|Single by Glenn Miller and His Orchestra|
|Genre||Popular, Jazz, Classic|
|Writer(s)||Johnny Mercer, Hoagy Carmichael|
"Skylark" is an American popular song with lyrics by Johnny Mercer and music by Hoagy Carmichael, published in 1941. Mercer said that he struggled for a year after he got the music from Carmichael before he could get the lyrics right. Mercer recalled Carmichael initially called him several times about the lyric, but had forgotten about it by the time Mercer finally wrote the lyrics. The yearning expressed in the lyrics is Mercer's longing for Judy Garland, with whom Mercer had an affair. This song is considered a jazz standard. Additionally, the song is believed to have inspired a long-running Buick car of the same name that was produced from 1953 to 1998.
Selective list of recorded versions
- 1941, Anita O'Day with the Gene Krupa Orchestra recorded the song on November 25, 1941.
- 1941, Helen Forrest with Harry James.
- 1942, Glenn Miller and His Orchestra with vocals by Ray Eberle in 1942, rising to #7 on the charts.
- 1943, Billy Eckstine with the Earl Hines Orchestra.
- 1947, Maxine Sullivan
- 1950, The Clovers recorded as a single.
- 1955, The Hi-Lo's for their album, Under Glass.
- 1955, Marian McPartland for her album, Marian McPartland at the Hickory House.
- 1960, The Fleetwoods for their album The Fleetwoods - Gretchen, Gary and Barbara
- 1961, Bobby Darin for his album, Love Swings.
- 1962, Aretha Franklin for her album, Laughing on the Outside.
- 1962, Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers for their album, Caravan.
- 1964, Ella Fitzgerald on Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Johnny Mercer Songbook with arrangements by Nelson Riddle.
- 1972, Sonny Rollins recorded a 10 minute version of the song for his album, Next Album.
- 1973, Bette Midler for her album Bette Midler.
- 1973, Paul Desmond used it as the title track for the album Skylark.
- 1980, Cleo Laine and James Galway for their album Sometimes When We Touch.
- 1982, Sky on their album Sky 4: Forthcoming
- 1983, Supersax on the album Supersax & L.A. Voices, Volume 1
- 1984, Linda Ronstadt - with the Nelson Riddle Orchestra - from her Platinum-plus album Lush Life. Hit #12 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart in early 1985. Linda's version was later nominated for a Grammy Award.
- 1986, Rosemary Clooney on "Rosemary Clooney Sings the Lyrics of Johnny Mercer"
- 1990, George Benson for his album Big Boss Band.
- 1994, Keith Jarrett and his Standards Trio, Keith Jarrett at the Blue Note.
- 1996, Peter Skellern, Sentimentally Yours
- 1997, Clint Eastwood's movie Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, that takes place in Mercer's birth town of Savannah, Georgia, used this song as ending title, sung by k.d. lang.
- 1997, Michael Brecker on his Two Blocks From The Edge album.
- 2000, June Christy on her A Friendly Session, Vol. 1 album (with the Johnny Guarnieri Quintet).
- 2002, Susannah McCorkle on her Ballad Essentials album.
- 2003, Janis Siegel recorded the song on Steve Hass's debut album, Traveler.
- 2005, Gretchen Parlato on her debut, self-titled album.
- 2005, Cherie Price for her album, Voyage.
- 2007, Chiara Civello on her album The Space Between
- 2008, Miki Howard for her album, Private Collection.
- 2008, Rachael Price on her album, The Good Years.
- 2008, Boz Scaggs on his album, Speak low.
- 2009 Mark Isham & Kate Ceberano recorded a version for their Bittersweet album.
- 2009, Renee Olstead on her album, Skylark.
- 2010, Gregory Porter on his album, Water.
- 2011, Seth Ford-Young for his eponymous debut album.
- 2012, Dayna Stephens on his album Today is Tomorrow.
- "Johnny Mercer's Songs on CD", Ralph Mitchell, JohnnyMercer.com, June 2009, webpage: JM-ralph.
- Wilk, Max (1997). They're Playing Our Song. New York: Da Capo.
- 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.
- Furia, Philip (2003). Skylark: The Life and Times of Johnny Mercer (1st ed.). St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0-312-28720-7.
- Wilder, Alec (1990). American Popular Song: The Great Innovators, 1900-1950. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press.
- Dennis Adler (2004), Fifties Flashback: The American Car, p. 52, ISBN 0760319278, "The flighty name for Buick's dream car came from a song of the same name recorded in 1942 by Johnny Mercer"
- Malcolm Laycock presents the Golden Age of Swing detailed track info (90511).