When Frank Sinatra first met Cole Porter, he apparently told him: “Mr Porter, I greatly admire your talent and your songs.” To which Porter retorted: “Well then, why don’t you sing them as I wrote them?
For if ever there was a composer who deserved to have his songs sung correctly, it was Porter.
Can you name a Cole Porter tune?
Until recently, I couldn’t, although little did I know that I was a big fan of his work already.
It took a recent trip to the theatre to educate myself. Kiss Me, Kate.
Julie Wilson sets hearts fluttering in 1958
The number of hits from this most jaunty of musicals is incredible.
How about Always True to You in My Fashion, Brush Up Your Shakespeare and I’ve Come to Wive It Wealthily in Padua”?
I’ve been singing them round the house for weeks since, much to the annoyance, no doubt, of the neighbours, and definitely, loved ones.
And then there were his other big hits, such as Let’s Do It (Let’s Fall in Love) and I’ve Got You Under My Skin.
Unusually for a composer of the first half of the last century, Porter did it all on his own.
He was both composer and lyricist, able to match superb tunes with clever and memorable lyrics.
And we have an item for sale that proves the point: Porter’s 1958 handwritten song lyrics to his last musical, Aladdin.
This remarkable document, which demonstrates Porter’s “list” method of matching lyrics, would make a wonderful addition to any musical memorabilia collection.#