Before I transition into night…

Not so long ago, I was looking through vinyl albums at a second-hand store (where there was a sale in progress).  One double LP that caught my eye was a live performance of Harry Belafonte at Carnegie Hall (recorded April 1959…that’s 58 years ago!)  Anyway, the records were in good condition and the entire purchase set me back fifty cents.  I enjoyed hearing Belafonte in top form and remembering some of his hits from that period.  Here’s a favourite…

Day-O (alternately The Banana Boat Song) was a traditional Jamaican folk song which became one of Belafonte’s signature hits (released 1956) and brought calypso music to a wider audience.

Who does transitions better than Cole Porter?  If you want some Night and some Day, he’s your man.

Night and Day was written in 1932 for the musical play Gay Divorce.  Fred Astaire‘s recording of the song was the #1 hit on the charts for ten weeks.  The song appeared again in the film adaptation (The Gay Divorcee in 1934) and ensured the song’s place in the “Great American Songbook”.

The song has since been covered by dozens of artists.  One of the more more unusual covers appears on the Porter tribute album Red Hot + Blue, released in 1990. This version is performed by Bono and U2.  Compare it to the original…

So we are now (finally) floating into Night on our consciousness stream.  Here’s someone who seems to like the night…

If you ever doubt that “night” inspires musicians, you have to look no further that Paul McCartney to find evidence.  Hardly an exhaustive list…but here are a few examples…

Every Night (released April 1970)

No More Lonely Nights (released 1984, from the soundtrack Give My Regards to Broad Street)

Goodnight Tonight (circa 1978… feelin’ a little disco?)

Beautiful Night (from the 1997 album Flaming Pie)

I can’t finish this little trip without mentioning this guy…

And why?  Back in 1967 (fifty years ago!) Neil Diamond recorded and released Thank the Lord for the Night Time…it’s from his second album, Just for You.  The song reached #13 on the charts that year.  Play us out, Neil (from a live performance in  1993)…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s