The Best Things in Life Are Free (Ray Henderson song)

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"The Best Things in Life Are Free"
Song
Released 1927 (1927)
Genre Show tunes
Composer(s) Ray Henderson
Lyricist(s) Buddy DeSylva and Lew Brown

"The Best Things in Life Are Free" is a popular song written by the songwriting team of Buddy DeSylva and Lew Brown (lyrics) and Ray Henderson (music) for the 1927 musical Good News. It enjoyed a revival during the period from 1947 to 1950, when it was covered by many artists.

Recordings[edit]

The song first enjoyed chart success in 1927 with the recordings by George Olsen and Frank Black.[1]

Jo Stafford recorded the song on November 7, 1947,[2] bringing the song to a new genre. She enjoyed chart success with the song reaching the No. 21 spot in 1948. Dinah Shore also covered the song in 1948; her single reached #18 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[3]

Other recordings[edit]

In film and television[edit]

The song was included in both film adaptations of Good News, in 1930 and 1947; the 1947 film featured the song several times, sung by June Allyson, Mel Tormé, and Peter Lawford.

The film The Best Things in Life Are Free (1956), about DeSylva, Brown and Henderson, was named after the song and featured it with a version sung by Sheree North (dubbed by Eileen Wilson).

In an episode of The Muppet Show a group of kleptomaniac prairie dogs sang the song as they looted the set.

The song was sung by Bonnie Bedelia in the 1969 Sydney Pollack film "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?"

Robert Morse performed the song in the Mad Men (season 7) episode "Waterloo" (May 25, 2014), in a dream sequence.[10]

Also featured in the film Nanny McPhee Returns during the piglet feeding in the beginning of the movie. Sung by Bing Crosby

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1986). Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954. Wisconsin, USA: Record Research Inc. p. 477. ISBN 0-89820-083-0. 
  2. ^ "Fred Fox School of Music" (PDF). Fred Fox School of Music. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1986). Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954. Wisconsin, USA: Record Research Inc. p. 477. ISBN 0-89820-083-0. 
  4. ^ "45worlds.com". 45worlds.com. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  5. ^ "Discogs.com". Discogs.com. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  6. ^ "45cat.com". 45cat.com. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  7. ^ "Discogs.com". Discogs.com. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  8. ^ "45cat.com". 45cat.com. Retrieved May 13, 2017. 
  9. ^ {{cite web[title=secondhandsongs.com|url=https://secondhandsongs.com/performance/251105%7Caccessdate=Aug 5, 2018}}
  10. ^ Itzkoff, Dave (May 27, 2014). "Robert Morse on His Big 'Mad Men' Number". The New York Times.