Herman Hupfeld

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Herman Hupfeld (February 1, 1894 – June 8, 1951) was an American songwriter whose most notable composition was "As Time Goes By." He wrote both words and music.

Life and career[edit]

Hupfeld was born in Montclair, New Jersey, the son of Fredericka (Rader), a church organist, and Charles Ludwig Hupfeld.[1] He was sent to study violin in Germany at age 9. Returning to the United States he served in the military during World War I, and he entertained camps and hospitals during World War II.[2] He never wrote a whole Broadway score, but he became known as a composer who could write a song to fit a specific scene within a Broadway show.

His best-known songs include "As Time Goes By", "Sing Something Simple", "Let's Put Out The Lights (And Go To Sleep)", "When Yuba Plays The Rhumba On The Tuba", "I've Got To Get Up And Go To Work", "Are You Making Any Money?", "Savage Serenade", "Down the Old Back Road", "A Hut in Hoboken", "Night Owl", "Honey Ma Love", "Baby's Blue", "Untitled" and "The Calinda".

While not known as a public performer, Hupfeld was featured on a Victor Young & His Orchestra 78 recorded on January 22, 1932, singing and playing piano on two of his compositions, "Goopy Geer (he plays piano and he plays by ear)" and "Down the Old Back Road".[3]

Hupfeld never married and, with rare exceptions, he stayed in his home town of Montclair, New Jersey only traveling to New York City for his entire life. He was buried at Mount Hebron Cemetery in Montclair.

"As Time Goes By"[edit]

"As Time Goes By" is most famous from the film Casablanca (1942). It was originally written for the Broadway show Everybody's Welcome (1931), which ran for 139 performances.[4] In 1931, the song was a modest hit, with versions issued on Victor, Columbia, Brunswick and the dime store labels. The song was featured in the unproduced play Everybody Comes To Rick's, which was the basis for the Casablanca story and script. Against Max Steiner's wishes (he wrote the music for the film), it was decided to feature the 1931 song in the 1942 film. It has been well documented that the producers considered droping the song in post-production, but since Ingrid Bergman had been given the part of Maria in Paramount's "For Whom the Bell Tolls" and had cut her hair for the part, it would've not been possible to reshoot any of her scenes with the song being performed!

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.northjersey.com/community-news/a-house-hums-an-artistic-melody-1.366007?page=all
  2. ^ Roger D. Kinkle, The Complete Encyclopedia of Popular Music and Jazz 1900-1950 (Arlington House, 1974).
  3. ^ Brunswick 6251
  4. ^ Internet Broadway Database

External links[edit]