Pennies from Heaven (song)
"Pennies from Heaven" is a 1936 American popular song with music by Arthur Johnston and words by Johnny Burke. It was introduced by Bing Crosby in the 1936 film of the same name. It was recorded in the same year by Billie Holiday and afterwards performed by Louis Armstrong, Tony Bennett, Dinah Washington, Clark Terry, Frances Langford, Arthur Tracy, Big Joe Turner, Frank Sinatra, Stan Getz, Dean Martin, Gene Ammons, The Skyliners (a major hit in 1960), Louis Prima, Legion of Mary, Guy Mitchell, Rose Murphy, Harry James, and many other jazz and popular singers.
The 1936 recording by Bing Crosby on Decca Records topped the charts of the day for ten weeks in 1936 and was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2004. Bing Crosby also recorded the song in a performance with Louis Armstrong and Frances Langford with Jimmy Dorsey and his Orchestra, also on Decca and issued as a 12" 78rpm recording.
- Frank Sinatra recorded the song twice: the first with Nelson Riddle for 1956's Songs for Swingin' Lovers! and again in 1962 with Count Basie for Sinatra–Basie: An Historic Musical First.
- Sarah Vaughan recorded the song for her 1957 album, Swingin' Easy
- Polly Bergen and Gordon MacRae sang a medley which included "Pennies from Heaven" on her 1958 NBC variety show, The Polly Bergen Show.
- Andy Williams released a version on his 1964 album, The Wonderful World of Andy Williams.
- Lena Zavaroni recorded the song for her 1974 album, Ma! (He's Making Eyes At Me).
- Rosemary Clooney recorded the song for her 1978 Bing Crosby tribute album, Rosie Sings Bing.
- "Pennies from Heaven" provided the title for the celebrated 1978 BBC television series and its 1981 US film adaptation, as well as being featured in both. The television series used Arthur Tracy's 1937 recording of the number, as did the 1981 movie, the latter featuring Vernel Bagneris lip-synching to Tracy's voice while dancing.
- Shirley Bassey sang this song on episode 5.04 of The Muppet Show.
- Donna Loren sang this song on the February 14, 1958 episode of The Mickey Mouse Club.
- Hugh Brannum, as "Smilin' Green Jeans", sang this song as an insert on Captain Kangaroo, anachronistically dating the insert "Smilin' Green Jeans, 1932"; the song was not composed until 1936.
- Billie Holiday's version was used in the 1994 film Corrina, Corrina and appears on its soundtrack album.
- The episode of Roseanne where the Conners win the state lottery jackpot of $108 million is entitled "Millions from Heaven."
- Regis Philbin sang this song for the soundtrack to the game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.
- A live two-piano performance by Bert van den Brink and Clare Fischer was recorded and released in 2001 on Bert van den Brink Invites Clare Fischer.
- Louis Prima's version was used in the 2003 film Elf and in the 2008 film Igor.
- Michael Bublé recorded a version of the song for his deluxe Crazy Love (Michael Bublé album) album in 2009. Bublé also recorded the song with Paul Anka for his Duets album in 2013.
- Anita O'Day recorded the song for what would be her final album, Indestructible!, released in 2006.
- The original, as well as the Louis Prima version, appears in the 2010 game Mafia II.
- Rose Murphy sang the song on the soundtrack of the 2011 film The Artist
- A line-by-line parody also exists, "Bennie's [or Benny's] from Heaven," lyrics possibly by Eddie Jefferson, telling the story of a "second lieutenant named Spears," returning home to his wife "after being overseas three years," to find a baby in the house.
- Mel Tormé on his 1994 album A Tribute to Bing Crosby
- European/German jazz and pop artist Marc Secara recorded the song on the CD You're Everything.
- Original Soundtrack, Pennies from Heaven
- Whitburn, Joel (1986). Pop Memories 1890-1954. Wisconsin, USA: Record Research Inc. p. 105. ISBN 0-89820-083-0.
- Pennies from Heaven. 1936 release by Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong, and Frances Langford with Jimmy Dorsey. Discogs.
- "The Polly Bergen Show". Classic Television Archives. Retrieved January 9, 2011.
- Original Soundtrack, Corrina Corrina
- Who Wants to Be a Millionaire: The Album
- Elf: Music From The Major Motion Picture
- You're Everything CD, Marc Secara and Berlin Jazz Orchestra arranged by Steve Gray, track #11