Get Happy (song)

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"Get Happy"
Song by Ruth Etting
Songwriter(s)Ted Koehler
Composer(s)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[citation needed] 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 1970 film The Boys in the Band, now considered a landmark of queer cinema, the character Michael sings a line from the song before remarking, "What's more boring than a queen doing a Judy Garland imitation?"

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.

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".[3]

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."

Emily Blunt sings "Get Happy" in the October 15, 2016 episode of Saturday Night Live.

Notable recordings[edit]


  1. ^ Arlen, Samuel. "Harold Arlen – Biography – A Dream to Perform". Harold Arlen. Retrieved 8 March 2011.
  2. ^ Lowe, Lindsay (4 October 2013). "Flashback Friday: Barbra Streisand's Iconic Duet with Judy Garland". Parade. Retrieved 4 August 2017.
  3. ^ a b Hugh Laurie as Gregory House and Lisa Edelstein as Lisa Cuddy (March 7, 2011). "Bombshells". House. Season 7. Episode 15. FOX.
  4. ^ "A Bing Crosby Discography". BING magazine. International Club Crosby. Retrieved December 3, 2017.
  5. ^ "". Retrieved December 3, 2017.