|"I Cover the Waterfront"|
|Single by Sarah Vaughan|
|Sarah Vaughan singles chronology|
|Billie Holiday singles chronology|
"I Cover the Waterfront" is a 1933 popular song and jazz standard composed by Johnny Green with lyrics by Edward Heyman. The song was inspired by Max Miller's 1932 best-selling novel I Cover the Waterfront.
Recordings and interpretations
The song became instantly popular, and many artists have recorded it since 1933: Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, Sarah Vaughan, Annette Hanshaw, Abe Lyman's California Ambassador Hotel Orchestra, Connee Boswell, Harry James, The Lester Young Trio (with Nat King Cole and Buddy Rich), and Louis Armstrong, among others.
Years later, Ella Fitzgerald recorded this song in her 1979 live album Digital III at Montreux on Pablo Records. R&B/soul singer/actress Miki Howard, portraying Billie Holiday, performs the song in the 1992 bio film Malcolm X. Annie Lennox gave her interpretation of the song on her 2014 studio album Nostalgia.
John Lee Hooker recorded several versions of the song. One appears on the 1991 compilation The Ultimate Collection and another with Van Morrison on Hooker's 1991 album Mr. Lucky. Hooker's versions make such great changes from the original melody and lyrics that his own label credits him as the songwriter.
A 1933 motion picture, also inspired by Miller's book and also titled I Cover the Waterfront, was re-scored at the last minute to include the tune. Sheet music publishers later used the film's success by claiming that the song was "[i]nspired by the United Artist Picture of the same name".
Radio program theme
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