All or Nothing at All
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|"All or Nothing at All"|
|Music by||Arthur Altman|
|Lyrics by||Jack Lawrence|
|Recorded by||Frank Sinatra (several times)
Chet Baker and Johnny Pace
many other artists
In a 1944 interview, Sinatra said of the delayed success of the song, "That was the song, a few days after Harry James and myself recorded it, that gave us our walking papers out of the old Victor Hugo Cafe (a major entertainment venue of the 1930s) on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood. The manager came up and waved his hands for us to stop. He said Harry's trumpet playing was too loud for the joint and my singing was just plain lousy and fired Harry, me and the entire band on the spot. He said the two of us couldn't draw flies as an attraction, and I guess he was right - the room was as empty as a barn. It's a funny thing about that song. The recording we made of it 5 years ago is now one of the top spots among the best sellers. But it's the same old recording. It's also the song I auditioned with for Tommy Dorsey, who signed me on the strength of it. And now it's my first big record."
References in Popular Culture
- The song was used in the 1947 MGM cartoon, Little 'Tinker, directed by Tex Avery. In the cartoon, a skunk tries to attract a mate by dressing like Frank Sinatra and singing this song. The skunk's singing voice was actually provided by Bill Roberts (uncredited).
- It is also heard very briefly in the party scene at the beginning of the 1982 film Missing.
- Frank Sinatra - with Harry James (1939), Sinatra and Strings (1962, once again in a ballad arrangement), Strangers in the Night (1966, in an uptempo, swinging arrangement), a disco version in 1977 with Joe Beck, live 1982 performance on Sinatra: Vegas (2006).
- Jimmy Scott - If You Only Knew (1955)
- Billie Holiday - All or Nothing at All (1958)
- Chet Baker and Johnny Pace - Chet Baker Introduces Johnny Pace (1958)
- Freddie Hubbard - Open Sesame (1960)
- John Coltrane - Ballads (1962)
- Sarah Vaughan - Sarah + 2 (1962)
- Jack Jones - The Impossible Dream (1966) and New Jack Swing (1997)
- Betty Carter, with Dave Holland - Feed the Fire (1993)
- Barry Manilow - Singin' with the Big Bands (1994)
- Diana Krall - Love Scenes (1997)
- Ian Shaw - In a New York Minute (1999)
- June Christy - A Friendly Session, Vol. 1 (2000) with the Johnny Guarnieri Quintet
- Patricia Barber - Night Club (2000)
- Ann Richards - The Many Moods of Ann Richards/Two Much (2004)
- Kurt Elling- Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman (2009)
- Nicola Conte - The Modern Sound of Nicola Conte (2009)
- Daniel Matto - I'm Old Fashioned (2010)
- Sara Gazarek - Yours (2005)
- Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854. Tape 1, side A.
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