Song of the Week
by Irving Berlin
In this anniversary week of 9/11, we'll be publishing various columns old and new from today and from September 2001. But we thought we'd begin with a musical remembrance: Mark presents a special audio edition of our Song of the Week telling the story behind the song spontaneously sung by Congressional leaders on the steps of the Capitol in the wake of that murderous event. We'll hear Irving Berlin's great anthem sung by Kate Smith, CĂ©line Dion and the composer himself - and we'll explore its origins in the First World War, and in a long forgotten ethnic novelty called "When Mose With His Nose Leads The Band". This podcast is adapted from Mark's essay in his book A Song For The Season. To listen to it, click here.
And don't forget our tribute to Jerry Leiber, the man who gave us "Jailhouse Rock", "Love Potion Number Nine", "Stuck In The Middle With You" and "I'm A Woman". And check out our other music podcasts of the summer:
~We mark the centenary of Lucille Ball. From the Steyn archive, Mark talks to the late Cy Coleman, composer of "Witchcraft", "The Best Is Yet To Come" and "Hey, Big Spender!", about the song he wrote for Lucy - and we'll also hear "Hey, Look Me Over!" in the hands of Louis Armstrong, Peggy Lee, a British pub singalong - and as interpreted by the composer himself.
~Mark celebrates the 90th birthday of composer/lyricist Richard Adler with two exclusive live performances from the Steyn archive: The composer himself recreates his big ballad from The Pajama Game, and Mark joins Liza Minnelli, Gwen Verdon, Kander & Ebb for an all-star performance of the showstopper from Damn Yankees.
~Mark talks to Nat Ayer Jr about his father Nat D Ayer, the two-hit wonder behind "Oh, You Beautiful Doll" and "If You Were The Only Girl In The World".
~Mark pays tribute to James Bond's music man, John Barry, with two hours of the coolest spy music ever written. Barry's successor as 007's composer, David Arnold, and a brace of Bond lyricists, Don Black and Tim Rice, recall "Thunderball", "You Only Live Twice", "Diamonds Are Forever" and many more - plus Steyn sings "Goldfinger"!