Put the Blame on Mame

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"Put the Blame on Mame" is a song by Allan Roberts and Doris Fisher,[1] originally written for the film Gilda in 1946 – in which it was sung by the title character, played by Rita Hayworth[2] with the singing voice of Anita Kert Ellis dubbed in.

In keeping with the film character Gilda being "the ultimate femme fatale", the song sung by her at two scenes facetiously credits the amorous activities of a woman named "Mame" (the name evidently chosen to rhyme with "blame") as the true cause of three well-known cataclysmic events in American history: The Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Great Blizzard of 1888 in New York City and the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Mame is also credited with causing the fictional Shooting of Dan McGrew during the Yukon Gold Rush - an event derived from a short narrative poem published in 1907 by Robert W. Service.

In 1946, the song was also recorded by Nat Gonella & His Georgians.[3]

The song was later reprised as an instrumental version in 1953's The Big Heat, when Gilda star Glenn Ford first meets Lee Marvin's character in a bar.

Rita Hayworth's performance of "Put the Blame on Mame" from Gilda, also appeared in a mini-short film for "Smooth Criminal" for Michael Jackson's This Is It. Shortly after Hayworth finishes the song, the video makes a subtle cut from Gilda to a scene out of The Maltese Falcon so Humphrey Bogart appears to chase Jackson down a flight of stairs and out of the building. The chase ends with Bogart cornering Jackson in a warehouse attic, where footage from yet another film, The Big Sleep is used for Bogart's line "What do you want me to do, count three like they do in the movies?" At this point Jackson was supposed to perform "Smooth Criminal" and upon finishing the song, the video would end with a clip of him leaping out the window.

It was later also recorded by:


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