Don't Explain (song)

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"Don't Explain"
Single by Billie Holiday
B-side"What Is This Thing Called Love?"
Format78 rpm
RecordedNovember 8, 1944
Songwriter(s)Billie Holiday, Arthur Herzog Jr.
Billie Holiday singles chronology
"Lover Man (Oh, Where Can You Be?)"
"Don't Explain"

"Don't Explain" is a song written by jazz singer Billie Holiday and Arthur Herzog Jr.[1]


It is said Billie wrote "Don't Explain" after her husband, Jimmy Monroe, came home one night with lipstick traces on his collar.

Recording session[edit]

Session #52: New York City, November 8, 1944, Decca, Toots Camarata and His Orchestra, with Russ Case (trumpet), Hymie Schertzer, Jack Cressey (alto saxophone), Larry Binyon and Dave Harris (tenor saxophone), Dave Bowman (piano), Carl Kress (guitar), Haig Stephens (bass), George Wettling (drums), Billie Holiday (vocals), and six strings.[2]

Notable cover versions[edit]



Lyrics from "Don't Explain" were sung by Carlo Marx (portrayed by actor Tom Sturridge) in the 2012 film adaptation by Walter Salles of the novel by Jack Kerouac, On the Road, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival.[8]


  1. ^ Jacobs, Dick & Harriet. Who Wrote That Song?, Writers Digest Books (1994), page 57 - ISBN 0-89879-639-3
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-10. Retrieved 2008-01-30.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "". Retrieved November 9, 2018.
  4. ^ Christopher Loudon (2012-12-13). "Malia: Black Orchid". JazzTimes. Retrieved 2018-04-11.
  5. ^ "Mariah Carey Don't Explain live in japan 2014 the elusive chanteuse show". YouTube. 2014-11-07. Retrieved 2016-07-26.
  6. ^ C. Michael Baitley (2014-11-08). "Nancy Kelly: B That Way". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2018-04-11.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-12-15. Retrieved 2012-01-26.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ Alagna, Magdalena. Billie Holiday, The Rosen Publishing Group (2003), page 61 - ISBN 0-8239-3640-6

External links[edit]