Sweet Georgia Brown
|"Sweet Georgia Brown"|
Later recording by Brother Bones and His Shadows (1949)
|Song by Ben Bernie|
|Composer(s)||Ben Bernie, Maceo Pinkard|
Reportedly Ben Bernie came up with the concept for the song's lyrics – although he is not the accredited lyricist – after meeting Dr. George Thaddeus Brown in New York City: Dr. Brown, a longtime member of the State House of Representatives for Georgia, told Bernie about Dr. Brown's daughter Georgia Brown and how subsequent to the baby girl's birth on August 11, 1911 the Georgia General Assembly had issued a declaration that she was to be named Georgia after the state, an anecdote which would be directly referenced by the song's lyric: "Georgia claimed her – Georgia named her."
One of the most popular versions of "Sweet Georgia Brown" was recorded in 1949 by Brother Bones and His Shadows and later adopted as the theme song of the Harlem Globetrotters basketball team in 1952.
- The song was covered by The Beatles while working as a backup band for singer Tony Sheridan. Two versions exist; the first was recorded on May 24, 1962 in Hamburg, Germany, using the original lyrics. The second (but the first version released) was released in 1964 during the wave of Beatlemania with Sheridan having re-recorded the vocals with tamer lyrics and the additional verse "in Liverpool she even dares/to criticize the Beatles' hair/with their whole fan-club standing there/oh Sweet Georgia Brown."
- Ben Bernie and His Hotel Roosevelt Orchestra, 1925
- The version used by the Globetrotters is a 1949 instrumental by Brother Bones and His Shadows with whistling and bones by Brother Bones. It was adopted as the Globetrotters theme in 1952.
- California Ramblers, 1925
- Cab Calloway, 1931
- Bing Crosby recorded the song on April 23, 1932 with Isham Jones and his Orchestra and it is assessed as reaching the No. 2 spot in the charts of the day.
- Coleman Hawkins with Benny Carter and Django Reinhardt, 1937
- Red Norvo with Charles Mingus and Tal Farlow, 1950
- Anita O'Day, Jazz on a Summer's Day, 1958
- Bud Powell, 1950
- Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, 1943
- Oscar Peterson, Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, and Ray Brown performed the song live at the Montreux Jazz Festival, 1977
- Oscar Peterson, Live at the Blue Note, 1990
- Django Reinhardt, 1938
- Art Tatum, 1941
- Ethel Waters, 1925
- Denny Zeitlin, Slickrock, 2003
Notes and references
- CD liner notes: Chart-Toppers of the Twenties, 1998 ASV Ltd.
- Craig Cross, Beatles-Discography.com, iUniverse, 2004, p. 46. ISBN 978-0-595-31487-4.
- "Polydor NH 52-906". Dmbeatles.com. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- Gioia, Ted (2012). The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire. New York City: Oxford University Press. p. 415. ISBN 978-0-19-993739-4.
- "A Bing Crosby Discography". BING magazine. International Club Crosby. Retrieved April 23, 2017.
- Whitburn, Joel (1986). Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954. Wisconsin, US: Record Research Inc. p. 103. ISBN 0-89820-083-0.