Posts Tagged ‘Pearl Bailey’

Pearl Bailey – Big Spender

(click song title above to listen)

Born in 1918 in Newport News, VA, Pearl Bailey was more than an Emmy-winning actress and a singer. She was an author of six books, received a bachelor’s degree in theology from Georgetown University at the age of 67, and served as special ambassador to the United Nations. Last, but certainly not least, she was funny.

Bailey began singing and dancing in Philadelphia’s black nightclubs in the 1930s, opened for Cab Calloway and Duke Ellington in New York in the 1940s, and made her Broadway debut in St. Louis Woman in 1946. Bailey recorded a number of sides for Columbia Records in the 40s and didn’t return to the label until 1966 cutting “If My Friends Could See Me Now” and this week’s signature comedic take on “Big Spender”, both written by composer Cy Coleman and lyricist Dorothy Fields for the hit musical Sweet Charity.

pearl bailey big spender columbia 300x300 Pearl Bailey   Big Spender

Contact & Licensing info:
Published by Notable Music Co. (ASCAP) & Lida Enterprises (ASCAP). Contact: Damon Booth /
Administered by Downtown Music Publishing.
Contact: Sean McGraw /
Master Controlled by Sony Music Group.

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Sammy Davis Jr – If My Friends Could See Me Now

1966 saw the debut of the iconic hit musical “Sweet Charity” on Broadway: Combining the music of Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields, the direction and choreography of the legendary Bob Fosse, and a book written by Neil Simon, “Charity” literally reinvented the look and sound of contemporary musical theatre. Of the many standards that came out of the play, “If My Friends Could See Me Now” remains one of musical theater’s most hummable classics. Originally immortalized by Gwen Verdon in the play and original cast record (and later by the star of the film adaptation, Shirley Maclaine), “Friends” had been covered by a select few over the years: Pearl Bailey and Dr John both put their stamps on unique covers; Curtis Mayfield produced a cover by Linda Clifford in 1978 which reached #1 on the Disco chart. But here we present you with Sammy Davis Jr’s defining take from 1969… cool, swingin’ and sung as only Sammy could.

Lyrics to “If My Friends Could See Me Now” HERE!
Check out this clip of a flash mob surprising New York shoppers with a street theatre interpretation. Amazing. Check it HERE!

Contact & Licensing info:
Master controlled by Warner Music Group (Sammy Davis Jr)
Published by Notable Music Co. Inc. and Lida Enterprises (ASCAP) / Publishing controlled by Notable Music Co. /Administered by BMG Rights Management / contact:

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