Last Night When We Were Young

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"Last Night When We Were Young" is a 1935 popular song composed by Harold Arlen, with lyrics by Yip Harburg. Arlen regarded it as the favourite of the songs that he had written.[1]

Lawrence Tibbett recorded the song on October 9, 1935.[1] It was cut from his film Metropolitan but performed instrumentally behind the credits.[2]

"Last Night When We Were Young" was highly regarded by Judy Garland, who recorded it twice, and frequently performed it.[1] Composer Alec Wilder called it a "most remarkable and beautiful song" that "goes far beyond the boundaries of popular music." Continuing, he stated that "[i]t is unlike any other Arlen song that I have heard. However, it is unmistakably his."[2] Harburg did not know where he acquired the title, saying, "the juxtaposition of those two phrases is almost a whole world of philosophy".[1]

Notable recordings[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Jablonski, Edward (1998). Harold Arlen: Rhythm, Rainbows, and Blues. UPNE. p. 100. ISBN 978-1-55553-366-3. Google Book Search. Retrieved on March 20, 2010.
  2. ^ a b Wilder, Alec (1972). American Popular Song: The Great Innovators, 1900-1950. New York: Oxford University Press. p. 26. ISBN 0-19-501445-6.