Do Nothing till You Hear from Me

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"Do Nothing till You Hear from Me" (also written as "Do Nothin' Til You Hear From Me") is a song with music by Duke Ellington and lyrics by Bob Russell. It originated as a 1940 instrumental ("Concerto for Cootie") that was designed to highlight the playing of Ellington's lead trumpeter, Cootie Williams.[1] Russell's words were added later. In 1944, Ellington's own recording of the song was a number one hit R&B chart for eight non-consecutive weeks and number six on the pop chart.[2]

"Do Nothing till You Hear from Me" has since been performed by many famous vocalists, including Mose Allison, Louis Armstrong, Tony Bennett, Mary J. Blige, Suzy Bogguss, Nat King Cole, Phil Collins, Harry Connick, Jr., Sammy Davis, Jr., Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Billie Holiday, Dr. John, Gladys Knight, Diana Krall, Silje Nergaard, Anita O'Day, Carmen McRae, Patti Page, Robert Palmer, Nina Simone, Andy Williams, Robbie Williams, Fiona Apple, and Al Hirt.[3]


  1. ^ 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 2, side A.
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 185. 
  3. ^ Al Hirt, Horn A-Plenty. Retrieved April 8, 2013.
Preceded by
"Ration Blues" by Louis Jordan and His Tympany Five
"G.I. Jive" by Johnny Mercer
Billboard Harlem Hit Parade number-one single
January 15, 1944
January 29, 1944
Succeeded by
"G.I. Jive" by Johnny Mercer
"Solo Flight" by Benny Goodman and His Orchestra