Monday Music: They Can’t Take That Away from Me (Gerswhin, sung by Ella Fitzgerald)

Andrew was playing this the other day, and I couldn’t help but stop and listen.

It seems sort of redundant to talk about the warmth and beauty of Ella Fitzgerald’s voice, but it is truly gorgeous.

Of course, what initially caught my attention was the song itself, which I recognised from the rather crazed Kenneth Branagh musical version of Love’s Labour’s Lost.  He had the characters singing it to each other at the end of the story, when the French King dies (and, in this case, World War II breaks out), and all the romances are interrupted.  Quite effective, though the whole musical does take a little getting used to. (And it’s interesting to see which characters were cast for their acting and which for their singing/dancing, too!)

And here, just for fun, here’s another Ella Fitzgerald version, this time with Louis Armstrong on the trumpet and bonus vocals.  It’s obviously later in Fitzgerald’s career – she was fabulous to start with, but her improvisation and voice production have improved in leaps and bounds.   What’s not to like?

(apart, that is, from the fact that you are probably now ear-wormed for the rest of the day…)

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