Thursday, February 16, 2012

"Till We Meet Again" charts for the first time: February 15, 1919








Henry Burr was one of the most successful recording artists of the first quarter of the 20th century, landing 15 songs at #1 as a solo artist. However, he also regularly worked with Albert Campbell (who sent three songs to the top on his own) and they landed another seven songs atop the charts. “Till We Meet Again” was their most successful pairing. PM

This “heartfelt farewell of a beau who promises to return and wed his love” RCG was “the most successful of all the ballads of the First World War,” RCG selling 5 million in sheet music. The United States had already entered the war when Richard Whiting and Raymond Egan penned this waltz. However, they threw it away because they disliked it. Luckily, their secretary heard the song, liked it, salvaged it from the trash, and sent it to the publisher. RCG

In 1919, five versions of the song charted – Nicholas Orlando’s Orchestra and the duo of Charles Hart & Lewis James also went to #1 with it, but Burr & Campbell had the most successful version (9 weeks at #1). Vernon Dalhart & Gladys Rice took their duet to the top 10, as did Prince’s Orchestra. PM

World War II saw the song revived and recorded by Kay Starr, Rosemary Clooney, Patti Page, Mitch Miller, and Jaye P. Morgan. RCG Doris Day and Gordon MacRae performed it for the 1951 film On Moonlight Bay. JA The song was also played for years at the adjournment of the United States Congress. RCG




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