Saturday 18 November 2017

Is "Lost in the Stars" the greatest popular song ever written? IMHO....yes

Kurt Weill
The greatest popular song ever written in my humble opinion and based by no means on listening to every popular song is…. fanfare… Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson’s Lost in the Stars from their musical theatre piece of the same name, an adaptation for the stage of Alan Paton’s novel “Cry The Beloved Country”. 

A film version was made, directed by Daniel Mann and, in Australia at least, was shown as part of a season called The American Film Theatre. I’m not aware that there has ever been a local production of the musical play.

Maxwell Anderson
Whatever…. The earliest version of the song I can find is by  Walter Huston. It was apparently released as the B-side of a 78 rpm disc, the A-side being Huston's famous recording of "September Song"  recorded when he headed the Broadway cast of the hit show Knickerbocker Holiday.
You can hear the version by Todd Duncan 
from the first Broadway cast of Lost in the Stars. The cover below is from a fine later concert version of the show. 

You can go to Amazon and buy a copy of the DVD of Daniel Mann’s film but in the meantime start with Judy Garland.

There are more than a few other versions you can find on YouTube including those by 

Lotte Lenya
 Lotte Lenya Weill’s wife. It’s from a double CD where Lenya sings Weill’s songs from both his American and German periods. I have to say I think the CD has been played more in our house than all our other CDs combined.

1 comment:

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.