Herbert A. "Herb" Magidson (January 7, 1906 – January 2, 1986) was an American popular lyricist. His work was used in over 23 films and four Broadway reviews. He won the first Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1934.
Life and career
Magidson was born and raised in Braddock, Pennsylvania. He attended the University of Pittsburgh and then worked briefly for a music publisher in New York. Magidson then moved to Hollywood, Los Angeles, California in 1929 while under contract to Warner Bros. to write music for films. In 1934, he won the first Academy Award for Best Original Song along with Con Conrad for his lyrics to "The Continental", used in The Gay Divorcee (1934) starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Magidson also co-wrote the lyrics to "Gone with the Wind", although they were not used in the theme for the film.
Magidson received Oscar nominations for the songs, "Say a Prayer for the Boys Over There" from the film Hers to Hold (1943), and "I'll Buy That Dream" from the film Sing Your Way Home (1945). He first wrote lyrics for The Show of Shows (1929), and many more films, including: No, No, Nanette (1930), Gift of Gab (1934), The Gay Divorcee (1934), Here's to Romance (1935), George White's 1935 Scandals (1935), King Solomon of Broadway (1935), Miss Pacific Fleet (1935), The Great Ziegfeld (1936), Hats Off (1936), I'd Give My Life (1936), Radio City Revels (1938), and Sing Your Way Home (1945). Magidson had his last hits in 1951, including the song "Happiness".
Magidson collaborated with many songwriters, including Con Conrad, Allie Wrubel, Carl Sigman, Sam H. Stept, and Sammy Fain. He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1980.
He died at the UCLA Medical Hospital in Beverly Hills, California at the age of 79, survived by his wife, Elsie.