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    Johnny Mercer

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    Rank:742 history »
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    Most Popular Songs (more)

    1Why Should I Cry Over You? lyrics
    2Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive lyrics
    Ennio Morricone feat. Johnny Mercer
    3Hit The Road To Dreamland lyrics
    Johnny Mercer feat. Margaret Whiting
    4That's The Way He Does It lyrics
    5De Camptown Races lyrics
    6Candy lyrics
    Ennio Morricone feat. Johnny Mercer and Jo Stafford
    7I'm an Old Cowhand (From the Rio Grande) lyrics
    Johnny Mercer feat. Bing Crosby
    I Thought About You lyrics
    Oh, Happy Day lyrics
    10If I Had My Druthers lyrics

    Most Popular Albums (more)

    Best Of Johnny Mercer [1998]
    2Capitol Collectors Series [1989]
    3Songsmith From Savannah [2003]
    4Dream: Lyrics & Music Of Johnny Mercer [2003]
    Blues In The Night [2005]
    6Moon River [2005]
    7Sweet Georgia Brown [1995]
    8Johnny Mercer's Music Shop [1998]
    The Harvey Girls: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack [1996]
    10V-Disc Recordings: For Our Armed Forces Overseas [1999]


    Johnny Mercer's main claim to immortality is his incredible songwriting output, penning the lyrics or music and lyrics to roughly 1,500 songs. Marked by a sophisticated, occasionally whimsical mastery of language and rhymes, many of Mercer's songs have become standards regularly covered by jazz artists. Yet Mercer was also a successful singer, with a relaxed, Southern-accented, jazzy, rhythmically agile delivery that resulted in several major hits in the 1940s. At first, Mercer was torn between acting and songwriting, but having failed to land a part in Garrick Gaities in 1930, he ended up writing his first hit, "Out of Breath, Scared to Death Of You," for the show. His first charted songwriting hit was Ted Lewis' 1933 recording of "Lazybones." By 1938 he was recording duets with Bing Crosby for Decca and the following year, he was on Benny Goodman's Camel Cavalcade radio program as a featured singer. In 1942, he, Glenn Wallichs and Buddy DeSylva founded Capitol Records, which would eventually become an industry behemoth, and Mercer reeled off a string of hits for his label, including "Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe," "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive," "Candy" and "Personality." "Atchison" is an especially good example of Mercer's flip, catchy, vocal style. While running Capitol, Mercer the talent scout attracted the likes of Nat Cole, Stan Kenton, Jo Stafford, Peggy Lee and Margaret Whiting to the label, where they had their greatest successes. Among Mercer's most durable lyrics -- a highly abbreviated list -- are those for "One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)," "Blues in the Night," "Come Rain or Come Shine," "My Shining Hour," and "Early Autumn," and his many collaborators have included Harold Arlen, Hoagy Carmichael, Duke Ellington, Jerome Kern, Gordon Jenkins, and Harry Warren. He also contributed to the scores of seven Broadway musicals and several films. Following an album with Bobby Darin and collaborations with Henry Mancini in the early '60s, Mercer's career slowed down under the onslaught of rock & roll, but time has since reconfirmed his status as an American popular music giant.

    Richard S. Ginell, All Music Guide

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