Friday, September 04, 2015
IT'S TOMMY WOLF'S BIRTHDAY (1925-1979)
As hard as I try to avoid doing so, it seems pert nigh impossible not to append that hoary adjectival overkill LEGENDARY to his name. Among Tommy Wolf's other co-creations with lyricist Fran Landesman are two bonafide somewhat late-blooming additions to the classics section of the Great American Songbook, "Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most," [HEAR HERE]and "All the Sad Young Men." And there dozens of lesser known ones from the duo that are just as memorable: "You Smell So Good," "Listen Little Girl," "Season in the Sun," etc. many of which have been covered by the equally, uh, well, ummm, legendary performing duo of Jackie and Roy. And on the Bill Black CD that I produced for Japan, there is a Wolfsong (with lyrics by the elusive Wayne Arnold rarity "So It's Spring." Wolf was nearly as gifted a lyricist (on the rare occasions when he acted in that capacity); also a fine pianist and vocalist. In 2003 I played a part in overseeing the reissue of singer Bobbi Rogers' albu, "Tommy Wolf Can Really Hang You Up the Most."At the very last minute, when Wolf's widow/publisher couldn't (make that "wouldn't) supply the songs' lyrics for the CD booklet, I copied them while auditing the recording. At first, it proved a bit slow-going and tedious, but finally, when I realized just how good (was there ever any doubt?) Wolf's music and Fran Landesman's lyrics are, I realllly got into the process of playing lines over and over again to get it just right (they really hold up even under the closest of scrutiny).
Posted by Bill Reed at 8:47 AM