Stories of Standards: "Easy to Love"

Feb 10, 2018

Tune in to Jazz with Victor Cooper - weekdays from 6-9 a.m. MT - for Stories of Standards to hear our favorite versions of this song all week long!

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Cole Porter wrote “(You’d Be So) Easy to Love” for the 1934 Broadway show “Anything Goes”. The wide vocal range was unsuitable for the lead singer, William Gaxton, and the song was not used at that time. It was then edited and introduced in the 1936 film “Born to Dance”, where it was sung by Eleanor Powell, James Stewart, and Frances Langford. It was later added to the 1987 revival of "Anything Goes" and over 200 recordings have been made since then. Alec Wilder, in “American Popular Song: The Great Innovators, 1900-1950”, said, “If ever there was a song that shouldn’t have a note changed, it’s ‘Easy to Love.’ Nor, as far as I’m concerned, any of its harmony.”

Cole Porter (1891-1964) was a composer, lyricist and performer from childhood on. While at Yale he wrote the college fight song (“Bulldog”, still in use), was a member of the Whiffenpoofs a capella group and in his senior year was president of the Yale Glee Club as well as its principal soloist. He moved to Paris in 1917 to work with the Duryea Relief Organization and served in the French Foreign Legion. For much of his life he combined a prodigious social life with a vast outpouring of great music. At one point, when asked how he could manage this, he said “I've done lots of work at dinner, sitting between two bores. I can feign listening beautifully. I can work anywhere .”

Cole Porter