The Nearness of You

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"The Nearness of You"
The Nearness of You Glenn Miller 78.jpg
Single by Glenn Miller
A-side "The Nearness of You"
B-side "Mister Meadowlark"
Released 1940 (1940)
Recorded 1940
Genre Jazz
Label Bluebird
Songwriter(s) Hoagy Carmichael, Ned Washington

"The Nearness of You" is a popular song written in 1938 by Hoagy Carmichael, with lyrics by Ned Washington. The song debuted in a 1940 recording by Glenn Miller and His Orchestra, with vocals by Ray Eberle.[1]


The first big-selling version was recorded on April 28, 1940 by the Glenn Miller Orchestra, with a vocal by Ray Eberle (Bluebird catalog number B-10745-A).[2][3] This recording first reached the Billboard Best Seller chart on July 20, 1940 (though this is misleading, as this was Billboard's first chart) and lasted eight weeks on the chart, peaking at #5.[4]

Other popular contemporary versions were recorded by Kay Kyser's orchestra (vocal: Harry Babbitt, Columbia catalog number 35488),[2][5] by Dinah Shore with Paul Weston's orchestra (Bluebird catalog number 10793),[2][3] and by Eddy Howard with Lou Adrian's orchestra (Columbia catalog number 35511).[2][6]

In 1953, Bob Manning reached #16 on the pop charts with this song[7] on Capitol Records #2383.[8]

The 1956 Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong album of duets, Ella & Louis, included a version of this song with Fitzgerald soloing vocally while Armstrong soloed both vocally and on trumpet. Accompaniment was provided by the small combo of the Oscar Peterson Trio featuring Peterson on piano, Ray Brown on bass, and Herb Ellis on guitar, joined by Buddy Rich on drums. The album charted at #1 on Billboard's Jazz charts, and the Top-10 on its Pop charts.[9]

Jonathan Frakes[2] performed the song on trombone in "11001001" (1988), the 15th episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, while in a holographic simulation of a 1958 New Orleans bar.

Sheena Easton released her version from her standards album in No Strings (1993) and for the soundtrack of Indecent Proposal (1993), in which she appears in a cameo singing the song with Herbie Hancock playing the piano in the movie.

Steve Buscemi sang/cried a version of the song as the character Happy Franks in the film The Impostors (1998), after the band leader protests that it is a little slow.

The song was performed by Norah Jones on her album Come Away With Me (2002), and (partially) in the film Two Weeks Notice (2002). It was also performed by Diana Krall on the Geoff Keezer album, Turn Up the Quiet.[citation needed]

A well-known bootleg recording exists featuring the Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards performing a solo version, accompanying himself on piano. Richards performed the song live during the Stones' 2002-2003 Licks Tour. A performance was captured and released on the live album Live Licks (2004).

German jazz and pop artist Marc Secara recorded the song with the Berlin Jazz Orchestra on the CD You're Everything (2008); this was arranged for big band by Steve Gray.[10]

Norah Jones performed the song live at the Steve Jobs Memorial/Celebration of Life, at the Apple, Inc. corporate headquarters on October 19, 2011.[citation needed]

Cover versions[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Maycock, Ben. "Jazz Standards Songs and Instrumentals (The Nearness of You)". Retrieved 12 September 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d Gardner, Edward Foote (2000). Popular Songs of the 20th Century: Chart Detail & Encyclopedia, 1900-1949. St. Paul, Minnesota: Paragon House. ISBN 1-55778-789-1. 
  3. ^ a b c "Bluebird Records in the 10500 to 10999 series". 
  4. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1973). Top Pop Records 1940-1955. Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research. 
  5. ^ a b "Columbia Records in the 35200 to 35499 series". 
  6. ^ a b "Columbia Records in the 35500 to 35999 series". 
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1986). Pop Memories 1890-1954. Record Research Inc. p. 293. ISBN 0-89820-083-0. 
  8. ^ Abrams, Steven & Settlemier, Tyrone (November 1, 2011). "Capitol 2000 - 2500, numerical listing discography". Online Discographical Project. Retrieved December 7, 2011. 
  9. ^ Inc, Nielsen Business Media (24 November 1956). "Billboard". Nielsen Business Media, Inc. – via Google Books. 
  10. ^ Secara, Marc & Berlin Jazz Orchestra & Gray, Steve (arr.). You're Everything (CD).  Track #2.
  11. ^ a b "DECCA (USA) 78rpm numerical listing discography: 3000 - 3500". 
  12. ^ a b "Vocalion 78rpm numerical listing discography 5500 - 5600". 
  13. ^ "VICTOR numerical listing discography". 
  14. ^ a b c "MGM Records - 78rpm numerical listing discography: 30500 - end of series". 
  15. ^ "A Bing Crosby Discography". BING magazine. International Club Crosby. Retrieved December 8, 2017. 
  16. ^ "". Retrieved December 8, 2017. 
  17. ^ Productions, Global Dog. "Singles Discography for Brunswick Records - UK - 05000 series". 
  18. ^ Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for King Records - 6000 series". 
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  20. ^ a b Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for Blue Note Records". 
  21. ^ a b c d Productions, Global Dog. "45 discography for Philips Records". 
  22. ^ "Capitol 1000 - 1500, 78rpm numerical listing discography". 
  23. ^ "Varsity 78rpm numerical listing discography: 5000 series". 
  24. ^ a b Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for Diamond Records". 
  25. ^ a b "Singles Discography for Apex Records - 76000 series - CA". 
  26. ^ a b "Capitol 2000 - 2500, 78rpm numerical listing discography". 
  27. ^ a b Productions, Global Dog. "78 Discography for Capitol Records - OZ". 
  28. ^ "78 Discography for Capitol Records - UK CL 13000 series". 
  29. ^ Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for Brunswick Records - US". 
  30. ^ Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for Mala Records". 
  31. ^ "Original versions of The Nearness of You written by Hoagy Carmichael, Ned Washington - SecondHandSongs". 
  32. ^ [1]
  33. ^ a b "Checker Records 78rpm numerical listing discography". 
  34. ^ a b Productions, Global Dog. "45 discography for Checker Records". 
  35. ^ a b Productions, Global Dog. "Singles Discography for Quality Records - CA - K series". 
  36. ^ "DISCOVERY 78rpm numerical listing discography". 
  37. ^ "♫ Learning How To Fly - Inga Swearingen. Listen @cdbaby". 
  38. ^ Productions, Global Dog. "45 Discography for Planet Records - OZ". 

External links[edit]