carnegie Hall Concert.

Resources and Related Links:

Other Related DMDB Pages:

First posted 11/14/2008; last updated 1/29/2022.