Willow Weep for Me
|"Willow Weep for Me"|
|"Willow Weep for Me"|
|Single by Chad & Jeremy|
|from the album Yesterday's Gone|
|B-side||"If She Was Mine"|
|Chad & Jeremy singles chronology|
One account of the inspiration for the song is that, during her time at Radcliffe College, Ronell "had been struck by the loveliness of the willow trees on campus, and this simple observation became the subject of an intricate song."
The song was rejected by publishers for several reasons. First, the song is dedicated to George Gershwin. A dedication to another writer was disapproved of at the time, so the first person presented with the song for publication, Saul Bornstein, passed it to Irving Berlin, who accepted it. Other reasons stated for its slow acceptance are that it was written by a woman and that its construction was unusually complex for a composition that was targeted at a commercial audience (i.e., radio broadcast, record sales and sheet music sales). An implied tempo change in the fifth bar, a result of a switch from the two eighth notes and an eighth-note triplet opening in each of the first four bars to just four eighth notes opening the fifth, then back to two eighth notes and an eighth-note triplet opening the sixth bar, which then has a more offset longer note than any of the previous bars, was one cause of Bornstein's concern.
It is mostly known as a jazz standard, having been recorded first by Ted Fio Rito (with vocal by Muzzy Marcellino) in October 1932 and by Paul Whiteman (with vocal by Irene Taylor) the following month. Both were hits in December 1932. Notable recordings continued into the 1950s, starting with Stan Kenton's version with June Christy.
Tony Bennett's 1996 version on his album “On Holiday” features a very moving voice and phrasing by Tony in a very sensitive performance.
It was a major hit for the British duo Chad & Jeremy. In January 1965, it reached No. 15 on the Billboard Hot 100, and went to No. 1 on the Adult Contemporary chart. It was included on their Yesterday's Gone album and many subsequent compilations.
- Version Paul Whiteman with Irene Taylor (1932)
- Greta Keller (1933)
- Stan Kenton with June Christy (1946)
- Art Tatum (1949)
- Billie Holiday - Lady Sings the Blues (1956)
- Red Garland - Groovy (1957)
- Tommy Flanagan - Overseas (1957)
- Vince Guaraldi - A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing (1957)
- Cal Tjader - Cal Tjader (1957)
- Frank Sinatra – Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely (1958)
- David Newman with Ray Charles - Fathead (1958)
- Wynton Kelly - Kelly Blue (1959)
- Nina Simone - The Amazing Nina Simone (1959)
- The Coasters – One by One (1960)
- Lou Rawls with Les McCann - Stormy Monday (1962)
- Sam Cooke - Mr. Soul (1963)
- George Benson - It's Uptown (1966)
- The Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra – Presenting Thad Jones/Mel Lewis and the Jazz Orchestra (1966)
- Alan Price Set - single (1966)
- Wes Montgomery - Willow Weep For Me (1969) (posthumous, from 1965 sessions)
- Oscar Peterson and Harry Sweets Edison – Oscar Peterson and Harry Edison (1974)
- Phil Woods with Jaki Byard – Musique du Bois (1974)
- Dorothy Donegan – The Many Faces of Dorothy Donegan (1975)
- Pat Martino - We'll Be Together Again (1976)
- Clark Terry - Clark After Dark (1978) 
- Shoji Yokouchi Trio plus Yuri Tashiro - Greensleeves (1978)
- Steve Miller – Born 2 B Blue (1988)
- Etta James - Time After Time (1995)
- Andy Bey – Ballads, Blues, and Bey (1995)
- David Sanborn – Pearls (1995)
- Tony Bennett (1996)
- Tin Hat Trio - The Rodeo Eroded (2002)
- Bennie Wallace with Kenny Barron – The Nearness of You (2003)
- Anne Hampton Callaway - Blue in the Night (2006)
- Bill McBirnie with Robi Botos – Mercy (2010)
- Vocal Spectrum - Vocal Spectrum III (2011)
- Mark Whitfield - Live & Uncut (2017)
- Paul Whiteman
|US Billboard Hot 100||2|
- Ted Fio Rito
|US Billboard Hot 100||17|
- Chad & Jeremy
|Canada RPM Top Singles||13|
|US Billboard Hot 100||15|
|US Billboard Adult Contemporary||1|
|US Cash Box Top 100||22|
- Carmel cover
- Zimmers, Tighe, E. (2009). Tin Pan Alley Girl: A Biography of Ann Ronell. McFarland. pp. 19-22.
- Gioia, Ted (2012). The Jazz Standards. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 460–462. ISBN 978-0-19-993739-4.
- The New Real Book (1988). Sher Music. p. 406.
- "Hot 100: Chad & Jeremy". Billboard. 2017. Retrieved 5 December 2018.
- Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 51.
- Ruhlmann, William. Chad & Jeremy: Yesterday's Gone at AllMusic. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
- "Greta Keller Collection 1929-1939". popularjazzarchive.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2020-08-08 – via Internet Archive.
- Poet, J. "One by One". AllMusic. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
- "Mr. Soul - Sam Cooke | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2019-04-13.
- Dryden, Ken. "Clark After Dark". AllMusic. Retrieved 19 Aug 2019.
- Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Born 2B Blue". AllMusic. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
- Yanow, Scott. "Pearls". AllMusic. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
- Johnson, Zac (2002-09-10). "The Rodeo Eroded - Tin Hat Trio | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2020-08-08.
- "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. 1965-01-11. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
- Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955–1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X