Get Happy (song)

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"Get Happy"
Song by Ruth Etting
Writer Ted Koehler
Composer Harold Arlen

"Get Happy" is a song composed by Harold Arlen, with lyrics written by Ted Koehler. It echoes themes of a Christian evangelical revivalist meeting song.

It was the first song they wrote together, and was introduced by Ruth Etting in The Nine-Fifteen Revue in 1930.[1]

In pop culture[edit]

Influenced by the Get Happy tradition, it is most associated with Judy Garland, who performed it in her last MGM film Summer Stock (1950) and in live concert performances throughout the rest of her life. The versions from Summer Stock finished at #61 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs survey of top tunes in American cinema. Garland sang this song with Barbra Streisand in a mash-up that also included "Happy Days Are Here Again" on The Judy Garland Show in 1963.[2] In the 2010 Glee episode "Duets", Lea Michele and Chris Colfer (as their characters Rachel Berry and Kurt Hummel) performed the song as part of the same mash-up that Streisand and Garland sang.[3]

In the season seven episode of House, "Bombshells", Cuddy has bizarre dreams after finding blood in her urine. In the dream she has during her surgery, she and House are singing "Get Happy".[4]

An instrumental, hot jazz arrangement of the song, performed by Abe Lyman's Brunswick Recording Orchestra, served as the original theme music for Warner Bros.' Merrie Melodies cartoons from 1931 to 1933.

The song lyrics incorporate the title phrase in the longer phrase "Come on, get happy", but it should not be confused with the Partridge Family theme song "C'mon Get Happy".

In the Comedy Central show Broad City, season 2 episode 5 titled Hashtag Fomo, actress Abbi Jacobson sings Get Happy when she becomes intoxicated and turns into her alter ego "Val"

Notable recordings[edit]


  1. ^ S.A. Music The Official Harold Arlen Website, 2001-2002, accessed March 8, 2011.
  2. ^ Lindsay Lowe. "Flashback Friday: Barbra Streisand’s Iconic Duet with Judy Garland". Parade. 
  3. ^ Video on YouTube
  4. ^ a b Hugh Laurie as Gregory House and Lisa Edelstein as Lisa Cuddy (March 7, 2011). "Bombshells". House. Season 7. Episode 15. FOX.